Unmedicated childbirth question — The Bump
September 2011 Moms

Unmedicated childbirth question

Hi all, I have been lurking on this board since finding out we are expecting our first child. I have not found a need to post until now. I would like to plan to have an unmedicated birth if possible, knowing that getting an epidural or c-section is a possibility. My family has not been supportive about this, basically laughing at me about it. I really want to take a natural childbirth class, which from what I've found is $300 for a 12- week class. My husband has been somewhat more supportive of my wish to have an unmedicated birth, but I guess he didn't think I was so serious about the issue. When the cost of the class came up he was surprised and hesitant to agree to this. He said it is ultimately my decision, but for some reason the whole discussion triggered an emotional meltdown! I started bawling, saying I might as well just plan on getting an epidural since I have no support on going unmedicated. Sorry for the rambling, I guess I just needed to vent to people who might understand more.

Re: Unmedicated childbirth question

  • I'm so sorry...cheer up, it sounds like mostly hormones that have you melting down.  I have absolutely NO intention of doing this naturally, so I can't really help you there, but if you want to, then you should.  I don't think $300 is all that expensive.  If it means you end up with a low-stress or easier labor and a happy, healthy, un-druged baby, then I think it sounds like money well spent.  I think if you explain that you are nervous about the unmedicated labor to your DH but that you really think its whats best and that the class will help ease your mind, I'm sure DH will be supportive.  Take a deep breath and try to talk to him about it.

  • Thank you so much. I think I just needed to hear something like thar. I know I'm hormonal, plus sleep deprived (from working the night shift last night).Again, thank you. I think I'll try to have a (rational) conversation with my husband.
  • 1.  Good for you for trying to go unmedicated!

    2. Hormones have me crying about EVERYTHING these days, so you are not alone.

    3.  300 dollars would be a deal breaker for my husband.  He is super concerned about money, and, I would probably feel a little guilty for spending that much, because we really don't have it right now.  However, an alternative that we have found is 80 dollars for four weeknight classes or two intensive Saturday classes.  Perhaps, if you look around, that may be an option for you.  


    Good luck! 

    image BabyFruit Ticker
  • I understand where you are coming from. My DH asked me the other day when I was going to throw in the towel and ask for the drugs. I told him that the whole idea of taking the classes is so that HE and I both have the tools to make the educated decisions based on what we think is best overall instead of just giving in--the idea is to never throw in the towel.

    I also told him that we're keeping the decision to go unmedicated to ourselves. A lot of people seem to either get offended when you tell them you plan to go unmedicated, or feel the need to put negative thoughts in your head (as if you just woke up that morning and thought "hey I don't want drugs" without putting any thought into the decision). It's a private thing for us; I haven't even discussed it with my mom and she and I are pretty close.

    When I told DH we were going to take the classes and the cost and everything he kind of put up a stink, but when I let him know it was important to me, and that I had done my research and that he could do his own and let me know what he thought if he wanted to, he came around little by little. Even on our way to our first class last night he was complaining about all of it but when we were on our way home he was glad we went and is excited about finishing the 12 week class.  I did do my research and let him know why I wanted to go unmedicated based on my research. I even offered for him to do his own research if he didn't agree with me.

    Don't give up. If it's something you really want to do, let him know how important it is to you.

    I rationalized the $300 class by telling him that the drugs they give you during labor cost WAY more than $300 (even after our insurance covers some of the costs for us). Plus most instructors let you pay in installments as long as you pay in full by the time the 12 weeks are up.



    IAmPregnant Ticker
  • I have a friend who just graduated med school, and when I mentioned I wanted to go natural, she said from her experience in Labor & Delivery, she thinks you really need to take the classes to have the experience go well. I'm not saying she is an expert, but given only her bit of experience in L&D, she was very adamant about the difference the classes made for the women.

    Are you wanting to take a childbirth class anyway? At my hospital there is barely any difference in cost between the other childbirth classes and the natural. If it's the same where you are looking, that might put things in perspective for your DH, and even if it isn't, your DH isn't bringing a life into this world, and your comfort in the situation is paramount to everyone elses'.

