Here are a few of our favorites. So enjoy! (But make sure you keep coming back to CHOICE!)
Up-to-date information about midwives, doulas and parents.
- AlternaMoms http://www.alternamoms.com/ The AlternaMoms site was created by moms to provide a clearinghouse for information on alternative options for pregnancy, birth and child-rearing. (An AlternaMom is “any woman who, above all else, questions and thinks for herself “) It encourages informed decision-making regarding place of birth, circumcision and vaccination. You can also participate in virtual Blessingways with this online community!
- BirthSource.com http://www.birthsource.com This is the official website of Perinatal Education Associates, Inc. Both expectant parents and maternal/child health professionals will find educational information, links and referrals. Professionals can visit the Events Calendar for a variety of continuing education opportunities. The BirthEssentials Online Store features books, videos, tapes, aromatherapy supplies, Maxafe slow-deflate birth balls, massage oils and tools, plus the finest teaching supplies (from pelvises to charts) from Ace Graphics of Australia!
- Childbirth.Org http://www.childbirth.org/ The philosophy of this site is “Birth is a natural process, not a medical procedure.” It provides an extensive collection of links emphasizing natural pregnancy and childbirth. Great features include “Ask a Nurse,” chat rooms, and week-by-week guides. A recommended first stop for anyone interested in becoming educated about childbirth from a non-medical perspective.
- The Bradley Method Home Pagee http://www.bradleybirth.com/ Information about the Bradley Method of childbirth preparation. Includes an overview of course content, pregnancy diet, a national directory of instructors, information on becoming a Bradley instructor and more.
- Doulas of North America Homepage http://www.dona.com/ This site includes information on the benefits of having doula in childbirth as well as information on locating a doula in your area, training and certification, and links to DONA-recommended childbirth web pages. It is a useful site both for those who are pregnant and for practitioners.
- Gentle Birth Alternatives http://www.geocities.com/HotSprings/8978/ A good collection of links concerning natural childbirth, breastfeeding, women and children’s rights, etc. Maintained by a certified childbirth educator.
- Healthy Child http://www.healthychild.com/ This is a companion site to the bimonthly newsletter Healthy Child. It supports a holistic approach to children’s health and health care. The site is also a great jumping off point with links to several other natural parenting sites.
- La Leche League International http://www.lalecheleague.org/ La Leche League’s home on the net. In addition to a wide variety of articles on every facet of breastfeeding, this site includes links to local LLL organization web pages, info on how to find a local LLL leader, job postings for LLLI and links to breastfeeding materials in languages other than English.
- Marilyn’s Midwifery Page http://www.midwifery2000.com/ This site is a collection of information about midwifery including great links to organizations, publications, education and help on specific topics.
- The Midwife Archives http://www.gentlebirth.org/archives This is a collection of information that has been extracted from conversations on the birth-related e-mail lists that are maintained at fensende.com (most of which are comprised of natural birth practitioners). Includes information on all stages of pregnancy and childbirth (from the perspectives of participating midwives) as well as a list of recommended links.
- Midwives’ Alliance of North America http://www.mana.org/ A key resource for the midwifery topic. The Midwives’ Alliance of North America (MANA) is an organization of North American midwives and their advocates. MANA’s central mission is to promote midwifery as a quality health care option for North American families. Also contains information about NARM (North American Registry of Midwives) for aspiring midwives that want to become CPMs and MEAC (Midwifery Education and Accreditation Council) the accrediting agency for midwifery schools.
- Mothers Naturally http://www.mothersnaturally.org/ Mothers Naturally is a public education program from the Midwives Alliance of North America. The goal of Mothers Naturally is to increase the number of safe and positive births by educating and informing the public about natural birth options and empowering women to make pregnancy and birth choices appropriate for their lives. Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA) was formed in 1982 to unify and strengthen the profession of midwifery, thus improving the quality of health care for women, babies and communities. As a leader in midwifery, MANA has been at the forefront of developing midwifery credentialing and educational organizations.
