Preach It!

No one can tell a woman what is best for her and her baby ... waterbirth, homebirth, hospital birth, doctor, midwife, Unassisted Childbirth (UC) or cesarean surgery ... it is for her and her baby to know. The best we can do is support her to access, trust, and know her own inner wisdom and communicate with the Being within her - the One whose birth it is through her womb and the man. - Janel Mirendah, Attachment/Birth trauma therapist, Filmmaker of The Other Side of the Glass.

Watch It! (The Trailer)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Inspired by Mercola's plan to make milk. Like he even could.

"We need to do whatever it takes to help women give their babies and young children the lifelong benefits of high quality mothering and stop subsidizing an ideology that promotes risky and inadequate substitutes." -- Peter Cook, PhD in Mothering Denied

He is speaking the institutionalized care of children in day care with adults who do not love the child and he is speaking about the nurturing needs of the human baby. The baby needs to be nurtured and nourished by the mother via breastfeeding not risky substitutes.

When most women hear the information that world-renown writer on nutrition and wellness and seller of products to enhance health, Dr. Joseph Mercola, is developing an organic formula for babies they say, "that's great, for women who can't." Even hard core breast feeding advocates. But Emma Kwasnica, breastfeeding advocate, and I have been swimming against the tide even in our community of natural birthers and breastfeeders to say let's look at this more deeply. Emma has been looking at the ethics of it and I have been looking at the feminist and baby's human rights perspective.

I received this story on Facebook this week, an example of why we need Mercola's formula and that is "what about the women who can't breastfeed?" I'm using this example to answer the response of of so many women, and women who are fierce advocates who say, "That's good" because "there are so many babies who can't breastfeed" and then my perspective on the human rights of babies to have breast milk as the first and best option and how it is that the belief that a field beast is superior to another woman's milk is a feminist issue.

I visited a home tonight where the mother had been given a child belonging to a family member. The baby's biological mother is a drug addict and the baby had some severe withdrawal from the drugs in her syst...em. The wonderful woman who agreed to take the baby was given one hour to make a decision to come and get this baby or it would be given to another foster family. She had had no warning that she was getting this baby. I am glad to be able to have formula available for babies like this one who are abandoned and need care. I am the biggest breastfeeding advocate on the planet and breastfed all my five children. All my 12 grandchildren have been breastfed long term. But I am realistic enough to know that sometimes a baby needs to be fed in another manner and I am thrilled that said baby can survive and thrive without breastmilk when absolutely none is available.

There's no debate about the need of some babies and moms to have quality access ... it's about a world-renown natural health guru who sells something with every issue he writes about .. it's about Mercola NOT putting his word, weight, and money be...hind a national agenda to create 100% breastfeeding that he says he supports BEFORE marketing a new formula. There is plenty of organic and "quality" formula on the market. It's about the ethics of a medical and natural health establishment not promoting what the research shows is the only way to feed a baby. In a world where breastfeeding is seen as optimal and the human right of a baby, there would be a resource ready within an hour of getting the baby to have another woman's breastmilk available for that baby ... in the hospital, when born.

This IS the baby that every system in our culture will have to be involved in caring for .. this IS the baby who will have life long issues because of his beginning. Physical health issues. Psychological, emotional, and spiritual issues. We as a society can enhance his potential merely by making sure he has human milk. Breast milk is the best chance this baby has to overcome health issues. A healthy woman's milk - a stranger, but a human woman -- HER Milk is the best option for this baby and human breast milk is flowing every where.

It is not true that there is "absolutely none available." We have human milk going down the drain right now. Formula for such a compromised baby would NOT be our medical system and society's first option ... donor milk would be a commitment. We can spend trillions to bomb a country for 8 years ... well, it would take little money to utilize donor milk. But even what there is now is about money. That's part of our issue. This is another way for some people to make money. Meanwhile, WOMEN are willing to SHARE their baby's milk so that others might have human milk. Why is Mercola ignoring that? Why is he not leading the way to create the consciousness shift like he has with other health issues while he produces his product to sell? That's what we are asking. Lead the way in shifting the perception that human beings have a human right to human milk. The other issue with Mercola's milk is that it is COW based. We know not to give cow milk to newborn humans. My question is when is the HUMAN WOMAN going to be ABOVE the status of the cow/chattel?