    In my opinion, even if you wind up getting an epidural, the natural class will help you cope before that is given and deal with the rest. It's not like your money went down the drain just because you don't wind up going natural.

    I also want to go natural and have been a little surprised by other people's reactions to this. It's not like I asked anyone else to do it. My decision has no baring on their lives. No one has really been confrontational about it, but my dad said something to me when I mentioned it (about "just don't get too wrapped up/resigned to that decision"). That was fine, but then I heard him talking to my DH at Easter behind my back... that was when I got pretty annoyed. I know he's trying to look out for me or whatever, but it's my darn body.

    Bottom line, it's your body and your decision. You do what you think is best for you and your baby and make no apologies for it!

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • Hi- I'm sorry you've been having such a hard time dealing with your family, and that your DH is sort of hesitant. Most people who have done natural classes assured me their DH's came around after the first one. It's what I'm counting on with mine, as I think my DH is just going along to humor me. As for the family situation, you'll have many people who will ridicule your choice of a natural labor and delivery. It's just something that you'll have to deal with.Try going to the Natural Birth board on here for support.

     It sounds like you want to take a Bradley class, am I right?

    If so, email some instructors in your area and see if they offer payment plans. A couple of mine mentioned that they do. Also, check with your insurance to see if you can get reimbursed for part or all of the cost. My instructor mentioned that once we get the certificate of completion, we can submit that to our insurance company for reimbursement.

    The cost of a $300 12 week class really isn't that much - it's 2 hours every week for 12 weeks. If you take into consideration that most hospital offered classes are around $100-150 for a 7 hour class, it's really worth it.

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker

  • I actually compared the price of the one day, 6 hour class at the hospital ($75) to re 12 week $300 class and for the time given the cost is the same!I really didn't want to paint my family in a negative light--they've been amazing in every other aspect of this pregnancy and I love them dearly.I really appreciate PP's comment about her friend that works in L&D. That makes me want to take this class even more. I'm not sure that it's necessarily a Bradley class, it is a natural childbirth class offered by a birthing center in my area--even though I am definitely giving birth in a hospital!I appreciate everyone's comments and support, I think it's exactly what I needed right now. :)
  • Check out Hypnobabies. It's a home-study course that you can do at your own pace and it's about half that price. I'm about half way through it and I LOVE it. My husband was skeptical at first so he actually asked the doctor if it works. When she said yes, he seemed more convinced.

    My other piece of advice would be to keep it entirely to yourself. I have had to put up with so much grief over it that now I just either dodge the question or outright lie and say "bring on the drugs!" People won't be with you in the delivery room, anyway.

    Good luck! 


    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • I am planning on doing it naturally in a birthing center and DH is very supportive (although, he is aware it has nothing to do with him aside from being there for me and LO, since I am the one giving birth --- he says, "I love this because you love this."). When it comes to the birth, natural is a more involved way to give birth because there are various things your DH can participate to help alleviate stress, pain, etc., if properly taught. If your DH is a hands-on guy, that might appeal more. And I took my DH to the tour and interview at the birthing center and he was very interested, as well as when I told him there are a few free classes coming up soon that I want him to go to. He understands the delivery is about me and LO, and he is just going to be the support role. Ultimately, do as you feel is best for you and LO!

    The only thing I have gotten from people about my decision to do it naturally aside from "And how does that work? I know nothing about it!" is "Well, that *is* how they did it before all this fancy technology and they survived!" Which, to me, is actually comforting. Women have been doing this for centuries...who says we need anything? Plus, all my naturalies all say they felt like warriors afterwards. So that's awesome. ;)

    BabyName Ticker Lilypie Pregnancy tickers imageimage
  • Don't give up hope!  I have just about zero pain tolerance yet somehow managed to have an unmedicated birth despite only having taken the regular birthing classes.  I owe a lot of it to creating a firm birth plan (AKA - don't offer me medication!) and a wonderful DH who kept me going.  Good luck! 
    Missed Miscarriage discovered at 12 weeks on 12/4/07


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