Life After Birth Paperback – 7 Aug 2008
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The complete manual of the terrors, exhaustion and passionate emotions of the post-partum existence. A classic (THE TIMES)
A sanctuary of revelation about the bafflingly contradictory experience of becoming and being a mother . . . In places I laughed aloud in relieved recognition (Rebecca Abrams, INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY)
[I] salute Kate Figes's sensitive book which, admirably, helps redress the balance between the plethora of pregnancy manuals and the ridiculous paucity of advice on how to cope after (Leonie Miller, MAIL ON SUNDAY)
* Fully revised and updated, LIFE AFTER BIRTH takes a hard-hitting look at the reality - physical, emotional, social and sexual - of becoming a motherSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
It presents an academic approach in an easy to access format, giving historical and sociological perspective to the way that we experience the post-birth period. For example, did you know that the concept of the mother staying home to take care of a child is a construct of the 20th Century? Before that, babies were brought up by nannies or extended family members depending on the social background of the family.
I found the sections on the impact that a baby has on friends of particular relevence. It did explain some surprising things that had been going on in my life.
I was delighted to find an unvarnished account of the problems that can be experienced which also gave full weight to the delights of motherhood and fully supported a range of childcare and lifestyle options, rather than dictating one. I have already given a copy to my best friend and would recommend it to anyone considering having a child, as well as those who have just given birth.
I had a traumatic birth in an underfunded London hospital, and the first few weeks with the baby were very difficult indeed. In that context I would agree with everything Figes says. However, like most other new mothers I have met, the situation quickly improved and now I am having fun in my new life with a wonderful baby. Figes does not put the lows in context with the highs.
If Figes were to re-write this book and include all the emotions of bliss, adoration and triumph that also come with having a baby then I would give it five stars and recommend it to everyone. As it stands, though, it is best read by health officials and government policy-makers as a way of encouraging better post-natal support.
I am not for a minute belittling the extroardinary joys of motherhood-- it's the best thing that ever happened to me. But Thank God someone prepared me for the intellectual vacuum, periodic loneliness and frequent tedium of the first few years! Thank God someone spelled out clearly some of the less obvious but perniciously recurring symptoms of Post Partem, so I didn't panic or blame the wrong causes.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Bought this for a friend, as I do for anyone who is about to give birth. They should be issued free at your first scan! Read morePublished 5 months ago by rhoscolyn
A brilliant, sensitively written book which manages to articulate all the new feelings and mixed emotions I have been experiencing as I get ready for the birth of our baby and made... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Nicola Wood
Reading this book made me realise how I was feeling was normal. An absolute life saver and one I often share with friends.Published 21 months ago by FarnhamMum
It's a work of some interest, but for me, not something I want to finish reading while pregnant. So I am in the unusual position of reviewing something I have partially read. Read morePublished on 22 July 2014 by netochka
I should have read this before having a baby! Figes is honest and relatable. This is one of the most reassuring books about motherhood and parenting I've read. Read morePublished on 30 May 2014 by A. Murray
I bought this while pregnant, and braced myself for a depressing motherhood after reading it. While I admire the 'warts and all' nature of the narrative, and the voices given to a... Read morePublished on 9 Dec. 2013 by Roundabout
part of this book are quite interesting, some other are depressing and would not recommend to a new mum! overall an interesting read to be taken with a pinch of saltPublished on 17 July 2013 by Maria C
Really helped me when my youngest was a baby.
You imagine you're the only one not enjoying every second of looking after your baby, that you're... Read more
Cannot recommend enough for new mums, although I wouldn't read before having baby! Fantastic book which covers the emotions most women go through after having a baby, the stuff... Read morePublished on 30 Dec. 2012 by MISS S