I remember hearing the term HypnoBirthing as a student midwife and as a new graduate midwife. It was usually accompanied by a sigh and the assumption from other midwives that these women would arrive with a list of demands and “be difficult”. I am pleased to say that at the time I didn’t see too many HypnoBirthing parents as I had neither the understanding nor the skill to provide them with the best possible care I could. Nobody else (Doctors or Midwives) seemed to understand it either. The attitude has changed, I don’t see women labelled anymore and birth preferences are becoming the norm. HypnoBirthing is becoming more popular, and more and more midwives are getting excited by HypnoBirthing women, but the understanding is still low about what is actually involved and how it can make your job as a midwife SOOO much easier.
When I first trained as a HypnoBirthing educator, it was to bring a wider understanding and clarification to my own birth experience. What I left with, was knowledge and skills, many and much of which I already possessed from my training and from my experience working with birthing women. It put all of these things together in a format that was easy to understand, and easier to teach. The biggest learning for my midwife self, was the techniques and tools taught to parents to prepare them to reach a relaxed state, to reach the comfort zone, their happy place. The place I was already spending so much time in birth suite trying to get mothers in.
You know that zone women go into at which point their labour intensifies, their progress speeds up and they become more relaxed, more internal and more focused? You know that zone?
That is what HypnoBirthing is! Teaching women to access that!
As a midwife HypnoBirthing has given me:
- a firmer understanding of how the mind affects the body
- a toolbox of strategies to assist my women to enter their own birthing space
- my women are educated and informed prior to arriving in the birth suite
- my women know their options, the benefits and risks of each
- women know if and when they will accept common interventions
- Birth partners are supported and educated to be the best advocates and support possible
How much more time would you have to be “with woman” if your woman is informed and aware and her birth support is prepared and ready?
How much more relaxed would birth be when you don’t need to discuss with a woman when things are going sideways? When she knows, she can feel it and she is talking to you about how to help?
HypnoBirthing is NOT about encouraging women to have a 5 page birth plan (I hate that word, don’t you?). It is NOT about encouraging women to decline every intervention. NOR is it about pushing Vaginal birth to whatever end. HypnoBirthing is NOT freebirthing in a river down the road.
HypnoBirthing IS about giving parents back the right to decide and consent to what is best for them. To enter their birthing calmly, confidently and with excitement. It is giving them back this experience, because it is theirs!
Their babies birth, their babies first breath, first moments, first time as a new family unit. Who are we to interfere and tell them as parents how it should be done if there is no need?
Article written by Charlotte Hogarth
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