In a U.S. report, Sweden has been rated as "the best place to be a mother in the world.” Although vague, this study sought to find out where mothers fare best and face the greatest hardship. Countries in the top ten included Norway, New Zealand, Denmark, Australia, Finland, Ireland, Germany and France.
My Chinese friends here have told me about the ritual for new Chinese mothers. After giving birth, they are expected to remain in the bed for one month, a ritual called zuo yue zi.
The thinking behind this is that after labor, mothers need to recover from the loss of energy and may suffer in the future if they don’t take the time to rest. Read more about this custom in Jerry Chan’s blog post about zuo yue zi