A Testimony from the UK
So I was thinking that to say one thing from the class was the most helpful is a little unfair, because each birth is such a unique experience and the most amazing result from the class is that at each change and as each situation arose, we had a viable response because we had practiced all the techniques and variables in class! Having my first birth be a home birth, assisted primarily by my husband, I never once felt lost, confused, or unable to cope.
If I really had to pick one thing from class, and this is mostly from talking with other mothers afterwards, I think going over the labor progression stages was the most helpful information from the class. Everyone I spoke with had problems going to the hospital or calling the midwife too early, and spending hours of extra time in a state of panic going "this is it!" Going over those stages and the repercussions of stressing early on made my first hours of labor a cakewalk. Now that I'm thinking about it, also the information about PROM and the constant nutrition encouragement were also so important, especially when my friends who've had none of that sort of input have had premature babies. I thought I knew so much before the class, and had so many resources already, but now I realize that even what I knew was almost meaningless because it wasn't distilled and applicable the way everything from the class was. Anthony says that for him the breathing and relaxation training was the most important, and I thought that would be so because he was the one who had to think about that, I just had to listen to him and do it! I'm telling as many people as I can to take a Bradley class! Lots of Love and Gratitude! ~Laura & Anthony, & baby D
When we first took Bradley Method classes, we knew that both of us wanted to be involved in the birth of our baby... but we had no idea how important that would be! The labor with our son, Kyle, ended up lasting 51 hours. During that time, as my wife's labor coach, I found myself working to keep in tune to her needs and taking care of everything before she asked. The things we learned in class and practiced were very useful. I rubbed her back when it was sore; made sure she had sips of juice and snacks, and according to her, was the "rock" that she needed to get her though the most challenging, but rewarding, experience of our lives. I lost count of how many times I praised her, walked beside her up and down the hall, and labored with her in the birth tub! I was very tired at the end, but when she kissed me and said thank you, and told me she could never have done it without me, it was all worth it. : ) ~Michael U.
I was very involved throughout my wife's pregnancy and was at the births of both my daughters. Being at the births allowed me to bond right away with my daughters and to create an attachment that I see now has helped our relationship as a family. Being at their births wasn't even a question; as their father, where else would I have been? ~Paul W.
We don't have a lot of medical technology here (Alaska) so we need to try to prevent things from happening. If someone gets into The Bradley Method® early enough, then they can remain independent and not worry about having to be flown out [to Seattle or Anchorage]. The Bradley Method® is compatible with the rugged individualism that is the Alaskan image. One doesn't need lots of technology to have a baby. ~Dave S.