Canada has a male midwife

There's a new midwife in town, and Alex has something to say about it.

By Alex Mlynek
Canada has a male midwife

Photo by vividpixels/

Otis Kryzanauskas was delivered by midwives, is the son of a midwife and even cut the umbilical cord at his brother's birth, so it's no coincidence that the 25-year-old is the first man to graduate from a midwifery program in Canada.

Maclean's reports that Kryzanauskas, who studied at McMaster University, will practise at Community Midwives of Hamilton come August.

He's not the first Canadian male midwife. Again via Maclean's, the now-retired Larry Lenske, who started practising before midwifery became regulated in Canada in 1994, holds that title.

On the one hand, it's kind of sad that this is such big news (well, for some of us). I'd love it if this were just an everyday occurrence, especially since the reality is the demand for midwives exceeds the supply in Canada; there are fewer midwives here than in London!

But in the end, I think this is a step in the right direction. Why shouldn't guys be midwives? We don't seem to have these issues with male OB/GYNs. There seems to be a stigma in general against men who enter so-called "caring" professions — professions like nursing, teaching or child care — which frankly means we have a lot of room to grow as a society.

We will all better off when we stop being so rigid about what women, men, girls and boys can do. And I'm happy my son will have more choice in terms of models of what he can be. So go Otis!

Did you use a midwife? Would you want a man to be your midwife?

Read more
about midwives in Canada.  

This article was originally published on May 24, 2012

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