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Birth

Why do I talk birth when I'm a postpartum doula?

anna
Why do I spend so much time banging on about birth info when I’m actually a postpartum doula? Because, quite simply, we can’t pretend birth doesn’t influence postpartum.
The impact, as any mother or person whose experienced a traumatic or amazing birth will tell you, is massive. As such, preparing for birth is, in a way, preparing for postpartum, but we can’t end our efforts at birth affirmations.
My tips are:
1️⃣Get independent birth AND lactation education. You can’t re…

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Where is this leading? What it looks like when systemic birth interventions go unchecked

Sometimes when I speak with women and parents about birth interventions and systemic trauma, they wonder aloud “where does this end?”
The answer is this: left unchecked, it doesn’t.
In Brazil 82% of private hospital births are Caesareans. The total rate across the country is 55.8%. The episiotomy rate for vaginal birth is 94.2%.
Why?
The article “Why Most Brazilian Women Get C-Sections” in The Atlantic explains in detail, but in short:
-It’s a way to “optimise”…

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The Default or The Doula? Why We Need To Talk About Birth Partners Now More Than Ever.

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Imagine waddling up to the desk at the maternity ward, labour in full swing. The masked midwife offers you a choice of Room One or Two. They are identical rooms, staffed by the same care team, and you are allowed one support person regardless of which room you choose.

Choose Room Two, she tells you, and your labour will be on average 41 minutes shorter than in Room One. You’ll be 31% less likely to need drugs to speed up your labour and 28% less likely to deliver via caesarean. You’ll also be…

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Again? Birthing Parents Ignored Again While Hillsong Parties Down The Road

I went on my first school camp at Glenrock Scout Camp, aged around 9 or 10 years old. That place has been in the news lately, but it wasn’t a big deal then.
What I remember as a view from a bunk bed, a movie night and a cold lagoon has been used in the last few days for Hillsong’s “Wildlife” event and summer camp. Footage from the event (released by Hillsong Youth in their own social media, not leaked), shows hundreds of people singing and dancing to performers inside a massive tent, …

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Mothers And Birth Parents Are Not Doormats. It's Time We Stopped Trampling Them.

not your passenger
“I’ll schedule your induction for Wednesday”

“I’ll check your cervix now”

“This will make the placenta come faster”

“They’re latching fine, you’ll get used to it”

“It’s policy to place them back in the crib”

“Just let them cry, they’ll soothe themselves”

“Tongue ties aren’t real”

“Start topping up with formula after each feed”

“It’s normal to feel low/anxious/exhausted”

“You should be grateful you had any leave at all”

“Mayb…

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Is It Time For A Royal Commission Into Birth?

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Today Western Sydney University Professor of Midwifery Hannah Dahlen posed two questions of her social media audience in response to 2021 update of the “Australia’s Mothers and Babies” report, released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare last week.

The first question, “what the hell are we doing?”, comes on the back of the following 2019 statistics from the publication last week.

As of 2019, Australia’s caesarean birth rate is now 36% (and 37% for first time mothers and birth par…

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Catching Up Post-Lockdown? 6 questions you can ask new parents before you meet their new baby

6 questions to ask a new mum
New parents might have felt sad or isolated through lockdown. They might also be feeling anxious about restrictions easing.
Here are 6 questions you can ask new parents before you meet their new baby to help them feel prepared for and safe during your visit, and to help you feel a lot less awkward about not knowing where their personal boundaries lie.

1. Would you like to meet up soon, or hold off a while?
You may be busting to meet the baby, but ultimately your job …

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Research Update: Pregnancy and COVID-19 Vaccination

Below is the transcript of the video and audio research update I recorded on 10th Sept 2021 on the topic of pregnancy and vaccination against COVID-19. This information is information only, and does not take the place of individualised advice and consultation with your medical team. I hope you find this useful, and please feel free to share this resource with anyone you think might be interested.

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Hello my name is Anna Cusack, I am an author, a doula, Certified Motherhood Studies Practition…

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White Privilege and My Empowered Home Birth

annacusackpostpartum my empowered home birth white privilege

My empowered home birth was a reflection of my inner work and outer advocacy, but also relied upon my white privilege.

To access a publicly-funded homebirth service is rare in Australia.

You need to be located within striking distance to hospital. ABS data from 2019 tells us that only 10% of non-Indigenous people live outside major city and inner regional areas, while 39% of Indigenous people live outside these zones.

You need to be a “low risk pregnancy”. Because I am a white Australian, I haven’t…

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Birth Rights are Human Rights

anna birth rights
Maternity services across NSW lockdown zones are applying different rules to birthing people and their access to support during labour and postnatal stays.

These are changing, so check with your own service provider what the situation is. From what I can ascertain, the current best-case scenario is 2 support people are allowed during labour and beyond, at worst it is 1 for the duration.

If you had planned for your partner to be your only support person and visitor, you're good to…

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