We are challenging folks to think beyond the man-man borders, the result of generations of ...not breastfeeding and the social structures it had created. I use this story of the baby as the perfect example of a system that does not value breastmilk for every baby, for the ones whose mother's can't or shouldn't, for the most vulnerable, the most needy of breastmilk, not formula. The most unhealthy, vulnerable babies need human milk most -- the "what about the ones" argument is turned back on itself. Yes, what about them? Mother's milk is flowing in our communities and families ... breastfeeding is NORMAL again. I had to fight such crap in 1975, fight nurses ganging up on me, fight misinformation everywhere I went about how man-made formula was better. How I was harming my baby by not giving him formula. Thirty-five years later, today, folks, the excilir of life is flowing. SO MANY women have more than enough, enough to share, and want to. Formula, organic or not, is NOT the first choice. It is not where our money should go, where Mercola's money and research should go. Our resources and problem-solving should go towards figuring out how to provide HUMAN MILK, not a milk from a "field beast" (thanks, Jesca!) Formula should be our absolute last resort in a world where WE KNOW the truth about the vitality of breastmilk, the source of HEALTH for HUMANS.

Wouldn't you like to be elevated in our culture above the cow? We are still chattel, women are, as long as a field beast's milk is MORE VALUED than a human woman's milk. Mother to mother sharing is culturally taboo while feeding your baby "organic" MAN-made milk from a field beast!?!? C'mon, wombyn!! wake up!!! We're gonna be the ones to save the planet ... I think it was Gandhi who said it would be the western women who save the planet/world ... and it's not going to be because we made a lot of money selling organic products to someone who has access to nature.


Lindsey said...

thank you. I'm so glad baby's have a spokesperson. They need so much more

Tammy Smith said...

It is such a challenge. My ninth baby had a heart defect and couldn't suck strongly enough to nurse. I pumped for four months but the strain of a large family and her health challenges led to loosing my milk. When I switched to formula she stopped gaining weight and every ounce was fought for. I looked for ways to get donor milk but it's such a foreign concept and not readily available. I finally used raw goat's milk with huge success. We need more milk banks!!

Buy It!

Part One: The Other Side of the Glass: a Birth Film for and About Men officially released in digital download format on June 2, 2013. Go to to purchase a digital download.

Men have been marginalized in birth for a long time. The old joke is that a man was sent off to boil water to keep him busy. I believe they were making the environment safe. Birth moved to hospitals and for forty years women were separated from their partners who was left to wait in smoke filled waiting room. Finally, he would see his baby from "the other side of the glass." Now a man can go in the birthing room and even get to hold his partner's hand during surgery. But they are still marginalized and powerless, according to the fathers I interviewed around the country.

Historically, birth has been defined by the medical establishment. The midwifery and natural birth movement now advocate for need "to educate and prepare men to protect their wife and baby" in medical environment. Seems logical ... if we process with the same illogic that got us here.

Through the voices of men - and doctors and midwives - men share heart-touching stories about how this is not workin' out. A man is also very likely to be disempowered and prevented from connecting with their newborn baby in the first minutes of life.

Now is the time for men to take back birth.

The film is about restoring our families, society, and world through birthing wanted, 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.

Donors, check your emails or email me at for info to download. Release on DVD is not planned at this date.

FREE online! watch Chapters 1, 2, 3, and 10 at

"Doctor's Voices" - Stuart Fischbein, MD - Part 1

Doctor's Voices - Michael Odent, MD

Human Rights Violations

Resources - Healing Birth Trauma

"The Other Side of the Glass" has the potential to open up feelings that have been denied and ignored for a very long time. How to heal the trauma of birth at any age will be addressed in the film. Meanwhile, these are pioneers in the field.

Raymond Castellino and Mary Jackson -

David Chamberlain, Ph.D. -

Judith Cohen -

Myrna Martin -

Karen Melton -

Wendy McCord, Ph.D. -

Wendy McCarty, Ph.D. -

And, many, many more all over the world at
In both relationships and life trust begets trust.
Generosity begets generosity.
Love begets love.
Be the spark, especially when it's dark.

--Note from the Universe,

"Everybody today seems to be in such a terrible rush, anxious for greater developments and greater riches and so on, so children have very little time with their parents. Parents have very little time for each other, and in the home begins the disruption of the peace of the world." - Mother Theresa