Frequently asked questions
Why should I take HypnoBirthing – the Mongan Method instead of another hypnosis for childbirth course?
HypnoBirthing® – the Mongan Method is the original hypnosis for childbirth program developed in 1988. Since then thousands of women all over the world have experienced safer, easier, more comfortable births using the techniques taught in this course. HypnoBirthing – the Mongan Method is only taught by HypnoBirthing Practitioners certified through the HypnoBirthing Institute, ensuring the quality and consistency of instruction. By choosing a class, rather than doing a self study course, you will have access to a HypnoBirthing® expert–your personal guide to learning the techniques and answering your questions. You will get to practice the techniques and get feedback on what you’re experiencing. Your birth companion will also benefit from the instruction and observation of how to help you utilize your HypnoBirthing® skills. In a group class you will also get to connect with other expecting couples. The depth of the class experience simply cannot be duplicated by a do-it-yourself home study course.
How much does it cost?
HypnoBirthing group classes in the New York Metropolitan area [including Long Island] typically requires an investment of over $550 and upwards to $1000; Debi paid $495 in 2001 for a total of 10 hours of instruction [which included watching videos in each class] which met four times. One Birth At A Time group fee remains at $97 per class however it is for 15 hours of instruction which includes 2 hours of watching videos in the privacy of your home on your own time. There is a non-refundable, transferable $97 required to register and secure your (pregnant mom and birth companion) place in class. After class one, if you decided to continue with the program, the balance is due [there are 5 classes in total]. Please contact us about availability and prices for private sessions if neither location is convenient or if you are crunched for time. However, cost should never be a reason to NOT take the classes. Payment arrangements and alternative compensation can often be made.
How do I sign up for class?
Email us with what dates/location you are interested in and we will email back to you all forms that need to be completed.
Will it be painless?
HypnoBirthing® does not promise painless birthing. What it does promise is that by changing your beliefs and perceptions about birth, releasing fear and limiting thoughts, and practicing the techniques, you will have a safer, easier, more comfortable birthing than you would have otherwise. Completely painless birthing is certainly possible using the HypnoBirthing® techniques, but pain perception is an individual thing and there are many contributing factors that cause childbirth to be perceived as painful. Pain is the body’s way of telling you to do something different. In childbirth this could mean relax more, change positions, or whatever else you body tells you to do. HypnoBirthing teaches that in the absence of fear and tension, severe pain does not have to be a part of the birthing experience.
How does it work? Will I be using mind distraction or tricks?
HypnoBirthing® teaches you to understand “how the birthing muscles work in perfect harmony”–as they were designed to–when your body is sufficiently relaxed. You will learn how to achieve this kind of relaxation, free of the resistance that fear creates, and you will learn to use your natural birthing instincts for a calm, serene and comfortable birthing. HypnoBirthing does not teach you to use mind tricks to trick yourself into thinking that you’re not feeling pain when your body is experiencing pain (although hypnosis can be used to achieve this). HypnoBirthing teaches you that extreme pain is not a necessary component to birthing and will simply not be present when you are free of all tension and fear, totally relaxed. Awake throughout, you will be aware of your body’s surges; but because you will have trained yourself to reach complete relaxation, you will be able to determine the degree to which you will feel the surges. You will experience birthing in an atmosphere of calm relaxation, free of the fear and tension that prevents the muscles of your body from functioning as nature intended them to. In this calm state your body’s natural anesthesia, endorphins, replaces the stress hormones that constrict and cause pain.
Should I take HypnoBirthing® classes if I’m planning on using medication?
HypnoBirthing® is a tool. Medications are other tools available for you to use. You make the choice that is right for you. Some women take HypnoBirthing classes so that they will be more comfortable prior to receiving planned medications. Others take HypnoBirthing to reduce their fears surrounding pregnancy, birth, and parenting. HypnoBirthing is for all women, not just those planning natural childbirth.
I have a low pain tolerance. Will HypnoBirthing® work for me?
HypnoBirthing® teaches you how to deeply relax so that you can reduce or even eliminate pain while birthing. If there’s little or no pain, even us pain wimps (yes, I’m one myself) can experience natural childbirth.
Should I take HypnoBirthing® if there’s a good chance I’ll be having a cesarean birth?
The goal of HypnoBirthing® is to teach you how to be in control of your perception of your birth experience from start to finish. Whatever turn your birth takes, you want to be in the moment with your baby. However your baby comes into this world you want to make that experience as calm and comfortable as possible for yourself and your baby. HypnoBirthing teaches you how to do this. HypnoBirthing moms who have cesareans report recoveries that are faster, easier, and more comfortable because they were relaxed during the experience.
Why should I take HypnoBirthing® instead of a hospital prepared childbirth or other independent class?
HypnoBirthing® teaches you everything you need to know in order to have a safer, easier, more comfortable birthing. HypnoBirthing differs from other childbirth classes in a few key ways.
