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

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hyper-Masculine Idea of Fatherhood

I am very much enjoying the "break" from editing due to the emails, calls, and plans to go east to spend time with and film a father's group, all compliments of the trailer. I am very, very much appreciating the commenters and posters on lists talking about the film. I am finding it very helpful in preparing for the next phase.

crabgrass Says:

what really got to me was the way that the trailer was so focused on triggering the “protect” aspect of fatherhood/masculinity. there was a way that it was really working to appeal to this hyper-masculine idea of fatherhood. I don’t think the entire film will be more expansive, because I think that the baseline rationale for the film is that fathers need to be empowered (as manly men!) to step in and protect their wives and babies from the abuse of the medical system.
problematic, yet interesting.

What really "gets to me" about the film is how rich and giving it is -- every one has sees and experiences it their different triggers and see that that is what it's about. Based on who they are and "where they are".

I hope you'll go to my blog, and and read about why the film is for men and about men.

It is not at all about being manly men .. and it will expand beyond what one can imagine, beyond feminism. It has for me. It will look at what happens when men are able to heal their own primal wounding as baby boys -- born "under the influence of drugs" as were their mothers, "he cut me so bad" stories, separated and treated harshly by strangers, often women -- like the baby in the film who was brutalized by four strange women.

Most adult men --and only part of the male babies now - ere not breastfed, were brought to their mother on a schedule and cried in the nursery, and most often, their penis mutilated. This was often done by causing an erection. This is the story of most men over 25. Only episeotomy, breastfeeding and rooming in has truly changed significantly, Many babies are not circumcised, but there are still subjected to cord clamping before the placenta is birthed, and this suctioning for "meconium risk" that is now routine, despite the research showing there is no reason. NO reason. It makes no difference on meconium aspiration syndrome. 30% of all babies are born surgically. Circumcision is still done in a majority of cases.

There is a whole psychological phenomenon to be unfolded ... how it is that historically men whose innate need is to protect, yet they have taken us to war repeatedly, raped and pilfered, and until recently it was rarely a woman who would abuse a child sexually.

The men in the film were so the opposite of the hyper-masculine, manly men. They were vulnerable, tearful, speaking of their feelings that men rarely access -- helplessness, powerlessness, guilt, and shame. ALL of it related to THEIR experience of their babies births. ALL of them embracing their earliest parts in order to be better men, and one the ways they do so is to support their partner's biological and physiological needs in birth.

Most women, varied by many comments around the web, are totally unaware of their partners need to have their story heard, to have their perspective of the experience of birthing their child heard, felt, and acknowledged. Honored. It is not just women who experience the birth of their baby. And, when they can figure that out, they can "be with" their baby to tell his or her perspective of their birth. The baby has a story. The baby girl, and the baby boy. It starts there. It changes there.

The film is about healing the masculine, and doing so by being embraced as also wounded, by women. Women and men need to work together to heal the wounding of the feminine and the masculine.

It's about the phenomenon of how men - a Marine deployed to Iraq three times - can be giant in the world and yet be brought to his knees by a family physician and an obstetric nurse.

It is about the inner healing that creates gentle protectors -- it's about a man seeing his baby for the first time and what that means to him and to his baby and the baby-mama.

The father who pounded on the glass is one of those. His story, in full, is about how he gently, and powerfully, protected his daughter ... he was watching a circumcision when he pounded on the glass. When a LD deliver nurse insisted that he leave his wife and go to wait in the waiting room and he refused, and she began to push his chest, a 6'4" man, he simply, "Oh, no, I am not going anywhere" and their doctor happen to come by at that moment to "ok it." It is not a hyper-masculine perspective encouraging him and other fathers to fight for peace in the hospital. It is about the caregivers, mostly WOMEN not violating the man, usurping his power, and ignoring his wishes and plans for his family. It is about the caregivers honoring birth, protecting the father's experience so he can be present with his partner and baby.

You leave me with a pondering of how "protection" is equated with hyper-masculine and the "manly man.'  When I am talkin' about women, mostly women, betrayers of women in the hyper-masculine, wounded masculine, overpowering, disempowering male-dominated system, acting like hyper-masculine women, manly women. For the pay check. Because they believe that they can achieve equality through work, career, and income. We're talking mothering here. Mothering the mother. Mothering the father. Fathering the mother. Fathering the father.  Creating it.

Good information for me ... thanks so much for the post.

No comments:

"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