Pregnancy

time of human offspring development in mother's body
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Pregnancy, also known as gestation, is the time during which one or more offspring develops inside their mother.

Quotes

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There was a time when doctors recommended alcohol to pregnant women for relaxation and pain relief, or even prescribed it intravenously as a tocolytic — meaning it stopped premature labor. One doctor who trained me spoke of a 1960s prenatal ward full of intoxicated women “swearing like sailors.” ~ Jen Gunter
 
Pregnancy seemed like a tremendous abdication of control. Something growing inside you which would eventually usurp your life. ~ Erica Jong
 
At some point in the process from conception to birth there comes “a period when a life contains that which is essentially valued as significantly human and should be vested with a sanctity uncompromisable to the interest of lesser claims. ~ Robert M. Veatch
 
There's an entire generation of women who saw a sonogram as their first baby picture. ~ Charmaine Yoest
  • “Human beings are created in the image of God”. Part of the gift that God has given us as humans is procreation, the ability to participate in creation along with the Author of life. This sacred gift should always be valued and treasured. In God’s original plan every pregnancy should be the result of the expression of love between a man and a woman committed to each other in marriage. A pregnancy should be wanted, and each baby should be loved, valued, and nurtured even before birth. Unfortunately, since the entrance of sin, Satan has made intentional efforts to mar the image of God by defacing all of God’s gifts—including the gift of procreation. Consequently, individuals are at times faced with difficult dilemmas and decisions regarding a pregnancy.
  • Unwanted pregnancies are not random events. The lives of women who have unwanted pregnancies or abortions differ in a variety of ways from the lives of women who do not have unwanted pregnancies or abortions, and do so before, during, and after pregnancy occurs.
    • "Report of the APA Task Force on Mental Health and Abortion" (PDF). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. 13 August 2008. Archived (PDF) from the original on 15 June 2010. p.13
  • [P]regnant women also must take care of their bodies, not avoiding exercise nor adopting a low diet; this it is easy for the lawgiver to secure by ordering them to make a journey daily for the due worship of the deities whose office is the control of childbirth. As regards the mind, however, on the contrary it suits them to pass the time more indolently than as regards their bodies; for children before birth are evidently affected by the mother just as growing plants are by the earth.
    • Aristotle, as translated by Rackham, H. (1944). "Aristotle, Politics". 1335b Harvard University Press. Archived from the original on 22 June 2011. Retrieved 21 June 2011.
  • Eric Johnston, an attorney who helped draft the Alabama bill, thinks a man and a woman can have sex and go straight to a clinic to determine if she’s pregnant. First off, you’ve gotta give her six minutes to clench her way to a toilet; otherwise she’s gonna get a UTI and ruin an exam table. Secondly, that isn’t how it works. . . It's still hard to know if you're pregnant at six weeks. You might have no symptoms, or if you do, they’re symptoms like fatigue or bloating and gas. On the other hand, it does explain P.F. Chang’s new motto: ‘Maybe it’s not us; maybe you’re pregnant!’
  • The bearing of a child takes nine months, no matter how many women are assigned.
    • Fred Brooks, The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering (1975, 1995) Page 17, cf. Theodore von Kármán (1957): "Everyone knows it takes a woman nine months to have a baby. But you Americans think if you get nine women pregnant, you can have a baby in a month."
  • We are moved particularly by the anguish of women who face unwanted pregnancies alone. The panic and isolation of such pregnancies, even in the best of circumstances, can be traumatic. Poverty, lack of supportive relationships, immaturity, oppressive social realities, sexism, and racism can intensify her sense of powerlessness. The prospect of having and caring for a child can seem overwhelming.
  • It is important that those who counsel persons faced with unintended pregnancies respect how deeply the woman’s pregnancy involves her whole person—body, mind and spirit—in relation to all the commitments that comprise her stewardship of life. Counsellors should seek to call forth her power to act responsibly after prayerful reflection upon all factors involved.
  • Let me then say it bluntly: Pregnancy is barbaric. I do not believe, as many women are now saying, that the reason pregnancy is viewed as not beautiful is due strictly to cultural perversion. The child’s first response, ‘What’s wrong with that Fat Lady?’; the husband’s guilty waning of sexual desire; the woman’s tears in front of the mirror at eight months – are all gut reactions, not to be dismissed as cultural habits.
  • Pregnancy is the temporary deformation of the body of the individual for the sake of the species. Moreover, childbirth hurts. And it isn’t good for you. Three thousand years ago, women giving birth ‘naturally’ had no need to pretend that pregnancy was a real trip, some mystical orgasm (that far-away look). The Bible said it: pain and travail. The glamour was unnecessary: women had no choice. They didn’t dare squawk. But at least they could scream as loudly as they wanted during their labour pains. And after it was over, even during it, they were admired in a limited way for their bravery; their valour was measured by how many children (sons) they could endure bringing into the world.
  • There was a time when doctors recommended alcohol to pregnant women for relaxation and pain relief, or even prescribed it intravenously as a tocolytic — meaning it stopped premature labor. One doctor who trained me spoke of a 1960s prenatal ward full of intoxicated women “swearing like sailors.”
    Things began to change in 1973, when fetal alcohol syndrome, or F.A.S., was formally recognized after a seminal article was published in The Lancet, a medical journal. F.A.S. is a constellation of findings that includes changes in growth, distinctive facial features and a negative impact on the developing brain. We now know that alcohol is a teratogen, meaning it can cause birth defects.
    With that knowledge, the pendulum swung hard. In 1988, Congress passed the Alcoholic Beverage Labeling Act, which would add the well-known “women should not drink alcoholic beverages during pregnancy because of the risk of birth defects” label to alcoholic beverages for sale or distribution in the United States. (A warning about drinking and driving was also added.) Many people unfortunately took this as an opportunity to police pregnant women in public.
  • Pregnancy seemed like a tremendous abdication of control. Something growing inside you which would eventually usurp your life.
  • I found that being pregnant was different from how I thought it would be…It shares a lot in common with writing in a way. You have an imaginary version of yourself pregnant, and an imaginary baby, an imaginary idea of yourself as a mother…
  • The idea that “life” and pregnancy begin at the moment of conception is a rather recent belief, and before the mid-20th century women might not have considered themselves pregnant until sometime in the second trimester. According to Koblitz, the variation in pregnancy definitions allowed ample moral and ethical ‘wiggle’ room for women to take matters into their own hands, so to speak.
  • The female body needs to navigate a tricky dilemma. In order to protect itself, the body needs to defend against foreign invaders. But if it applies that logic to sperm or a fetus, then pregnancy can't occur. The shifts in immunity that women experience may be a response to this problem.


