I was interviewed a while back for an article that has just been published in the New York Magazine. It’s a very good article, one of the best ones I’ve read recently. I like it because it puts a very personal touch on the concept of placenta encapsulation.
Of course, Mark Kristal, my favorite placentophagia expert/detractor, had yet another noteworthy quote:
According to Kristal, the first recorded placentophagia movement in America began in the seventies, when people residing in communes would cook up a placenta stew and share it among themselves. “It’s a New Age phenomenon,” he explains. “Every ten or twenty years people say, ‘We should do this because it’s natural and animals do it.’ But it’s not based on science. It’s a fad.”
I am going to love continuing to quote him as the years pass, and it becomes obvious that placentophagy is here to stay, and NOT a fad. I am also going to enjoy having the research published to show that placentophagy is beneficial, and have the evidence to back it up. However, all of this promotion of placentophagy has certainly contributed to the highlighting of his research, and he has always been very friendly in our correspondence, I should add.
The author also discusses the 2007 Swanson case, where my client and friend Anne Swanson was denied her placenta by Sunrise hospital. I liked how she described the case and the outcome.
For Swanson, it was too late for negotiations: Her placenta was in a vat with countless others. The hospital demanded a court order for its release, and Selander and Swanson obtained one. Three months after Swanson gave birth, Sunrise gave up a placenta from their supply.
“It was the saddest little placenta I’d ever seen in my life,” Selander recalls. “It was half-decomposed.”
Selander and Swanson buried it as a tribute.
Over the next year, four additional clients were refused their placentas, and Selander picketed Sunrise on behalf of another customer who wanted to fight the hospital’s policy. She posted notices on the Internet warning women not to give birth at Sunrise, issued press releases about her rally, wrote articles for parenting journals, and appeared on local TV extolling the benefits of placenta consumption. It became a women’s-rights issue: my placenta, my choice.
Her hard work paid off. Sunrise changed its policy, and hundreds of miles away from Las Vegas, the victory sealed her reputation as the high priestess of the modern placentophagia movement. Lisa Fortin, another placenta provider (whose sister [Laura Fortin] took Selander’s course), attributes the attention the practice has received—even from skeptics—to Selander.
I have to admit, it’s pretty embarrassing being hailed as “the high priestess of the modern placentophagia movement”, but it’s one of the best things I’ve been called! (Thank you, Atossa.)
Atossa Araxia Abrahamian wrote a really outstanding article, and you can read it in its entirety online.