12 Ways to Nurture Babies at Conception, Birth, and Beyond

By Dr. Darcia Narvaez

We foster human potential and optimal relationships from the beginning of life.

Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology (PPN)*


Understanding our earliest relationship experiences from the baby’s point of view and how these experiences set in motion life patterns have been the intense study of the field of prenatal and perinatal psychology (PPN) for over 40 years. The PPN field uses the baby’s point of view to focus on our earliest human experiences from preconception through baby’s first postnatal year, and its role in creating children who thrive and become resilient, loving adults.

Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology incorporates research and clinical experience from leading-edge fields such as epigenetics, biodynamic embryology, infant mental health, attachment, early trauma, developmental neurosciences, consciousness studies and other new sciences.

The Origins of PPN 12 Guiding Principles

In 1999, Marti Glenn and Wendy Anne McCarty co-created the first graduate-level PPN degree programs and opened the Santa Barbara Graduate Institute.  Leading-edge prenatal and perinatal psychology-oriented therapists collaborated in an academic community grant project (funded by the Bower Foundation) to create a set of principles that arose from decades of PPN findings and clinical experience. 

The 12 principles are offered as a beacon to help guide parenting practice, professional practice, theory and research. They support human potential and optimal relationships from the beginning of life, laying the foundation for a new movement in welcoming and caring for our babies. All of us have a part to play.

The 12 PPN Guiding Principles:

1. The Primary Period

The primary period for human development occurs from preconception through the first year of postnatal life. This is the time in which vital foundations are established at every level of being: physical, emotional, mental, spiritual and relational.

2. Forming the Core Blueprint

Experiences during this primary period form the blueprint of our core perceptions, belief structures, and ways of being in the world with others and ourselves. These foundational elements are implicit, observable in newborns, and initiate life-long ways of being. These core implicit patterns profoundly shape our being in life-enhancing or life-diminishing directions.

3. Continuum of Development

Human development is continuous from prenatal to postnatal life.  Postnatal patterns build upon earlier prenatal and birth experiences.

Optimal foundations for growth and resiliency, including brain development, emotional intelligence, and self-regulation are predicated upon optimal conditions during the pre-conception period, pregnancy, birth and the first year of life.

Optimal foundations of secure attachment and healthy relationships are predicated upon optimal relationships during the pre-conception period, during pregnancy, the birth experience and the first year of life.

4. Capacities and Capabilities

Human beings are conscious, sentient, aware, and possess a sense of Self even during this very early primary period.

We seek ever-increasing states of wholeness and growth through the expression of human life. This innate drive guides and infuses our human development.

From the beginning of life, babies perceive, communicate, and learn, in ways that include an integration of mind-to-mind, energetic, and physical-sensorial capacities and ways of being.

5. Relationship

Human development occurs within a relationship from the beginning. Human connections and the surrounding environment profoundly influence the quality and structure of every aspect of the baby’s development.

From the beginning of life, the baby experiences and internalizes what the mother experiences and feels. A father’s and/or partner’s relationship with a mother and baby are integral to optimizing primary foundations for a baby.

All relationships and encounters with a mother, baby, and father during this primary period affect the quality of life and the baby’s foundation. Supportive, loving, and healthy relationships are integral to optimizing primary foundations for a baby.

6. Innate Needs

The innate need for security, belonging, love and nurturing, feeling wanted, feeling valued, and being seen as the Self we are is present from the beginning of life. Meeting these needs and providing the right environment supports optimal development.

7. Communication

Babies are continually communicating and seeking connection. Relating and responding to a baby in ways that honor their multifaceted capacities for communication supports optimal development and wholeness.

8. Mother-Baby Interconnectedness

Respecting and optimizing the bond between a mother and baby and the mother-baby interconnectedness during pregnancy, birth, and infancy is of highest priority.

9. Bonding

Birth and bonding is a critical developmental process for the mother, baby, and father that form core patterns with life-long implications.

The best baby and mother outcomes occur when a mother feels empowered and supported and the natural process of birth is allowed to unfold with minimal intervention and no interruption in mother-baby connection and physical contact. If any separation of a baby from the mother occurs, continuity of the father’s contact and connection with the baby should be supported.

The baby responds and thrives best when the relationship with the mother is undisturbed, when the baby is communicated with directly, and when the process of birth supports the baby’s ability to orient and integrate the series of events.

10. Resolving and Healing

Resolving and healing past and current conflicts, stress, and issues that affect the quality of life for all family members is of highest priority. Doing so before pregnancy is best. When needed, for optimal outcomes, therapeutic support for the mother, baby, and father provided as early as possible during this vital primary period is recommended.

11. Underlying Patterns

When unresolved issues remain or less than optimal conditions and experiences occur during conception, pregnancy, birth and the first postnatal year, life-diminishing patterns often underlay [subsequent] health issues, stress behaviors, difficulty in self-regulation, attachment, learning, and other disorders over the life-span.

