01-07-2014 11:20 AM
01-07-2014 11:26 AM
My husband and I took them, we got them free though because a family member is an instructor. What I found most useful was learning about the process or labor and the steps and what to expect. My husband loved that he felt like he could DO something and help me and be part of it, rather than just watch and feel helpless. It prepared him for what to expect also. I also enjoyed the relaxation techniques and liked that (unlike lamaze) it encourages you to find what works for you, rather than using a predetermined breathing technique. Bradley also focuses on natural childbirth, and tips for women to help keep it that way.
01-07-2014 01:04 PM
The class I took with DD1 was useless. It maybe helped a litlte bit but for the main part the breathing, etc that was taught wasn't good breathing for labor and ended up actually making me really lightheaded and stuff (the instructor taught sh-sh-sh breathing instead of yoga breathing). For my second I did the home study hypnobabies course, starting around 30 weeks.
The hypnobabies course is $150 but you can often find it used on craigslist, etc for around $80. If you think that it is something that could work for you, IMO it is probably one of the best methods out there. It is NOT the same as hypnobirthing. It is a complete child birth education- not only does it have meditation CDs that walk you through and instruct you on different coping mechanisms for your child's birth, but it also comes with a complete child birth education manual that covers everything from how birthing works, to information on how hospitals are run and how to avoid unneccessary interventions, to breastfeeding. It is pretty comprehensive, much more than the hospital course I took with my first and gives you plenty of information without being overwhelming. The instructor that has written the course has a strong background in Bradley method too and did Bradley instruction for years before writing hypnobabies, so there is a really strong influence from that in the education materials. It is incredibly time intensive however, and you have to 100% believe that it could work for you. You basically have until 32 weeks to start the material, the actual course itself runs 6 weeks which involves daily practice, and any other time after that is simply spent practicing daily exercises. When I began my birthing time with DD2 because of that practice time I instinctively knew how to apply the exercises to her birth. I was so relaxed that I was able to stay very comfortable during her labor for all but a few minutes during transition, where I did need some extra coaching from my husband (but hypnobabies also has some practice scripts that will actually program you to relax even deeper simply if someone puts their hand on their shoulder). Overall I was extremely pleased with the outcome and found it very beneficial and definitely worth the time practicing, as it has come in handy for other things, like helping myself relax when I am having a difficult day, or even if I have a really sore back I can still use the tools I was given by the course to help with the pain more.
And to give you an idea of how well this works, I was in active labor and the nurse couldn't even believe I was 6-7 cm when I came in because I was too relaxed, lol.
01-07-2014 02:30 PM
I say take one. Especially if you are going unmedicated. I planed on having an epidural and took just a general birth class. My labor didn't go very smoothly and it was super comforting to know a little what to expect and what the next likely step would be. If you want to go unmedicated having all the practice relaxing and breathing with an instructor would be massively helpful.
01-16-2014 01:00 PM
I liked it. I think it's a great way to help your husband feel connected to the process. We got a tour of the hospital too. We did end up trying to do some of the things we learned in the class. I was induced so the labor went very quickly and was super intense so I also got an epideral. I think it's good before your first baby. I think it helped relax me about the process which is unnerving. It was good to have my husband's support. I don't think we'll do it again with #2 now that we've been through it once.