snohomish county doula

Confident Childbirth FAQ

When in my pregnancy should I take the classes?

It is preferable to register for a class that begins sometime after your fifth month. You want it to be close enough to your "due" date that you remember the skills but not too close that you might miss a class if you birth early.

I've already given birth before, will this class be helpful for me?

That depends on several things. Did you take classes for your first birth? Was your birth experience positive? Do you have the same partner as your last birth? How long has it been since you have given birth? I once had a mom come to class who was having her 8th & 9th babies (twins!). On the last night, she pulled me aside and told me that she learned something new at each class and was so glad that she had come. Funny sidenote: I taught her oldest son's childbirth class 4 years later!

Should I take this class if I am going to have an epidural?

Maybe! If you plan to go to the hospital as soon as possible in labor and receive the epidural as quickly as they will give it to you then you might be better off taking a short hospital preparation class. However, there are some occasions when epidurals cannot be given or do not work properly. In these instances having a "toolbox" of birth comfort techniques is highly advantageous. If you plan to "wait and see" or try to go as long as you can without an epidural than this class will certainly give you the skills you need for birth.

What "method" do you teach?

I teach what works. Each "method" of childbirth education has it's pros and cons, many of them were developed 5, 10 or more years ago when the birthing environment was very different. I believe childbirth education should be extremely dynamic. Based on the speed in which research is being released and the ways hospital policies are changing, I can't in good faith keep to a specific method just for the sake of having that name behind me. I only teach the most up to date techniques that I use right now as a doula; by observing women, helping women and knowing what type of care our midwives and doctors are providing.

Many pregnant couples seek out a particular method because that is what they have heard "works". What they don't know is that the most important ingredient to a successful childbirth education class is the experience and skill of the teacher. Does she know how to help you learn through multi-dimensional teaching styles, content sequencing and proper integration of technology? Is she highly knowledgable and able to answer even the most obscure questions with confidence? Is she positive, enthusiastic, funny and enjoyable to listen to? Choosing a childbirth class is one of the most important decisions you will make in preparation for birth. At 12 to 18 hours per series, you will likely spend more time prenatally with your childbirth educator than your care provider. As an experienced childbirth educator (500 couples) and doula (42 births) I am certain that I can equip you for navigating the birth process with confidence.

Kind Words

"Coming to the classes was not only fun but so informational. I've learned so much and am way more prepared than before I attended. I couldn't ask for a better instructor. Emily was very helpful and made it fun to come to class!" -Brandy

"Before taking these classes we had a lot of reservations with my ability to take care of a baby and go through the whole birth process. We were unsure of the pros and cons of natural birth. Emily is a great instructor. She not only made classes fun to learn but also gave us great information for us to decide our birth process." -Kalawe

"My impression before the class was that medical professionals would know what to do and we could leave most decisions up to them. I appreciated learning so much about which steps are necessary and which aren't. I feel that I am better prepared to be an advocate for my wife and child, and I have the knowledge to do my part to ensure their safety and comfort. Emily, I appreciated your preparation and your high level of research and expertise." -Jon