Tips for being a Good Birthing Partner

Whether you are the father, the grandmother or the best friend of the mum-to-be, having the honor of being present at the birth of the baby is one that cannot be matched. If you are lucky enough to have been chosen to be a birth partner then you will want to ensure that you are worthy of your role by being the best birthing partner that you can possibly be. Here are some tips on how to do this.

Discuss your role beforehand

If the woman who will be giving birth is devising a birth plan then you will most likely be involved in this process. Discuss with the mother what she expects from you in the delivery room and want she hopes to experience during birth and labor. She may want to practice some relaxation techniques with you or express her opinions on different issues, such as pain relief and levels of intervention in labor, so that you can act as an advocate for her in the delivery room.

Be flexible

In spite of many women making plans in preparation for the birth of their baby, when the big day actually arrives and they begin their experience their wishes often change unexpectedly. For example, the mother may have planned to have her birthing partner massage her lower back during contractions but on the day she may find this uncomfortable and not want anybody touching her. It is important that you are flexible and respect her wishes. It is also worth bearing in mind that labor often does not go to plan and that this again will require flexibility on your part.

Be complimentary and positive

Difficult though it may be at the time it is very important that you are a positive presence in the room. Even if the mother doesn’t seem to be coping well with the pain your role is to be complimentary and supportive offering only words of praise and encouragement for how well she is doing.

Have patience

One of the most difficult aspects of being a birthing partner is waiting around and feeling helpless in their role. This is perfectly normal and it is important that you are patient. Labor can be a long and tiring process that may require you to simply be around rather than playing an active role at some points.

Conclusion

The honor of being a birthing partner is a fantastic opportunity to see the beginning of a new life and the role needs to be taken seriously. There are many things that you can do to make sure that you fulfill your role fully including being patient, being flexible, taking a positive attitude and taking part in the planning of the birth.