History of the Bradley Method®
The following is an excerpt from an article in "Parents"
Magazine by Leah Yarrow
In 1966, Majie Hathaway, just days before she was due to give birth,
flew with her husband, Jay, and three small children from California
to Denver. The Hathaways had heard Dr. Robert Bradley, a Denver obstetrician,
speak about his method of natural childbirth and were determined to
attempt the kind of delivery he described: a spontaneous, unmedicated
birth with husband coaching during labor and delivery and the mother
breast-feeding the newborn on the delivery table. They couldn't find
a doctor in their area to agree to those conditions, so they flew right
to the source. And after a relatively easy labor and birth, they were
holding their fourth child within 36 hours of landing on Dr. Bradley's
doorstep. So that others wouldn't have to travel so far for this kind
of birth, the Hathaways, along with Dr. Bradley, founded the American
Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth® to teach the Bradley
Dr. Bradley's theory and record
Dr. Bradley began developing his method in 1947.
His credo: "It's not nice to fool Mother Nature, and if you
do, you'll wish you hadn't."
Dr. Bradley never had a maternal death in his years of obstetrical
94% of his patients had unmedicated births.
3% of his patients had complications requiring medication and 3%
were cesarean births. Dr. Bradley considered this an irreducible minimum.
Dr. Bradley believed that labor and birth did not have to be an awful
experience and could be less painful, even exhilarating.
Dr. Bradley encouraged his patients to read and become educated consumers.
Dr. Bradley considered himself as a lifeguard at a pool, "Ninety-four
percent [of swimmers] have a wonderful time. But somebody gets cramps
or bumps their head and there's a sudden... emergency." In the
the Bradley Method, the doctor takes the backseat to the husband-wife