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Husband refuses to go to class

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
My husband and I got married in June and tried for and were able to get pregnant right away. We are due in March. It took a lot of discussion and some tears to get my husband to begin Lamaze classes with me. He hates sitting in class and kept insisting that we could learn everything we need to know from Youtube. Now that we are going to class, he admits that the instructor is very knowledgeable and seems to be benefiting from it. There are a few more classes I would like for us to take. I plan to go to Breastfeeding Basics without him, but I want him to come with me for Baby's First Outing/Travel with Baby, and Newborn Care. He refuses to come to the Newborn Care class because it falls on a Thursday night and he plays basketball for exercise on Thursday nights. I am upset with him because I feel like he is telling me that basketball is more important than me or the baby. He reminds me that he never wanted to take classes to begin with because he doesnt think they are necessary to learn or the best way to learn, and the only reason he is going to Lamaze is because he wants to be supportive of me. He says I can take the Newborn Care class and fill him in on the main points afterwards or he can learn from Youtube. Other than his not being on board with going to classes, he is supportive. But I can't help feeling hurt over this and angry about it. Am I expecting too much of him as a man? Maybe pregnancy, birth, and babies really are women's business and I'm imposing something on him that I shouldn't? Are we having an issue because of cultural differences? He is from rural China and I am Caucasian from the U.S. Would like to get others perspective on this.
Edited by dawn2013 - 11/29/12 at 6:42pm
post #2 of 9

Well.. i would be hurt too, 1st pregnancy, if my husband didn't come to classes and do all the baby prep stuff with me..


but i just wanted to say, i think it will turn out to be more important for him to go to the breastfeeding class with you than the newborn care class..  the newborn care class i went to during my first pregnancy was a joke (stuff you really could learn from youtube, unless it includes infant CPR, then it might be worth something) the breastfeeding basics class was helpful ONLY because my husband was there - it was not enough for me to be prepared, but it was worth it for him to get that introduction..  I would see if he will go to the breastfeeding class and then you could pick out some videos to watch together on newborn care ..  (in addition to you going to the class if you still want to) this will give him a chance to be supportive without having to miss his basketball thing.. 


(for you to prepare to breastfeed i highly recommend attending La leche league meetings while you are pregnant and reading a breastfeeding book like The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, or Breastfeeding Made SImple)

post #3 of 9

Classes were not available when I was first pregnant, so my partner and I watched lots of videos together about all sorts of different aspects of birthing. We would then discuss.  We got videos from the midwife, but I imagine that similar stuff might be on youtube (except not pre-screened for quality).  Would he be willing to do a weekly joint video night together with discussion? I think the discussion part was the most important, as we talked about what appealed to us or what we imagined would be hard. 

post #4 of 9

I would second the suggestion that the breastfeeding class would be the most important for him to go to with you - you would think that being from rural China he would have been exposed to a lot of natural breastfeeding stuff but I have friends who are from rural China and that's not necessarily the case!  Especially if he moved away when he was younger - it would have just been "baby stuff" that he ignored once he was old enough to run around on his own.


He's right that a class isn't the best place to learn about newborn care though.  Your midwife or nurses in the hospital will bring you both up to speed on those pretty fast.  You could also "assign" him stuff like carseat installation or infant first-aid and have him teach YOU those things.

post #5 of 9

i would get a doula if I were in your position :)

post #6 of 9

I also suggest he attends the breastfeeding basics class with you. Having my husband help with latch with our first daughter was a life saver. If he hadn't attended those classes with me he never would have been able to help me correct my latch. 


Newborn care would be tough to learn in a class I think, every newborn is so different. You can read the basics in some really good books that are out there (NOT what to expect!!) I would suggest Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn by Penny Simkin (and a few other authors)


I would also second the suggestion that you look in to hiring a Doula. If you can't work that in to your budget contact DONA.org to help you find a low fee or volunteer Doula in your area :)


Good luck mama :)

post #7 of 9
Originally Posted by spughy View Post

IHe's right that a class isn't the best place to learn about newborn care though.  Your midwife or nurses in the hospital will bring you both up to speed on those pretty fast.  You could also "assign" him stuff like carseat installation or infant first-aid and have him teach YOU those things.

Yes. This!  I hate to say it men are different from women. My DH is wonderful father, but he would never attended any of those classes and he turned out just fine!!  You could even let him skip the breastfeeding class, if you think you are going to hire LC.  My DH was much more comfortable and relaxed with the LC and would listen to her and do what she asked him to do to help.  


Give him some more "manly" things to do to prepare for the baby.  Men like to feel needed. (So, have him figure out how to get the hospital once you are in labor, do the carseat stuff, put furniture together, etc.) 

post #8 of 9

Are you two generally on the same page as far as pregnancy, birth, raising children?  If you are, that might be of some comfort to you.  But in any case, it seems like he is willing to be supportive of you in general and is willing to learn about all these things- he just doesn't want to go to classes.  He doesn't want to learn in the same way as you.  I don't think it's that he's a man or has a cultural difference.  I just think he's a different person than you.


So I don't see a problem.  Just get him a bunch of books.  Or select some youtube videos for him or both of you.  If it's the togetherness you want, make sure you read the same books and watch the same videos and maybe set aside a time to talk about them together.


I understand wanting him to be as into everything as you are, but that's just not possible sometimes.  It sounds to me like he's just not into classes.  My advice is to forgive him for being into basketball.  After all, that's something that he already has going on- a scheduling problem. 


I bet there are lots of things he is doing or will do to get ready for the baby and when the baby is here.  You may be feeling particularly hurt by this because you have hormones that are making you an awesome concerned mama who wants to be really prepared.  But since you say he's supportive in general, I'd just figure out a way to work around this one.


Take care. hug2.gif

post #9 of 9

I don't see the point of a "newborn care" class tbh. We never took one and we figured it out pretty easily. If you are birthing in a hospital the nurses will show you how to change diapers, hold the baby, bathe the baby, and basic stuff like that, and you'll figure out the other stuff as you go. Same with Travel With Baby. Having him there during the Lamaze class would be more important, I think. Maybe he thinks that you are encroaching on his time to do something he really enjoys--play basketball--which will already get encroached on enough after the baby is born. I would let him off the hook. He'll figure stuff out pretty fast once the baby comes along. 

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