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Hypnobabies...Magical or a Big Old Hoax?

Looking for The Lactivist? She's retired. But you CAN still find Jen blogging. These days, she's runs A Flexible Life. Join her for life, recipes, projects and the occasional rant.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

So I'm a skeptic...a big time skeptic. I don't believe that DiDi7 is going to magically lift every stain from my wardrobe, nor do I believe that after a one hour seminar I can go home and start buying investment properties with no money down. ;) In general, I live by the adage "if it's too good to be true, it probably is."

That's why it took me a good couple of months after I first heard about Hypnobabies to go from "yeah, uh huh, pain free, whatever" to "well, it certainly couldn't hurt!"

I'd studied the Bradley method for my first birth, though only at home with a few books. We weren't able to find any Bradley classes in our area. (Ended up taking some pretty useless Lamaze classes, though it did reinforce much of what I'd told my husband about the intervention side of things...) The Bradley methods were mostly useless to me as I simply was not able to lie down at all during my labor. That said, the educational aspect of the glasses was invaluable. This time around, I already knew pretty much whatever I needed to in regards to interventions and the process itself, plus I'm having a home birth, so I don't need to worry about much of that.

Thus, it was the actual process of dealing with labor itself that I figured made Hypnobabies worth trying.

Now, to note, I never really experienced any pain in my first labor. I had back labor for about 18 or 19 hours before I eventually ended up with pitocin and an epidural, but I'd never describe my labor as painful. It was simply hard work. Kind of like pushing yourself through that "I'm gonna die" spot when you're working out. Nonetheless, I also never made it past 5cm dialation, so who knows if I ever really hit "real" labor that time.

So I ordered the home study course of Hypnobabies when I was around 20 weeks pregnant and started it at 24 weeks pregnant. Went through the course by 30 weeks, including all my practicing and everything. Then I sort of slacked off. ;) At around 33 weeks, I picked it back up again though I'm far from doing it as I'm supposed to. Basically, I burned all the scripts to my iPod and I fall asleep every night listening to them. I might remember to practice my "finger drop technique" once a week or so...and my husband has never practiced the partner scripts with me.

That means I'm hardly the test case for "will it work."

I will say that I have, on many occasions, used it to create anethesia for my heartburn and it did work amazingly well. I also find that I have an amazing peace about this birth and absolute zero fear about how it will go. I credit that to the Hypnobabies suggestions.

I bought an FM transmitter for my iPod so that I'll be able to listen to it through the stereo without having to change CDs all the time. I figure I'll give it a go and we'll see what happens. In reality, if I have a pain free birth, that's going to absolutely rock. If I don't, I'm certainly not going to be any worse off than I would have been if I didn't take the class. ;)


  1. Blogger mamamilkers | 10:47 AM |  

    I didn't use Hypnobabies, but I did go to some sessions with a hypnotherapist. I can't say how well it helped in labor, subconciously it definitely helped me stay relaxed, but I never was able to do the full on listening to my cd and relaxing thing that I intended to. My labor went from zero to sixty in no time at all, and I just didn't have a chance to use the hypnosis. All in all, I am glad I learned it. It was fun to practice!

    Do you know about/belong to the hypnobabies Yahoo! group? You might find it interesting, there is alot of discussion that takes place on it!


  2. Anonymous Andi | 1:41 PM |  

    Good luck! I didn't do anything like that, but did play the same relaxation spa music over and over and over again on an iPod. I think it kept me from freaking out completely (even though it was Baby #2).

    On another note, I just launched a breastfeeding blog. Check out www.mamaknowsbreast.com. I have a link to your blog on my site. It's on the page called Resources.

  3. Blogger Jennifer | 3:44 PM |  

    Yep, I get the Yahoo Group mailings, though that's a good link to post. You don't have to have bought the Hypnobabies course to join, so it's a good way to listen in on the conversation and see what other Hypnomoms have to say about it.

