Our Core Values
To inform, inspire and support expectant parents to realize their own best vision for a healthy and joyful passage into parenthood.
We believe that pregnancy and birth are normal life events …
and reject the fear-based notion that pregnancy is a disease cured by the birth of the baby or that birth is an emergency waiting to happen. While a small percentage of women will experience complications during their pregnancy or birth that require medical intervention, the process itself is not inherently pathological. Rather, it is perfectly designed for humans and all other mammals and it works well! A little odd if not …
We will teach you all the practices that help birth stay “normal.” There is extensive evidence favoring the following Six Healthy Birth Practices:
- Let labor begin on its own.
- Walk, move around and change positions throughout labor.
- Bring a loved one, friend or doula for continuous support.
- Avoid interventions that are not medically necessary.
- Avoid giving birth on your back and follow your body’s urges to push.
- Keep mother and baby together, skin-to-skin.
We think some skepticism is warranted.
A national cesarean rate of 33 percent is too high. Literally one-third of women entering U.S. hospitals to have a baby today end up undergoing major abdominal surgery. For comparison purposes, in 1970, the national cesarean rate was 5 percent. If the escalation in use of the potentially life-saving cesarean correlated with a decrease in maternal or infant mortality rates, then we could reasonably conclude that its use is warranted. But this is not the case. Instead, the U.S. has consistently ranked among the highest in infant mortality when compared to other industrialized nations.
We encourage a consumer approach to childbirth that puts you in the driver seat and helps you determine the benefits, risks and alternatives to medical interventions in birth, thereby encouraging you to individualize the care you receive.
We believe that the quality and experience of birth and early parenthood have far-reaching consequences for moms, babies, families and society as a whole. Too many women today are experiencing birth as traumatic. Research shows that when women are well supported and nurtured during childbirth, they become better nurturers as mothers.
We believe in helping parents be proactive in planning for a positive birth experience. You deserve to have your needs met and, even when things don’t go according to plan, birth need not be traumatic. We encourage parents to stay flexible and equip them to deal with any curve balls that may come their way.
Breastfeeding is best for moms and babies.
We encourage all mothers to breastfeed and provide the education, encouragement and support to help you be successful with your breastfeeding goals. From prenatal breastfeeding classes to postnatal mother-baby drop-in groups, and a lactation consultant and breastfeeding boutique onsite … we are a one-stop shop for all things breastfeeding! See The Breastfeeding Center of Ann Arbor for more information.
We understand that one size does not fit all.
Each mother, baby and family is unique. We do not purport that there is one right way to give birth or to parent your child. If an induction of labor or an epidural to manage pain are the right choices for you, we will teach you techniques for minimizing the downside of these interventions. If your goal is to achieve an all-natural childbirth, we will equip you to be successful.
Our bottom line is, we provide evidence-based information and encourage informed decision making. Then we trust you to make decisions, in conjunction with your chosen caregiver, that are right for you. If you don’t know what your choices are, you may as well not have any.