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How Birth Affects
the Rest of Our Life

These important aspects of water birth are widely acknowledged by humanist psychologists, who recognize the valuable benefits to the mother/child relationship that result from a positive emotional state during birth.

A mother who has an easy time birthing her baby will forever look into the face of her child and be reminded of an empowering birth experience, rather than one of excruciating pain and fear. Some have postulated that this positive beginning will sustain the family through later, more difficult times, such as during the onset of puberty.

In recent years there has been a growing awareness on the part of both professionals and lay people about the importance of the first minutes, hours and days of life. Some believe that many of us unknowingly spend a good deal of our lives feeling the negative effects of, and dealing with, birth trauma that could have been avoided, if those who assist at birth were more knowledgeable about this issue.

There are interesting studies which show that the birth experience is one of several causal factors in determining the kind of personality an individual manifests later in life.

The California Commission on Crime Control and Violence Prevention spent two years studying the root causes of crime. It found that gentle birth, more loving families and less violence on television are three major factors that curb violent crime. The Commission said that "a positive birth experience, one that is gentle, loving and non-traumatic, increases the likelihood of healthy child development and less violent behavior."

Medical and psychological studies aside, it seems obvious that such is the case. Each of us is deeply affected on many levels by major life circumstances, which help to shape our character and personality, and birth is the first big occurrence for most of us.

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