Couples have found the group experiences in a childbirth class helpful. They want to be in a class with others who want a natural birth and don't think that the idea is crazy. A class requires you to take time to think about your birth, has incentives for eating well, exercising and practicing relaxation.
The experience of seeing your child born is a powerful one, and should be positive for the coach. If they can get used to thinking about the birth and are prepared, they can focus on the miracle that is occurring and not on the bodily fluids that come along with it.
Of course, not everyone needs to take a childbirth class. You need to know
yourself and your husband.
Consider these questions:
Taking a class early is a good idea. Students have told me that they needed the extra time to read, practice and prepare for their labors. This extra time allows you more opportunities to discuss important issues with your medical care provider. (Since you only go once per month and have limited time with each visit).
The bottom line is to take classes that are at the most convenient time and location so you will attend them.
Your class should cover issues that have been frequently mentioned as the most challenging by childbirth class students here in North Carolina. Many didn't realize how clearly they needed to communicate with their birth team members to be sure that their special concerns were addressed during the birth.
Try to obtain a balanced perspective on use of medication and medical interventions. If you are planning for a natural birth you should still be well versed in the choices that come along with common medical interventions. This allows you to communicate more effectively with your care providers.
Induction of labor is quite common in this area and typically not without complications. I have found that induction can have a huge impact on a labor, usually dramatically increasing the number of additional medical procedures required. There should be some discussion in your class of the various situations and medical research behind a decisions to induce.
Students also have said that the relaxation techniques presented in class were very helpful. Take time to try out and practice these techniques.