People are weighing in on an adventurous couple’s plan to give birth in the open ocean among dolphins, and by far most people think this is a very bad idea.
Pahoa – Adam Barrington, 29, and his pregnant wife Heather, 27, are heading to Pohoa, Hawaii, for a dolphin-assisted birth at the Sirius Institute. The institute describes itself as part of a Cetacean Commonwealth that wants to ‘dolphinize’ the planet.
According to the Charlotte Observer, at the institute, the Barringtons, “will spend time in the water, forming a connection with a dolphin pod they hope will bond with them and ultimately their newborn.” Digital Journal
The following comments are fairly representative of the hundreds on various articles:
“I lived in Pahoa and Kalapana for many years. Where does Heather think she’s going to give birth? At Kehena Beach? Big waves and far from emergency services. Will she give birth at Pohiki, where she might get run over by boats and surfers? At the hot ponds in Kapoho, with high levels of E. coli? Might want to give this some thought – East Hawaii has big waves and currents and sharks. It’s not Kona.
Pahoa – the land that time forgot.” Read more
“they get this from the Onion?”
“Nonetheless, the Sirius Institute claims it receives up to four requests each week for dolphin-assisted birth. “People who are deeply called to be with the dolphins search widely and find us,” according to the institute’s website.
HOW ABOUT A NAME CHANGE?
“THE NOT-SO-SERIOUS-INSTITUTE?” CBS News
AnaGirl Empath ·
“If existing guidelines regarding acceptable practices in “swim with wild dolphins” excursions are unclear, perhaps it is time to better define and implement them. I do not necessarily think these activities are harmful in all circumstances. I think it is possible to have responsible diving events like this if the programs are passive; i.e., not forcing contact or pursuing pods relentlessly, and allowing the animals to approach on THEIR terms. Regarding the Black Sea births, this is a very different matter. I’ve researched this issue and it isn’t necessarily dolphin-focused. The women are near-shore, among rock depressions in warm, shallow waters, and have human midwives. It has been done for many years and is very respectful of both sea Life and the women/children involved. There are proven benefits of water births, and if dolphins happen to be nearby, I don’t necessarily see this as problematic. Expecting them to be “doulas” is another matter entirely, and I am concerned with the particulars of the Sirius Institute. Glorifying dolphins as some sort of divine, demigod-like, perfect beings is ridiculous.” TakePart
There are a lot of misconceptions however – the planned birth will not take place with bottlenose dolphins, nor will it be with animals kept in captivity.
This video shows the type of dolphins (spinner dolphins) and habitat typical of the area where this couple plan to give birth. The water is not shallow, protected or all that warm, and tiger sharks are common. The dolphins never stop moving for more than a minute or two, even during rest periods. (Video by the Wild Dolphin Foundation).
This video shows the only birth with dolphins that I’m aware of that has taken place, it occurred in captivity.
Unfortunately, medical evidence contradicts [the safety of underwater birth], and underwater births may in fact be dangerous to newborns. In a 2002 study published in the journal Pediatrics titled “Water birth: A near-drowning experience,” researcher Sarah Nguyen questioned the safety of water births and described instances of infants inhaling water and feces during underwater deliveries, which increased the risk of infection and pneumonia, among other complications. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists does not recommend water births, suggesting instead that children born in hospitals are safer — if for no other reason than professional medical help is immediately available in case of complications. Discovery