12.  Professional Support

These early diminishing patterns embed below the level of the conscious mind in the implicit memory system, subconscious, and somatic patterns. Professionals trained in primary psychology (prenatal and perinatal psychology) can identify these patterns and support babies, children, parents, and adults to heal and shift these primary patterns to more life-enhancing ones at any age. When parents resolve and heal their own unresolved issues from their child’s pregnancy and birth, their children benefit at any age.

The Association of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health (APPPAH) endorses the 12 Guiding Principles.

REFERENCES

This article comprises excerpts from the official 12 Guiding Principle brochure and position paper co-written by the authors:

McCarty, W.A., Glenn, M., et al. (2008, 2016, 2017). Nurturing Human Potential and Optimizing Relationships from the Beginning of Life: 12 Guiding Principles. [Brochure]. Natural Family Living–Right from the Start: Santa Barbara, CA.

McCarty, W. A. and Glenn, M. (2008). Investing in human potential from the beginning of life: Keystone to maximizing human capital (pp. 12-14). (White paper available at www.wondrousbeginnings.com)

For bibliography, please see:

https://birthpsychology.com/content/birth-psychology-bibliography-classics

https://birthpsychology.com/content/birth-psychology-bibliography-2000-2015

For more information and to obtain the position paper and official 12GP-PPN brochures: see hereBrochures are currently available in English, Spanish, Italian and German and can be shared freely. For other uses of the 12 Guiding Principles content, please contact Dr. McCarty.

*Primary Authors:

Wendy Anne McCarty, PhD, RN, HNB-BC, DCEP, was the Founding Chair and Core Faculty, Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology Program at Santa Barbara Graduate Institute and author of Welcoming Consciousness: Supporting Babies Wholeness from the Beginning of Life–An Integrated Model of Early Development. She currently is a global consultant/educator for professionals and families to optimize human potential from the beginning of life and repair of earliest life experiences at any age.  See: www.12guidingprinciples-ppn.com and www.wondrousbeginnings.com

Marti Glenn, PhD is the Clinical Director of Ryzio Institute, offering professional trainings and intensive retreats to help adults heal adverse childhood experiences and trauma. A pioneering psychotherapist and educator, she was the Founding President of Santa Barbara Graduate Institute, known for its graduate degrees in prenatal and perinatal psychology, somatic psychology and clinical psychology. In her clinical work and trainings, She is an international speaker and trainer, emphasizing the integration of the latest research in behavioral epigenetics, PolyvagalTheory and affective neuroscience with attachment, early development, and trauma.

Both authors are recipients of the APPPAH Thomas Verny Award for excellence in the field of prenatal and perinatal psychology and health.

Related Reading by Dr. Narvaez at Peaceful Parenting: 

An 'On Demand' Life and the Basic Needs of Babies

Where Are All the Happy Babies?

The Dangers of Crying It Out

10 Things Everyone Should Know About Babies

5 Things NOT to Do to Babies

12 Ways to Nurture Babies at Conception, Birth, and Beyond

Are you treating your child like a prisoner?

Are you or your child on a touch starvation diet?

Conspiracy Thinking: Understanding Attachment and Its Consequences

Psychology Today: Circumcision Series

Learn More from Narvaez:

The Evolved Nest Institute

Kindred Media

Neurobiology and the Development of Human Morality: Evolution, Culture, and Wisdom

💜 Peaceful Parenting Community

💙 Peaceful Parenting on Facebook

💗 Peaceful Parenting on Telegram


Not a Pacifier

By Sarah for Nurshable: Joy in Gentle Parenting
Read more by Sarah here.



Dear Daughter,

You are three weeks old. You nursed pretty much straight through the night last night, as I sort of drifted in and out of being fully awake.

You’re going through a growth spurt.

When you switch sides I feel the sting of letdown. Sometimes you nurse eagerly and gulp down the milk. Sometimes you become upset because you don’t want milk. Or you don’t want the fast flow of my over-active letdown. Sometimes you just want to lay in the semi-dark and nurse peacefully while your little dark blue eyes stare at my face and your little feet kick the still-soft skin of my belly which was your former home. Sometimes you want to comfort nurse. When this happens I kiss your forehead and switch you back to the “empty” side and let you lay close. You are a wise little creature that understands what it is that you need.

I am not a human pacifier.

Usually when a mom says that, it’s an expression of frustration that their infant insists on suckling for comfort. This is not what I mean when I say this.

I am not a warm human substitute for a cold silicone and plastic doohickey.

