It’s been three months since the birth of Charlie and I’m starting to build a list of things that were not as important as I thought they would be prior to the baby coming. I have to say that one example of money better spent elsewhere would be those damn prenatal classes. Now I’ve chronicled my misadventures (part 1 and part 2) of attending prenatal classes with my wife when she was still pregnant, but in further hindsight and talking to my wife about it today, I can confidently say that it was pretty useless.
Just as a warning, this was true for me and my wife. Everyone’s situation is different and it may not be necessary true for you. So if you are a mommy-daddy-to-be considering signing up for a class, here are four reasons why you shouldn’t waste money on prenatal courses. Of course, there’s no reason for you to listen to some random guy on the internet about it, but I highly encourage you to at least consider it.
I am in no way affiliated with the Anti-Prenatal Class Group (I don’t think there’s one that exists.. lol), so no hidden agenda against the perinatal education field. I’m just an oblivious husband of a former prego who thought we needed everything to prepare for the big day.
1. Put Your Money to Better Use
Babies cost money. Cribs, car seats, strollers, clothes, formula, seriously it doesn’t end! There’s so many things that cost so much, as new parents you’re caught off guard with knowing whether or not something is worth it.
Worst is that the baby merchandising industry knows this and uses it to their advantage. Take that stupid Sophie the Giraffe for example. You take a doggy chew toy and market it it for kids and you can charge it three times more. It’s madness! But we jump at the opportunity to buy on when it was on “sale.”
The class that we signed up for was a private class through the hospital, and I believe we paid $200 for it! That two bills could be spent on diapers, wipes, massage, or a 2-3 months worth of internet. Some municipalities do offer free classes, so check those out. But truthfully, your time is probably more valuable than attending this class so you are better off saving that as well and putting it to good use to like say…installing your car seat, or putting together the crib, or finding deals on a Sophie ;).
Spend your time and money wisely.
2. All Information Can Be Found on the Inter-webs
As I alluded to it previously, much of the information from the class can be found online. Honestly, a quick YouTube search can go a long way. If you ever had any questions on labour massages, just watch something on YouTube and you’ll get to watch it in the comforts of your own home and not some grainy cringe-worthy VHS tape that you are forced to watch with other new parents.
As for those labour exercises they teach the husbands to comfort their wives during labour, my wife didn’t want me to lay a finger on her at that point in time.
So really, just do a quick google search and you can find prenatal class lesson plans that you can simply research and figure out on your end. Here’s a particularly useful one from a Public Health Department that lists all of the topics that you “need” to know.
3. Knowledge is Power – But Not In This Case
One of the biggest regrets for my wife and I was learning too much. Did you know that the epidural needle has another needle inside?? Did you know about the crochet hook that pops your wife’s bag of water? Or how your baby can get a conehead from the suction that they use?
I think I’ve already said too much. When your wife is ready to pop at any moment, you really don’t need to know all of this information in your head. It’ll just psyche you guys out, trust me. My wife chose to go with the epidural and I remember having conversations prior to labour with her about how horrific it was going to be.
“What if something screws ups?”
“What if the needle inside gets stuck?”
These were some of the unwarranted questions that we asked each other, and I can honestly say that ignorance is definitely a bliss when it comes to this subject.
Both of you are already in an emotional roller-coaster near the end, the last thing you need to know is how messed up things can be if something were to go wrong. I know some of you are thinking, “Well, shouldn’t I know to prepare myself?” The answer is no. Regardless of the outcome, your doctor or midwife will provide you with your options at that point in time, there’s no use in worrying now.
4. You’ll Forget Everything Anyways, and That’s Okay
Have you ever been certified for first aid training? I have, twice even. But if someone where down and out on a sidewalk I’ll be the last person to know what to do, despite being “certified.”
The same can be said when mom is ready to blow and you’re scurrying to the hospital. All that preparation and “training” from those 8 hours of sitting in the classroom means nothing when it’s show-time. Part of the fun and experience of labour is the freaking out and panicking part.
Between contractions, my wife and I had time to take a selfie, as well as take one final photo of her final prego-form.
The spontaneity is what makes things memorable and great.
Besides, the nights leading up to the actually trip to the hospital you’ll be googling “how far apart do contractions need to be before going to the hospital” 20 times. So you digging for your class notes is likely the last thing you want to do.
So there you have it, four reasons to not sign up for prenatal classes. If you are considering it, just save your time and money for something else cause I really believe you can get more value elsewhere.
Before I finish, I feel like I can’t be all down on prenatal classes and I do have something positive to say about it. So here it goes:
The one thing that is good about prenatal class is that there’s always another couple who is less prepared and further behind than you are. That couple makes you feel pretty good about your situation – that is, unless you are that couple.