What should a pregnant woman know about choosing a childbirth education class and educator?

The Right Class
Childbirth education classes should be interesting -- and fun. Time spent in the right class should make you smile and relax. Classes should be a forum for helping you untangle the web of modern obstetrics and figure out what will work best for you. This requires lots of time for open discussion. Beware of large classes where the educator lectures and provides vast amounts of technical information. Classes should involve doing and moving, talking and discovering new ways of thinking about birth. You should leave class feeling assured rather than afraid. And each class should leave you feeling more confident in your own ability to do the hard work of labor.

Talk to women -- including your friends and family -- who have attended childbirth classes. Consider their recommendations, but your best recommendation will probably come from a woman who has given birth naturally and is deeply satisfied with her experience. And don't be afraid to change classes if you don't like how things are going!

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