How We Prepare Dad is Important

Posted by  cheryl  Mar 4, 2016

There are so many reasons I love teaching Birth Boot Camp classes!  One of my favorites is how we prepare partners for birth.  Every week we fill his tool box with a little more information so he knows exactly how to help his birthing lady when the time comes.  Here are 5 ways Birth Boot Camp prepares dad for birth.

1. Confidence: "A word I hear from my students in regards to the guys is how 'confident and prepared' they feel." -Jennifer Valencia, childbirth educator 

I love seeing dads walk into class 1 looking a bit overwhelmed or even wondering why they need to be there and leave class 10 with an "I've totally got this" attitude.  It is just as important for dad to learn about birth as it is mom.  He should not underestimate his role in the birth. I love watching dads become more and more confident with each class.

2. Communication:  "After working with 5 or 6 Birth Boot Camp couples, I was blown away with how well they communicated with each other and their birth team.  It was obvious they were well prepared and such a difference from couples I have worked with in the past.  It was amazing!" -Rachelle Davis, birth doula

I think I must sound like a broken record in every class especially when we are practicing comfort measures, "Moms, tell him how you like it!  How can he make it better?  He wants to know so he can help you!  Tell him!"  BEFORE labor begins is the time to communicate these things because once she's in the thick of it, she likely won't be talking much.  Communicate and blow away your birth team!

3. Being sensitive to her needs:  "I loved knowing that he knew what was considered normal. He never got scared or grossed out. He was all in--taking care of me (often even before I knew I needed taken care of--offering water, lip balm, snacks, etc), catching babies, cutting cords. We always talk about women being empowered through birth, but my husband was too!" -Kacy Bunte, childbirth educator 

Does she want to rest? Does she want to walk?  Has she lost her appetite? Does she need affirmations?  Is she ready to be done?  Knowing how to respond to these things will help her feel safe, loved, and well cared for.  We don't expect partners to "crack the whip," we teach partners to be sensitive to her needs, follow her cues, and help her finish the job.  

4. Birth videos:  "Husband has seen multiple births. He's not confused when she starts mooing or getting naked." -Jillian Blakeman, childbirth instructor. 

We watch lots and lots of modern birth videos so both partners know the sights and sounds of birth.  He won't be caught off guard by how she may act or sounds she may make.  He knows all of the possibilities and how to deal with them.

5.  Making decisions: "He is informed enough to be her advocate, knows what options she'll have with prenatal test results, if a cesarean became necessary and how to avoid an episiotomy!" - Julia West, childbirth instructor

"I wanted to know that Justin would be able to make educated decisions with me if/when variations occurred." - Kacy Bunte, childbirth educator

There's no way for us to know what birthing cards we will be dealt so we talk about testing, variations, red flags, etc. and your options so you can make informed decisions all the way through - from pregnancy to postpartum.


This is only the tip of the iceberg in how couples are prepared for birth with Birth Boot Camp classes. There's so much to know and so many ways to prepare.  It's worth the time and effort it takes to give yourselves the best odds possible to have that AMAZING birth you both want!  Dads, you're so cool and super important.  Study up, you won't regret it!