  • It might seem strange, but you're not actually pregnant the first week or two of the time allotted to your pregnancy. Yes, you read that correctly! Conception typically occurs about two weeks after your last period begins. To calculate your estimated due date, your health care provider will count ahead 40 weeks from the start of your last period. This means your period is counted as part of your pregnancy — even though you weren't pregnant at the time.
  • Pregnancy is a natural result of sexual activity and integral to God’s design and command for humans to “be fruitful and increase in number” (Genesis 1:28). If God permits a pregnancy, planned or unplanned, we should understand that God is forming a new life in his image.
 
The question is not 'Can a man do it? It's 'If a man does have a successful pregnancy, can he survive it?' ~ Glenn McGee
  • “It is extremely possible and very common for people to get to the six-week mark and not know they are pregnant,” said Dr. Jennifer Villavicencio, lead for equity transformation at the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
  • Unwanted pregnancies occur because women are unable to regulate their fertility by contraception alone. The complexities of managing sexual behaviour and the fallibility of contraception mean that some unwanted pregnancies are inevitable.
    • Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists: "The Care of Women Requesting Induced Abortion" (PDF). Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. p. 9. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 July 2013. Retrieved 29 June 2008. p.3
  • Unintended pregnancy is the root cause of induced abortion, whether safe or unsafe...Each year an estimated 27 million unintended pregnancies occur as a result of method failure or ineffective use; of these, about 6 million occur even though the contraceptive method has been used correctly and consistently.
  • Pregnancy is not always a happy occasion—it may be a destructive and threatening experi-ence. Far from being regarded as a person to be protected and loved, a conceptus may be experienced as a threat to personal well-being or a reminder of sexual abuse or of the dangers attending the processes of conception and gestation.
  • Despite the many contraceptive options available in the United States, nearly half (49%) of the 6.4 million pregnancies each year are unintended; these represent a significant cost to the health care system.
  • While most pregnancies and births are uneventful, all pregnancies are at risk. Around 15% of all pregnant women will develop a potentially life-threatening complication that calls for skilled care, and some will require a major obstetrical intervention to survive.
  • After high-profile scares like thalidomide in the 1960s, where pregnant women taking the drug had children with serious birth defects, drug researchers were hesitant to include women in drug trials because of the possibility that they might get pregnant, said Dr. Cara Tannenbaum, scientific director of the Institute of Gender and Health at the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Dialogue

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A: I felt powerful in this way of “I don’t give a fuck about what people think,” and I felt this life running through me when she was kicking me. But I did also feel really vulnerable. You become like a vampire when you’re pregnant: your senses are so sensitive and your emotions are so heightened – that helps with performance because you really feel things. Any stories about something happening to little girls killed me. Put it this way: I did not find Inside Out uplifting.
  • Q: You’re the first comedian to make a special while pregnant. Was it important to you to break that barrier?
A: Being the first to do it was less important to me than just getting it done before I had the baby. When I planned it in my first trimester I had no idea how I’d look or feel in my third. I had no idea about things like the severe constipations, the bleeding gums or that my lasered moustache would come back. So those were all fun surprises.

See also

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