There is no childbirth preparation class that is perfect for everyone. Here is a guide, though, in helping you find a class that will truly prepare you for the birth of your child:
- Look for classes that are offered independent of a particular birth setting. For example, a hospital childbirth class will only teach you about birthing in that hospital, what to expect, and how to be a cooperative, complacent patient.
- You should emerge from your childbirth preparation class with the knowledge of how to handle a birth on your own. Even if you don’t plan to birth at home, you should know what to do if the baby comes fast (which can happen).
- The emphasis should be on what choices are best for you, and MUST address your fears and emotional needs. If the class does not address nutrition, exercise and pain relief other than drugs, walk out.
- If after reading the above, you still insist on some immediate guidance, check out Birthing From Within and The Bradley Method®. You might also wish to search for a local Hypnobirthing® instructor or class. Remember, different styles appeal to different people, and not all childbirth educators are created equal, so explore your options early and don’t hesitate to take more than one class if you have the time and the money. You will quickly be able to determine for yourself what is quality and what is not.
- Check out The Pink Kit (The International Cesarean Awareness Network has the least expensive copies I could find online).