The Business of Being Born

The Business of Being Born

When browsing my lengthy Netflix queue, I was reminded of my first day at BirthWise. Jill gave me a tour of the center and asked if I had seen “The Business of Being Born,” Ricki Lake’s informative documentary about the ins-and-outs of childbirth in the United States. I added it to my instant queue but didn’t get around to watching it until a few weeks ago.

All the ladies here at BirthWise have opinions on the film, as you’ll see from our personal reviews below. Join the conversation on Facebook to weigh in with your thoughts on “The Business of Being Born” and the four-part episodic series “More Business of Being Born”!

“I thought the feature-length documentary was well-researched and non-judgmental of women’s birth outcomes. The home water birth shown in the beginning of the film, was definitely my favorite moment. It was the first natural birth I’d ever seen! What a wonderful thing to be provided a new image of what a natural labor and delivery can look like! I just wish there was more information about what parents can expect in terms of cost, including an emphasis on the fact that hospital births usually end up costing more than out-of-hospital births.” Morgan’s rating: ***

“I feel like “The Business of Being Born” is the single most impactful film in the US
bringing families to reevaluate their birth choices. Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein managed to make something wholly accessible, and understandable – and because they are coming from the mainstream, are able to reach your every day woman. They speak American. We speak…. birth. Which works great, once we’re meeting halfway, or even if expectant mama’s have a toe in the water. This is a way to get that toe in the water. Love it.” AnnMarie’s Rating: ***

“I meet with most of the families coming into BirthWise for their tour/consult and like to ask them what brings them here to us. Most often they respond “well, we saw The Business of Being Born….” Today’s obstetrical world treats healthy women’s pregnancies as an illness and as something to be controlled. Main stream media in relation to birth often show images that provoke feelings of fear, out of control, danger, painful and scary. “The Business of Being Born” offers women a different option. The images in the film show elation, beauty, strength, love, joy, power, control and happiness surrounding the families during their birth experiences. It is hard for me to imagine anyone not wanting those feelings when it comes to such an important day in their lives! I highly recommend watching this film.”
Jill’s Rating: ****

“A co-worker encouraged me to watch the Business of Being Born a number of years ago. Knowing nothing about modern day maternity care in the United States, this film opened my eyes to the epidemic crisis of fear in main stream maternity care. It inspired me to learn everything I could about natural childbirth and believing in a woman’s ability to birth. I love that this film facilitates interest to know more, to get people thinking about their own needs in childbirth, to expand the possibility otherwise un-discussed by most maternity care providers. A must see for excepting families!” Tricia’s Rating: ****

Let us know your thoughts about “The Business of Being Born”!


1 Comment
  • Nancy
    Posted at 16:38h, 04 July Reply

    The movies helps parents to get a more objective overview of childbirth. It reassures them that births can be done differently for the needs of the mothers and families. There are numerous safe ways to go about birth and mothers really need to think about what they want. Ricki and Abby did a good job.

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