Your father may sometimes be a human pacifier. You suckle on his pinky finger during diaper changes or when I desperately need to wash my milk-stained body in the shower and remember for a few moments that I have two arms with two hands and that the dimensions of my body do not include an oddly independent nine pound female child that is frequently suspended from my body in a wrap of lightweight gauze. Your grandfather may be a human pacifier, as he holds you lovingly while I get your big brothers ready for bed or eat a hot meal without waiting for it to cool first- a luxury of not being afraid of hot bits of soup falling on you while I eat. Your brothers may briefly be human pacifiers when they offer up their pinky fingers for you to suck on, always imitating their daddy.Your grandma may be a human pacifier when she offers you her pinky finger to suck on and sings you Russian songs from her childhood.

But my breasts are not pacifiers. Comfort sucking is not time wasted. It’s part of the job that my body and you have. It is how we evolved. We are the product of a long process of evolution that causes you to seek out my arms and my breasts, to suckle for comfort, to communicate with my immune system, to stay close and warm and protected, to stimulate the supply of your food, your antibodies, the components of breastmilk that scientists can see but cannot identify the function of.

Maybe you want the comfort of non-nutritive suckling because there is something that has you stressed out. Maybe you want a slow flow of high fat hindmilk that comes from comfort nursing. Maybe your body has some bacteria in it and you need the closeness so that your immune system can communicate with my immune system and it all can be taken care of without either of us ever knowing and without you ever becoming sick from the foreign invaders that your body cannot cope with but that my adult immune system attacks with the ferocity of a mama bear defending her cub.

Independence will come at your pace. “I DO IT MYSELF!” will become the phrase of the moment soon enough. The need to peel off and be independent is as natural a need as the need to breathe, to sleep and to eat. It comes from within the child when the child has the ability. It has come from within your brothers as they get older. It will come from within you as well. I can see it already as you bob your head against my chest in the wrap and peek over the side eager to strengthen your muscles and look at the world.

I choose to neither hold you past when you wish to be held, nor deny you comfort while it is something that you seek. I push you gently to be independent, recognizing that your world naturally expands within your comfort zone without me needing to push you past it into tears.

I am not a “human pacifier”. I am what you have a biological and evolutionary need for. I will not devalue your needs by implying that you lack the wisdom and understanding of what those needs are. I will not devalue your needs by becoming frustrated by your refusal to accept something that does not meet those needs. I want you to listen to your body from the beginning, to understand the difference between a healthy need of yours and a pacifying object. To have an understanding that dates back to the beginnings of your time on this planet.. That comfort comes from having your needs met, not from distracting yourself with something pink, pretty and plastic.

No manufacturer makes what you need for happiness, little one. I want you to understand this from the beginning of your life. Happiness comes from love, from closeness, and from deep inside of you. Seek this happiness, and never be distracted by things that simply pacify you rather than satisfying your needs.


Sarah is a gentle parenting mom of three who writes at Nurshable. Learn more about her passions and how to 'wait it out' when it comes to baby sleep at her site

Breastfeeding mothers are welcome to join the Breastfeeding Group: FB.com/groups/Breastfed

I'm Intact - Do NOT Retract Soft Baby Bands




A handy little soft baby band reads: Do NOT Circumcise / Do NOT Retract for those birthing in a U.S. hospital or birth center (and reusable for clinical visits or babysitters as a reminder going forward to not retract). These small bands come with intact care materials which Peaceful Parenting families have found to be incredibly useful for hospital charts and staff.

Found at Etsy here.

Intact Care Resources: http://www.DrMomma.org/2009/06/how-to-care-for-intact-penis-protect.html

Safe space groups:



Photo courtesy of Elana at the Intact Jewish Network









Lactation Cookies: Increasing Milk Supply

By Danelle Day, PhD © 2010


I am frequently asked to pass along lactation cookie recipes. My own momma has been baking these up since she was a nursing mother and RN, striving to help other new moms with their babies, 35 years ago -- so I've consumed my fair share over the decades. While there are many variations out there, they are all essentially the same and boast three main ingredients commonly believed (in North America) to impact milk supply: oatmeal, brewer's yeast, and flax.

Some home bakers will throw in fenugreek as well, and because this is known to increase milk supply (in both humans and cows!), but hard on the stomach, it isn't a bad idea to add it to foods you'll already be eating (you can open a couple capsules of fenugreek and toss them to the cookie batter). Fenugreek is one of the oldest medicinal herbs used for increasing milk supply, but to do so you will need to consume 1500mg of fenugreek, three times each day. (1) This is more than the recommended amount on the bottle, but the dosing printed on fenugreek labels is not intended to be for boosting milk supply. One study found that when enough fenugreek was consumed, milk supply doubled. (2) Note that while mother's milk teas (with fenugreek) may be a great supplement, and mood-enhancing to sip, you'd have to drink a lot of it to really see an impact. Capsules are a better way to go if you are planning to add fenugreek to your regimen.

