The Other Side of the Glass : A Birth Film For and About Men 

shatters the prevailing belief that men need to be trained to be prepared to “protect their partner and baby” at birth, in the obstetric medical system – and calls for a collective effort to end the bad practices of a US medical system that has worst maternal and infant death rate of all industrialized nations.

Fathers in the film, from all over the US, referred to their experience of witnessing    their baby‘s birth as “being in a war zone.”

Featuring David B. Chamberlain, Ph.D., co-founder of Association for Pre and Perinatal Psychology and Health, and author of the classic, The Mind of Your Newborn Baby, and Windows to the Womb: Revealing the Conscious Baby from Conception to Birth, released in Jan 2013.

Janel is a woman of rare vision, a passionate filmmaker, and dauntless advocate for giving babies the best possible start in life. As this film clearly demonstrates, she knows how to fight for fathers as well.

– David Chamberlain, Ph.D., psychologist, prenatal psychology pioneer, and author of “Windows to the Womb:  Revealing the Conscious Baby from Conception to Birth”


The Other Side of the Glass started the conversation about a man’s experience at his baby’s birth and his need to be seen as having his own experience as the father, a partner, and a witness. Men across the US shared their experiences of birthing their babies as “like being in a war zone” and being powerless – on “the other side of the glass,” even if present.

The man’s experience of becoming a father was mostly ignored prior to the fundraising trailer here that went viral in the fall of 2009. This ground-breaking work by Janel Mirendah is based on her decade of study and practice of pre & perinatal psychology and craniosacral-based attachment/birth healing therapy.

The father in the photo was in the nursery and refused to leave. He insisted on holding his newborn who was born by cesarean and needed to be under lamps. His four other children were born at home – unattended – and he caught them.

In addition to fathers, the film features David Chamberlain, PhD founder of pre and perinatal psychology and others in the field, as well as nurses, midwives, doctors (Michel Odent MD, Stuart Fischbein MD, Sarah Buckley MD, and others), doulas, and grandmothers.

The overall theme of the film is the foundation established by the mother-baby connection at birth is neurologically critical for creating a humanity that is in thriving (love) mode, rather than in survival (fear) mode. The neural understanding of the mother-baby development and connection is introduced; and the film focuses on the needs of newborns at birth and the impact on family and society for not understanding this and for not meeting those needs.

The film implores caregivers (midwives, nurses, doctors) to be the ones to protect the mother-baby dyad and father in the hospital and home settings, and to be the ones to protect skin-to-skin at birth.

The film asks all men – fathers or not – to become aware of the critical need to see birth as a vital experience and to protect birth for all humans. The film supports men to realize they can not protect their child and partner in the modern patriarchal-based maternity system; but, men can engage in protecting all women and babies by addressing their local hospitals, county, and state policymakers.


Janel Mirendah has produced more than a film. It is a poignant love letter to fathers, babies and mothers,  and also an imperative call to action for society:  birth matters for each of our individual psyches, and for the future of our shared human family, so we better consider how we do it.

-Marcy, Anxess, Ph.D., Author of Parenting for Peace: Raising the Next Generation of Peacemakers”


We have two jobs, you know. The first thing is to stop the harming, and then the second is to heal those who have already been harmed. Do our best, best to heal, right?   

– Mike Hagan, father of two

To call it a film or even a documentary does not really represent the scope of your offering. It is more a manifesto on the origins of, and influences on, parenting and family life from the very beginning.

In a way, it is a stand-alone early parenting course. It is the most inclusive and balanced mother/father/baby film I have seen. This is rare because few actually get the true significance and importance of father’s influence on the baby’s gestation, birth and breastfeeding experience, as well as on the mother.

– Patrick Houser, Author of “Fathers to Be Handbook: A Roadmap for the Transition to Fatherhood”


The Other Side of the Glass is about a baby, a mama’s and family’s basic human right to labor and birth free of fear and intimidation. It is about protecting the emotional and physical connection between mom/dad/baby.  It is about love and peace for every soul entering this world and every family accepting this soul.

-Morgan Matthews, Doula, Educator, mother of 3


This is so needed. I watch over and over and over as fathers get swallowed in the fear of hospital birth practice. I am torn apart every time I see a father stand back and chew his knuckles while his wife is essentially assaulted or his baby is left to lie there screaming.    

– Carrie Hankins, doula

Watch a short of Dr. Chamberlain here:

Dr. David Chamberlain from The Other Side of the Glass on Vimeo. 

Check out other excerpts of chapters on the youtube and Vimeo channels.