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Labor Partners: They need Support Too!

September 28, 2011

It’s no secret that moms need and deserve the utmost support during labor and birth. But part of ensuring that happens is equipping birth partners—be it husbands, significant others, friends or family members—with their own support system beforehand.

The best partner during your labor is going to be one that feels confident in assisting you every step of the way: the one who understands the stages of labor and methods of guiding you through; the one who has practiced relaxation techniques with you and can help meet your collective birth goals and preferences. Here are three ways to prepare for birth—that will ultimately help your birth partner help you:

Communicate

The more honest dialogue you and your birth partner have about your upcoming birth, the better. Start by sharing your feelings, concerns, and wishes related to the birth of your baby. Ask your birth partner how they feel about each of these issues. Creating this realistic, open line of communication between the two of you will help you both feel supported and ready as a team to create a positive birth experience. 

Take a Class Together

As the cliché goes, knowledge is power, and it really is when it comes to labor and birth. Becoming informed about the process of having a baby can help quell fears about some of the issues many people find intimidating. With hands-on and discussion-based instruction on everything from signs and symptoms of labor, stages of labor, and pain management options, to breathing techniques and cesarean sections, classes like Boston Baby Beginnings’ Childbirth Preparation prepare expectant moms and birth partners alike (not to mention arm partners with a wealth of confidence, support and helpful information.)  

Read

There are a lot of books that help expectant parents prepare for labor and birth—some of which are specifically written to the birth partner. In addition to reading through the materials given to you from your childbirth preparation class, it never hurts for you and your birth partner to buy or borrow a few books from the library or friends to get several perspectives. You may find a few invaluable tips in one book and then inspirational birth stories in another. Again, all of the information will help you and you partner feel more prepared for this amazing life event!

 

 

 

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