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

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Breath of Life

The feminist critique of pornography is not that the female body is ugly, or shouldn't be seen. The feminist critique of pornography is that it reduces women to their body parts and erases their individuality. Instead of treating women as persons, pornography treats them as objects for male enjoyment.

-- Amy Tuteur, MD

This is exactly the point of natural birthing advocates who believe a woman has a right to her body, who touches it, and how, and where and with whom she will birth. Our human body is our temple. It is where one lives, the place in which the soul occupies. From before birth the human body and soul deserve to be respected and treated as sacred. These are the old messages from previous times when women had domain over birth and the human body was revered, not seen as puritanically impure and a medical crisis.

Meanwhile, these feminists will go lay down on a table, hook up to the narcotics, and allow whatever anyone wants to do. Three nurses and two residents learning cervical checks, resident getting to his first birth, an anesthesiology and a pediatric resident or two all standing by? I doubt all that many feminists really agree with the treatment of womens' bodies in medical care, especially birth, is really inane.

Where are the feminists when it comes to Victoria Secret commercials of scantily clad women writhing on the bed or stairway during prime time commercials when my fourteen year old was watching television -- after being indoctrinated with "Just say no" and abstinance programs, and religious sermons about purity? Our society is over-sensitized and de-sensitized at the same time. Makes for great commerce in obstetrics and in consumer trade. So, how about the commercials using sex and women's bodies to sell unrelated household products? The woman in the shower making orgasmic sounds while her husband looks dejected in the bedroom (Herbal Essence Shampoo.) Or, the man and woman getting physical while Uncle Ben's rice cooks quickly in the microwave. Working women, with so little time, are reduced to messages of sexuality and intimacy in five minutes waiting for the rice? We are bombarded by the messages with women's bodies and sex that human sense of loss, lack of intimacy, and lack of respect for women's bodies -- and men's too, for crying out loud.

Feminism -- who even knows what that means these days. Traditionally, it is the hard-core women whose focus in on career and being equal to men in a world where no one is really happy because of their career and amassing money and things. Some of the greatest "feminists" I know are women who are IN THEIR BODY, living a spiritually, emotionally, and physiologically evolving life -- finding her real worth and her work -- usually healing decades of buying into the myth, the cultural mental virus that sold them (and their children) out. Taking back her body and her life, that's what natural birth and healing birth is all about.

Acknowledging the extraordinary divinity of being a life giver, a woman of the species, doesn't have to take away from her other abilities and glorious aspects of being human -- brilliant, mathematical, scientific, motivated, industrious, contributing to the world through other aspects other than being a mother. Feminists are not immune from the angst of multiple conflicting desires and from guilt of decisions that seemed right at the time but are later hard to live with. Women whose self-esteem comes from career accomplishments are stressed and tired and they live the myth of having it all -- satisfying work and career and a relationship, family, and being a good mother. Any woman of age, with children especially adult children, knows she can have it all, just not all at the same time. She also knows the price paid for focusing on the world rather than herself and her children. I don't quite get the feminist writings today against the natural birth beliefs that medical birth controls the physiology of women. You'd think they'd be the first to identify being controlled by the male oriented obstetric, medical care of women's bodies. And, they don't see the poor research behind the propagation of "maternal choice" as leading women by the nose to the slaughter. So weird -- I'll have to ponder this some more. Hey! I wonder if it is the effects of generations of drugs , tied down, and maniupulated that numbs emotions and clouds the view?

Throughout history, that natural birthing returns to in many ways, was a time of revering the cycles of women's lives. Young girls were revered, not jeered at and molested. Women were honored for being the bringer of life and in nurturing and mothering those souls she brought for. When that cycle of feminine life was finished she was not castigated as worthless, but rather she was supported to enter into HER time and HER work. The culture revered the older women who finished mothering and moved into her work. Sure, it's glamorized these days. Who knows, maybe the man beat the crap out of his woman then, raped young girls and boys, the women demanded to be hunters and not stay home in such an unappreciated role.

Whether we are male or female at the end of the day, and life, the spiritual teaching of every religion is really love. And, our measurement of good life is about how much one loved and was loved. In the Aramaic language that Jesus spoke our breath is our connection to Source, to Life, to God, and every other living thing. One of the teachings puts a new perspective on "inheriting the earth" and that is that at the end of the day all one really has, no matter what they have accomplished and gained in the world, is their breath. Breathing has to become a intentional practice to feel connected on the level we seek. Nursing doesn't do it. Service work doesn't do it. Winning the lottery or working oneself to death to earn six figures doesn't bring the happiness and feeling of love. It's all within, is the teaching of every religious, and in our connection to others. In Jesus' native language, the connect is throug breath. In six minutes without air anyone of us is gone from this existence and it is our breath that takes us there. Whether one is Dr. So-n-so, or Oprah, George W, or Bill Gates who has more money than three combined countries in Africa, or whether one is a child in Africa or the homeless person one passed by today, it doesn't really matter because all ANYONE really has is their breath.

A day of meetings, or patients, shopping, or performing "life-saving" surgeries after inducing a baby's labor (and all the riches it brings) just never compares to being in the arms of a loved one, or watching your baby or child or lover with deep love for them, or watching them sleep and just taking in the beauty of it, watching them breath, taking them in. Finding yourself insinc with them. It's usually a moment of pure joy -- that we seek in every breath.

Breath is about life, about connection to the mother, and to the Source. Our life here, our view of the world here is created during the birth experience. Our first breaths are critical to how we will live and love. STOP CLAMPING THE CORDS OF BABIES and LET THE MOTHER'S BODY SUPPORT HER BABY TO TRANSITION AND RELEASE THE PLACENTA. Is that so friggin' hard and does it really take a medical degree to know this? Does it really have to become a "FEMINIST" issue? Whatever that is?

BReeeeeeeeATHE, everybody .... but don't push until YOU feel YOUR urge to do so ........ if there is not a man there to catch, not to worry .... catch yourself.

1 comment:

Rachael said...

I had to laugh when I read that post by Dr. Amy. Really, it's gone beyond silly- I don't think even she believes what she wrote- she has had fewer and fewer comments lately, and needed to be as provocative as possible to generate more. She was looking for a button to push, and found it.

"This is exactly the point of natural birthing advocates who believe a woman has a right to her body, who touches it, and how, and where and with whom she will birth."
I don't necessarily agree with all aspects of natural childbirth advocacy, but this is one of the very reasons I chose a midwife instead of a doctor- the fact that a woman's body is NOT objectified and disrespected by the midwifery community (in general). I had a hospital birth, and I knew from experience that I wouldn't be treated as an individual, a person with my own unique needs. I would be just another patient coming down the line, made to fit a pre-determined scenario for labor, whether it actually fit or not. Likewise, my baby would be treated similarly.
Dr. Amy's insistence that natural childbirth advocates objectify women's bodies is utter stupidity. It just makes no sense.
Anyway, I'm new to this blog- I enjoy reading it.

"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