The most important is invisible....
From the Little Prince by A. de Saint-Exupéry
This question came in this morning and I decided to make it a separate topic.
"implying that children, and adults, are different than they would have been had their mothers had different "experiences." This seems an extraordinary claim. Have you any proof of this?"
Yes, there are ever increasing volumes of proof scientifically, both retrospective and prospective, as well as observational, that lead scientists, researchers, behavioral psychologists, cellular biologists and neurologists to the same conclusion. WHAT WE DO IN PREGNANCY AND BIRTH MATTERS.......AND affects the way we live life.
I will post a comprehensive bibliography on my website in a few days that will give you the actual scientific references. The research in this area has been going on for almost fifty years.
The mind of the child - what are the influences? What are the memories? Do we make decisions at birth and before that effect our relationship with the world?
Memory before 3 years old is intrinsic - always there, present, taking everything in and storing the memory in the brain for future reference. It is on a cellular level, flavoring and coloring all our responses.
Bruce Lipton, PhD, a medical school professor and author, states in his book, "The Biology of Belief" that humans are not, as was previously believed, victims of our genes, but that the environment and things that go on in our environment, including pregnancy and birth, has a direct effect on our DNA.
He goes on to explain that the activity of cells reacts to the environment, but more specifically, our perception of the environment directly controls the activity of our genes.
Dr. Joe Dispenza, an expert in neuro-biology stated in a recent interview, "There is scientific proof that the mind state of a pregnant mother affects the growth of her baby's brain. Dr. Dispenza elaborated, "A mother who is relaxed and in an environment in which she is able to cope adequately - rather than one that causes her chronic stress - is going to encourage the development of the fetus's forebrain, the area that allows us to reach logical conclusions, control our impulses, and successfully navigate our emotions." Inadequate development of the forebrain has been suggested as a possible explanation for aggressive and anti-social behavior in children, potentially leading to violent behavior, criminal offenses, and higher rates of drug abuse later in life.
Researchers conclude that the mother who is relaxed and free from stress during birth gives birth much more easily, sometimes painlessly and with a totally different attitude. And the baby who is placed on her chest immediately and left there skin to skin for many hours receives a message of love, attention, completeness, welcome and perceives infinite possibilities. Not true for the baby whose mother gives birth in pain, stress, with drugs that the baby also receives, and is immediately separated. A painful or traumatic birth can be overcome with remedial work and an acute awareness of what the baby is trying to communicate after birth.
A stressful, painful birth is not a prescription for psychiatric problems for the rest of ones life, nor is a gentle birth a guarantee that a child will have an easy peaceful life, but.....there is a connection. This connection is virtually ignored by the medical community and is only now being addressed publicly in films, books, and in the press. I'll write more on this topic in future posts. A very good film to watch is, "What Babies Want: A Exploration of the Consciousness of Infants.
Dr. Joe Dispenza, famed neurologist featured in the film, What the Bleep Do We Know, will lead a presentation that addresses the biology of the infant mind at the first Gentle Birth World Congress and Whole Baby Expo, September 27 – 30, 2007, at the