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The Birth Of A Mother: How The Motherhood Experience Changes You Forever [Kindle Edition]

Daniel N. Stern , Nadia Bruschweiler-Stern , Alison Freeland
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

As you prepare to become a mother, you face an experience unlike any other in your life. Having a baby will redirect your preferences and pleasures and, most likely, will realign some of your values.As you undergo this unique psychological transformation, you will be guided by new hopes, fears, and priorities. In a most startling way, having a child will influence all of your closest relationships and redefine your role in your family’s history. The charting of this remarkable, new realm is the subject of this compelling book.Renowned psychiatrist Daniel N. Stern has joined forces with pediatrician and child psychiatrist Nadia Bruschweiler-Stern and journalist Alison Freeland to paint a wonderfully evocative picture of the psychology of motherhood. At the heart of The Birth of a Mother is an arresting premise: Just as a baby develops physically in utero and after birth, so a mother is born psychologically in the many months that precede and follow the birth of her baby.The recognition of this inner transformation emerges from hundreds of interviews with new mothers and decades of clinical experience. Filled with revealing case studies and personal comments from women who have shared this experience, this book will serve as an invaluable sourcebook for new mothers, validating the often confusing emotions that accompany the development of this new identity. In addition to providing insight into the unique state of motherhood, the authors touch on related topics such as going back to work, fatherhood, adoption, and premature birth.During pregnancy, mothers-to-be talk about morning sickness and their changing bodies, and new mothers talk about their exhaustion, the benefits of nursing or bottle-feeding, and the dilemma of whether or when they should return to work. And yet, they can be strangely mute about the dramatic and often overwhelming changes going on in their inner lives. Finally, with The Birth of a Mother, these powerful feelings are eloquently put into words.


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The author of Diary of a Baby turns his attentive eye on motherhood in this reassuring and uniquely substantive volume that focuses on new mothers. Based on close observation and hundreds of interviews with the mothers of young children, Stern, an infant psychiatrist who teaches at Cornell University Medical Center-New York Hospital, describes the complex emotional shifts that women experience as they travel from pregnancy through birth and into their baby's newborn period. For some, the transition into the new state of motherhood is instantaneous; for others, the initiation requires time. But all find the transformation profound, thoroughly changing their view of themselves, their relationships and the world. Stern offers his own perspective on the normal development changes that may be taking place, from concerns during pregnancy to changing relationships women may be experiencing with their own mothers, to building a matrix of helpful friends, to a baby's impact on a marriage. Of particular value are the descriptions, delivered in sensory, immediate prose, of the interactions between a wide array of mothers and their babies. Most stunning is a detailed evocation of a three-minute interaction between a mother and her baby that shows how, even when the mother doesn't respond perfectly, she is still doing well enough. It's hard to imagine a new mother who would not be inspired, reassured and encouraged by Stern's moving and thoughtful account. (Mar.) FYI: Basic will simultaneously reissue Stern's classic Diary of a Baby in paper.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Mothers are not created by the act of giving birth. Instead, argue the authors, the "motherhood mindset" begins to take shape during pregnancy and is created as parents care for their infant in the weeks and months after the birth. Most women find themselves shifting more attention to other women who are more experienced mothers during this time in an effort to find role models for this new identity. Special sections discuss the problems encountered by the new mothers of handicapped and premature babies, who often feel a sense of failure or inability to bond with their child. Other chapters discuss the impact of parenthood on the marriage and the question of juggling career and baby. Throughout, the focus is on the mother's developing sense of self. Brenda Eheart's The Fourth Trimester (Prentice-Hall, 1983) covers similar ground but does not include as much information on marriage and career concerns. In general, this title would be very useful to expectant mothers and is recommended for public libraries serving areas with young families.?Mary Ann Hughes, Neill P.L., Pullman, Wash.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 360 KB
  • Print Length: 258 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0465015670
  • Publisher: Basic Books; 1 edition (December 3, 1998)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003PJ6UEI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #274,567 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Warm and Informative January 10, 2001
Format:Paperback
Although written by a man, this book seems to grab the psychology of a pregnant woman quite successfully. The writer asks the accurate questions and enlightens the reader with the detailed and satisfactory answers. This is not a text book though, it is like a complete novel of the journey of becoming a mother. Highly recommended...
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A chef d'oeuvre... July 23, 1998
Format:Hardcover
I bought the book today and I finished it. Sterns did a great job. They explained a highly complex developmental theory very simply for everyone who want to learn something on motherhood. I am psychologist who has been interested in their theory in a very sophisticated way for a very long time but I felt that I learned a lot while reading the book. Everyone should read this 'tour de force' to understand themselves, their mothers, their chilhood, their motherhood and also their 'fatherhood'. Congratulations Nadia and Dan !
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful January 23, 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This book offers much valuable information about what goes on emotionally when your expecting a child, and once you've become a mom. It helps you to understand many of the "why's" about what you may be feeling or thinking. While most books offer information on pregnancy,labor and delivery, they leave a very important subject untouched...the psychological and emotional side of it all. This book is all about that and definitely worth reading.
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Format:Paperback
This book was an assigned reading from our family therapist.
Each woman starts her own motherhood a certain way - some become a mother at 8 or 12yo, when caring for a younger sibling, some become a mother at 50yo, when taking their late-arrived child for the first time to the ER, and some, during a miscarriage or after an abortion.