So why are these three ingredients the core foundation in lactation cookies?


Oats (or oatmeal) are key in boosting milk supply because of the iron they contain that nursing moms are frequently in need of. Oats are also filling, dense with healthy calories - and nursing moms need calories! Oats are extremely nutritious and easy to work into the diet in a number of ways: cereals, granola, breads, casseroles, meatloaf, cookies - you can add oats to just about anything.Oats are also a great source of fiber. What does fiber have to do with milk supply? My 97 year old grandmother recently discussed the diets of her father's award winning, fatty-milk producing cows back in the 1920s. And guess what they did to increase milk supply? That's right -- boosted the fiber the cows had access to. Farmers have long known this trick, so I suppose milkin' moms can pick up on it too.


Brewer's yeast is an ingredient that has also long been touted to increase milk supply (although contested by some). Brewer's yeast is one of the best natural sources of B vitamins, which are essential to overall health of a nursing mom (and any woman). Even if milk supply were not impacted by brewer's yeast, the boost of energy (and increased sugar metabolism) that comes from brewer's yeast consumption is worth including it in lactation cookies (or other things you bake). Once again, looking back on decades past, women have long passed on the knowledge that sipping a deep, hearty beer (sister to brewer's yeast) has a positive effect on milk supply.


The oil from flax seed is considered by many to be a galactagogue (substance that improves lactation). It is also a great form of fiber. And, while it is again debated among those who believe in flax's galactagogue properties or not, one thing is certain: flax is power packed with omega-3 (essential fatty acids) that are absolutely crucial to a nursing mom's diet (as well as baby's diet, and all human health in general). Human milk is super charged with heavy amounts of omega-3 because the brain (rapidly growing in our babies) is dependent on these fatty acids. It is important that a mother not be deficient in omega-3 (something that many are) and risk her baby not getting enough for optimal health, development, and wellbeing. [Note: artificial forms of omega-3 in manufactured formulas do not respond in a baby's body in the same way that natural omega-3 from mother's milk does. Do not buy into the hype that formulas 'fortified with DHA' are good for your baby. Rather, these artificial baby formulas with DHA have been linked with diarrhea, dehydration, seizures.] That said, omega-3 from fish and flax for mom are wonderful! They not only improve milk quality (and possibly quantity) but also boost brain function, memory, joint lubrication, and help to regulate hormones and decrease postpartum depression. It is unlikely that you could get too much omega-3 today, so when it comes to flax (and low-mercury fish if you like) - eat up!

Before you jump on the lactation cookie making machine and fret about your milk supply, however, know that if you are exclusively breastfeeding (i.e. your baby is consuming nothing but your milk) around the clock (day and night), and your baby is gaining weight (no matter if s/he is in the 99th percentile for weight, or the 1st percentile compared to other babies) then you have a full milk supply suited perfectly for your little one. (3)

It is, of course, good to eat healthy, whole foods to ensure your baby is getting all s/he needs from your milk (and taking a prenatal vitamin while nursing is a good idea too), but studies have shown that even when mother's diet is not the best, her body will compensate (for the sake of her baby) by putting all nutrients into her milk. (4, 5) Therefore, your baby will not suffer as much as you will suffer from poor eating habits. Only in cases of severe malnourishment is milk quality impacted.

That being said, most nursing mothers need to consume a bare minimum of 1800 calories per day to maintain a full milk supply for their growing baby (some will need to eat more to not see a drop in milk), and consuming 2500-2700 calories per day is recommended by most. (6, 7) This is an energy need of 50-125% more than women had in their pre-pregnancy days. So no matter what you eat, do not forget to eat!

Below are two recipes. The first is a recipe for Major Milk Makin' galactagogue cookies ("lactation cookies") that share some similarities with the many generic cookie recipes commonly passed around and posted in a variety of recipe books. This one has just a touch more omega-3, protein, and iron than other "lactation cookies." It was created by Kathleen Major, PNP, RN, in conjunction with a local lactation specialist and LLL leader in the Cedar Valley (IA) hospitals in the early 1990s when Major was focusing her practice on pediatric health. She has granted permission for DrMomma.org to share her recipe. Please do not reproduce without crediting her and linking back to this page. The second recipe is my own, and while it is not as sweet (no sugar), it is all the more healthy and packed with beneficial ingredients. My cookies are slightly more like granola in cookie form -- you can be sure they are good for you, if this is your goal.

While no lactation cookie will miraculously boost your milk supply if there are other hormone related factors weighing on you, (for example, you are going to have to nurse and/or pump - increase demand - to increase supply, and be physically close to your baby - holding/wearing/rocking/sleeping, as much as possible), they certainly won't hurt -- may help a smidge -- and will ensure you are getting some good, wholesome (much needed!) calories packed with omega-3, nutrients, and goodness along the way.

