lamaze classes, totally worth it or kind of a waste?

posted 2 years ago in Babies
Post # 2
154 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

I didn’t take 5 weeks of birth classes. We went to a 6 hour, single day labor/delivery class offered by the hospital and I also took a labor comfort measures/natural pain management class (2 hrs long) run by a midwife/doula education center not affiliated with the hospital. They were both very informative and worth it. I think we spent $125 on both so 5 weeks of classes for $75 is very good value imo! Id sign up and just go to the ones that seem helpful to you. Also your husband isn’t the one pushing a watermelon sized human out of his body, so I think he should thank you for doing all the work growing the child you made together and do what makes you the most comfortable with and prepared for labor.

The comfort measures class was especially helpful! I wanted and had a pain med free delivery, so it really helped for that. But I think its recommend to be in “active labor” before you get an epidural which is usually 5-6 cm dialated and contractions every 3-4 minutes. It took me almost 24 hours to get to that point, so I would have totally used what I learned in the class either way.

I also found the book Guide to Childbirth by Ina May really helpful. Skip all the labor stories unless you’re really into hippie, crunchy earth mother type stuff and just read the second half of the book.

Post # 3
9467 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

Our classes were free and I think they were all a waste of time EXCEPT FOR the one where they explained step-by-step what would happen when once labor started all the way until discharge (plus the hospital tour). It was great to know exactly where to park, what doors would be open at what times, what floor to go, what it all looked like, etc.

Post # 4
6949 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2015

I read a book (Mayo Clinic Guide) to get a general idea of what to expect.  I can’t think of any reason I would have needed to take an actual course and am glad I didn’t waste my time driving around for one.  I guess CPR could be useful but that’s about it.

Post # 5
567 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

We took 2/4 of our birthing classes (at an entity outside of the hospital where I delivered) and dropped out after class two because we found it a waste of time – full disclosure- both my husband and I are healthcare professionals. 


Thst said, if you’re aiming for a natural no meds birth, I’d recommend you do something in the way of preparation (class, book, etc). I think a baby/infant CPR class and a breastfeeding class are all really helpful (again, if you’re breastfeeding).  I also think if you’re a person who really needs to know the ins and outs of the birthing process, who has an idea of what you want your birth experience to be (I’m looking at you birth plan authors) then I think these classes are important so that you get the full picture of what happens and how things work. If you’re less structured and are just “going in to have a baby and see what happens” then you’re probably just fine without.  Congratulations! 

Post # 6
1547 posts
Bumble bee

I actually enjoyed ours and I went into labor with a ‘whatever happens happens’ approach. They weren’t ‘necessary’ but they did increase my confidence going into the birth and helped my husband feel and get more involved which I wanted. Our most useful class was about pain relief options and medical interventions that might be done during the birth in our hospital, as well as running through various birth scenarios and things that go wrong and what we would want to do if we find ourselves in that position. I genuinely felt that I learned important things in that class but i’m the type of person who likes to be aware of all my options (my only birth preference was that I be kept informed of what is happening and what my options are throughout labor). The massage/ breathing aspects were useless to me but they didn’t take up much time in our classes. We also had a free tour of the birth center during our classes which was really useful. I do wish the classes had removed all the breathing exercises and added more time on post partum issues and what to expect with a newborn (aka how to handle severe sleep deprivation when you are bleeding nonstop, a hormonal wreck, have cracked bleeding nipples and a screaming hungry baby). 

Post # 7
9773 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

I don’t think they’re necessary at all unless you’re trying for a very specific type of birth or something.

All we did was a tour of the hospital.

I did all my research online as far as post partum care, breastfeeding etc and felt very informed.

Post # 8
7594 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

We ended up just doing an online birth class through our hospital because dh’s schedule is impossible and none of the in-person class times would have worked. It took us about 90 min to get through it and, honestly, it was pretty much a waste of time. I didn’t learn anything new. I gave birth three weeks ago and can’t say the class helped in any way. That said, prior to taking the class I had already done a ton of reading about giving birth, watched a bunch of live births, read countless birth stories, etc., so I learned a lot that way and was pretty clear on what to expect in terms of the different ways the labor and delivery process could go. If I hadn’t done that, the class would have probably been a lot more helpful.

*ETA: I do recommend a hospital tour though. It’s nice to see where all the magic will happen so you can visualize it for yourself ahead of time.

Post # 9
3572 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

We did an NCT course (private ante natal course in the UK) and loved it. I learnt so much about birth and the options for pain relief and early infant care. The main thing I got though was a network of other mums due at the same time as me. We spent our Mat leaves together and are still in regular contact now. It was worth the money for that alone 

Post # 10
487 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2016

I am touring my birth center at the hospital and taking a childbirth and breastfeeding class online.  I will take the CPR class with the hospital I am giving birth at.  There are many online options and I chose that because it works better for my schedule. I can also go back and look at modules again, so I may go through the whole course soon and then revisit certain areas a month before my due date to refresh. 

Post # 11
224 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

We did our birth class online, took a tour of the hospital and will take a CPR class at the hospital. Our baby is 3 weeks old. The birth class was helpful but the nurses and doctor walked me through everything so I’m not sure if it was necessary but it was good to have at least an idea of what things were potentially coming during labor and delivery.

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