Dr. Grandy Dick Read
THE death of Dr. Grantly Dick Read has taken from the world a man who fought passionately against the idea that normal childbirth is excruciatingly painful. Ile argued, in season aud out of season. that fear causes tension, tension causes pain. and held that if the fear went so would the pain in a normal childbirth.
He also emphasised the spiritual side of the experience — and maintained that, if a mother was deprived of her consciousness, she missed something truly wonderful.
Although many people found his views extreme — especially those of some of his disciples — his teachings have now permeated the medical profession. and from being avant-garde he is now tie riguer, So Much so that the extremists say: "Childbirth ? Oh, there should be no pain whatsoever!"
So I consulted that most vital class of gynaecological experts the snothers. One spoke for them all: " Give me Grantly Dick Read — and gas and air." Together, they seem to be a good team.
AD VICE has reached this
column from mothers of three to mothers of 11, and. one factor common to them all is that rest in the afternoon — for mother and babies. One mother who has looked after both her own and other people's children says:
"I found it essential, both for my sake and their own, to insist on an hour's rest every day after the midday meal. If it is started early enough, thie habit is taken for granted le, the child and is no hardship. while from the mother's point of view it is a great blessing to be able to relax arid put one's feet up when one has finished the washing-up. I often wonder why mothers today seem to
have given un the rest habit." The mother of 11 said the afternoon rest was the only way she could keep going, and that if the childreis were up early enough they took to the midday rest quite easily.
A convert couple with several small children: " The mere fact
By PAT JONES
that Catholics have large families will not impress our nonCatholic friends, but the deep peace and joy of a good Catholic home is the best advertisement the faith can ever have. It was such a family who first started my husband and me on the road to the true faith."
IN former years the way in eswhich you reared a child depended directly on the way your parents reared their children and upon local custom — whether you bathed the child in the morning arid " top-andtai:ed " him in the evening, or
simply sewed him up in brown paper and pig's fat for the winter. This dependence upon teaching. as opposed to mother instinct, was brought home most painfully in Morris West's " Children of the Sun " — vivid and horrifying document of the slums of Naples.
Against this background of the pain that can be inflicted by ignorance. not necessarily culpable, one can turn with positive joy to books like the St. John Ambulance Association's "Preliminary Child Care." It costs 3s. from any bookseller.
Easily understood, brightly illustrated, it deals with the child from birth to five years old, and, remembering the rearing of a Neapolitan slum-baby, I will never call the information therein commonplace.