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Birth classes

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Have any of you moms who have btdt taken birth classes? Or other FTMs, are you planning to? My mom is basically insisting that I take one, and while I'm not closed to the idea, it honestly hadn't occurred to me. I live in a pretty rural location with only one option that isn't an hour+ drive, and it seems like a lot of money. Maybe it's worth it? Fill me in, please!

post #2 of 9

I'm debating about taking one. The problem is that our trip overseas in April/May is smack in the middle of when many of the sessions are going on, and the ones that start afterward go into early August. I'm not too keen on signing up for a class that won't be done before my due date.


One thing to consider is the type of class offered. A girlfriend of mine, who is also a midwife, said that many classes, especially those offered at the hospital, will simply go over what is going to happen, but don't do much to prepare you with tips on how to deal with what is happening.  She took a hypnobirthing class for her first child (homebirth) and felt like that was better because it gave her actual tips on how to cope with things; as she didn't really need to know the process of what would happen since professionally she was quite familiar.  So, maybe think about that when considering whether to sign up?


If I do take a class, I'm leaning toward Hypnobirthing, Birthing from Within, or Bradley - if anyone has done any of those, I'd love input and feedback too.

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Good points, Harmonious. I should have mentioned that I'm planning a homebirth, and the only class nearby is a Bradley class. I also don't have insurance for another few months, so I'm paying for everything out-of-pocket. The cost is really what has me balking at the idea. I did save up for having a baby, so if it really is worth it, I'll gladly find the money for it. I just need some convincing, I guess!

post #4 of 9

I wouldn't wanna do a bradley class. My hubby is totally the wrong choice for that. LOL - don't know how your partner is though. 

And money does matter. I've never had a birth class and I'm on number 4. I have been doing some reading from various books from the library on coping techniques for labor and birth. Everything I'm reading basically says, just breath deep, focus on relaxing your muscles and body and some people find it helpful to focus on something else as much as possible, etc. Nothing too complicated. I don't think it'd be worth an over one hour drive and the money personally. 


If you haven't already looked into it, it would be helpful to be fully aware of the stages of labor and what to expect from it so it doesn't totally take you by surprise. Lots of info online and in books on that all.
Funny thing that I learned before my first birth is that you had to birth the placenta. I never knew anything about that. LOL 

post #5 of 9

I took a class offered by a chiropractor's office the first time around and Bradley the second time around.  I agree with the pp who said not to take a hospital class - they basically prepare you to be a good hospital patient.  You're looking for something to help you figure out what to expect and how you're going to cope.


I highly recommend the Bradley class.  I found it very helpful when the time came.  It is very partner centered and you can choose to take or leave that part of it.  I found it helped my partner be more confident because he knew what to expect and had some ideas on what he would/could be doing, but we left the whole part where he's 'in charge' because it just doesn't fit with our paradigm.


I was really glad that I had taken a class of some sort - I think a lot of people (not necessarily the types who hang out here lol) think they'll just refuse the epidural and that's all there is to having an unmedicated birth, but they don't have any tools in their toolbox for actually dealing with it all. 

post #6 of 9

hi there - I wanted to update you guys that I decided to do the HypnoBabies home study course. So far I'm really into it, and am feeling positive and confident that it will help me achieve the natural intervention-free (albeit hospital) birth that I want.  I'll report back after the fact :)

We also hired a doula, so I think that is giving both me and DH some confidence that we won't be entirely alone trying to figure things out while laboring at home.

post #7 of 9

My midwife is basically mandating that I take a class and I think it will be pretty time-consuming - at least 4 (maybe as many as 6?) sessions, each an hour away from my house each way. The class she wants me to take is hypnobirthing, with a specific teacher, and so far I have thought that the teacher seems good, though we haven't met in person yet. It was a little stressful to set up because the teacher was not able to commit to exactly when the classes would be. She said something vague like she builds classes around families' due date schedules and back in late April she didn't have anyone else due in mid-July. However now that I've talked to her more I have realized that she is going to accommodate my schedule and I think she'll make the whole thing happen no matter what it takes. I don't know the cost - I'm guessing it will be around $350 to $400 based on other rates I have seen. 


I have read somewhere that childbirth education classes are tax deductible if you itemize medical expenses. Federal taxes don't save you any money on medical costs unless they exceed 7.5% of your income (at least in my bracket) but state taxes can have lower thresholds so you could save a few bucks on your taxes at least. I looked at IRS bulletin but couldn't find any specific info on childbirth class deduction though. Maybe other mothering posts cover this. 

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

Ack, I would be pretty upset if someone was mandating for me to take a class that would cost so much and be so far away :-/ I hope it is a good experience for you!


I talked to my midwives and they suggested some books for me to read, which have *really* helped a lot. _The Birth Partner_ made me feel 1000x more knowledgable about the nitty-gritty details of birth, which felt really helpful. 

post #9 of 9

Well I took hospital held prenatal classes when I was pregnant with my first. I thought they were great classes and really helped me prepare for the birth and first couple weeks at home with a newborn.

They were taught by the hospitals head lactation consultant. I have to say that I was a little surprised but extremely happy about how baby friendly the hospital I was birthing in was. I thought I was going to be fighting a lot of scary unnecessary hospital routines that I had read about online but that wasen't the case. It felt nice to know what the common routines were. The classes centered around having a natural child birth experience in a hospital setting. The teacher explained why we should labour at home for as long as possible, how an epideral can lead to a cascade of interventions and C-section (explained importance of skin to skin after birth, C-section can be skin to skin with daddy, etc), explained how narcotic effects baby in labour, etc showed us various labour positions and explained alternative pain management methods...She also spoke alot on breast feeding. I felt less anxious about what to expect giving birth at the  hospital. I also really enjoyed the tour of the delivery and postpartum rooms. It was worth it for me as I felt well prepared after the classes :)

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