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Kirstie Allsopp in twitter row with NCT

(183 Posts)
DuelingFanjo Sun 20-Feb-11 22:59:01

Sorry for the DM link.

what do you think about this?

Personally I think my NCT class covered C-sections very well, though there was an emphasis on 'natural' birth through-out the course. I was glad of the C-Section info when I was signing papers for the possibility, though in the end didn't need one.

Sadly my experience (Midwives not checkinghow dilated I was, No gas and Air for ages, Having waters broken, Spinal at 10 cm dilated, episiotomy and so on) has made me wonder if I would want to attempt a more natural birth next time - I am worried that I will be too scared to try.

Do you think she is right though, are women who have C-sections being made to feel like failures?

Violethill Mon 21-Feb-11 09:12:45

PMSL at the idea of a woman having an orgasm as the baby crowns. Perhaps a handful of women worldwide may claim to have experienced that - but hardly worth a mention! IME, tearing as the baby crowns is the most excruciating part of giving birth by a mile.

DuplicitousBitch Mon 21-Feb-11 09:19:06

i went to one nct class and was horrified. never went back

nymphadora Mon 21-Feb-11 09:21:08

Kirsty said on twitter she had a discussion with someone from the show about CS & both hadn't had info in NCT classes and asked other people on twitter for their input. That was her 'survey' and got in discussions with a NCT person on twitter over what classes cover.

I feel that the amount NCT charges they should have a set curriculum so you know what you're paying for.

Lollypolly Mon 21-Feb-11 09:29:34

My DD is 6.5 and I'm still waiting for the NCT to get back to me about emergency breast pump rental. It's the only time I've ever had anything to do with them.

If you feel guilty about a c-section or bottle feeding, what is exactly that makes you feel guilty? It is something someone said? I had a c-section and bottle fed both of mine - not a shred of guilt here.

Violethill Mon 21-Feb-11 09:32:58

We did loads of relaxation, breathing techniques, massage etc at ours- and as a mum who got through her first labour on these, I'd say it was well worth it. However, I can quite see that for other people it may not be. FWIW I had a CS second time around and I felt the refresher NCT class I'd done hadn't turned out to be good value- but thats not anyones fault- it was just one of those things. 3rd time I didn't bother with NCT as I knew there was an increased risk now of another CS, though as it turned out I drew on a lot of the techniques learned first time, and had a natural VBAC.
sounds to me like kirstie ended up with csections, either through medical reasons or through the cascade of intervention, and is a bit sour grapes at feeling the classes Weren't as useful to her as they might be to others

Grumpla Mon 21-Feb-11 09:36:15

I imagine that like all classes, skool etc you probably do have some very good teachers and some who aren't so good or who are perhaps a little too heavily subscribed to one particular agenda.

But one of the many things I was impressed by was the detailed feedback forms we were asked to fill out (both at the end of the class and later online) so I imagine this is something the NCT as an organisation is trying to address.

With regards to those who felt put out at not being invited to talk to the next group - we had two couples come in to one of our sessions - it would have been a bit frightening to have 8 couples and babies descend on us! Perhaps this is just a question of numbers? Also, whilst I certainly don't judge those who have a crash section ms am incredibly grateful to live in a country where the lives of mothers and babies can be saved by this method, I'm not sure the 'worst case scenario' is necessarily the story people need to hear in that context (8 months pregnant and shitting it!)

That is partly for the simple reason that telly, papers, films etc tell LOTS of stories about when things go a bit wrong. So having some actual real people sat there telling us that it had been hard but that they had managed it was pretty reassuring!

Longtalljosie Mon 21-Feb-11 09:36:49

Yep, we had a session on c-sections as well.

As far as a curriculum goes - in our first session we "set" our curriculum - we were encouraged to write a list of the things we wanted to know about and our teacher made sure all of those things were covered - adding a few things of her own (including the c-section session, I don't think we asked for that)

DuplicitousBitch Mon 21-Feb-11 09:41:44

going to the nct is a choice and a fairly expensive one. the classes are taken by folk who mean well. alot of the well heeled, a-type personalities who go to teh classes build up birth into some sort of competition, i think the issue goes beyond the nct.

theyoungvisiter Mon 21-Feb-11 09:43:13

I agree with Grumpla. My NCT class was very non-judgemental and fact-based. We talked about what kinds of scenarios were likely to end up in what kinds of outcomes and why, and the course leader was very open about the statistics and options.

She said "Statistically three of you in this class will probably end up with sections and two of you will have an instrumental birth" and bizarrely that did indeed prove to be the case!

There was one woman schedule to have a section for medical reasons and like Grumpla's leader, our course leader was very inclusive and made sure that during the section of the course dealing with vaginal birth and labour this woman was included as much as possible. She also went out of her way to show how much of the advice about handling labour could be equally applied to handling a c-section (taking control of decisions, choosing your environment, music etc - asking for skin-to-skin afterwards).

I think there is often a feeling that once you have a section it's all mapped out, and she really made us feel like there was a way to take control of any scenario.

She was a qualified midwife though - and I think from speaking to other friends who did NCT, this was pretty amazing and her information was spot on and very realistic. I am not sure all course-leaders are so well qualified.