If you enjoy baking and try out these recipes (or any other you find online or create yourself), please let me know your favorites. I'll admit I rarely stick straight to the recipe. I inherited my parents tendency to throw things into the batch (or leave things out if they aren't in my cupboard at the time). Some sesame seeds here, pumpkin seeds there...a bit of Fenugreek or a handful of sunflower seeds. I often substitute extra milled flax or applesauce for the butter, and toss in extra oats, or a scoop of almond butter if it looks like the batter can handle it. So if you are like me, and have additional special tips that make your homemade lactation cookie creations stand out among the milkin' moms - please, share!

A few notes on the recipes:

1) Flax seed is prepped many ways. The version most useful for baking is the milled flax seed that you will find in your local store. It typically comes in a bag or a box (depending on the brand you select). You may have to go to a health food, whole foods store, or large supermarket to find the brewer's yeast which typically comes in a can.

2) Whole oats should always be used - not 'quick' oats (the type that cook in a few minutes in the microwave). Be sure when you buy your oats ('oatmeal') that you are purchasing whole, natural oats.

3) I'd suggest purchasing eggs from a local farm or buying free range "happy chicken" eggs at your grocery store - especially with all the recalls on salmonella tainted eggs lately. And who wants to support the massive hen house operations? Not us. Be informed on where your food comes from, and teach your kids too.


Major Milk Makin' Cookies
Recipe by Kathleen Major
Detailed recipe with photos found here


1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1 3/4 c. oats
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
3/4 c. almond butter or peanut butter
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 c. flax
3 T brewer's yeast
1/3 c. water
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 large eggs
2 c. (12oz) chocolate chips
1 c. chopped nuts of your choice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a bowl.
In a large bowl, beat almond butter, butter, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, brewer's yeast, flax and water until creamy.
Mix in eggs.
Gradually beat in flour mixture.
Mix in nuts and chocolate chips.
Add oats slowly, mixing along the way.

Place balls of dough onto greased baking sheets or baking stones.
Press down each ball lightly with a fork.
Bake 12 minutes.


Momma's Milk Cookies
recipe by Danelle Day

2 eggs
1/2 c. unsweetened applesauce
1 c. flax
1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. melted butter
2 c. Agave nectar
3/4 c. walnuts (crushed)
2 c. chocolate chips
3/4 c. raisins
4 T water
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
4 T brewer's yeast
3 c. oats

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

I have found greased cookie sheets work best, but you can also use parchment lined sheets or a baking stone.

In a bowl mix flax and water until thoroughly mixed.
In a large bowl mix flour, baking soda, salt and brewer's yeast.
In another bowl mix together butter and ONE cup Agave nectar (the other cup will be used later). Stir well until the butter and nectar are completely mixed.
Add eggs to the nectar mix, stirring well after each one.
Add vanilla, stir.
Add the nectar blend to the flax and mix well. (A hand mixer or mixing bowl works best)
Pour the nectar/flax blend into the large bowl of flour and mix well.
Mix in walnuts, chocolate chips, raisins.
Mix in oats.
After everything is blended together well, add the applesauce and final 1 cup of Agave nectar and stir through well.

Scoop onto sheets, and press down each ball of dough lightly with a fork.
Bake 13-14 minutes.


Vegan options for both recipes:

In place of eggs - 3 tsp of egg replacer mixed with 4 T water OR 4 tsp of milled flax with 4 T water.

In place of butter - butter substitute like Earth Balance OR 3/4 the amount worth of Canola oil or Crisco (although Crisco is not a healthy option) OR 1/2 c. milled flax and 1/2 c. applesauce


Have the need for special lactation cookies, but no time to cook?
There are many lactation cookie producers now who sell and ship online.

(100% dairy free!)




Ordered cookies stay good for 6 months in the freezer (and taste good frozen too)! Several of these cookies have some added bonuses - pumpkin seeds, kelp, hemp seeds, sesame seeds, nettles, clover, peppermint, poppyseeds and Fenugreek. Making Mama's Milk & More Cookies are specially created by a mom herself, are organic and 100% dairy free. In addition, she recently started making a vegan lactation cookie for special order.

You can always add these extras into YOUR homemade lactation cookies (or muffins!) as well, but these are great shops for cookie purchasing if that's up your alley.