- Ohio Midwives Alliance http://www.ohiomidwives.org Founded in 1984, Ohio Midwives Alliance (OMA) is a professional organization of midwives and others who recognize and support the practice of Direct-Entry Midwifery and the homebirth choice in the State of Ohio. Its purpose is: To expand communication and to build support among Ohio midwives and their supporters. To promote midwifery as a quality health care option. To promote research and disseminate information in the field of midwifery care. To provide public education about midwifery, prenatal care, childbirth, postpartum and newborn care.
- ParentsPlace.Com http://www.parentsplace.com/ This site strives to provide an online community for discussing all aspects of parenthood, from pre-pregnancy planning onward. It provides bulletin boards, daily live chats on several subjects and lists of links and resources. Great feature: an interactive pregnancy calendar, individualized for each person.
- Parent Soup http://www.parentsoup.com/ Another online community of parents with bulletin boards, chats, and resources of parents of kids of all ages. Contributors of note include William and Martha Sears who serve as the site’s pediatrician and baby experts.
- Pregnancy Today Online http://www.pregnancytoday.com/ This site is the online companion to the print journal Pregnancy Today. The resources are well balanced between natural and medical perspectives, but with a healthy emphasis on the natural. Their panel of experts (who participate in an online Q&A) includes nurse-midwives, obstetricians, lactation consultant, doulas, anesthesiologist, nutritionist, massage therapist, chiropractor/yoga instructor and more. Great feature: this site sponsors monthly mailing lists for expectant parents as well as forums and chat rooms.
- Radical Fringe Mothering Page http://www.geocities.com/Wellesley/6028/Warm, friendly site maintained by a mom with two daughters. Has links to sites covering childbirth education, homebirth, waterbirth and vaccine education. This site participates in several WebRings devoted to birth, breastfeeding and parenting. A great jumping-off site for more info.
Electronic mailing lists are a great way to build a support network, particularly for those who, due to their location or lack of local resources, might have difficulties finding like-minded people with whom to share questions and concerns.
- ap: Attachment Parenting: A support forum for parents who practice attachment parenting. To subscribe, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. Leave the subject line blank and type SUBSCRIBE in the body of the message.
- nat_birth: Natural Birth and Pregnancy: A list for parents to discuss natural birthing practices in home, hospital, or birth center. To subscribe, send a message to email@example.com. Type SUBSCRIBE in the subject line.
- Parent-l: Attachment Parenting List: The grandmommy of all attachment parenting lists. To subscribe, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. Leave the subject line blank and type SUBSCRIBE in the body of the message.
- Pregnancy Today Online: Sponsors mailing lists for those due each month. To subscribe, either visit http://www.pregnancytoday.com/lists, or send a message to email@example.com. Leave the subject line blank and type SUBSCRIBE MONTH in the body of the message (where “MONTH” is the month in which you are due).
- pgap: PreGnancy-Attachment Parenting: A support forum for parents planning to conceive or expecting children who plan to practice attachment parenting. To subscribe, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. Leave the subject line blank and type SUBSCRIBE in the body of the message.
- pgwmoms: Pregnant Working Moms: A discussion list for issues affecting pregnant working mothers. To subscribe, send a message to email@example.com. Leave the subject line blank and type SUBSCRIBE PGWMOMS in the body of the message.
- pump: Pumping List: Discussion list about pumping and related issues (lactation problems, supply boosters etc.). To subscribe, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. Leave the subject line blank and type SUBSCRIBE PUMP in the body of the message.
- sah-ap: Stay-at-Home Attachment Parenting: This is a list for full-time moms and dads who practice attachment parenting. It is a high-volume list (expect at least 50 messages/day). For more information visit the web page at http://www.kjsl.com/sah-ap/. To subscribe send a message to email@example.com. Leave the subject line blank and type SUBSCRIBE in the body of the message.
- wmoms: Working Moms: A discussion list for issues affecting working mothers who love their children and also enjoy their careers. This is a high-volume list (expect at least 50 messages/day). To subscribe, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. Leave the subject line blank and type SUBSCRIBE in the body of the message.
News groups can be a valuable source of information. However, because they are open to everyone without moderation they carry with them the unfortunate side-effect of being prone to discussions that can range from simply contentious to out and out flame wars. The groups below contain discussions relevant to pre-pregnancy planning, pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and parenting. Most heated issue of late: circumcision. misc.kids.pregnancy misc.kids misc.kids.breastfeeding