Violethill Mon 21-Feb-11 09:44:25

I agree with that last point grumpla- i suspect if a poll were done, most couples would want to meet a woman who's had a straightforward birth. I was invited back to speak to the next NCT group after dd1 and received very positive feedback. I think it was reassuring for a load of 8 months pregnant women to hear that yes, you can have a first baby naturally without everything going wrong.

I also returned after dc3 , by which time I'd had a cs and vbac as well, so I think the teacher thought I was good value for money, having experienced just about every style of birth!!!

theyoungvisiter Mon 21-Feb-11 09:46:33

Oh and yes we did a role-play of an emergency CS and one woman who ended up with an emergency CS told me afterwards how amazingly helpful she found it, to have an idea of how many people would be in the room, what they all did, and what the different stages would be.

I think my course handled it very well - but can see that it clearly depends on the trainer.

Forster Mon 21-Feb-11 09:46:35

I did NCT to meet other parents.

The educational bit was awful though, very biased towards HB. Interventions were regarded as bad and natural birth talked up and up.

Very little information on life after the birth.

I ended up with a 36 hour labour, high forceps delivery. I felt a failure and it was only after the birth of my second child that I realised how 'set up' I had been by the misinformation given out
Birth is a vulnerable time accurate information needs to be given.

Likewise with the bf debate similar and very biased info. I bf both my children but to be honest I felt under HUGE pressure to BF, BUT I knew many women who felt a failure because they opted not to BF for whatever reason. Again I think the NCT and other similar prosletisers have a lot to answer for here and misinformation is rife. Yes great bf if you want to and you have enough support, etc... But if you chose not to fine.
It seems to be forgotten that the biggest cause of maternal death is suicide, birth is a very vulnerable time for many women, huge pressures on women about their own mothering and lets face the most important is that the baby has a mother who can cope and thus is able to care and love her baby. Anyway rant over - sorry blush

paddypoopants Mon 21-Feb-11 09:46:45

My NCT class (near Edinburgh) was brilliant and covered c-sections in great detail.
I don't think Twitter is a great place to have an informed debate on anything and the woman from the NCT was being idiotic to have any engaged in any sort of slanging match with an ill informed sleb about something as important as this via Tweets. Allsopp would need to get some sort of proper data before she starts this sort of crusade.

Longtalljosie Mon 21-Feb-11 09:47:39

DuplicitousBitch - you know this from one class? What on earth happened in this class?

EmmaBemma Mon 21-Feb-11 09:50:47

"she is wayyy too posh to push"

What a horrible thing to say.

EmmaBemma Mon 21-Feb-11 09:55:50

and before you think I'm being defensive, I was "lucky" enough to squeeze two babies out of my fanjo, like the majority of women who give birth, but that doesn't mean I award myself the right to pass snotty comment about other women's experiences.

sharbie Mon 21-Feb-11 13:28:07

only meant in a light hearted way emma smile
you can't deny she is posh though

watfordmummy Mon 21-Feb-11 13:35:04

I just feel a failure as my dh wouldn't let me book NCT classes!! 11 years on and I'm still hurting!! grin

Clytaemnestra Mon 21-Feb-11 14:04:17

I had an "elective" CS (medical reasons which meant that I was very unlikely to manage a natural birth) and it was brilliant, I felt very lucky I didn't have to do it the natural way, I'm all about avoiding the pain.

And I have a gorgeous DD at the end of it Who cares if people say I haven't given birth? I haven't given birth in the natural way it's true, and I'm just fine about that.

LemonDifficult Mon 21-Feb-11 14:11:00

I just love Kirsty Allsop. And this makes me love her more.

She's right. My NCT teacher tried to steer me out of having an elective c-section after I was diagnosed with a breech baby. So much emphasis was put on the birth. I remember sobbing with disappointment at not getting to have the experience.

The consultant who delivered DS later said it would have been a very dangerous birth. It was irresponsible of the NCT teacher to behave the way she did.

mamatomany Mon 21-Feb-11 14:23:52

I think given the fact that the property market has ground to a halt, KA is looking for something else to become an expert in, god help us.

theyoungvisiter Mon 21-Feb-11 14:27:36

Oh my god Mamatomany - you could be right!

Can you imagine - I can see it now, the first series could be called "Reproduction, Reproduction, Reproduction" followed by "Lactation, Lactation, Lactation."

CMOTdibbler Mon 21-Feb-11 14:30:21

The class I went to covered c sections in a lot of detail - the teacher had had three c sections herself so was v good on it (apparently).

halfcaff Mon 21-Feb-11 14:45:17

I haven't read the article as I am allergic to both Twitter and the DM (!) but I must say our NCT teacher was a bit crap and CS was only mentioned as something to be avoided at all costs; ditto for epidurals as they would increase the likelihood of the dreaded CS...was very glad I did the class though, as I have made a lasting friend (11 years on.) We went camping with her and dh and their 4 girls last summer, and we will be meeting up for a drink soon, even though we have both moved out of the area we met in. And we can laugh about the awful teacher and how she would tell people off for laughing, and her dh for falling asleep!

jonicomelately Mon 21-Feb-11 14:49:59

I went to NCT classes and then had an emergency section. I can honestly say I was totally unprepared and in shock and wish the leader had covered sections in some form.

Had I been a different personality I may have felt I'd failed by having to have a section. Luckily, my brain soesn't work that way but I feel sorry for those people who would feel like that.

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