What does it take to be confident in giving birth? Knowing what to expect is a great way to feel confident. Taking a childbirth education class can be extremely helpful. Childbirth classes explain stages of labor and delivery, show tools that might be used, and cover what to expect after birth. These classes also usually include a tour of the hospital so you know what the rooms and options of your hospital are. Childbirth classes will accurately explain what labor is like and not just what they show on television and movies.
Being able to make informed decisions about your labor and delivery can build confidence. Having evidence-based research for the choices you make. Knowing why the decision needs to be made can be powerful. It is your body and baby and you have a say in how labor and delivery happens. Most decisions during labor and delivery have at least two minutes for discussion before an answer is needed. Don’t feel you are forced to make a snap decision.
Confidence can come with being prepared for the unexpected. That might seem hard to do, but it is really not. Curveballs or changes to the plan can happen at anytime. Being prepared for the unknown and having to change plans helps to build confidence in your birth. Each labor and delivery are different and planning for a need in flexibility is key.
Lastly, having a solid birth team can be key in having confidence. Not just the medical team, but a partner or other support person and a doula to help the one laboring through all the different stages and decisions that need to be made. Having someone that is knowledgeable in birth but is truly unbiased in your decisions is the ultimate confidence builder! The key to being confident in giving birth is being prepared!