The Other Side of the Glass

Part One was officially released June 2013 in digital distribution format. To purchase to to If you were a donor and want to download your copy send an email to

The trailer

Monday, November 20, 2006

Welcome, One and All

Welcome to the Hospital Birth Debate blog.

While my heart's desire is to inspire and support respectful DIALOG between those who support and provide either homebirth or hospital birth (or birth center), the purpose of this blog is to allow opportunity for viewers and posters of the blog, to discuss hospital birth. Those of us who have tried to contribute information and discuss the lack of safety in hospital births (due to misuse of drugs and interventions) have been banned. Those who shared experiences of peaceful, powerful, and even feeling orgasmic during birth are called liars because there is no scientifc proof. This is the place to be heard and to post your links to support natural, physiological birth as well as your links to the science thats show us WHEN and HOW that birth is safe in the hospital, or not.

The scientific research demands that WE, as a society, look at the consequences of drugs, interventions, and other disruptions to the human baby during his or her birth and hold medicine accountable. I hope doing so will logically, scientifically, and naturally lead to a DIALOG about how to make birth safest WHERE EVER it takes place and with whomever is the primary caregiver, midwife or doctor. I wish for this sharing and discussing of the literature about the experience of hospital birth to begin the dialog about HOW we create respectful partnerships between a birthing woman and caregiver whether home or hospital, or both. I wish for us to dialog about HOW doctors and midwives (and society) can engage with a woman and her gestating baby (body and brain) as if it really MATTERS for the developing baby's brain. That discussion is on

In a safe world, a woman is responsble for her body and her health and so, she is held accountable for her choices and outcomes – as she is protected and nurtured in every possible way to gestate and birth gently and safely. In a safe world she has access to the greatest technology available SHOULD she need it and she has access to cooperative, respectful, partners of midwives and doctors who honor the consciousness of the laboring and birthing baby. AND, the BIG bottom-line is that in a safe world everyone in society knows WHATEVER we do with, to, and for that gestating or laboring or birthing woman and baby WILL also be experienced by that baby.

We know now logically and scientifically that everything that happens to a baby will be recorded in his or her brain. For life.

We know that narcotics during labor and birth is not without consequence. HOW we engage with a woman and her gestating baby (body and brain) would be MY choice of a dialog, NOT a debate. How any interaction with her and any intervention affects her baby would be my choice topic. I have studied this field with pioneers in the field for almost seven years and I am practitioner of healing birth trauma. As a poster on the homebirthdebate blog, my links to the scientific researchers and practitioners were banned and so was I. Many were also banned who who support homebirth and attempted to discuss research that supports the growing importance for options outside of hospitals (ie., increasing surgical rates) and demands by women to give birth at home -- often to feel safe and respected, knowing they are very unsafe in the current hospital environment.

I feel the need to offer an opportunity to discuss what was not allowed and was banned. This is not my blog, per se; it is just to allow the silenced voices and to provide women who are looking at the debate in their researching to have both views. On the Home Birth blog women's stories are denigrated and denied as not scientifically valid and those who speak up are blanned. One of my own babies, now 23, is on the ground in Iraq proudly making the greatest of sacrifices in defending our freedoms, including speech -- never in my life have I taken my freedoms and rights so seriously. Nor, have I considered so powerfully those who defended and died for that. Our sons and daughters.

We women are silenced and violated in modern medical birth, and in the discussion of how hospital birth harms us and our babies. During his birth I was asked repeatedly to take drugs, his membranes were ruptured without my consent for other's time frames, resulting in the need for fetal scalp monitor, and of course, brutal interventions in the first moments of his life. It's about time we stopped creating warriors and spreading this way of birth around the world as "scientific".

We can contribute to a harmonious world, rather than terrorism, by intervening only when necessary and doing so with awareness, safe, and gentle touch. I won't be silenced now by a physician who refuses to listen to women and honor their stories, and so I provide the opportunity to discuss safety (or lack of) in Hospital Birth. God speed, my boy, now a man -- my hero, Lt Joe Uray, and all of your brave colleagues. Thank for you each for doing the unthinkable that our society has demanded of you, and set you up at birth to do.

First, let me state my beliefs that:
  • birth is neither safER or safEST in either enviornment -- at home with a qualified midwife or in the hospital with a qualified physician.
  • birth is a physiological, biological process of the human being's sacred passage into this world.
  • birth is truly safe only when there is mutally respectful partnership between midwifery model of physiological birth and the medical science model of obstetrical medicine.
    women must be given social, political, and systemic rights to her body and to choose where and with whom she gives birth.
  • it is the responsbility of medical caregivers to embrace the evidence-based science and to participate in building the bridge between home and hospital birth.
Those who support homebirth, I think it is safe to say and let me know if otherwise, we generally agree with these:

Yes, birth at home without medical care is dangerous for a high risk woman.

