mine went to the hospital classes with me the first time around.
I'm doing Hypnobabies and he hasn't really read much about it so i'm going to be relying mostly on my doula for cues and things. He does do perineal massage so i can't complain!
He's pretty involved. He went to Bradley with me the first time around. He wasn't that into the classes, but he did make sure I did my exercises. And at my urging, he read "Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way." (He wouldn't have done that on his own, though). He also hounded me to take my prenatal and my iron supplement. We're not taking a class this time around, but he still reminds me about my vitamins. I haven't started doing the exercises yet - I really should get on that. If I tell him, he'll make sure I do them every night.
He was very involved in DD's birth. I was in active labor for 21 hours and he only left my side for about 90 minutes to take a nap in the middle of it, and then only at my mw's insistence. He held my hand, rubbed my back constantly, and kept encouraging me. I could not have asked for a better coach!
DH is super excited, attends every prenatal visit he can, is skipping his sister's wedding in Turkey because it's too close to my due date, is kind enough to sit through birthing videos, will read a snippet I send him via email, or something out of a book, but WILL NOT pick up a book and doesn't care to learn about different methods.
We sat down to have our weekly family meeting with the whole family, but continue the meeting after the kids go to bed for the "adult stuff." When I asked to address this issue I have with his inability to tap into this portion of the pregnancy he expressed concern with his ability to remember every bit of information, or my expectations on him as a coach, a partner, a husband, a father, etc. Though many men want to be there for the births of their children, they don't always want to be an "active member" of the crowd. Honestly, they won't know how they'll act or react until they're thrown into it. That's why I'm planning on having women surround me. Women have a better energy for birthing. I want DH involved, but I don't want to tax him with high expectations.
If your DH is having "commitment" issues with birthing classes and doula appointments, talk to him. Find out what's going on in his scared mind and help him ease through this. For us women, being pregnant is natural, birthing is natural, and finding out all we can is instinctual. For men, not so much.
Ditto pp. Dh comes to appointments with our MW, attending all of the birthing classes (bradley, baby care) - oh but didn't attend the breast feeding one. He won't read anything on his own, but if I pick a chapter or an article and ask him to read it, he will.
We need to step up the practicing though - we do some of the practices, but we need to do a bit more so they become more second nature to him.
I do get a little worried that he won't be a good labor coach, but I think I need to just have faith in him. And we need a little more practice.
My DH is getting there. I originally wanted to skip the classes (a catch-all on natural childbirth) and rely on reading the Bradley and Hypnobirthing book. DH originally said he'd read the books, but it was becoming clear that wasn't happening so we are signed up for the classes.
He's totally supportive of my decision, but I think as the pregnancy is becoming more real to him and after he's taken the classes he'll take the "birthing partner" thing more seriously. If not, I'll hire a doula. Am just trying to avoid that at this point, for several reasons.
He's come to most of my prenatal appointments so far. He is excited to attend the Bradley classes. I know he'll be a rock solid partner come labor and delivery time. As for perineal massages .... I think I'm on my own there haha.
I don't have any close friends of family out here since we recently moved to TX, so I have been relying on him heavily for support throughout this pregnancy. I couldn't ask for a better partner.
I feel really lucky that my DH has been quite involved too. He probably wouldn't have picked Bradley method had it been him giving birth, but said that he would stand behind whatever I wanted to do since I'm the one going through the pregnancy and labor. We attended Bradley classes, infant and child CPR classes through Red Cross, and - at his insistence - attended a breastfeeding class at the same birthing center where we took the Bradley classes. He makes sure I do my exercises, get good nutrition (and he never has goodies in front of me, esp since my GD diagnosis), and keep up whatever level of exercise I can (haven't been to the gym in weeks but we still go on walks). He doesn't come to the more frequent appointments, but came to all of the "big" ones and has been good about reading our Bradley and parenting books together with me. He's still, in his heart, very pro-medicine but understands where I am coming from and is practicing how to be the coach that I'll need - offering alternatives to try instead of getting freaked out or asking if I want pain meds. He insists that we don't need a doula, so it will definitely be interesting to see how we do together in labor! Our Dr. is great too - we both like him a lot and he is on board with everything we want, so I'm expecting it to be a good experience.
He's very involved. He has gone to every appointment, and classes (including the breast feeding one). He also goes to my chiro appts and talks with her about stuff he can do at home to help with my discomfort. Then he does them EVERY night without fail. He read Ina May's book as well as The Happiest Baby on the Block. He's also read some other books I don't know about, he frequently will unleash a statistic that I hadn't heard of.
He's my biggest champion and supporter. Initially I was very concerned that he wouldn't be this involved nor would he be able to stand the potential gorriness of the birth, but so far I was wrong, and SO wrong at that.