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From the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences comes this article, which talks about why humans tend to birth with midwives, versus monkeys and other apes tend to birth alone.

In preparing for my last birth, which I secretly wanted to be unassisted, I pictured an ape birthing alone. But after reading this article, I see that apes have a slight advantage over humans in being able to birth unassisted.

Intersting how even though animals may not need midwives as much as humans do, stories abound of females coming together at birth. I witnessed two cats who gave birth a day apart and when the second one was struggling with a stillborn, the first female literally had her arms around the birthing mom.