The book won't create a mother of you, but will help you identify several essential steps of your personal maturity that created - or will create a mother of you.
Unlike a "pregnancy book" that most likely fairytales the labor and explains how most women are soaked with love during pushing and become a mother here and there, this book addresses deep thoughts, and maturing processes that are independent of any single physical moment. You don't need to be pregnant to be a mother, you don't need to have a vaginal birth to be a mother. You don't even need a child to be a mother!
And vice versa, having a smooth pregnancy and dream vaginal birth doesn't create instant perfect love toward the new baby.

You need that book to acknowledge your own identity thru your own personal life and experiences, beyond what "people think of you".

As for me, it helped me be proud and active in my own IDENTICAL AND EQUAL love toward three children who came to me thru three different ways, loving my children for who they are, not for the how or when or when of their arrival.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Raw honesty about PPD October 14, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was in complete despair after the birth of my beautiful daughter. I had read other books about PPD and nothing hit home for me...until I read this book. If you are having an identity crisis as I was reading this book made me weep with relief. I could finally put words and concrete feelings to my emotions. Now my daughter is 13 months old and I am just as attached to her as she is to me. I love her more than seems possible. I would even say that this would be a good prenatal book for those of us who are worried about PPD. All this knowledge and written by a man!!!!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing book! October 31, 2004
By Esther
Format:Paperback
If you have any doubts about buying this book, this review is written for you. I read this book in about 1 hour the first time and have read it about four more times since. I loved it! It's truly one of a kind and extremely enlightening. As a new mother, you are overwhelmed with so many thoughts and feelings and this book helps you feel normal and helps you understand yourself in a new way...as a mother!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Not only for new mothers December 10, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is not only for new mothers! I am very happy I read this during the pregnancy period, I felt more prepared for the big change. Recommended!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book December 13, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An incredible book for mother, mothers to be and everyone that works and cares about motherhood

nnn nnn nnn nnn
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars recommended for any mother-to-be
very well written and soothing for a mother-to-be, gets you thinking about all the changes you are going through and makes you feel normal again :-)
Published 2 months ago by Nina
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book!
A great book for new Mums to be....very very useful.
Published 2 months ago by Colette Dunford
5.0 out of 5 stars so helpful
This book put into words much of what I struggled with and had difficulty articulating the first several months of my own journey into motherhood
Published 3 months ago by Lindsayfu
5.0 out of 5 stars I am reading it the second time
The first time I read this book - it was a translated version - was when I had a pregnant patient. After I read this book, I gave it to my friend, who also became pregnant. Read more
Published on June 18, 2012 by coconutbunny
2.0 out of 5 stars Depressing Book
I didn't like this book very much. It was recommended to me because I was having my first child at 41, and I was nervous about it whether I would be a good mom. Read more
Published on October 1, 2011 by JJohnson
5.0 out of 5 stars For the Mom-to-be!
This book is a perfect read when you are pregnant, and the meaning you take from it changes even more after you give birth. Read more
Published on July 18, 2010 by Robin
5.0 out of 5 stars A Book for evry Pregnent Woman
This is a book, based on serious psychological research, and contains the state of the art knowledgge about becoming a mother. Read more
Published on February 20, 2010 by Espen Collett
2.0 out of 5 stars Maybe good for after birth??
This book is supposed to be what the mother goes through during pregnancy. Though some of it is accurate, I'd have to say that it's not something that I wanted to read while... Read more
Published on March 14, 2008 by L. Salter
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