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on 15 January 2010
A lack of information from my own Midwife meant I actually referred to this book throughout pregnancy as well as during labour.

It gave me the information I needed to manage the birth of my second child with confidence and minimal pain. The breathing method for managing pain was perfectly explained.

As a direct result I have actually experienced what the book talks about and presumably what eludes many of us and that is, childbirth as a joyful, wonderful process.

Thanks to my Mum (herself a mother of five) for recommending Sheila Kitzinger.
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on 8 September 2008
I would recommend this book to any expectant mother. This book empowered me to experience both a positive mental and physical childbirth. It doesn't matter how you give birth but it matters how you experience it. It covers a woman's emotional experience of childbirth, which is often overlooked.
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on 6 December 2006
I bought this book in the hope that it would "demystify" the childbirth process for me a little and it did, explaining in detail exactly what happens during contractions, crowning, etc.

The only problem for me is that it very much majors on home / natural birth. What do you do if you want a natural birth in a birthing centre but end up being induced? Not enough information on this side of childbirth for me, hence the four stars.

Beautifully written though.
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on 12 January 2006
I read this book when I was pregnant with my second child. It was an interesting, thought-provoking book and served as a useful reminder of some of the technicalities of how a baby is born. Very readable - this is not a manual.
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on 18 May 2007
I tell everyone about this book. Both my husband and I read it during my pregnancy and found it extremely reassuring. During the labour, I realised that the book had given me a huge amount of confidence and my birth experience was much easier as a result of this.
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on 9 May 2011
I am very happy I purchased this book. It iS filled with very motivational and inspirational information about birth and a how a woman can have a positive and uplifting birth experience. I am a great fan of Sheila Kitzinger's work and this book didn't disappoint. After reading this book I felt very positive and less fearful about the process of birth and am actually looking forward to putting some of ther active birth tips into practice! Thank you to Sheila for once again reminding women that we can achieve a natural birth and birth doesn't have to be so medicalised, controlled and taken over by health professionals. After a previous c-section I am hoping for a natural delivery this time and it's books like these which empower women to trust their bodies and believe in themselves.
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on 22 June 2010
I used this book during the births of my children, so I bought it for my daughters.This publication is even better. Excellent read.
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on 7 May 2012
Inspirational. Empowering. Thank god for Sheila Kitzinger. Warm, readable, understandable, this book gave me the confidence to elect for a home birth with my second child and we couldn't have had a better experience. A joyous and (practically) pain free experience. I do remember appreciating a nip of gas and air at the time, but have no memory of real pain at all. Just wonderful.
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on 20 May 2015
still relevant today, nourishment for the soul of all pregnant woman, and brimming with sage advice and suggestions on how to get the most out your own experience of childbirth.
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