2 Documentaries Touching Birth and Justice You Should Know About

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Today's post comes to you from Everyday Birth, a new magazine I've launched through The Educated Birth, about pregnancy, birth, and parenthood created for folks from many life experiences. View the original post here.

People are talking about the very real issues parents face in birth more and more these days. NPR wrote about it, Propublica wrote about it, Serena Williams spoke out about her experience, and groups like BlackMamasMatterChanging Woman Initiative, all of us involved with Everyday Birth Magazine, and countless others continue to strive to raise awareness and make a difference for so many.

Today, we're sharing two Kickstarter projects, created by folks ready to make waves in what we know about birth, specifically in the United States today. Take a look, and consider how you can and want to support!

Mother May I?

"It just shouldn't be too much to ask, to say,
I just don't want to be traumatized giving birth."

"I thought I was crazy."

One-third of women describe their births as traumatic.  They're also saying they were shamed and silenced afterwards when they tried to talk about how they were treated or how they feel.

"I didn't even know I was allowed to say no."

This situation is urgent.  Every day, more women and birthing people are failed by a system that hurts and traumatizes them--especially women of color and other marginalized groups.

"But at least you have a healthy baby." 

It's not true that you have to choose between a healthy baby and a healthy mom.  In fact, we know outcomes are better for both babies and moms when providers safeguard mothers' mental and emotional well-being.

"The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any."- Alice Walker

As consumers, we have so much more power than we realize!  Public outcry is the only way great social change happens.  This project is a chance to take our sadness, anger, and frustration and turn it into ACTION for CHANGE.  We are making a film to reach the masses, representing people from all backgrounds and walks of life.  We want to bring to light what is happening in maternity care, break the taboos that keep women silent, and present specific solutions.

"Addiction is not a moral deficiency.
It doesn't mean I love my child any less."

Original Body of Pain portrays the American opioid epidemic in an immersive, longitudinal fashion, following families stricken by addiction and Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome - when babies are born exposed to substances - for over a year of their lives. 

Set in Asheville, NC, the documentary follows women through pregnancy, childbirth, and beyond, profiling the highs and lows of motherhood - from first steps and birthday parties, to drug withdrawal, personal traumas, and relapses. 

But this film isn't a sob story or a portrait of shame. Told with compassion, integrity and love, our film documents the bravery and resilience of three strong women at different intersections of the opioid crisis, and makes a compelling statement for sympathy and understanding for those suffering from addiction. 

Furthermore, our documentary is proof that addicts can still make great parents when they're provided the social support and compassionate care that addiction demands.