Working with thousands of expectant couples over the last 20 years (yikes!), I’ve repeatedly heard moms complain that they can’t get their partners to read much about labor and birth. At the same time, I’ve seen so many dads want to be a hero at the birth of their baby (or at least be more of a help than a hindrance) but feeling anxious that they won't be able to pull it off and unsure how to improve the chances that they will. It’s something I’ve always tried to address in the birth classes I teach, but not every partner in every couple has the time to come to classes – and the partners who do make it often want something to take home and read.
That got me looking at the books available for birth partners and I realized that although they were full of important information, most made it way too hard to pull out simple, practical tips that could make all the difference in supporting a laboring mom. Others just seemed embarrassed by the whole topic and lapsed in a kind of bro-jokiness that my dad clients would tell me just got in the way and made them feel condescended to.
So that’s why, with the help of friend and former doula client dad, Simon, I began writing "Deliver! A Concise Guide to Helping the Woman you Love Through Labor.”
The idea is right there in the title: it’s a straightforward, quick-reading "field guide" to helping a mom and her baby have the most successful birth possible. Births can and do happen in all kinds of ways. But we know that couples are far more likely to look back on the event as a positive experience if the mom felt truly supported during it. Birth partners now have a primer for helping a mom feel supported during labor. And if they can do that, dads – or any other birth partner, like a girlfriend, wife, sister, or mom – can actually be the “heroes” they were hoping to be.
Our book covers:
- How to prepare for the big day.
- How to know when to go to the hospital.
- How to keep her comfortable with simple massage techniques and positions.
- Communicating with the hospital staff.
- Staying calm through surprises.
- And a fair amount more …
“Deliver!” doesn’t substitute for the professionals moms usually have with them: an OBGYN, nurse, doula, or midwife. But it supplements their essential work.
This is actually more important than you might think. Research tells us that positive birth experiences go a long way to ensuring a smooth adjustment to parenthood for both a mom and her life partner.
The bottom line is as concise as the book: if you’re planning to help a mom through labor and want to shift from being an anxious spectator to an active supporter who makes things better, this book’s for you. I’ve seen so many birth partners prove that they can do it, and I know how much of a difference it makes when a mom and her partner feel like they made it through one of life’s biggest moments together.
You can learn more about Julie here.