Yes, sometimes, no matter where a woman chooses to give birth to her baby, unforeseen complications will arise and medical technology can save her and her baby. And, some babies are doomed to not survive where ever they are born. It is so rare that it does not justify forcing every woman to adhere to medical birth interventions on "in case" basis, which is unnecessarily traumatizing to the newborn.
Yes, a woman who has the right to keep or terminate a pregnancy, ought to have the right to choose where and with whom she labors and gives birth WHILE having the best, evidenced-based medical care available.

What some supporters of midwifery, homebirth, and physiological birth know intuitively, but not necessarily consciously yet is that:

The field of pre and perinatal psychology embraces physiological and medical models of care; and, importantly, teaches HOW to be with these mothers and babies who need medically necessary intervention in ways that can faciliate a NON-traumatic experience. The science from a mulitude of scientic studies merge to show us how it is that AFTER birth we can assist the mother and baby to heal – even from cesarean surgery. It leads us to:
  • knowing and demanding that we must first, “DO NO HARM” in medical birth.
  • seriously evaluating the physiological, hormonal consequences of disrupting birth and we can work differently to avoid undue trauma.
  • demand for medical caregivers (mothers) to stop what they are doing that we know is traumatizing.
  • seeing the laboring and birthing human baby as a full present human being who is violated and who voice is ignored at birth.
It IS known in the literature that the experience of the labor, birth, and early hours are as critical as the prenatal period. The baby's experience of HIS or HER birth is that human being's first experience. It is known that the joys and traumas of birth are a part of that human's earliest brain experience and this is a foundation or lens for the rest of life. The physical experience -- gentle loving touch or rough handling, forceps, or vacuum, needles, resuscitation -- are all remembered – in the early, emotional, reactive, non-verbal brain.

On the Home Birth Debate blog, the blogger refuses to allow any of the scientific evidence showing that interventions are dangerous, that they lead to further interventions and create lifelong issues to be discussed. So, bring it on here!

This is where we talk about the inherent safety issues of hospital birth. It is NOT a place to bash doctors or nurses – they are trained to believe that the human baby is not affected by rough treatment and drugs. They are trained to believe the human being doesn’t remember labor and birth experiences, just pre and postnatal ones. Be kind to one another here, and keep the focus on the research in the context of what a woman and a baby need physiologically, emotionally, and spiritually during labor and birth.

So, with that said, I must provide an overview of the Homebirthdebate blog where the debate grinds on about the loss of life and a live baby as the measurement of where birth is safest.

The debate ignores and disallows anyone to post research or theories or questions about the immediate and lifelong effects of using unneccesary drugs and interventions that are known (inside and outside of medicine) to be for medical staff convenience and litigation avoidance, not about the baby's needs and timing.

The debate further disallows a DISCUSSION about HOW to use these inventions with consciousness and compassion in the cases where interventions are necessary to ensure a live baby and mother.

The debate ignores the socially and politcally evolved "standard of care" that now allow medical caregivers to routinely use unnecessary medical interventions on otherwise healthy women and babies.

The debate ignores and disallows a discussion of how this "standard of care" purports safety of drugs at birth by instead focusing on a woman's right to chose drugs for pain relief, despite the lack of scientific research that drugs were EVER researched for safety for the baby or the mother.

The debate ignores the poor scientific methods of NOW comparing control groups of women and babies exposed to different narcotics (never shown safe) or situations or interventions.

The debate further ignores the science of basic physiology that clearly shows the complications of drugs, artifical hormones, interventions (especially surgical) to the health and wellness of the human baby, despite the scientific understanding and facts that we do know about the effects of introducing artificial hormones and narcotics on the adult brain and body.

These are the issues about which I invite you to participate in discussing and sharing your information.
Janel Martin-Miranda

1 comment:

Mama Liberty said...

Thank you for starting this blog, Janel. It sounds like we will have some interesting discussion here. Unfortunately, the most interesting issues raised on the other blog were always immediately dismissed without a deeper investigation and dialogue on the issues. I look forward to spirited discussions and true dialogue on the research and science of birth! I also look forward to hearing about the experiences of others.


"Soft is the heart of a child. Do not harden it."

A public awareness reminder that things that happen behind the scenes, out of our sight, aren't always as rosy as we might think them to be. Perhaps its a restaurant cook who accidentally drops your burger on the floor before placing it on the bun and serving it to you. Here it's an overworked apathetic (pathetic) nurse giving my newborn daughter her first bath. Please comment and rate this video, so as to insure that it is viewed as widely as possible, perhaps to prevent other such abuse. -- The mother who posted this YouTube. How NOT to wash a baby on YouTube Are you going to try to tell me that "babies don't remember?" There is no difference to this baby's experience and the imprinting of her nervous system/brain and one that is held and cleaned by the mother or father either at the hospital or at home? By the way, this is probably NOT the baby's first bath. The nurse is ungloved. Medical staff protocol is that they can't handle a baby ungloved until is has been bathed (scrubbed if you've seen it) because the baby is a BIO-HAZARD -- for them. Never mind that the bio-hazard IS the baby's first line of defense against hospital germs.

Missouri Senator Louden Speaks

Finally, A Birth Film for Fathers

Part One of the "The Other Side of the Glass: Finally, A Birth Film for and about Men" was released June, 2013.

