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Save Bebejam £200! What important things did you learn in your NCT classes?

(18 Posts)
morningpaper Mon 06-Jun-05 10:22:42

I'll start...

- You can ask for a half-dose of pethidine to start with, which has less of an effect on you and the baby, and lots of people find to be highly effective.

- Lying on your side rather than on your back opens your birth canal up to a third wider.

morningpaper Mon 06-Jun-05 11:59:31

Is that it for your £200?! No more Top Tips?

MRSflamesparrow Mon 06-Jun-05 12:00:46

Errr... the only thing that I learnt from ours were that the black daddies remembered more than the white!!!

morningpaper Mon 06-Jun-05 12:18:28

Well if that's it, then I think it's definitely better to spend the £200 on health farm vouchers intead...

Blu Mon 06-Jun-05 12:20:30

The most important thing i got out of NCT classes were
a) the chance to discuss things that came up with Dp - it was a catayst for conversations that we might not otherwise have had - like what my expectations of him were as a birth partner (he was anxious, I discovered, that he might not be good enough - whereas I was sure that all I wanted him to do was be there and let me be me)
b) made friends with whom I felt a bond because we had been in it from the start and knew eah others hopes, fears and dreams
c) an excercise where they made the dads put items into a holdall, representing all the extra burdens that preganancy puts on the body. Had a HUGE effect on DP who never again said I was walking too slowly!!

Don't think you could replace any of those, and I thought my money was well spent. The friends are still friends.

CarolinaMoon Mon 06-Jun-05 12:41:18

<<makes sincere effort to rack brains...>>

nope, can't remember any specific facts that I hadn't already read/heard somewhere else. e.g. the effect of upright/forward positions is v well covered in this book with the weirdy-beardy pix .

I had done a fair bit of research though. Unfortunately, I think I ended up a bit too confident in my body's ability to give birth - so when it became apparent that ds was well and truly stuck and wd have to come out thru the window as it were, it was a real and I'm not sure I've quite come to terms with it even now, 7mths later.

Having said that, I did enjoy meeting other couples also on the brink of having their first baby - but most lived a bit further away than I'd expected and I was too fat and tired to go and meet up with them for coffee while still pg, and then we moved weeks after ds was born! so not great on the bonding front either. oh dear.

morningpaper Mon 06-Jun-05 15:10:11

I have heard a lot of people say that they learnt stuff at their NCT classes that they wouldn't have learnt anywhere else, but I think that for most pregnant women who devour books on the subject, I'm not sure that this holds true.

Looks like this thread might prove it.

acnebride Mon 06-Jun-05 15:17:41

I'm pretty sure I would have learned the same stuff at NHS classes but -

- saw actual picture of how big 10cm is! made an impression on me, anyway
- got an 'average' timescale/pattern of how a first birth goes - none of us had one anything like it, but for some reason I still found it useful
- got reassurance about our local hospital's clinical care but advised to check and chase all admin details - v useful
- got told that second stage contractions aren't painful - although this certainly wasn't true for me I found it comforting at the time!!
- mainly the personality of the teacher was very reassuring and one day when I was completely panicking following discussion with midwife and tour of hospital she calmed me down just by being there.

But we only paid #80.

Also if you're going to bond with people who can afford #200 then they're going to want to do expensive stuff with the kids later on as well.

lunavix Mon 06-Jun-05 15:19:54


But what I learnt from elsewhere was : he might SAY he's the head midwife, but when he sticks the pethidine into the wrong vein and paralyses you for the extent of your labour, you will realise that status does not matter.

Blu Mon 06-Jun-05 15:24:14

Um yes, our course was about £160 and lasted 6 weeks plus a follow-up meeting!

Join and go to the tea groups!

KatieinSpain Mon 06-Jun-05 15:36:02

That there are always a list of alternatives, in any given situation - when to arrive, pain relief, induction - and that you can query what you are told.

I really liked the birth photos - even second time round, our group got the order wrong .

Was it worth the money? IME - yes but as my Mum's driving instructress used to say "when in doubt, don't!", so if you have any doubts, don't go .

LeahE Mon 06-Jun-05 15:50:03

Not to make assumptions about how you will feel in any particular situation but to be aware of what your options are and prepared to be flexible.

The BRAN approach to making decisions -- ask medical staff what are the Benefits of the procedure you'e suggesting? Are there any Risks? What are the Alternatives? What will happen if we do Nothing for a while?

Discussion about after the birth -- both the graphic stuff about the first few weeks post-partum and also about how you can make it easier later on. For example, when you've been at home all day with the baby playing up, haven't had a chance to have a shower or eat, and meanwhile dp/dh has been having a really bad day at work and gets home late, what happens when he gets home? For us this has led us to be careful about communication -- dh almost always phones me from work at some point in the afternoon now so we each know how the other one's day is going.

DS crying, will be back later...

LeahE Mon 06-Jun-05 17:25:15


Some useful discussion on how we and partners might recognise post-natal depression if it happened.

Advice on what you don't need to buy for a new baby and how to tell if they are hot or cold.

Much of the other stuff, apart from the social aspect, I'd got from books or the hospital classes. DH wasn't so keen on reading the books, though, and coulsn't make the hospital classes, so it was a useful overview for him.

Hazellnut Mon 06-Jun-05 20:03:46

Erm... When we did it, I thought the most important thing they did was an exercise where they showed you how many people would be in the room when you had a ceasarian. I thought it would be good to be prepared as it seemed loads. However, when it came to an emergency c-section at 1.30 am after 3 days of induction I had NO idea how many people were in the room nor did I care !! I do think it was worth the money (we paid £160 plus nct joining fee) but can't really remember much else that we learnt. Definitely meeting people was invaluable but if you have other ways of doing this and have read lots then there are probably better ways of spending £200 !

Hazellnut Mon 06-Jun-05 20:09:01

Actually, having just posted that, the most important thing I think we got from it (and can't believe I forgot this !) but our instructor/facilitator kept telling us to ask for what we wanted and to keep asking. When we were told I would probably have to transfer to another hospital to make sure they had a neo-natal cot for dd before they could induce, we kept calmly (?! apart from the tears !) asking to stay and why it was important. I really think this was due to the confidence the classes gave us to ask for what we felt strongly about. It worked so to me this was more than worth the money but then I guess don't really know if we would have done this anyway !?

Nightynight Mon 06-Jun-05 20:09:02

I saved the money and never did'em. It was a bit of a shock though when birth day came, and I realised that you have to push...

HannahMoomin Mon 06-Jun-05 20:42:50

Hi, Somebody else has mentioned the BRAN mantra - which we also found helpful, and if your course includes it, the bfing workshop was great too. I guess the most important thing we learned from going to the course, was how different our ideas about parenting were from the other parents to be. It prepared us and made us aware that we needed to be strong about our choices. I'd recommend the course to first time parents, although a good book such as Sheila Kitzinger's and a course of Active Birth classes/prenatal yoga would suffice if you think that may suit your personality more. Hope that helps,
Hannah xxx

bebejam Mon 13-Jun-05 14:14:06


how sweet of you to start the thread... and I sincerely appreciate all the input!

I posted in the other thread that it may all be a moot point as I can't seem to get anyone from my branch to return my calls or e-mails.

I found a five week class that might work, but it goes up until the day before my due date, which might be a bit silly to even try.

I'm sure in the end the baby will find a way out with or without classes. :-) I'm trying to just read up what I can and not worry too much.

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