Hospital birth classes used to be the standard for expecting parents, but now there are alternatives to that form of learning. Many are actually more effective than the prior form of learning, which I am sure you will appreciate.
But, before we start — Hi, I’m Hilary — The Pregnancy Nurse 👩⚕️. I have been a nurse since 1997 and I have 20 years of OB nursing experience. I actually taught birthing classes for my hospital, which I absolutely LOVED doing. But, I found that they just weren’t really working.
Alternatives to Hospital Prenatal Classes
There are some other options to hospital classes, let’s first talk about why hospital classes may not have been as worth it as we think they are:
What’s Wrong With Hospital Classes?
They’re at a Hospital — and Hospitals are Confusing
I can’t tell you how much time was spent looking for the room the class was in by couples. They’d often end-up in labor and delivery. Also, parking is ALWAYS an issue at hospitals. #sigh
I taught classes at 6-9 on Tuesday nights. Honestly, it was a horrible time for me (I wanted to be at home with my family) and pregnancy couples were tired, or often missing. So often one or more partner had to miss a session because of life. No good.
One Time Only
Yes, they might provide you with some hand-outs, but if you zone out for a few minutes you’re out of luck for what was taught at that time. No rewind, no replay. Not being able to go back and review is a big issue.
What are the Alternatives To Hospital Childbirth Classes?
Traditionally, there’s been one big issue to non-hospital based classes.
Most often they were for people who didn’t plan on delivering in a hospital. Those who planned a home birth, a birthing center birth, or planned to refuse much of the regular standards of care in a hospital.
Which, frankly, isn’t most of the population.
Most people want a fairly standard hospital birth. But, instead outside the hospital they found classes from “natural” doulas. And that wasn’t what they were looking for.
Also, these educators weren’t always vetted. Who knows how much experience they had (and what biases they had towards different types of birth).
Which is why, in 2015 I created The Online Prenatal Class for Couples. The #1 hospital-based birthing class on the internet.
The Online Prenatal Class for Couples
This class is aimed to prepare couples for their confident birth in just a few hours. Really fixing the majority of the issues from hospital classes.
On Your Own Timeline: No more missed classes — and both partners can attend every session, even if they have crazy schedules.
Replays Encouraged: Miss a session because you had to pee? No issue, just back it up, or even replay the whole thing while you’re ready to concentrate.
A Great Teacher: Many hospital classes are taught by busy labor nurses who are great nurses, but possibly not great instructors. With this class you can be sure that the teacher has already prepped thousands of couples. The reviews tell how great it is. Her 20 years of experience is given to you in just a few hours on your couch.
Key Point Review: This classes is created to make SURE you understand the important parts. Couples absolutely LOVE the key point videos you can watch for a quick review (even when you’re in labor).
Covers It All: Sometimes, in person I’d forget a point or two. Doesn’t happen with this online class. Each and every time you’re getting my very best information. Plus, I update it yearly to make sure you have the up to date information you want.
Just for You: Honestly, the worst part of prenatal classes is the couple in the front row asking 400 useless questions that you don’t want to hear the answer to. None of that in here. You can ask questions — but it’s just for you.
Less Bias?: Honestly, I never was pushed to teach one thing or another by my hospital (they were desperate for teachers, so they were mostly just happy we were there. However, I have heard that some hospitals push compliance rather than learning how to make the best choice for yourself. With a non-hospital based class, you’re likely learning more about how to question what’s going on and how to make choices based on their input (rather than, we recommend you do xyz).
Couples-Based: While you don’t have to be a couple to take this class, it is targeted to engage dad in each and every step. I even have a couples workbook to help you two consider a lot about life after baby together (plus some delivery plans as well).
In addition to this:
- The class can be completed in just a few hours if desired.
- Lots of vetted outside information if you are interested.
- Comes in 3 price points for every budget and need.
Alternatives to Mama Natural’s Birth Class
Mama Natural’s class is probably the longest-running class online. However, it is definitely aimed towards a natural birth, and has a strong bias against hospital-based interventions. If you are looking for something with more hospital-based information, check out The Online Prenatal Class for Couples.
Or, you can purchase the full class here:
And, if you’re not quite sure you’re ready for that whole thing, check out the free lesson from it. It’s your first step toward getting in the driver’s seat of your birth.
- About the Author
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A nurse since 1997, she has worked in various fields including pediatrics, geriatrics & hospice. She has 20 years of labor and delivery experience in the San Jose, CA and Phoenix, AZ areas.
As an evidence-based prenatal educator Hilary has delivered thousands of babies and has educated hundreds of thousands of parents from a diverse patient population to help them have a confident birth.