Birth Preparation Exercise

Identify Fear

In this exercise you will begin to work through some of the feelings you have about childbirth. You will need to think about how you talk about childbirth and how that relates to your understanding of the childbirth process. You will also need to think about the people and ideas that are influencing your beliefs about giving birth.

Finish the following statements about your experience and your feelings. You may not be able to finish every sentence, these are simply prompts to help you identify any fears you may have.

I believe childbirth...

One of my worst fears for the labor and birth is...

When I talk about giving birth with other people...

When I think about my birth plans, I get concerned about...

When I think about my mother's stories about giving birth, I get concerned about...

When I think about other births I've been to, I start to be concerned about...

When I think about being "out of control" during labor, I start to be concerned about...

When I think about pain during labor,I start to be concerned about...

When I think about becoming a mother (again), I start to be concerned about...

When I think about the actual physical process of giving birth, I start to be concerned about...

When I think about the people who will be with me when I labor, I start to be concerned about...

When I think about the first days of breastfeeding, I start to be concerned about...

When I think about the comments people make to me about being pregnant, I start to be concerned about...

WhenI think about my midwive's philosophy of childbirth, I start to be concerned about...

WhenI think about my chosen birthplace, I start to be concerned about...

Review Your Work

Go over the sentences and rate each concern as small, medium, or large.

Go over the sentences and rate each concern as unlikely, somewhat likely, or very likely.

Is there anything you can do now to help relieve some of these concerns?

What has stopped you from addressing these concerns before?

Choose a friend or family member you trust. Share your concerns with this person and ask them to hold you accountable for doing any work necessary to address the concerns.