For more information on boosting milk supply, see:

Making More Milk: Breastfeeding, Supply and the Feedback Inhibitor of Lactation by Danelle Frisbie

The Breastfeeding Mother's Guide to Making More Milk (book)

Breastfeeding Made Simple (book)

Nursing Mother, Working Mother (book)

Milk Supply in the First 6 Weeks by Paula Yount

Balancing Breastfeeding: When Moms Must Work by Danelle Frisbie, Ph.D, M.A. [includes suggestions that impact milk supply due to women's powerful hormones whether working away from baby or not]

Increasing the Milk Supply [pdf] by Dr. Carolyn Lawlor-Smith, BMBS, IBCLC, FRACGP and Dr. Laureen Lawlor-Smith, BMBS, IBCLC

How Can I Increase My Milk Supply? by Becky Flora, IBCLC

Increasing Milk Supply
by Janet Talmadge, IBCLC

Increasing Your Milk Supply by Anne Smith, IBCLC

Increasing Low Milk Supply on KellyMom.com

Human Milk Donors and Donations Resource Page (for those who find they must supplement their own supply)

Additional information for nursing mothers (books, websites, articles) can be found on the Breastfeeding Resources page.

The Breastfeeding Group for nursing moms: FB.com/groups/Breastfed


Notes:

1) Breastfeeding Made Simple, p.219

2) Swafford S, Berens P. Effect of fenugreek on breast milk volume. ABM News & Views. 6(3):21

Abo El-Nor S. Influence of fenugreek seeds as a galactagogue on milk yield. Egypt J Dairy Sci. 27:231-8.

3) Breastfeeding Made Simple, p.130

4) Lunn P, Prentice A, Austin S, Whitehead, R. Influence of maternal diet on plasma-prolactin levels during lactation. Lancet. 1(8169):623-5

5) Smith C. Effects of maternal undernutrition upon the newborn infant in Holland (1944-1945). Journal of Pediatrics. 30(3):229-43.

6) Strode M, Dewey K, Lonnerdal B. Effects of short-term caloric restriction on lactational performance of well-nourished women. Acta Paediatr Scand. 75(2):222-9.

