You’re a foreigner living in Finland getting ready to conceive a baby, give birth, or maybe you’re already navigating the postpartum and life as a parent. This podcast will introduce you to some amazing people who support families just like yours. My name is Danielle Bensky, a mother and postpartum doula specializing in maternal well-being and psychology and every week on Monday I’ll be interviewing a new guest who will share their unique set of skills and knowledge, helping you feel less alone and more supported. This podcast is brought to you by The Nest - Helsinki International Doulas+.
#16: Informed choice, consent, and taking responsibility for your birth - with midwife Silja Seppänen
In today's episode I’m bringing you my conversation with Silja Seppänen, a midwife and childbirth educator. Silja discovered her passion for midwifery when she was just 9 years old and living in Kenya with her family. Our conversation today will take a deeper look into the topic of informed choice and informed consent of the birther and everything that comes with that. We spoke about informed choice as the building block for a positive birth experience, the difference between informed choice and consent, navigating risks and doing risk assessment in birth, as well as the relationship between informed choice and taking ownership or responsibility over your birth. We also talked about what you can do to make sure there is informed choice and consent at your birth, the partner’s role at being the gatekeeper of informed choice, and the midwife’s role in giving informed choice and asking for consent. Silja shared a great acronym which will help you make informed choices in the moment you are presented with options, the difference between planning for birth and preparing for birth, and why a seagull pooping on your windshield has everything to do with preparing for labor. This is a fantastic episode filled with so many gems and eye opening topics.
Evidence Based Birth website
The evidence on Strep B
#15: Parent-infant bonding support as a public service - with psychologist Mirjam Solomon
On today’s episode I’m chatting with Mirjam Solomon. Mirjam is a psychologist who has spent the last 6 years working in Terapeuttinen vauvaperhetyö which is a public service provided by the city municipality. Mirjam specializes in psychological therapy that helps parents who feel that they are struggling to build a bond with the baby in pregnancy and or afterwards. In this episode we speak about why it may be beneficial to apply for this kind of service already during pregnancy, how cultural background can influence parenting values, and how Mirjan has seen these differences play out for families here. At the end of the episode we go into some things you can do to facilitate a stronger bond with your baby during your pregnancy. Mirjam also has her own private practice where she welcomes foreigners and expats for a wide range of psychological therapy in English.
General info about the service
Terapeuttinen vauvaperhetyö in Helsinki municipality
Register for webinar: Baby's position in utero - June 15th 2022
#14: Emotional vulnerability for men and fathers - a non-violent approach for communication with Giuliano Valentini
On today’s episode I’m chatting with Giuliano Valentini about communication and vulnerability. Giuliano facilitates a peer support group and a workshop through the organization Mielen Portti. The peer group is called “Men Talk” and is a safe space for men to openly discuss their struggles, and the workshop is called “Communication Talk” and is centered around non-violent communication. In this episode Giuliano explains about these two initiatives in more detail. We get to talking about the reason why men also need a safe space to talk about their emotions, how this can be very important as a father as well, as well as how both parents can pass down things from their lineages. Giuliano explains the foundations of non-violent communication and why he thinks it’s a way of life and not just a method. You’ll find out how to register to these two free groups at the end of the episode so stay with us until then.
Before we jump in, I want to mention that June 20th 2022 will be our last episode before a short summer break. As you’ve probably realized, July is a ghost town around here because everyone is out enjoying the 2 minutes of sun we have. Anyways, the next episode after that will be coming out on August 8th 2022. I'm waiting to welcome you back here with a whole bunch of amazing guests and episodes.
If you are pregnant and want to have a chance to chat with me some more, join me and the nest doulas online for the June Positive Birth Helsinki meetup which will be about dads and birth partners. It will be on Saturday the 11th of June 2022 at 10-12am. You can sign up with the link in the show notes or through The Nest IG page bio link.
Men Talk Instagram
Men Talk email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Communication Talk Instagram
Communication Talk Registration Form
Register: Positive Birth Helsinki online meetup on June 11th 2022 (dads and birth partners)
Brene Brown Netflix "Call to Courage" Trailer
Brene Brown quote about white horse
Brene Brown quote "Show me a woman..."
#13: Birth as a sexual experience with sex therapist Anna-Riitta Kässi
On today’s episode you will meet Anna-Riitta Kässi, a doula, owner of Doula Akatemia a center for doula training, as well as a sex educator and therapist. Our conversation focused on the topic of sex and sexuality along the journey of pregnancy, birth, and postpartum. Anna-Riitta goes into the sensitivities around sex and intimacy at each of these very different times in the relationship and in each one of the partners separately as well. We explore body image issues after birth, how a positive or a negative birth experience can influence your sexual desires, bust a few myths about sex in pregnancy, redefining sex to fit our needs and desires, and why birth itself is actually a sexual event! Let’s get started.
Anna-Riitta's email address: email@example.com
Anna-Riitta's Instagram account
Mama Mojo podcast by Anna-Riitta
#12: What makes for a positive birth experience with midwife Anu Lampinen
Today I have the pleasure of interviewing Anu Lampinen, a seasoned midwife of over 30 years. Anu has worked as a hospital and home birth midwife throughout her career. She also has knowledge in Chinese medicine and acupuncture as well as breastfeeding consultancy and postpartum recovery. In this episode Anu and I talk about what a positive birth means for the birthing person, what kind of changes Anu has seen in the Finnish birth culture and what she still hopes will improve. We speak about the importance of continuity of care and why it can make such a difference in the birth experience as well as how midwives can help facilitate this positive birth experience. We then touched on physiological birth and what you can do to increase your oxytocin in childbirth as well as what happens when we remove the pain caused by the oxytocin. We finish the episode off by giving you pain coping techniques you can try and practice, so make sure you listen until the end.
Books by Pam England
Poem by Robert Frost
Evidence for doulas from Evidence Based Birth
Rachel Reed - Midwife Thinking
Spinning Babies - Three Balances
Kerstin Uvnäs Moberg - Oxytocin researcher
Books by Michel Odent
#11: The energetic experience of pregnancy, birth, and postpartum with Brenda Miquiztli
Today I have the pleasure of interviewing Brenda Miquiztli. When I asked Brenda how she would describe herself, she said “medicine woman”. In the first part of the episode you’ll hear what this means to Brenda and why she chose this description. Brenda grew up in Mexico surrounded by natural remedies, witnessing the traditional care women receive especially in pregnancy and postpartum. When she moved to Finland in 2011, Brenda noticed the gaping hole that exists especially with postpartum support, and decided to share her wisdom with the people living here. Brenda supports families through the entire pregnancy, birth, and postpartum journey using traditional Mexican ceremonies and rituals and we go into how these rituals are seen at those different stages of the parenting journey. Join us on this conversation as we dive deeper into Brenda’s beautiful and special work here in Finland.
Brenda's Instagram page
Brenda's Facebook page
Brenda's email: firstname.lastname@example.org
"7 sisters for 7 days" book by Michelle Peterson
Evidence on doulas by Evidence Based Birth
Register for the webinar "Pain as your birth ally" on May 18th 2022
Register for the Positive Birth Helsinki online meetup "The 4th Trimester" on May 21st 2022
Register to the Milky Mornings trial session on May 19th 2022 by emailing email@example.com