Category Archives: pregnancy

gift guide for cranky fat feminists!

Gift ideas for the holidays, for all of the cranky feminists in your life (fat or slim)! This is a gift guide in progress, so don’t forget to check back for more great finds!

books I recommend!

Fatropolis will take you away to an alternate world where big is beautiful. Hiding your body is unnecessary. Shopping for clothes is easy. Eating your fill isn’t embarrassing. If you’re a fat woman (or man!) this is a book you don’t want to miss! (age appropriate for high schoolers as well)

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide is a book to not read lightly. It’s important work, it’s an important read, but it comes with a giant trigger warning. Amazon says “…a passionate call to arms against our era’s most pervasive human rights violation: the oppression of women and girls in the developing world. One chapter at a time, this is an important read.

Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic is a graphic novel depicting Alison Bechdel’s childhood, adolescence, and discovery of her sexuality. She shows us her vulnerabilities, her family problems, and her journey to adulthood. I’ve read this several times, and highly recommend!

Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood is a graphic novel depicting Marjane Satrapi’s coming of age in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. Don’t miss this! (also age appropriate for high schoolers)

buying books instead of drinks

my wishlist!

On my personal wishlist is Sex Object: a Memoir, by Jessica Valenti. Amazon says “Valenti explores the toll that sexism takes on women’s lives, from the everyday to the existential. From subway gropings and imposter syndrome to sexual awakenings and motherhood, Sex Object reveals the painful, embarrassing, and sometimes illegal moments that shaped Valenti’s adolescence and young adulthood in New York City.”

Fresh off the press, Feminist Fight Club: an Office Survival Manual for a Sexist Workplace, by Jessica Bennett is also on my wishlist. Here’s why: “Part manual, part manifesto, Feminist Fight Club is a hilarious yet incisive guide to navigating subtle sexism at work, providing real-life career advice and humorous reinforcement for a new generation of professional women… Hard-hitting and entertaining, Feminist Fight Club blends personal stories with research, statistics, and no-bullsh*t expert advice. Bennett offers a new vocabulary for the sexist workplace archetypes women encounter everyday.”

Fight Like a Girl introduces readers to the history of feminist activism in the U.S. in an effort to celebrate those who paved the way and draw attention to those who are working hard to further the feminist cause today.” How could this not be on my list of books to read and give?!

Rad Women Worldwide: Artists and Athletes, Pirates and Punks, and Other Revolutionaries Who Shaped History features 40 women from 31 countries around the world. There’s also a list of 250 additional rad women to check out on your own. Get inspired, or inspire others with this awesome collection!

strong women

 

coloring books on my wishlist!

The Yoni Coloring Book is an awesome gift for anyone you know that loves to color, or would enjoy creating crazy colored vulvas! The illustrator is part of our CFF community.

The Ruth Bader Ginsburg Coloring Book: A Tribute to the Always Colorful and Often Inspiring Life of the Supreme Court Justice Known as RBG. Need I say more than “notorious RBG coloring book!”? <3

 

 

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Reflection: The Business of Being Born

The first startling statistic of childbirth in America is that less than 8% of births are attended by a midwife. In Europe and Japan, midwives attend an average of 70% of births.

Startling stats, part two. The USA has the number one worst maternal death rate and the second worst infant mortality rate in the developed world.

Perhaps this makes more sense when we realize that in other countries midwives deliver babies, not doctors. Obstetricians are always available or on call in case of delivery emergencies. Obstetricians don’t do the majority of baby delivery in any country except the USA.

What’s the big difference?

Capitalism.

Hospitals in the USA are businesses, and businesses are all about increased traffic and turnover. Pregnant women in — baby out — minimum recovery time — goodbye. Any time additions lose money.

In an effort to keep turnover high and profits higher, many women are nearly immediately administered pitocin to induce stronger contractions. This is painful, so women are then offered and encouraged to have an epidural for pain relief. But epidurals slow contractions. Therefore she needs more pitocin to keep up the rate of contractions (and then needs another epidural…) The fluctuation between pitocin-induced contractions and epidural slowing contractions takes oxygen away from the baby, and too often results in “emergency” c-sections.

Since 1996 there has been a 46% increase in c-sections, s that by 2005 one in three births were c-sections. Additionally, it has been documented that c-sections peak at 4pm and 10pm — when doctors are ready to go home before shift changes. The surgery is relatively simple on the part of the obstetrician, meaning that they’re less likely to be sued than in a traditional birth.

Why the lack of midwives? Answer one is that there is a lack of understanding what women in labor need (in the USA). The biggest reason though is that hospitals don’t like the competition — therefore many insurance companies don’t like to want to pay midwives. This means midwives have to fight insurance companies for what is owed to them, and many go bankrupt. Midwives average $4 thousand for their services, while a hospital bill is often around $13 thousand.

preggo dress

Food for thought —

Natural birth releases a huge cocktail of hormones and “love drugs,” helping a new mother to truly bond with her newborn. A c-section bypasses this, and no love hormone cocktail is released into the mother’s body. Does this screw up one in three kids later?

Also, do labor and delivery drugs fuck with infants? In previous studies with formerly used drugs there were side effects later in life for these babies. For now, and this round of drugs, there are no conclusive answers yet.

Links:
 
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