Thursday, January 24, 2013
The Bradley Method of Husband-Coached Natural Childbirth
We are well into our Bradley Method classes and I thought that I would write about the method of childbirth we are using. I will also talk in subsequent posts about the 12 weeks of classes we are attending in preparation as well.
What is the Bradley Method of Husband-Coached Natural Childbirth?
In my own words, the Bradley Method of Husband-Coached Natural Childbirth or simply, the Bradley Method, is a compilation of research and observation by Dr. Robert Bradley throughout the course of his career as an OBGYN and life experiences from growing up on a farm. Dr. Bradley believes that each and every woman (with the exception of life threatening conditions for baby or Mom) can experience a natural childbirth with adequate preparation. The Bradley Method includes exercises to prepare your body for aspects of the birth, pain management strategies, nutritional guidance/education, education on all aspects of the birthing process and most importantly, training for your husband as a "coach" advocate during your birth.
Why choose the Bradley Method and a Natural, Unmedicated Childbirth?
This is definitely a personal choice, not only for the Mom, but also for the Dad or her partner. It's INCREDIBLY important that each be on the same page with how they want the birth experience to go since you will rely on each other so very much! A word of caution: This is WHY I chose this method, I DON'T expect YOU to feel the same way necessarily!
Simply put, I feel that my choice for a natural childbirth, free of drugs and interventions such as forceps and vacuum extractors provides the best environment for both me and my child. I'm not delusional - I know that it is going to hurt and will likely be the most pain I will ever experience. BUT, I know that I am prepared and can work through that pain with the help of what I am learning in the Bradley Method. Having attended chiropractic college, I have a healthy appreciation for what the body can accomplish free of pharmaceutical intervention. I believe fully that God made our bodies the way they are and function for a specific reason You may argue that I have a fear of drugs other than Tylenol and Asprin - you are probably right. I also know that deep down, I have a definite fear of both needles and anesthesia.
I have been asked, "Don't you want to have a good experience? Why would you put yourself through unnecessary pain?" I do want to have a good experience, and this is the "good" experience that I want to have. Pharmaceutical and instrumental intervention would make me a basket case! Remember - it's different for EVERYONE!
I have also been told, "You know, you don't have to be a hero. There's nothing to prove." I know that and believe me, the last thing that I am seeking by having an unmedicated childbirth experience is to come out hailed as a hero. That's not me and that's not what I desire.
While I understand that you may not share my opinion, I am asking that you are supportive of it. If you came to me for advice and told me that you wanted as many drugs as you could have, I would fully support you. I hope that by sharing my feelings and reasoning, it will help other women to understand that they have a choice - whether it is medicated or unmedicated. Don't take your Doctor's word as Gospel - do your own research and formulate your own opinions. Ask questions!