With our first, we took a hospital Lamaze class. Well, it was AT the hospital but the nurse instructor advertised on her own. She had a bit more freedom than a standard hospital class.
When I told my midwife what kind of class we took, she shook her head and said, "Well, I guess you didn't get much out of THAT!" But that really wasn't the case for us! Our instructor was a Board Certified Lactation Consultant at the hospital, and she was not a "system automatron" at all.
Without her guidance, we really never would have considered natural childbirth. But she strongly recommended drug-free labors, doula support, rooming in, and breastfeeding (of course). She also called me on the phone every day for two weeks when ds and I ran into nursing difficulties.
This go 'round, we have no extra cash. So I'm reading the Bradley Book (the one written by Susan McCutcheon). And we're having a homebirth.