There are many reasons why it’s a good idea to take a childbirth education class. I could talk about this until the cows come home, but for now, here are five:
1. Get Your Mind Right
Life can be really busy! Even when you’re pregnant, it’s not unusual for people to be so busy that they occasionally forget they’re even having a baby. Especially with second time (or third, etc.) parents! At the very least, your childbirth education class can be a time for you to slow down and think about this new baby coming into your life. It’s a wonderful time to reflect on any decisions you need to make before, or soon after their arrival so that you can feel confident in those decisions when the time comes to make them. If you have a loved one accompanying you, you can even make it a date night since it will probably be just the two of you!
2. Legit Information
A good childbirth ed class should offer you relevant, accurate information all in one place. If you’re taking a class in person or virtually, the person leading the class should have a thorough understanding of what they’re talking about because they have done their research using up-to-date, reliable sources. There should also be a place or time for you to ask your most burning questions instead of staying up till 2 in the morning Googling stuff.
3. Learn About Your Options
There are so many different possibilities when it comes to how you’ll bring your baby into this world. How do you feel about being induced? What comfort measures might you like to try? Do you want an epidural? Each decision has a list of pros and cons that you’ll need to consider. Taking a quality childbirth education course should expose you to the basic timeline of what to expect as well as some of the most common decisions you might need to make during your baby’s birth. Maybe you’ll find that as you learn more about how birth works and your different options, your opinions evolve; or perhaps they solidify what you already knew or wanted. You won’t know what you don’t know until you take some time to understand what’s going on in your body during your baby’s birth.
4. Meet Other Pregnant People
Being in a group of people who are in a similar season of life as you can be good for the soul. You don’t have to explain your excitement to learn what fruit or veggie your baby is that week; chances are, everyone in the group gets it. These people are right there with you, picking out names and clothes, planning for childcare, wondering what their labor will be like. It’s a great chance to link up with people who understand some of what you’re going through. So don’t be shy! Reach out to your classmates. Make friends! You never know who might end up being a friend for life.
5. Prepare Your Support Person
If you have a spouse, partner, friend or family member who is planning on supporting you during your pregnancy and birth, it is equally important for them to attend as well. They’re not going through the changes that you are. They will not be experiencing the birth as you will, but they have agreed to support you. In order to do that, a basic understanding of what will be happening can help them think of ways that they can be truly helpful. They will learn things like the signs and symptoms that labor has started, what it might look like when you’re in transition, how to massage your back to get you more comfortable and a whole host of other things. I cannot stress enough how important it is for support people to prepare for the birth as well.
So, there are a few reasons why it’s a great idea to take a childbirth education class. Stay tuned for my next post on how to choose a class that works for you!