7) Making More Milk, p.84


~~~~


Danelle Day specialized in lactation science and human health and development during her graduate training. After teaching and conducting research at the collegiate level, she left academia to pursue another passion - mothering. She is currently completing credentials to serve others as an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and helps run the non-profit organization, peaceful parenting, and DrMomma.org.

Why I Cry

Artwork by @spiritysol

I couldn’t reach the toy. ⠀

I reached out my hands but they couldn’t make it,⠀ ⠀

I don’t know how to crawl just yet.

So I looked around for you and cried, and there you came.⠀

I heard your voice say “You want that toy” as you moved it back to me, and I rested in the truth that you come when I call.⠀

Mama, ⠀

I know you get tired of my cries. It feels like cry for everything right now.⠀

I don’t know how to say “I need the toy” or most importantly “I need you” so I cry instead.⠀

Mama,⠀

It’s not a reflection of how I feel about you.⠀

I love you, that’s why I cry for you.⠀

I need you, that’s why I cry for you.⠀

I know you can’t always get to me right away, that’s ok.⠀

I love hearing your voice saying “I hear you, I’ll be there soon” as I wait for you.⠀

Mama, ⠀

I can’t wait for the day I can tell you how I feel.⠀

How in your arms I feel safe.⠀

How you are my fortress, my rock.⠀

How I find comfort in your voice, your body, and your presence.⠀

But right now I can’t,⠀

So when I need you I cry.⠀

Mama, ⠀

I see your tears too.⠀

I know it can be hard.⠀

In my short life we’ve already been through so much together, and I know we will get through this too.⠀

I know you don’t always feel like you are doing good, but mama you are more than just good, you are mine. ⠀

Mama,⠀

I love you.⠀

So tonight if I cry, know I don’t expect you to get it right, right away.⠀

I know you are trying to learn me, just as I’m trying to learn this world around me.⠀

Mama, we will get through this.⠀

One day at a time,⠀

One minute at a time,⠀

One cry at a time.⠀


By @ourmamavillage

💕



Love the Skin that You're In!

'Love the skin you're in' watercolor painting by Rachel Toll, Devon England.


Three good friends went for a swim. 
The one who was fat wished she was thin. 
The one who was curvy wished she was clever. 
The one who was clever wished she swam better. 
The really great swimmer wished she was witty. 
The one who was witty wished she was pretty. 
All three friends thought the other two were just fine. 
If only they could let their own bright light shine. 
So throw on your swimsuit if you're fat or you're thin. 
Enjoy fun and friendship...
Love the skin that you're in!

-Author Unknown

*******

How to Care for Your Intact Son



The number one reason for problems of the penis is unnecessary infant circumcision (and the consequences of this surgical removal of the prepuce organ). The second reason for penile problems and complications is well-meaning adults who retract, over-clean, and 'mess with' intact boys' foreskins before they retract naturally and completely on their own. Sometimes this natural, gentle retraction does not occur until the pre-teen years. This is 100% normal. In fact, a recent Dutch study shows that the average age for retraction among boys is 10.6 years of age. Some retract (on their own) before this time, some later.

Among both boys and girls, before natural retraction, the prepuce (foreskin/hood) is tightly adhered to the glans (head) of the penis/clitoris, in the same way your fingernail is tightly adhered to your finger. If you stick things under your fingernail, try to pull it back, or otherwise 'mess' with it, you are bound to not only be in pain, but also fester irritation and/or infection. The same is true with the prepuce organ (the clitoral hood in girls and the foreskin in boys).

In addition, the prepuce serves the function of protection over the glans in much the same way your eye lids protect your eye balls. The temperature, moisture, pH balance, enzyme level, antivirals, and more are all regulated because the glans is meant to be an internal organ - just as our eyeballs are also internal organs. We'd never scrub under our eyelids and not expect some severe and painful (possibly infectious) consequences.

Remember: INTACT=DON'T RETRACT! ONLY CLEAN WHAT IS SEEN!

One friend, a pediatrician, tells parents, "The ONLY thing you need to care for your intact son's penis is a ruler -- to slap the hand of anyone who attempts to touch his foreskin."

Below are additional resources for parents of intact boys. Know the myths, and be informed enough to protect your son and his genital integrity.

If you're a pro-intact physician, PA or midwife willing to field an occasional question,
write to SavingSons@gmail.com to join the MedPro advisory board. 

RETRACTION

Should My Baby's Foreskin Be Retracted? Dr. Antier Responds
DrMomma.org/2012/08/should-babys-foreskin-be-retracted.html

Hands Off My Foreskin! Dr. Martin Winckler on the Care of Baby Boys
DrMomma.org/2013/02/hands-off-my-foreskin-dr-martin.html

Forced Retraction: Don't Let it Happen to Your Son
DrMomma.org/2010/11/forced-retraction-dont-let-it-happen-to.html

Forced Retraction: Now What?
DrMomma.org/2009/12/forced-retraction-what-now.html

Don't Retract Clinician Pack (for physicians and medical staff; includes links to the AAP, RCH and CPS organization care statements):
SavingSons.org/2015/07/retracting-clinician-information-pack.html

Using a Catheter Without Retraction: My Nurse Did It and So Can Yours!
SavingSons.org/2013/01/using-catheter-without-retraction-my.html

Only Clean What is Seen: Reversing the Epidemic of Forced Retraction:
DrMomma.org/2009/09/only-clean-what-is-seen-reversing.html

Medical Testing: Do Not Retract:
DrMomma.org/2009/09/uti-testing-on-boys-do-not-retract.html

Doctors Opposing Circumcision Statement for Physicians and Nurses on
Forced Retraction:
Doctorsopposingcircumcision.org/info/info-forcedretraction.html

Forced Retraction: Ask the Experts
DrMomma.org/2009/09/ask-experts-forced-foreskin-retraction.html

The Forced Retraction of My Son [One Parent's Story]
DrMomma.org/2011/07/forced-retraction-of-my-son.html

Medical Organization Statements on Intact Care (and Physician 'Do Not Retract' Packs):
SavingSons.org/2015/07/retracting-clinician-information-pack.html

