How to make the Big Parenting Decisions when the Pressure is On

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Preparing for Parenting

If you are like most new parents you pour your energy into the pregnancy. You write a birth plan. You have assembled a team of wonderful providers. The baby comes, and now… what? Does that sound familiar?

Worse yet, doctors come at you in the first hours after baby is born with a list of things they want you to do. They position it in dramatic terms, and you don’t feel qualified to say “No.” So what do you do?

Standing on a pole
Sometimes you have to breathe and say to yourself “Don’t Leash the Puppy.”

The first step is to stay out of that defensive position. Be proactive. My intake form asks the same questions to every pregnant patient in my office. I want them to think about the big picture items, so I find out if any of their birth providers have talked with them about:

I like to open conversation doors. As a physician I don’t dictate what someone should or shouldn’t do. I ask my patients to make decisions based on their values, and share with them the places that have informed my reference points. Below are a few of them.

  • Let Nature be your Guide
  • Value Autonomy, even your child’s
  • The Innate Intelligence in your baby put all those cells together, it must know what it’s doing.
  • Don’t Leash the Puppy


Check out this podcast, Happy Births, Happy Babies: Hosted by Dr. Jay Warren

Ina May Gaskin Quotes

One Conscious Path In Parenting Dr. Jeanne Ohm

Full Issue of this Pathways Magazine:

The Circumcision Decision– the article that shifted my mind on the topic.