Spe­cial­ist ed’s note

Your Pregnancy - - Contents -

What a won­der­ful time to be preg­nant! Never be­fore has in­for­ma­tion been so read­ily avail­able, and more than ever we’re faced with so many choices – some triv­ial, some im­por­tant and vi­tal to our health and qual­ity of life. One can’t make truly in­formed de­ci­sions if one doesn’t have the in­sight and con­fi­dence that knowl­edge brings. Choices about child­birth and par­ent­ing are never as sim­ple as de­cid­ing what break­fast ce­real to eat, or what colour to paint the nurs­ery. Birth will bring about pow­er­ful emo­tions. Hope, fear, joy, anger, sad­ness and guilt to name a few. Birth will force you to ex­am­ine your val­ues and very deep feel­ings that you may have about your­self and those close to you. The birth of your child has that kind of im­pact. That’s why mak­ing the right choices dur­ing your preg­nancy is of paramount im­por­tance. What you de­cide now can and will af­fect your fu­ture and the fu­ture of your child. Be­ing free to choose how and where to have your baby is your right. Yet many of the choices we make are re­stricted and shaped by so­cial pres­sures. Ev­ery­where you turn peo­ple will be in­flu­enc­ing you about your preg­nancy, your labour, what kind of pain relief and birth you should opt for, and how you should raise your child. Choice isn’t as in­di­vid­ual and per­sonal as we would like to think. It al­ways takes place in a so­cial con­text, es­pe­cially in this day and age. It’s wise to be aware of the con­stant pres­sures that de­fine and limit the choices we make. Be sure to make the choices that you are com­fort­able with. Al­ways fol­low your gut feel­ings – they’re sel­dom wrong. Many changes have taken place in the child­birth arena since the start of this cen­tury, and birth is viewed in a very dif­fer­ent way than be­fore. I urge you to take stock, and con­sider your choices care­fully. Read all you can. But reader be­ware, not ev­ery­thing you read is gospel. At Your Preg­nancy mag­a­zine, we go to great lengths to search out rel­e­vant in­for­ma­tion to share with you. At­tend child­birth ed­u­ca­tion (an­te­na­tal) classes – but be sure you are get­ting all sides of a story, not just one side. There is noth­ing more pow­er­ful than knowl­edge. With love,

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