Bear Grylls Offers Tips for Surviving a Homebirth

As the host of Man vs. Wild, Bear Grylls is used to testing his limits. But his skills as a husband were truly put to the test when wife Shara decided to deliver the couple’s third son, 3-month-old Huckleberry Edward Jocelyne, on the couple’s houseboat. In a story for the April 2009 issue of Men’s Journal, the 34-year-old survivalist gave expectant fathers advice on how to “survive” a homebirth.

The couple “both love home,” and after having suffered through “a few bad experiences” himself, Bear admits he’s developed “a pretty healthy hatred of hospitals.” Together they decided to pursue a homebirth, an experience Bear describes as “absolutely brilliant.”

“The cons are that you have quite a lot of blood and gore, and you don’t have the emergency help if it all starts to go pear-shaped. But then again, she feels safe and secure, and she’s got me hovering over her with a toolbox. What more can an expecting mother want?”

Acutely aware of his role in the equation — telling the magazine “all I was there for, really, was reassurance” — Bear used his “homeopathic kit” to distract his laboring wife. “The more pain she was in, the more I was going ‘What are your symptoms?'” Bear recalls. “And then I’d list all these wacky things that homeopathic pills work for.” In the end, Huckleberry was born safe and sound, and an “amazing” Shara left her husband awestruck.

“Girls are so great in a big crisis. I’ve seen it in the mountains, too. Men are all great when it’s quite comfy and there’s lots of bravado, but when the sh-t really hits the fan, it’s the women who often come through.”

In addition to Huckleberry, Bear and Shara are parents to Jesse, 5 ½, and Marmaduke, 3.

Source: Men’s Journal

— Missy

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