Childbirth Education – Think outside the big box location
So let’s chat about childbirth education. Of the reported 30% of expecting parents who attend childbirth classes the majority go to the hospital where the birth is planned instead of seeking out independent options. I want to challenge you to think about how strange that is. Does it make sense that the information presented will REALLY be balanced, unbiased and evidence-based? Many protocols and practices used during labor and delivery in the hospital are designed as a one size fits all, no suited to each individual mom and baby. More importantly, they are not designed to suit the usual low-risk mom and baby (the majority of moms and babies are normal and low-risk), but can actually make a mom and baby appear or become high-risk. Some refer to hospital classes as “good patient preparation” classes because of lack of inclusive information. I will admit, that all hospitals do not offer education in this manner, however, in my experience and research many sadly do.
If a car salesman tried to sell you a car and actually insisted you purchase the specific color, make and model he/she decides for you, would you buy it? You would hopefully say no thank you and leave. How dare some one make such a huge decision for you. How long do you research a piece of electronics or a computer, even a cell phone plane before deciding? Even the pair of shoes you are wearing. Did you have to try on several before finding the right pair?
So why not think outside the big box, one size fits all class? Every mom, baby and partner deserve to know the wisdom of birth, understand what is normal and how to stay that way, when the abnormal happens what to do and be a skilled consumer.
There is no re-do here. This time is too important to leave to chance and inadequate education.
This is at the essence of why I teach my own childbirth classes at a location outside the hospital. I am able to freely give full spectrum information without restriction, bias or without the fear of losing my position.
Your birth matters to both you and your baby, to your future fertility, to your confidence as a mother
Below is a list of options available to families all across the US and variations in other countries as well (if if any class types have been overlooked, please let me know and I will add it).
- Independent – philosophy based (CAPPA, Lamaze post-2000, ICEA, CBI, ALACE, Birth Works, Birthing From Within)
- Independent – method based (Bradley, HypnoBirthing, Hypnobabies
- Self education
There are many other great ways to find a class that suits you.
- Ask around in your community
- Attend birth circles, Birth Network, La Leche League and/or ICAN meetings
- Seek out local doula groups and information nights
- Check out sites like Independent Childbirth
Here’s to finding the perfect fit and gestating in peace.