Turning the pages

We went to a book reading/signing yesterday. The book is called My Miserable, Lonely, Lesbian Pregnancy. We hadn’t yet read it, but enjoyed the snippets that the author read and found her to be witty and charming. At one point, the discussion almost turned into an argument over whether or not to circ.umcise (the reading took place at the JCC and while the author is Jewish, she’s not so much into circ.umcision). Otherwise, it was a fun morning spent having brunch with a bunch of Jews, and even though we’re both Jewish, I’m usually ready to run away after a couple hours of that.

We read 60 pages out loud together later in the day. The book is a quick read, filled with acerbic humor, and we were surprised at how normal the author appeared in person when she seems so…well, crazy in the book.

Other books I’m currently working on include Dr. Spock’s Baby and Child Care, which I find to be a lovely book since it’s very down-to-earth and has been updated for the 21st century, including references to gay and lesbian families, and BabyCenter Essential Guide to Baby’s First Year, which …ick. Pregnancy is all hearts and flowers in that one, and while I appreciate them having polled “real women” to get answers to everyday questions, I can’t say the answers are particularly helpful.

Guard yourselves against The Baby Book. It is digustingly sexist, relegating the role of father to a completely secondary one and forget any mention of GLBT families (although I started reading the 1995 version and it’s been updated since then…but still).

Anyone got other recommendations?

Nutella is doing a bit better these days. The heartburn and nausea are on and off, and she finds that taking a zantac in the morning and another one at dinner keep the worst of the heartburn/reflux at bay. Whew!

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9 responses to “Turning the pages

  1. The Baby Book – My sister gave this to me with similar warnings that you had, but she said it was very, very useful for practical questions like what foods should baby have when.

    I LOVE my Mayo Clinic guide to pregnancy. It is not at all inclusive of GLBT families which is very annoying, but the information that it gives about fetal development is good and decision making gude is helpful and I really like the little charts at the end of every chapter that list symptoms and tell you what you need to panic about and what is totally normal.

  2. The Ultimate Guide To Pregnancy For Lesbians (2nd edition) by Rachel Pepper.

    We read this when we were first starting ttc, it’s a nice easy read but has some good info in the too. It covers right from the planning and insem stages through to a step by step pregnancy guide. I liked this one because it does have some medical facts but is balanced by also having some of the author’s own experiences. From memory (it’s been several months since I picked it up) it doesn’t go too far into life with a baby, mostly just pregnancy – which the title kind of suggests anyway lol

    Also – Confessions of the Other Mother – not a guide but we both loved this one and got different things out of it.

  3. I also LOVE the Mayo Clinic book!

  4. I will definitely have to look into the Mayo Clinic book- thanks! I’ve stopped by their website a few times and liked what I saw.

    Tui- I’ve read most of the Pepper book and agree that it’s a nice one. When we first started trying, we got that one and the Brill (yellow) book, the latter of which I can’t really stand because of its ridiculousness. “Confessions” sounds interesting- thanks for the recommendation 🙂

  5. Hi, OK, you don’t know me, but I found you through Susanica’s blog and thought I would leave a comment. I’m pregnant myself…due yesterday actually but still waiting.
    I fumbled through the book “What to expect when you are Expecting” and found it to be helpful but rather dry. I work in a medical field myself and so I appreciate the statistics of things, but being that this is all so personal, I found I could really get myself worked up and worried. The important weeks for brain and neuro function are weeks 9 through 15…so you are in them now. Like your partner, they are also the weeks that I was the sickest and worried about what I was doing to baby. A little light reading will help more than the dry stuff right now.
    I live in Australia and there happens to be a pretty funny book called “Up the Duff”…the aussie phrase equivalent of “knocked up”. It’s a combination of a fake diary of pregnancy and useful information. It’s a light read but useful and it gives you just the right amount of helpful information. If you can find it in the US, it’s worth a read.
    By the way, people will give you all the “how to calm your baby” books when you have a shower…so don’t purchase any of those yet.
    Good luck!

  6. Thanks, Elizabeth! Good recs and advice.

  7. Hmmm…I wasn’t a big fan of the Pepper book, because she really misses the boat on non-bio-mom issues, which are going to be important to at least some of her readers, and uses really awful language (refers to non-bio-mom as “partner” or “dyke daddy,” but never as a mother.) I later found an essay by her in a book called Home Fronts that makes it clear she believes there is really only one mother (or at least she did in the early 2000s). In my book, that’s pretty inexcusable for one of the most cited queer parenting authors. That said, her TTC info is correct, but you’ve already done that!

    This is less baby specific, but we really liked “reinventing the family” by Laura Benkov and wished we had read it during the pregnancy. She has a few chapters in the middle about two-mom families in which one mom gives birth, and she doesn’t pull any punches. We also got something out of “The Transition to Parenthood” by Jay Belsky, though it is VERY VERY straight, somewhat sexist, and VERY VERY dated, so you have to squint and read between the lines to get the helpful parts. Even with that, it started some important conversations for us.

    Do read the Other Mother Anthology. Several essays are wonderful, though I do think it reflects Aizley’s bias as a bio-mom (and one who admits she had trouble sharing mothering), albeit fairly subtly.

    And thanks for dropping by our blog!

  8. I also really like the Mayo Clinic book – it was all business and I appreciated that.

    Also, What to Expect the First Year was our BIBLE. Seriously, we (and Oscar) would never have survived year one without it.

  9. OH! And Happiest Baby on the Block – this is like the best baby soothing book ever written.

    For breastfeeding, I reccommend the Seven Natural Laws of Breastfeeding. It’s really helpful and has some great tips if you are having trouble. I hated the Le Leche League BFing book. I found it very judgy.

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