Should Intended Parents Take a Childbirth Education Class?
“I’m not birthing a baby, why would I need to take a childbirth education class?” Simply stated: You ARE birthing a baby through the help of a surrogate.
Your journey to parenthood through surrogacy has been a unique and complicated experience that has brought a mix of emotions along the way. On the one hand, you’ve waited for what feels like an eternity to welcome a baby into your arms and heart yet feel unsure and afraid of the unknown. These are absolutely normal feelings for anyone experiencing childbirth for the first time even if you’re not the birthing person. As intended parents preparing to witness the birth of their baby by surrogate, a range of concerns may naturally arise.
Let’s take a deeper look at how taking a childbirth education class specifically for intended parents can help you understand the emotional and physical dynamics of childbirth and the birth experience, diminishing your concerns and fears while providing the tools needed to be supportive as you enter the birth space and welcome your baby.
Navigating Emotional Dynamics
The birth of a baby is an emotionally charged event, and for intended parents, attending your baby’s birth can evoke a mix of emotions. It’s completely normal to feel a blend of excitement, gratitude, fear, and a fair amount of anxiety. These emotions are valid! Taking a childbirth class designed for intended parents provides tools to navigate these emotions and cultivate a supportive mindset that extends to your surrogate AND your baby. Knowledge is empowering!
Balancing Presence and Respect
Being present at your baby’s birth while respecting the surrogate’s space and comfort is a delicate balance. You might worry about intruding on her experience or feeling like an outsider in a deeply intimate moment. Open communication is key here. A childbirth education class equips you with communication techniques and insights into childbirth topics that can lead to open and compassionate discussions with your surrogate. By communicating in an educated and understanding manner you are establishing that you are choosing to work together as a team in your baby’s best interest.
Fostering a Connection with Your Baby
Intended parents often wonder if attending the birth will foster a connection with their baby, given that the physical birth experience is not their own. A childbirth education class addresses this concern by emphasizing the power of your touch, voice, and skin-to-skin contact in establishing a profound emotional connection between you and your baby. You’ll gain insights into how your presence at birth contributes to the early stages of your baby’s emotional connection to you and the world around them. We can assure you that witnessing your baby’s birth is a profound way to create a foundational bond that will only grow throughout your life together.
Dealing with the Unexpected
Birth is a natural process, but as with any event, unexpected situations can arise. Concerns about complications or changes in birth plans are valid. While you can’t predict every scenario, having the knowledge to openly communicate with your surrogate and healthcare professionals ensures that you’re well-prepared. A childbirth education class prepares you for various scenarios, arming you with information to make informed decisions even if plans deviate. The class provides you with the confidence to adapt and navigate any unexpected twists while ensuring your baby and surrogate’s well-being comes first.
Honoring the Surrogate’s Role
Acknowledging and honoring the surrogate’s role in the birth process is a heartfelt concern. A childbirth education class emphasizes the importance of respecting and understanding your surrogate’s physical and emotional needs before, during, and after childbirth. Classes designed for intended parents may also offer guidance on developing a collaborative birth plan built on mutual respect and understanding AND your newfound knowledge about childbirth.
As intended parents, your concerns about attending the birth of your baby are a testament to your deep love and commitment. Every concern you have reflects your dedication to creating the best possible experience for all involved. The power of a childbirth education class lies in its ability to address these concerns, provide essential tools for communication and emotional readiness, and empower you with knowledge that transforms apprehension into excitement.
Taught by a Childbirth Educator with 20 years of experience, Family Tree Doula Services offers Childbirth Education Classes for Intended Parents in two forms: as an online course allowing you to take (and revisit) each module at your own pace or one on one with our Childbirth Educator in a virtual live format.