We wrapped up week 10 of 12 last night. Completely natural child birth is not something you just happen upon. While women's bodies are designed for it and it's been happening for millennia, it's still like preparing for a marathon. Proper training and education is required.
Two pluses for Bradley: 1.) They are very focused on the husband/coach-mother relationship. 2.) They are very focused on nutrition and exercise to prepare for labor and prevent complications.
Two big negatives for Bradley: 1.) Major indoctrination and fear mongering against all modern medicine. 2.) Their courses and accompanying visual aides are extremely out of date.
This is our teacher's second course...ever. She delivered a little boy 19 months ago via (pseudo successfully) Bradley Method. She was reluctant to share her own birth story because it didn't go entirely as planned which sends negative vibes to this crew of women who need all the positive reinforcement of their abilities right now. This didn't surprise me, but I think it lowers her credibility a bit. But she's killing me. She reads verbatim out of the book half the class. We still have a very open Q&A time and in general, she's fairly knowledgeable. She does have us practice relaxation techniques at the end of each class. I just think we'd do better studying on our own and having more practical training during class time with general conversation/Q&A instead of being read too.
The course is at her home and started out with us and three other couples. Mid way through another couple with jacked up schedules are trying to pick up on some of the ones they missed. Another mystery couple appeared when we were a half hour late one day. No clue why they started 6 weeks in, but oh well. The perk to her being a new teacher and having it at her home is the three times we haven't had a baby sitter we've been able to bring our kiddo along. The down side is a couple weeks ago she was sick or had some kind of emergency and canceled class.
So she decided to merge class 9 and 10 together instead of making up a course. This was last night. On top of cramming the two together, she also had a couple from her last class come in to do a testimonial. This was great. Hearing someone's success story from the same class/teacher we were having was phenomenal. The problem I had with it was that we had them and two classes of material to cover. The info in 9 and 10 were the most important too. They were all about what happens during labor. Granted, we've had bits and pieces throughout the whole course thus far, but this mapped out exactly what we are looking for in each step of the process from beginning to just before the baby arrives.
I just wish she had more experience in general. She's sweet and very approachable with questions, but her over all ability has left me lacking. I'm also wondering why I'm paying for what I could have just read from the book: Husband Coached Childbirth. The single redeeming value from it all is that my wife has more confidence after being around a group of folks who are pumped to have this be a success...unlike the rest of the Debbie-Downers who like to tell their horror stories and let her know she's crazy or can't do it.