Feeling overwhelmed by all the information (and conflicting advice) about birth out there? Curious about the non-medical aspects of birth that don't seem to be discussed? Interested in ways to bring your self into this process that sometimes feels far-removed from your own life?
We're here to help!
We offer a different approach to childbirth education. We are Birthing From Within mentors, and we teach birth classes from that perspective. Our classes involve information about labor, birth, and preparing for the postpartum period - the things you'd normally expect. We also work on practical tools for coping with pain, intensity, and unexpected or unwished for events during labor.
In addition to the many benefits of conventional childbirth preparation classes, our goal is to prepare you to meet the challenges that birth and parenthood bring with an inner confidence in yourself and your instincts. No matter what type of birth you're planning - or if you don't have a plan at all - our classes are a time for you to ask questions, explore your feelings around birth, and prepare to meet your little one.
Our private child birth classes are designed by YOU!
We know you probably have a hundred questions about birth and life with a newborn... we're here to help you find answers! In a private childbirth class, you'll have the opportunity to engage with us in an intimate setting. With just you and your partner (or anyone else you'd like to include), you'll be able to chart the course of your own class, ensuring that your needs are met.
If you have any special circumstances or concerns, we can help you sort out your options. We are passionate about meeting parents where they are in preparation to welcome a new baby. While we will have a loose plan for our class sessions, we are always willing to take a detour to make sure that you have the information you need.
For partners: We're here for you! We want to help you prepare for the birth of your new baby, and we understand that you probably have questions and concerns too! We encourage partners to participate in childbirth classes whenever possible.
3 hour private class: $150
6 hour private class (two 3-hour classes): $285
9 hour private class (three 3-hour classes): $400
Frequently Asked Questions
What will be covered in class?
A lot of this depends on YOU! First and foremost, we will address your pressing questions. Once we've done that, we can move on to other topics and tools to help you prepare to welcome your little one. How much we cover also depends on the length of class you choose, of course.
Class topics can include:
- What you need to know about writing a birth plan
- Choosing a birth place and care provider that are right for your family
- How to tell when labor is beginning
- Coping tools and practices
- Procedures that may take place during labor, birth, and the immediate postpartum period
- Options for baby care immediately following birth
- The physiological birth process (stages of labor)
- Positions that can help with labor pain and progress
- Epidurals and other options for medical pain relief in birth
- Exploring cesarean birth options
- Communicating effectively with hospital staff
- Breastfeeding preparation
- Postpartum recovery and bonding
What is a Birthing From Within class like?
Birthing From Within takes its inspiration from the book of the same name written by Pam England and published in 1998. It has evolved as a teaching method to include a focus on coping with the intensity of birth and early parenthood. We find that parents who prepare for birth with a Birthing From Within birth class tend to feel more ready to meet challenges as they come.
Birthing From Within focuses on birth not as a medical event, but as a rite of passage for parents. We find that there are very few places in our culture for expecting parents to experience processes of self-discovery. Our classes provide a place to ask questions and learn about the physical process of birth. In addition, parents will explore the emotional journey of birth and early parenting. We encourage self-compassion and listening to your intuitive inner voice, and teach methods of coping with intensity of all kinds.
Birthing From Within is not a "natural birth" class per se, although some of our clients are planning home births or hospital births without pain medication. Rather than working toward a specific birth outcome as some classes do, we instead focus on creating realistic expectations for labor, birth, and life with a new baby. Parents who have the chance to do this kind of preparation often find that they are less likely to attach their self-worth to any particular birth outcome, which reduces chances of trauma.
The coping techniques we practice in class are not just useful during labor and birth. Many parents put them to use if they are having breastfeeding challenges, if they find it difficult to endure their baby's cries, and in so many other experiences that parenthood can bring. Our goal is for you to be able to apply techniques from class to other areas of your life. Birthing From Within is more than birth preparation: it is life preparation!
In a Birthing From Within class, you can expect:
- pain coping practices
- labor support skills practice
- learning about the physical process of birth
- placing birth in a cultural context through storytelling
- art processes to involve both the right and left hemispheres of the brain
- bonding practices to bring parents closer to each other and closer to baby
What is Birthing From Within all about?
To help you get a better idea of the Birthing From Within perspective, here are the guiding principles behind Birthing From Within:
- Childbirth is a profound rite of passage, not a medical event (even when medical care is part of the birth).
- The essence of childbirth preparation is self-discovery, not assimilating obstetric information. The teacher (mentor) is "midwife" to the parents' discovery process, not the expert from whom wisdom flows.
- Childbirth preparation is a continually evolving process (for parents and teachers), not a static structure of techniques and knowledge.
- Parents' individual needs and differences help determine class content.
- Active, creative self-expression is critical to childbirth preparation.
- The purpose of childbirth preparation is to prepare mothers to give birth-in-awareness, not to achieve a specific birth outcome.
- Pregnancy and birth outcome are influenced by a variety of factors, but can't be controlled by planning.
- In order to help parents mobilize their coping resources, it is critical for childbirth classes to acknowledge that unexpected, unwelcome events may happen during labor.
- Parents deserve support for any birth option which might be right for them (whether it be drugs, cesarean, home birth, or bottle-feeding).
- Pain is an inevitable part of childbirth, yet much can be done to ease suffering.
- Pain-coping practices work best when integrated into daily life, rather than "dusted off" for labor.
- Fathers and birth partners help best as birth guardians or loving partners, not as coaches; they also need support.
- For parents, pregnancy, birth, and postpartum is a time of continuous learning and adjustment; holistic support and education should be available throughout that period.
- Childbirth preparation is also parent preparation.
Do you offer group childbirth classes?
Not right now. Currently we offer private childbirth education classes in our clients' homes. This allows us the flexibility to schedule classes more conveniently and accommodate individual needs and concerns.
If you are only interested in group classes, contact us and we would be happy to provide referrals to local childbirth educators currently offering group series.