  4. Anonymous Anonymous | 2:19 PM |  

    i did hypnobabies, practiced daily, did all the homework, etc. it did NOT work for me. in fact listening to a woman telling me it didn't hurt, was just "pressure" on a cd while i was in labor was extremely irritating.

  5. Anonymous Colleen | 9:39 PM |  

    I used HB with my second dd, who was born in Sept 06, after not being very happy w/ my induction/epi delivery with my first dd in Sept 04. I had a great delivery experience the second time. I was healthier and more comfortable in my pregnancy (climbing stairs at 40 weeks). I arrived in the hospital room fully dilated, and had the baby in 4 pushes, -- and 4 because I lost focus a little. I also didn't need pain medication after delivery the 2nd time, either. Other than the local anesthetic for the tear, I only took one Motrin the next night trying to grab a little more rest. (DD was born at 4:23 AM. ) Having a comfortable natural childbirth was such a wonderful feeling. 6 months later, I could use that feeling again.

  6. Anonymous Anonymous | 5:32 AM |  

    I had studied hypnobirthing the mongan method but found it dull and not very detailed. I felt kind of left to my own devices with it. So about 2 weeks before my son was actually born, almost 4 weeks before he was due, I bought the home study course for hypnobabies. I got 9.. NINE, days practice. You're supposed to have 6 weeks... and out of a 14 hour labor, 7 hours was completely pain free. I felt sensations mostly. But seriously when that 7 hour mark hit back labor started, and that was REALLY hard for me to focus enough to use any kind of hypnosis. Especially with only 9 days practice.
    My son was a home birth, born about 12 days early, but it was AMAZING. I'm now a certified Hypnobabies Instructor, and doula in training. =) NEWLY certified. I just took the class this past month and it was a great class! Kerry taught the bradley method for 10 years ya know.

  7. Anonymous Bronwyn | 6:42 AM |  

    We used HypnoBirthing (Mongan Method) for our first child. We took the class from a very experienced licensed Hypnotherapist, who also happend to the and OB nurse on a L&D ward.
    Working with a real hypnotherapist was very important for me. She made sure I had reached very deep hypnosis and relaxation.

    I practiced everyday for a couple of hours at a time for the 6 weeks. My husband practiced and even recorded scripts for me in his own voice.

    Between laboring in the nice warm bathtub and Hypnobirthing, I can say I had a "pain free" labor.

    HypnoBirthing works! You must practice, practice, practice. I feel that a REAL instructor is important. A comitted support person or spouse is very important. This is the person who will get you back on track with your hypnosis if you become distracted or off track.

  8. Blogger Amanda | 4:27 PM |  

    so. . . what happened?

  9. Anonymous Elena | 5:32 PM |  

    I used hypnobabies with my son's birth. I didn't have a pain free birth, but it was a very enjoyable birth, free of complications and no interventions, including no tearing or episiotomy. I am a HUGE advocate of hypnobirthing. It was a great experience!

  10. Blogger Em Ybarra | 10:20 PM |  

    i took the hypnobabies course with my first child and practiced it religiously. my labor was painless and quick. 6 hours of wonderful birthing and LOVED it. I am pregnant again and will be doing the hypnobabies again. i swear by it!

  11. Blogger Gisela | 1:22 PM |  

    I used hypnobabies for my son's birth. I had the most wonderful and completely painless experience. My only regret is that it was way too short. Only 50 minutes passed from the time I arrived at the hospital to the time he was nursing on my arms.
    I wasn't the best student at all, though. I listened to the affirmations daily, practice the finger drops whenever I remembered and my husband only read the scripts for me a couple of times. He listened to his script only once on our way to class just to be able to say that he have done something.
    However, I never doubt that it was going to work for me. When I decided to use hypnobabies, I surrender to the method completely with all my convictions. At times it was hard because people thought I was crazy but I didn't care and it worked exactly as I had envisioned. I would recommended it to anyone with strong will and convictions.

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