All Time Famous Ina May Gaskin Quotes

Ina May Gaskin Quotes

Ina May Gaskin, born in 1940, is an influential American midwife, author, and advocate for natural childbirth. Renowned for founding “The Farm Midwifery Center” in Tennessee, Gaskin has been a pioneer in the modern midwifery movement. Her groundbreaking book “Spiritual Midwifery,” published in 1976, documented the natural and spiritual aspects of childbirth based on experiences at The Farm. This work significantly influenced the shift towards woman-centered birthing practices. Gaskin’s writings, including “Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth” and “Ina May’s Guide to Breastfeeding,” continue to empower women and contribute to the discourse on maternal health. Her legacy lies in promoting holistic, empowering approaches to childbirth and advocating for the role of midwives in supporting women during the birthing process.

Ina May Gaskin Quotes

1. “Whenever and however you give birth, your experience will impact your emotions, your mind, your body, and your spirit for the rest of your life.”
— Ina May Gaskin

2. “If a woman doesn’t look like a Goddess during labor, then someone isn’t treating her right.”
— Ina May Gaskin

3. “When we as a society begin to value mothers as the givers and supporters of life, then we will see social change in ways that matter.”
— Ina May Gaskin

4. “There is no other organ quite like the uterus. If men had such an organ they would brag about it. So should we.”
— Ina May Gaskin

5. “I think that women can be just completely surprised by the change in them from giving birth-you have something powerful in you-that fierce thing comes up-and I think babies need moms to have that fierceness-you feel like you can do anything and that’s the feeling we want moms to have.”
— Ina May Gaskin

6. “Even if it has not been your habit throughout your life so far, I recommend that you learn to think positively about your body.”
— Ina May Gaskin

7. “The energy that gets the baby in is the energy that gets the baby out.”
— Ina May Gaskin

8. “The way a culture treats women in birth is a good indicator of how well women and their contributions to society are valued and honored.”
— Ina May Gaskin

9. “The human species is no more unsuited to give birth than any other of the 5,000 or so species of mammals on the planet. We are merely the most confused.”
— Ina May Gaskin

10. “Squat 300 times a day, you’re going to give birth quickly.”
— Ina May Gaskin

11. “Let your monkey do it.”
— Ina May Gaskin

12. “It is important to keep in mind that our bodies must work pretty well, or their wouldn’t be so many humans on the planet.”
— Ina May Gaskin

13. “We are the only species of mammal that doubts our ability to give birth. It’s profitable to scare women about birth. But let’s stop it. I tell women: Your body is not a lemon.”
— Ina May Gaskin

14. “If birth matters, midwives matter. In Europe, there are hospitals where the cesarean rate is less than 10%, and you’ll find midwives in these hospitals, you’ll see a lot less re-admissions with infections and complications, and you’ll see a lot less injury to mothers.”
— Ina May Gaskin

15. “The Creator is not a careless mechanic.”
— Ina May Gaskin

16. “I had to learn not to let anyone push me around, to be brave and to say things I knew might make people mad.”
— Ina May Gaskin

17. “It will take your breastfed baby an average of five to six months to double her birth weight.”
— Ina May Gaskin

18. “Simply put, when there is no home birth in a society, or when home birth is driven completely underground, essential knowledge of women’s capacities in birth is lost to the people of that society – to professional caregivers, as well as to the women of childbearing age themselves.”
— Ina May Gaskin

19. “Mother’s milk is soul food for babies. The babies of the world need a lot more soul food.”
— Ina May Gaskin

20. “The best a health care system can do is to equip itself to meet the needs of each individual woman and birth. Those needs run the gamut from undisturbed home birth to planned cesarean section.”
— Ina May Gaskin

21. “Don’t forget to bring your sense of humor to your labor.”
— Ina May Gaskin

22. “Don’t criticize nature, stand in awe of it.”
— Ina May Gaskin

23. “It’s good to laugh at times that feel inappropriate.”
— Ina May Gaskin

24. “When a child is born, the entire Universe has to shift and make room. Another entity capable of free will, and therefore capable of becoming God, has been born.”
— Ina May Gaskin

25. “I think midwifery was developed by people with common sense, people who were close to nature, and people who observed other species of mammals and saw that there were lessons there to be learned.”
— Ina May Gaskin