Through presentation of the current research and stories of fathers, the routine use of interventions are questioned. How we protect and support the physiological need of the human newborn attachment sequence is the foundation for creating safe birth wherever birth happens.

Based on knowing that babies are sentient beings and the experience of birth is remembered in the body, mind, and soul, fathers are asked to research for themselves what is best for their partner and baby and to prepare to protect their baby.

The film is designed for midwives, doulas, and couples, particularly fathers to work with their caregivers. Doctors and nurses in the medical environment are asked to "be kind" to the laboring, birthing baby, and newborn. They are called to be accountable for doing what science has been so clear about for decades. The mother-baby relationship is core for life. Doctors and nurses and hospital caregivers and administrators are asked to create protocols that protect the mother-baby relationship.

Men are asked to join together to address the vagaries of the medical system that harm their partner, baby and self in the process of the most defining moments of their lives. Men are asked to begin to challenge the system BEFORE they even conceive babies as there is no way to be assured of being able to protect his loved ones once they are in the medical machine, the war zone, on the conveyor belt -- some of the ways that men describe their journey into fatherhood in the medicine culture.

Donors can email to get a digital copy.
Buy the film at

The film focuses on the male baby, his journey from the womb to the world and reveals healing and integrating the mother, father, and baby's wounded birth experience. The film is about the restoring of our families, society, and world through birthing loved, protected, and nurtured males (and females, of course). It's about empowering males to support the females to birth humanity safely, lovingly, and consciously.

Finally, a birth film for fathers.

What People Are Saying About the FIlm

Well, I finally had a chance to check out the trailer and .. wow! It's nice that they're acknowledging the father has more than just cursory rights (of course mom's rights are rarely acknowledged either) and it's great that they're bringing out the impact of the experience on the newborn, but I'm really impressed that they're not shying away from the political side.

They are rightly calling what happens in every American maternity unit, every day, by its rightful name - abuse. Abuse of the newborn, abuse of the parents and their rights, abuse of the supposedly sacrosanct ethical principal of patient autonomy and the medico-legal doctrine of informed consent, which has been long ago discarded in all but name. I love it!

In the immortal words of the "shrub", "bring it on!" This film needs to be shown and if I can help facilitate or promote it, let me know.

Father in Asheville, NC

OMG'ess, I just saw the trailer and am in tears. This is so needed. I watch over and over and over as fathers get swallowed in the fear of hospitals birth practice. I need a tool like this to help fathers see how very vital it is for them to protect their partner and baby. I am torn apart every time I see a father stand back and chew his knuckle while his wife is essentially assaulted or his baby is left to lie there screaming.
Please send me more info!!!!
Carrie Hankins
CD(DONA), CCCE, Aspiring Midwife

Thanks for sharing this. It was very touching to me. I thought of my brother-in-law standing on the other side of the glass when my sister had to have a C-section with her first child because the doctor was missing his golf date. I'll never forget his pacing back and forth and my realizing that he was already a father, even though he hadn't been allowed to be with his son yet.

Margaret, Columbia, MO

In case you don't find me here

Soon, I'll be back to heavy-duty editing and it will be quiet here again. I keep thinking this blog is winding down, and then it revives. It is so important to me.

I wish I'd kept a blog of my journey with this film this past 10 months. It's been amazing.

I have a new blog address for the film, and will keep a journal of simple reporting of the journey for the rest of the film.

I'll be heading east this week to meet with a group of men. I plan to post pictures and clips on the film blog.

I'll keep up here when I can -- when I learn something juicy, outrageous, or inspiring related to making birth safer for the birthing baby.

Review of the film

Most of us were born surrounded by people who had no clue about how aware and feeling we were. This trailer triggers a lot of emotions for people if they have not considered the baby's needs and were not considered as a baby. Most of us born in the US were not. The final film will include detailed and profound information about the science-based, cutting-edge therapies for healing birth trauma.

The full film will have the interviews of a wider spectrum of professionals and fathers, and will include a third birth, at home, where the caregivers do a necessary intervention, suctioning, while being conscious of the baby.

The final version will feature OBs, RNs, CNMs, LM, CPM, Doulas, childbirth educators, pre and perinatal psychologists and trauma healing therapists, physiologists, neurologists, speech therapists and lots and lots of fathers -- will hopefully be done in early 2009.

The final version will include the science needed to advocated for delayed cord clamping, and the science that shows when a baby needs to be suctioned and addresses other interventions. Experts in conscious parenting will teach how to be present with a sentient newborn in a conscious, gentle way -- especially when administering life-saving techniques.

The goal is to keep the baby in the mother's arms so that the baby gets all of his or her placental blood and to avoid unnecessary, violating, and abusive touch and interactions. When we do that, whether at home or hospital, with doctor or midwife, the birth is safe for the father. The "trick" for birthing men and women is how to make it happen in the hospital.

Birth Trauma Healing

Ani DeFranco Speaks About Her Homebirth

"Self-Evident" by Ani DeFranco

Patrick Houser at

Colin speaks out about interventions at birth