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NCT classes and membership(44 Posts)
I had a quick search for threads that answered my question but they all date back to 2013 or later, so thought i'd ask to get some current opinions.
I'm due to have my first baby early next April and was looking at booking up some ante-natal classes. Are the NCT ones worth the money and does anyone know roughly what they cost? Can't seem to find an answer on their website.
Also, i see they have a membership scheme. If you buy the membership does that give you access to the ante-natal courses or is that a separate cost? Are there any perks that come with the membership other than being allowed to buy and sell at their nearly new sales? Sorry if this is all there on their website but i looked and couldn't see answers. I might be being slow because I've been ill all week and not had much sleep!
DH and I are doing the 'essentials' course now, it was £124, there is another one which has more classes and is more £'s but they didn't have that locally to us.
I would say yes, it has been worth the money, even just to make some local mum friends (and dad friends for DH) who I can meet up with/panic with/moan to etc. Everything you are taught you can read in a book/find on the internet but making some new friends who are in exactly the same situation (first time baby etc) as you is the major plus point.
Not sure about the other stuff sorry, but I don't think membership would give you the classes for free, maybe a discount??
It's been 4 years since I did it, but membership brought sod all benefit save for early entry into the sales they have, so I didn't bother. Doesn't give you any discount on the classes. Are the classes worth it? Id say yes. Not so much the info, but there is plenty, but for the people you will meet. Having 7 friends locally in exactly the same position as me was invaluable. We still all hang out now, as do the husbands. With dc2, I had friends locally also on their second, but I noticed just what a difference a couple of months can make to the stage you're at. Having people at exactly the same stage was lovely. It is expensive though. Think mine was about £200 for an 8 week course. I know other mums who didn't bother, but only the very very sociable who found it easy to make friends at mummy groups didn't regret that decision.
I did a course, it was around 150 I think. 6 Thursday evenings, and it was with 7 other couples. The 8 of us women have been quite close ever since. Luckily DD was the penultimate baby so the others could tell me what was normal etc and it was so reassuring. We picked up another woman at a baby group and we all still meet up fairly regularly.
I would definitely recommend it. As pp says you won't learn anything not in the books or web, but finding a ready made bunch of people in the same situation as you is great.
Sorry didn't really answer your question. If you do the classes you get membership for a year. It just allows you earlier entry to the nearly new sales, you can still go in half an hour later with no membership iirc.
My first baby is due early Jan and we've signed up to the NCT 'signature' course. This was about £200 for 7 sessions. This was the only course they ran in my area so didn't have a choice of the cheaper one. I haven't bothered with membership as I couldn't really see any benefit as you can still go to NCT run baby groups, coffee mornings etc without being a member. Haven't actually done the course yet so can't comment on whether it's worth the money!
I didn't do it. I thought for ages about it and the cost put me off.
I met many other new Mums at groups and made some very close friends. As my son was premature, I didn't actually get to any classes NCT or otherwise but the midwives talk you through it all at the time and I don't feel as though I missed out.
My biggest concern was that I wouldn't meet other mums etc but I haven't found that to be true at all so I'm glad I saved the money!
Thanks everyone for your responses. You've been very helpful!
The overall gist i'm getting is that i'll essentially be paying to make friends, which doesn't sound like a bad thing! I don't have many friends as it is and am a bit of a loner most of the time so i was worried about becoming even more isolated once the baby arrives. Paying for an NCT class sounds like the right thing to do for me!
I'll go make some inquiries
It's 13 years since I did my classes. I still meet the other mums for coffee once a fortnight or so, they are amongst my closest friends, it was worth every penny. However there are no guarantees, I have made other friends along the way whose NCT groups didn't really stick together, but at least they made a few friends in the early days when it really helps.
So often I read on MN "why on earth would you make friends with someone just because you have a child the same age" (either referring to ante-natal classes, or school gate etc) but I've found it to be a very good basis indeed for friendship.
I asked about NCT or hospital classes a couple of weeks ago. NCT plus was making friends. Hospital plus was seeing the labour ward. I've booked NCT signature course (as no essentials one) and it was over £300 just to give u the heads up!! (Think 18 hours of sessions though)
IDream - sounds like the right decision for you but honestly don't think you won't have the opportunities to make friends if you don't. I had very few friends in the town I live in as if not long moved here but now that's changed so much. I met my closest friends from baby groups. Enjoy it all!
It's a bit of a gamble - our NCT group didn't gel and actually came from a biggish area so I think there was only one group meet up after the babies were born, and other than that two of the women who lived close by seemed to get close. The rest of us occasionally chatted on whatsapp but that died out after the first six months.
Equally I know groups who all seem to be great friends years later, and went to all the early baby groups together in NCT cliques that were hard to break into.
So...may work, may not!
Varies from area to area, we paid 175 for the signature nct course, it was worth it for us. The nct membership has given us discount on swimming lessons and also early access to nct nearly new sales, I cancelled my membership a couple of months ago as have never braved a nearly new sale and the swimming discount is only small.
I did the NHS ante natal classes which were free and made great friends. Also the health visitor did a post natal class weekly for a few weeks after babies were born.
I didn't do the nct class as the leaders are not medically qualified just enthuasiastic amateurs and because I knew I would be having a high level of intervention in the birth so natural childbirth was never going to be for me. but if you are going for the friendship angle and if there are not NHS classes where you are it could be worth it.
It's a while since I did it but here's my comments which I hope help you!
- membership: got no benefit from
- course: content helped me get prepared for birth but much of it went out the window when in actual labour (I vividly recall telling my husband what would happen if he suggested a scented candle in the birth room one more time, and breathing through it really really didn't for me cut the mustard pain wise) BUT totally worth it for the friends and support my group gave me. Many years on we're all still close so for that reason alone would totally recommend
An nct leader may never have attended a birth other than their own. The NHS ones ate run by midwives who deliver babies every day. I know which I prefer
There are free NHS classes available locally to me also which I'd like to go to as well. Just initially didn't know if it was a waste of time/ money going to both?
My midwife suggested I look into the NCT classes but wouldn't give me anymore information as to why? Please don't take this the wrong way anybody, but do certain types of people book onto those? Did I come across a certain way to her that meant she thought I'd do better there than the NHS classes?
Can you see why I don't have many friends? Lol.
I just want to learn and gain some new, like minded friends in the process. Fingers crossed I'll manage!
Dixie £175!! Wow I feel even more like mine were so expensive now. Do you mind saying roughly what area yours were in? (Happy to blame bloody London prices for the cost of mine if that is the case!)
Op I doubt it she likely gives the same information to everyone.
2014newme, thanks! I got a bit worried there for a second!
Why are you worried about that the midwife giving you antenatal class information 🤔 it's her job. " we do NHS antenatal classes and nct also run them if you want to look at those " isn't anything to worry about. It's general info. They will tell you about "tricky births", doesn't mean you will have one. If you are feeling anxious discuss with midwife 💐🌸💐
Just being silly I guess. I'll stop being so self-critical/ paranoid and take it as what you said - she's just doing her job!
Price will vary by area, but will be given on the NCT website if you do a search for courses in your area/for your dates. I am in London and have paid just over £300 for an 18-hour signature course.
You're not being silly or self-centred. Pregnancy is amazing and anxiety inducing for some of us so we question things more.
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