With this blog I aim to bring awareness of the issues involved in childbirth, newborn care and parenting, and show how any mother and non-specialist (like me) can go about exploring in an objective and scientific way the many different options that are out there. Rather than convincing you of my personal right (or wrong) way of doing things, I aim to make the reader aware of the issues that might come up, open up the discussion and provide some tools of investigation. My experience as a scientific researcher (in geophysics) showed me how scientific knowledge is acquired and how received opinion can change. Most significantly it gave me the confidence to dig into the medical literature and do my own research, which ultimately led to this blog.
As someone who lived in Belgium for 22 years, studied and worked in the U.K. and the U.S. in a very cosmopolitan university environment for eight years, and then moved to France to become part of yet another international community, I can assure you that huge differences exist (yes, even amongst developed countries) between what’s considered the best way to give birth and raise your children. I’ve personally witnessed Belgian doctors roll their eyes at French practices, French doctors look down their noses at Dutch home births, and American doctors turn a deaf ear to European practices. They can’t all be right, no matter with how much authority the medical profession in each country puts forward their policies.
This blog documents the different paths and theories I explored in my search to be the best mother I can be for my two children, including preparing for birth. It also portrays my own growth as a parent, a wife, and a former scientist who is aching to write again and do scientific research in addition to the everyday challenge of raising two children and running a household.
It is my sincere hope that this blog will help other parents to question the way most people have been giving birth and raising their children and realise that other choices can be made.