Gentle birth is about having an empowered birth.  A birth should have the mother be aware of her rights as a patient. With mother knowing what they want and how to achieve it. They are in control with the mother having the right to choose what pain control to use or not using it at all, the right to agree with or refuse interventions or therapy after being educated about options that are available, good or bad, possible risk and complications.

Eida Mohd
" Gentle birth is when I owned it (birth). I am an active part of it, at the centre of it and NOT simply a 'vessel' (unfeeling and submissive). My companion is not merely a spectator, he/she will champion my cause and be my rock. Gentle birth is when, I emerge from the experience feeling empowered instead of being left to 'lick my wounds, pick up the pieces and move on with life'."

Chris Anthony
Gentle Birthing Advocate
A Gentle Birth is exactly that – Gentle. Unfortunately, the majority of births today are far from gentle. There are many aspects to Gentle Birthing and you can have a gentle birth in your home, the hospital or even in the car! A Gentle Birth is as gentle and natural as possible and places a lot of importance on the feelings and emotions of the new baby as well as those of the mother. 

If your baby could talk, they might tell you something like this:
Mummy, when I am in your tummy, please encourage me with happy loving thoughts and words, be excited to welcome me to your world and plan a beautiful birth day for me with warm arms, a peaceful environment and your milk. Be confident that I will know when I am ready to come out, and give me a chance to show you I can do it. Do not be afraid, but use instead warm water and your breath if you need help. Do not leave me, for I have known only you, and a minute in your world is an eternity in mine. Please do not scare me with bright lights, cold instruments, strangers and loud noises, I need only you. Ask Dad to protect us both, keep me with you on your skin and whisper words of love. And I will be eternally grateful.

In order to have a Gentle Birth it is important to be aware of all the ‘not so gentle’ aspects of birth, so that with education and understanding, you can confidently choose what is right for you and your family. 
For me personally, a Gentle Birth is a loving and positive pregnancy; allowing the baby to decide when he/she is ready; a drug free birth using natural methods like water, breath and HypnoBirthing; immediate skin to skin contact and early breastfeeding; continual presence of mum; delayed separation from the placenta and a warm quiet welcome to this world.

Chrissy Steinheart
Gentle Birthing Advocate

What is Gentle Birth? What does it mean?

A Gentle Birth will mean something different to every woman, but the key concepts of a Gentle Birth are a birth without trauma for the Mother, Father AND the baby. 

‘It is one that I remember with a smile, one that leaves me with a feeling of empowerment, one where I feel supported, respected and encouraged. It is a warm and gentle welcome to this world for my baby and it is a beautiful start to a lifelong journey of love’. The location does not matter, even a c-section can be gentle if the mother is aware of her choices, accurately informed of the risks and benefits, is consulted before any procedure, and is in agreement with the choices made. Gentle for the baby means a gentle transition from womb to world, remaining attached to the placenta until baby is ready to breathe on his own, skin to skin contact and words of love. 

Read on to discover what ‘Gentle Birth’ means to these mothers …..

Gentle birth to me means baby, mum n dad had a gentle birth experience - physically (no violent procedures or rough treatment), mentally (no talking down to, treated like idiots or inferior in knowledge), emotionally (respected, acknowledged, felt loved n compassion, encouraged, uplifted, empowered) and spiritually (left intact, whole, not traumatized)

Ng Bee Ting
Gentle Birthing Advocate
 When I've looked at what gentle birth actually is, it always amazes me how many elements there are to a gentle birth. It's not necessarily about setting, or about having a vaginal birth - there's environment, attitude, atmosphere, the steps/procedures, and the outcome of a happy and healthy mother and baby. I've had two C-sections and the first was not gentle at all. When I've reflected upon the second I feel it was.
 It was medically necessary (due to my bladder adhering to the uterus), my labour was well supported by my birth companions (including Mother In Law), the nurses and midwives were caring. The doctor was great. I will never forget the anaesthetist who held my face and stroked my cheeks and in the recovery room, the nurse who cuddled me as I cried. Baby latched on brilliantly after having an hour of skin-to-skin with my husband. Gentle birth is just so many things...

Danielle Sweetman
Gentle Birthing Advocate

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