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Book reviews for "Gaskin,_Ina_May" sorted by average review score:

Ina May's Guide to Childbirth: Discover the Proven Wisdom That Has Guided Thousands of Women Through Childbirth With More Confidence, Less Pain, and Little or No Medical Intervention
Published in Paperback by Bantam Doubleday Dell Pub (Trd Pap) (04 March, 2003)
Author: Ina May Gaskin
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Changed How I Viewed Giving Birth
I'm 17 weeks pregnant, and while I'm overjoyed to be pregnant...I've always been afraid of the pain I'll experience during childbirth. Reading Ina May's book, and the birth stories of the women in it, has changed all of that. I feel that I can handle labor now...and am even toying with the idea of not using drugs. (Prior to this, I used to say that I'd like an epidural plus any other drug they'd give me.) Even if I end up using some pain meds, I know I'll be entering the labor process without the level of fear I had before. That is priceless. This is a must-read for any pregnant woman and her husband...whether or not she wants to have a medicated or non-medicated birth. Bravo Ina May! Just wish I lived closer to TN so that I could use her services.

Better than the girlfriends by a landslide
I have known Ina May for a long time, and I have been waiting for this book for years. Now that I have my copy in hand, I am not disappointed. First off, she starts the book with 100 plus pages of birth stories. Wonderful birth stories, scary birth stories, maddening birth stories, and even second generation birth stories. I loved reading the story of the birth of Mariahna, and then several pages later the story of how Mariahna herself gave birth. There is a special bonus in the birth story of two obstetricians (a married couple) giving birth. The book would be worth the investment if only for the birth stories.
Part two of the book includes well written and researched information on pregnancy, birth, midwifery, and obstetrics. It includes a historical perspective that is fascinating and imformative. Statistics and research are covered in a way that is neither dry nor boring.
I highly recommend that anyone pregnant, contemplating pregnancy, or involved with pregnant women should read this book. While one may disagree with some of the conclusions and recommendations, the data is compelling and the recommendations both evidence based and cost effective.
When the wealthiest country in the world has criminally high infant and maternal mortality and morbidity rates, it is time for some change. Read the last chapter (first if you like) for a vision of how that change might be brought about.

Exactly the book that's needed in this Epidural Age
Anyone associated with the childbirth genre knows of Ina May, and her many devotees have been waiting a long time for this book. It couldn't have come at a better time, as legions of today's women voluntarily turn to the tricks of modern obstetrics, notably epidemic epidurals.
I'm a retired midwife (and author of Baby Catcher, a modern midwifery memoir), and feel I learned a good bit of my craft by listening to Gaskin speak, visiting The Farm a bazillion years ago, and reading and rereading and rereading Spiritual Midwifery. But much in obstetrics has changed since Spir. Mid. was published; at that time, natural childbirth was all the vogue, and Ina May was sort of preaching to the choir. Now, oh lordy, now things are very, very different. Cesarean rates hover around 25-30% in some hospitals, and the epidural rate is twice that. What are these women thinking??
It was by studying Ina May's 'style' that I realized the power of teaching by parable: the power of story-telling. Women's eyes glaze over when they're lectured to, but their attention is rivited by birth stories. In this Guide to Childbirth, Gaskin deals with the changes in modern OB and offers ways to get around the routines. But she once again relies on her story-telling techniques for getting across her central message: If you're surrounded by people who believe you can do it and who support your own belief that you can do it, then guess what? You can do it.

Babies, Breastfeeding and Bonding
Published in Paperback by Bergin & Garvey (1989)
Author: Ina May Gaskin
Amazon base price: $12.95
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valuable information
Ina May Gaskin is the same author of Spiritual Midwifery and now writes a great book about breastfeeding. In this book, she provides tons of valuable information about the history of breastfeeding, the techniques, and solutions to common problems. I truly value this book because it helped me understand the bigger issues surrounding breastfeeding and understanding the best way to feed my child. I believe that the best part of the book is when Ina May shares the experience of losing one of her children. It touched me in the farthest depths of my soul. I value this woman's opinions and know that she is giving the advice that she has personally tested. I love this book and highly suggest to every woman even those who don't have children.

Spiritual Midwifery
Published in Paperback by Book Pub Co (1990)
Authors: Ina May Gaskin, Alan Bishop, and Mark Schlichting
Amazon base price: $16.95
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A classic. A "must have".
This book changed my life! Iread it about 13 years ago and it was the deciding factor in my going to nursing school. (at that time direct entry midwives were illegal in Florida). This book totally reinforces "birth" as a spiritual and natural event. Ina May also stresses the importance of babies in the birthing process and in our lives, as well as the relationship of the mother and father. This book offers positive affirmations of the birthing process that it should be read by anyone who is pregnant or wants to be.

hippie terminology, but excellent information
When I first read this book, I must admit I was put off by the hippie language, and the way they referred to contractions as "rushes", which are an interesting sensation that requires all of your attention. I thought, who are they trying to kid? Despite my initial reaction, I have grown to love this book. If you can ignore the groovy hippie language (if it bothers you), this is a super book, chock full of consise information for both pregnant families and midwives. The language is plain, no "medicalese", and the information is sound. The book was written about The Farm, an intentional community started in Tennessee in the 1970's. When the women of the Farm started having babies, some women became midwives to serve them. Learning from experience and some helpful doctors and texts, they have had excellent results with maternal and infant health. Their statistics are better than any hospital I know of, as far as maternal and perinatal mortality. The book is half birth stories, and half information for parents and midwives. I recommend it for both consumers and midwives.

Dated style but timeless content
To get the real, and very great, value of this book, you have to be able to tolerate its hippie style. Women don't have "pains" or "contractions," they have "rushes," etc. And lots of psychedelic decorative illustrations! But it's worth looking past those superficial things, because Ina May Gaskin and the women (and a few men) who contributed to her book have a tremendous amount of profound wisdom about birth. I read this book between the second and third of my three births -- all unmedicated, all in hospitals -- and I attribute mainly to its influence the much greater level of joy that accompanied every part of my third childbirth -- the easy parts and the hard parts, the work parts and even the scary parts. A great book to read in your second trimester as you try to integrate what is coming your way -- and an indispensable book to have read if you work with or support women in or approaching childbirth.

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