FORTY WEEKS OF PREGNANCY EXPLAINED ON SAT-7 PARS
Forty, a new documentary on SAT-7 PARS, helps expectant parents navigate the challenges that can come with pregnancy. Providing vital medical information and spiritual guidance, the series will support couples throughout the 40 weeks that lead up to a full-term delivery.
The program is one of few unbiased, educational resources on pregnancy available to Persian-speakers. Though 93 percent of the Iranian adult population is literate – as of September 2015 – superstitions and traditions remain prevalent. These can often jeopardise pregnancies or force couples apart.
The ten engaging episodes of Forty (“Chehel” in Farsi) aim to prepare couples for all aspects of pregnancy from a practical as well as spiritual point of view. While celebrating the immense fulfilment that can come with bringing new life into the world, the show also informs first-time parents about possible issues that they may not be anticipating.
DRAWING FROM PERSONAL EXPERIENCE
Forty is presented and produced by Sally Momtaeizani, whose own experience of pregnancy sparked the idea for the show.
“My own pregnancy was not very easy, and although my husband and I thought we were prepared for it, we really weren’t. I think most people are in the same place.” says Momtaeizani “Even when you think you are prepared you don’t know what kind of challenges you will face.”
Across the series, Momtaeizani presents a complete narrative of the three trimesters of pregnancy and the changes that take place in an expectant mother’s body. The presenter also interviews midwife Nasrin Mortazavi and Baharak Alavi, a nutritional expert, on a variety of issues.
The expert speakers do not dictate the choices that viewers should make during pregnancy. Instead, they provide useful information to equip parents-to-be with the tools necessary to make their own decisions. As Momtaeizani explains,
“The most important thing is to provide people with the correct information. When they have the correct information, they can manage challenges in better ways and avoid potential problems.”
TRUSTING IN GOD’S WORD
Forty also covers issues such as the father’s role, abortion, marriage problems and other pregnancy related topics. To explore these issues, Momtaeizani interviews several couples who openly share their own journeys of how God has helped them deal with their challenges. In one interview, a couple spoke about the choices and struggles they faced after being informed early on in pregnancy that their child might be born with Down Syndrome.
Teacher Louise Mokhof shared a Christian perspective on the issue, encouraging viewers to trust in God’s Word no matter how difficult their situation might seem. With each episode, viewers get to see first-hand that they are not alone, but other couples are facing similar problems and that choosing to trust in God can help them to deal and overcome their challenges, while still nurturing their marriage.
Forty’s first episode was broadcast on 21 September. New episodes are introduced week by week, and previously aired episodes are available to viewers on YouTube and Facebook.