26. “Contrary to myth, for instance, intrinsic physical characteristics only rarely interfere with the capacity to give birth. In other words, your pelvis is probably big enough for vaginal birth. Nearly every woman’s is. Mental attitudes and emotions, on the other hand, interfere with the ability to give birth far more than is generally understood.”
— Ina May Gaskin

27. “Step one to preventing PPD is to find time to sleep after giving birth, no matter how euphoric you feel.”
— Ina May Gaskin

28. “I kept thinking while I was pushing, I’m going to get huge. I’m going to get huge!” she said.”
— Ina May Gaskin

29. “What I love about stories the most is the power they have to teach us of possibilities that might not occur to us without them.”
— Ina May Gaskin

30. “Believe me: if you are told that some experience is going to hurt, it will hurt. Much of pain is in the mind, and when a woman absorbs the idea that the act of giving birth is excruciatingly painful – when she gets this information from her mother, her sisters, her married friends, and her physician – that woman has been mentally prepared to feel great agony.”
— Ina May Gaskin

31. “Remember this, for it is as true and true gets: Your body is not a lemon. You are not a machine. The Creator is not a careless mechanic. Human female bodies have the same potential to give birth well as aardvarks, lions, rhinoceri, elephants, moose, and water buffalo. Even if it has not been your habit throughout your life so far, I recommend that you learn to think positively about your body.”
— Ina May Gaskin

32. “I dreaded having a boring life when I grew up. And I certainly can’t complain about being bored.”
— Ina May Gaskin

33. “I have never observed even the slightest laceration in a woman who used clitoral stimulation as a relaxation method during birth. Clitoral stimulation seems to increase vaginal engorgement as the baby emerges.”
— Ina May Gaskin

34. “Breast stimulation is especially effective in starting labor at term when it is combined with sexual intercourse. Unless your partner is an abysmally poor lover, this combination is by far the most enjoyable method of induction.”
— Ina May Gaskin

35. “Ask the woman, she will tell you everything you need to know.”
— Ina May Gaskin

36. “Touch is the most basic, the most nonconceptual form of communication that we have. In touch there are no language barriers; anything that can walk, fly, creep, crawl, or swim already speaks it.”
— Ina May Gaskin

37. “Why should nutrition matter less in the creation of young humans than it does in young plants? I’m sure that it doesn’t.”
— Ina May Gaskin

38. “When you cast doubt on some bodily function- you don’t know how sensitive the body is to that kind of idea.”
— Ina May Gaskin

39. “Many of our problems in US maternity care stem from the fact that we leave no room for recognizing when nature is smarter than we are.”
— Ina May Gaskin

40. “If you can’t be a hero, you can at least be funny while being a chicken.”
— Ina May Gaskin

41. “It would be a mistake, though, to consider care by family doctors or midwives inferior to that offered by obstetricians simply on the grounds that obstetricians need not refer care to a family physician or midwife if no complications develop during a course of labor.”
— Ina May Gaskin

42. “Dear Lord, make us truly grateful for what it is that we are about to receive.”
— Ina May Gaskin

43. “Why do we, then, continue to treat women as if their emotions and comfort, and the postures they might want to assume while in labor, are against the rules?”
— Ina May Gaskin

44. “Only rarely do doctors in training have the opportunity to sit continuously with laboring women for hours. Most are taught to intervene in the normal process so often and so early that they have never witnessed a normal labor and birth.”
— Ina May Gaskin

45. “The strangest request I have encountered was that of a first-time mother who – just before pushing – asked her husband for a jar of peanut butter and proceeded to eat two heaping table-spoonfuls. She then washed the peanut butter down with nearly a quart of raspberry leaf tea and pushed her baby out. I was impressed.”
— Ina May Gaskin

46. “Why in the world do the insurance companies get to be the boss of birth? That’s what I want to know.”
— Ina May Gaskin

47. “Why should insurance companies continue to get away with limiting the skills that a health profession has always previously required of its members if they were to be considered fully trained?”
— Ina May Gaskin

48. “We are, indeed, fully prepared to believe that the bearing of children may and ought to become as free from danger and long debility to the civilized woman as it is to the savage. – Thomas Huxley.”
— Ina May Gaskin

49. “Many midwives work as employees in large hospital practices, where the techno-medical model of care is still the rule. In practices like these, midwives are used to attract women who desire midwifery care, but they may in fact be under constant pressure to practice within the techno-medical mode.”
— Ina May Gaskin

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