Hospital Intact Care Packs ($3):
https://www.etsy.com/listing/526265909/hospital-stay-packet?ref=shop_home_active_4

Baby Bands (soft and stretchy for the hospital or care providers):
https://www.etsy.com/listing/502616895/do-not-retract-do-not-circumcise-baby?ref=listing-shop-header-3

Intact care stickers and cards available at Etsy.

INTACT CARE

How to Care for Your Intact Son [Homepage]
DrMomma.org/2009/06/how-to-care-for-intact-penis-protect.html

Intact: Healthy, Happy, Whole [Facebook Group]
FB.com/groups/IntactHealthy

Basic Care of the Intact Child:
DrMomma.org/2010/01/basic-care-of-intact-child.html

Protect Your Intact Son: Medical Advice for Parents When Your Doctor Says to Circumcise:
DrMomma.org/2009/08/protect-your-uncircumcised-son-expert.html

The Functions of the Foreskin:
DrMomma.org/2009/09/functions-of-foreskin-purposes-of.html

Natural Foreskin Retraction in Intact Children and Teens
DrMomma.org/2008/04/natural-foreskin-retraction-in-intact.html

Adult Intact Penis Care:
SavingSons.org/2015/09/adult-intact-penis-care.html

Phony Phimosis Diagnosis:
DrMomma.org/2010/01/phony-phimosis-diagnosis.html

Urine Sampling and Catheter Insertion for the Intact Boy
DrMomma.org/2011/12/urine-samples-and-catheter-insertion.html

Using a Catheter without Retraction: My Nurse Did It, Yours Can Too:
SavingSons.org/2013/01/using-catheter-without-retraction-my.html

Deep, dark, red, purple or blue: the normal glans in the intact child:
DrMomma.org/2014/12/deep-dark-red-purple-or-blue-normal.html

UTI (Urinary Tract Infections) Resource Page: SavingSons.org/2014/11/uti-resource-page.html

Yeast, Rash and Redness: Breastmilk Spurs Yeast Overgrowth, Neosporin Alters Microflora; What to Do Instead:
DrMomma.org/2014/04/yeast-rash-and-redness-breastmilk-spurs.html

Swimming, Suits and Mesh: Cut the Lining of Your Child's Suit to Decrease Irritation Potential: DrMomma.org/2014/06/swimming-suits-mesh-cut-lining-of-your.html

Intact Care (and No Retraction) Agreement (Parents to Clinicians): DrMomma.org/2014/10/intact-care-and-no-retraction-agreement.html

Raising Intact Sons:
DrMomma.org/2009/11/raising-intact-sons.html

Foreskin: It's Not 'Icky':
DrMomma.org/2010/12/foreskin-its-not-icky.html

How the Foreskin Protects Against UTI:
DrMomma.org/2009/12/how-foreskin-protects-against-uti.html

Painful Urination During Prepuce Separation
DrMomma.org/2010/01/painful-urination-during-prepuce.html

Ballooning in the Intact Child:

Questions Regarding Normal Separation of the Prepuce:
DrMomma.org/2010/01/common-questions-regarding-normal.html

Hypospadias: Surgery and Circumcision:
DrMomma.org/2010/04/hypospadias-surgery-and-circumcision.html

National Organization of Circumcision Information Resource Centers - care of the intact penis:
http://www.nocirc.org/publish/4pam.pdf

Penile Hygiene for Intact Males (Circumcision Information Resource Pages):
http://www.cirp.org/library/hygiene/

American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Care of the Intact Child
http://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/bathing-skin-care/pages/Care-for-an-Uncircumcised-Penis.aspx

Medical Organization Statements on Intact Care (and Physician Packs):
SavingSons.org/2015/07/retracting-clinician-information-pack.html

Hospital Intact Care Packs ($3):
https://www.etsy.com/listing/526265909/hospital-stay-packet?ref=shop_home_active_4

Baby Bands (soft and stretchy for the hospital or care providers):
https://www.etsy.com/listing/502616895/do-not-retract-do-not-circumcise-baby?ref=listing-shop-header-3

Expecting a Boy? Stickers and Postcards to share at Etsy.

CIRCUMCISION CARE

Cloth Diapering Your Baby After Circumcision: DrMomma.org/2016/04/cloth-diapering-your-baby-after.html

Circumcision Care (National Organization of Circumcision Information Resource Centers): http://www.nocirc.org/publish/pamphlet5.html

Note regarding the recommendation of 6 months jelly for post-circumcision care:

In summary, this RCT demonstrated that an easy, safe, cheap, widely available intervention (petroleum jelly) reduces some of early and late complications of circumcision. It is prudent to apply the petroleum jelly on glans and meatal area of circumcised boys after each diaper change for 6 months post-circumcision.

Bazmamoun, H., Ghorbanpour, M., and Mousavi-Bahar, S. H. (2008). Lubrication of circumcision site for prevention of meatal stenosis in children younger than 2 years old. Urology journal, 5(4), 233-236.

Full Text: http://urologyjournal.org/index.php/uj/article/viewFile/30/29

Similar articles:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3830142/

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9539919

Intact Info Cards in English or Spanish available at Etsy.



Bands available at Etsy


Foreskin Facts





Stickers arrive with baby bands or hospital packs.

Diaper Rash or Red Foreskin Care
The perfect bath for healing and soothing

Hospital packs come with a variety of intact care materials, as well as a pediatric organization statement on care sheet to share with your doctor.

For discussions with fellow parents raising intact sons, you are welcome to join any or all of these groups: 

The INTACT Network: Facebook.com/groups/TINFamily

Saving Our Sons: Facebook.com/groups/SavingOurSons
Peaceful Parenting: Facebook.com/groups/ExplorePeacefulParenting
It's A Boy! Facebook.com/groups/OhJoyItsABoy


What if your son is retracting his own foreskin? Boys will tug and play - and it's okay! The foreskin will begin its natural separation process during this early exploration time for most boys. This is normal. Make hand washing fun! If irritation occurs, apply Calmoseptine to the outside of the penis to soothe. No retraction, unless by a boy himself. Further information also at: IntactHealth.orgSavingSons.org
Intact men in America have historically been cared for improperly. It is not the fact that they have foreskin that is sending them into urology offices. It is the fact that their foreskin had been torn away from the glans as infants, causing scar tissue that led to an injury, preventing the foreskin from functioning normally. As long as we are not damaging babies by retracting and tearing the foreskin, this will not be an issue. -Jennifer D'Jamoos, CCCE, Founder, IntactNetwork.orgMedical Professionals for Genital Autonomy


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