Why can't I just learn what I need to know about birth from my midwife or doctor?
Prenatal time is very limited. OBs and midwives working in the hospital/ clinic settings are very busy and have very tight schedules. You will often find you do not have enough time to ask your questions or even remember them. Working with a homebirth midwife will offer much more time to visit and provide a comfortable atmosphere for asking questions, however, once again your time is still limited. With a class you have many more hours to work with, ask questions and develop a rapport that will facilitate greater learning. Also, in a class, you will have other couples with you who may ask important questions that may never have occurred to you.
Check out this chart to discover how much time you really have to ask your important questions.
Provider Number of Appts. Avg time/meetings Total time together
OB 10-12 10 min (avg) 100 - 120 min/
1hr, 40 min - 2 hours
CNM 10-12 20 min (avg) 200 - 240 min
3hr, 20 min - 4 hours
CPM 10-12 60 min (avg) 600 - 720 min/
10 - 12 hours
Birth Free 10 120 min 1200 min/20 hours!
Are there any books I should read before I start?
There are numerous good books on childbirth and pregnancy at our local bookstores, library, and on-line. Books that I have found helpful and recommend include:
Pregnancy and Birth Books
Creating Your Birth Plan, by Marsden Wagner
40 Weeks Devotional Guide to Pregnancy, by Jennifer Vanderlaan
The Thinking Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth, by Henci Goer
Gentle Birth Choices, by Barbara Harper, R.H.
Ina Mae's Guide to Childbirth, by Ina Mae Gaskin, CPM
Nursing and Parenting Books
So That's What They’re For! Breastfeeding Basics, by Janet Tamaro
Bringing Up Boys, by Dr. James Dobson
Kids First, by Dr. Ogi Ressel
No Cry Sleep Solution, by Elizabeth Pantley
Mothering Magazine, www.mothering.com
Midwifery Today, www.midwiferytoday.com
Pathways to Family Wellness, pathwaystofamilywellness.org
Click here to go to see more books that may be of interest.
Are all natural births right and all medicated or cesarean births wrong?
Absolutely not! There is no such thing as the “right” or “wrong” birth experience, but there is a vast difference between a birth that leaves a mom empowered and one that takes that power away from mom and sends her home filled with self doubt. Moms and dads who take ownership over the preparation of their birth experience, no matter the outcome, come away feeling stronger and more sure of themselves as parents.
Why are the classes so long?
Birth Free Childbirth Education is not just about the hours your baby comes into the world or the equipment your birthing provider wants to introduce you to. These classes offer so much more! In 10 weeks we talk about nutrition…thoroughly. We talk about the consciousness of your unborn baby and how they interpret their prenatal time, their birth and postpartum period. We share ideas with your loved ones on how they can most effectively assist mom before, during and after the birth. We do talk about the equipment, procedures and medications your provider may have available to you, but we will discuss them from an objective view point, assess the pros and cons so you can make a true informed decision if faced with any of them. We spend a week each on baby and mom’s postpartum period. We talk about ways to make that time a time of gentle transition for all involved. We work together assess all your hopes, goals and objectives for your upcoming birth and compose a birth plan that is flexible, obtainable and to the highest standards possible. We prepare both mom and dad for the joys and occasional challenges that breastfeeding your baby can present.
And, oh yeah, we talk about the actual birth. We discover the awesome possibilities and consider the potential challenges. Why 10 weeks? Because we haven’t been able to convince mom and dad to come for 15!
I'm having my baby in the hospital, shouldn't I just take their classes?
While the hospital courses are beneficial and will introduce you to the attitude and atmosphere of your providers, they simply do not cover as much as the Birth Free classes. If you are looking for a very thorough course, one that will leave very few stones unturned, then these are the classes for you. Here is a glimpse of all the topics we discuss in class in comparison to the classes offered by HealthPartners and CentraCare.
CentraCare Classes Cover: Pregnancy Anatomy, Stages
of Labor, Birth/Delivery, Relaxation, Support, Common Labor Procedures, Baby Postpartum Experience
Health Partners Classes Cover: Stages of Labor, Birth/Delivery, Common Labor Procedures, Medications Used in Labor, Baby Postpartum Experience, Postpartum for Mom, Nursing
Birth Free Class cover: Birth History, Pregnancy Anatomy, Gestation, Pre and Peri Psychology, Pregnancy Exercise, Pregnancy Nutrition, Stages
of Labor, Birth/Delivery, Relaxation, Support, Equipment commonly used in labor, Common Labor Procedures, Medications Used in Labor, Postpartum
Transition including Postpartum Depression, Placental Encapsulation, Baby Postpartum Experience, Nursing
(according to their websites 1/09)
Why should I take these classes?
Like planning for the perfect wedding, you do not spend one weekend putting the whole thing together and expect a beautiful, seamless event; rather you spend many hours of work and preparation. Very often what you sow truly is what you reap. Though natural birth is just that, natural, and we were designed perfectly to do so, in our current societal climate this is not easy to achieve. You cannot expect it to be handed to you by your doctor, midwife, or even your doula. It often requires conscious preparation and thought.
What do the classes cost and what is included?
The full series is 10 consecutive weeks, two hours each. Classes are $300, $30 a night for mom and her spouse or support person. Consider it a date night with your baby, it’s cheaper than dinner and a movie and the preparation and bonding that can happen through those 10 weeks will be part of the very foundation of your relationship with your child. It is a very cheap investment in the very future of your child and your relationship!
Along with 20 hours of lecture, you will receive a 180+ page workbook filled with notes, work sheets, recipes, exercises, and other learning tools from class. Most evenings you will see a video or two. Each couple will be loaned a fetoscope to listen to their baby with and a rebozo to relax mom with. These two things will be picked up from your home after you have your baby when Jenny stops by with a home cooked meal for mom and dad, saving them a night of cooking!
Jennifer Davis . Labor For Love Birth Services . firstname.lastname@example.org . 320-493-5110