1. Most childbirth classes teach that pain–excruciating pain, even–during childbirth is inevitable. They give you ways to cope with the pain. HypnoBirthing® teaches you that pain during childbirth is not inevitable. While all childbirth classes teach that the more relaxed you are, the less pain you will have, HypnoBirthing teaches you how to actually relax enough to reduce or even eliminate pain while birthing. We do not promise pain-free birthing, but many women using HypnoBirthing report pain-free births.
2. HypnoBirthing® teaches you how to have the birth you want, not the birth that someone else might expect you to have. We teach you to remember that this is your experience and your baby’s one and only chance to be born. If you keep these things in mind it will help guide you to make better decisions regarding your birth preferences.
3. 90-95% of births are normal, without any complications. Therefore, we don’t teach about what could go wrong because we focus on what likely will go right. Parents who take childbirth classes that do teach about complications often end up afraid that those things will happen during their babies’ births and if those complications don’t occur they feel very lucky. Learning about what could go wrong can replace previous fears about childbirth with new ones about complications. So we don’t go there. HypnoBirthing® focuses on the positive, on reducing fears, so that you can be truly relaxed during your birth experience. If you have carefully chosen your care provider, you will be able to trust him or her to guide you if your birth should take an unforeseen turn. If that happens, HypnoBirthing will allow you to stay focused on your baby and allow you to feel as comfortable and relaxed as possible throughout the experience.
4. HypnoBirthing® works wonderfully with a “coach” (we call them birth companions) or alone. Other methods rely more heavily on birth companion involvement.
5. I, as a HypnoBirthing® Practitioner, am not employed by a hospital and can therefore teach facts that may or may not be in line with hospital policy. The hospital can’t fire me as a childbirth educator because I’m hired by you, not them.
Do I need a partner?
No, HypnoBirthing® teaches you how to use self-hypnosis in order to achieve that wonderful, deep state of relaxation that allows you to birth your baby more comfortably and easily. However, if you are going to have a support person be with you as you birth, it’s best if he or she knows how to help so that he or she doesn’t unintentionally hinder your efforts. This is why partners (or another support person) are encouraged to attend the classes as well. If you do not have a support person, consider hiring a doula (professional birth companion).
I have fast labors. Will HypnoBirthing® work for me?
Obviously your body is already very comfortable with opening to birth your baby. Short labors can be more intense, which is why HypnoBirthing® is so great. Using your HypnoBirthing skills, you’ll be able to get to a relaxed place easily so that the experience of your labor–even if it proceeds quickly–will be more comfortable and less intense.
I have long labors. Will HypnoBirthing® work for me?
Labor lengths vary greatly from woman to woman and many factors come into play, only some of which can be controlled. Genetics and your own body’s ideal birth progression rate are what they are. You can’t change them. Other factors that come into play are your choice of provider (a supportive provider will allow you to relax and feel safe), your choice of birthplace (an environment in which you feel safe and relaxed will allow you to open more easily), fetal position (babies can be encouraged to adopt optimal position, but sometimes babies persist to present awkwardly), your beliefs about birth (fearing birth or believing birth to be safe and normal), and your level of relaxation during labor and birth. HypnoBirthing® focuses heavily on these last two factors: releasing fears about birth so that you can relax and teaching you how to relax deeply so that your labor will be more comfortable. You will learn in class how your body works more easily and quickly when you are relaxed. HypnoBirthing moms typically see a reduction of labor length because they are so relaxed. Even if your labor is longer than average, HypnoBirthing will allow you to perceive the time as passing quickly and will help you from becoming fatigued.
I’m a first-time mom. Will HypnoBirthing® work for me?
Yes, HypnoBirthing® works wonderfully for first-time mothers. The great thing about the first time giving birth is that you don’t have past experience to create certain expectations. You can adopt positive beliefs about birth more easily and can make good decisions to create a positive birth experience without having to go through a negative experience first.
I’ve had a baby before and it really hurt. Will HypnoBirthing® work for me?
Yes, HypnoBirthing® works well for women who have given birth before. The great thing about having given birth before is that you have a good sense of what you liked and what you didn’t, which helps you make more focused decisions the next time around. HypnoBirthing helps you release your fears, anxieties, and limiting thoughts about birth which in turn gives you the ability to relax deeply–a skill you probably didn’t have when giving birth before. With your new HypnoBirthing skills your future birth experiences will be profoundly different from past birth experiences. If you feel that circumstances occurring during your previous birth experiences will have a negative impact on future births, consider doing a session with me on releasing negative birth experiences.
I’m very analytical. Will HypnoBirthing® work for me?
Yes, All hypnosis is self-hypnosis. If you want to reach a state of hypnosis, you will. If you believe HypnoBirthing® will work and you practice the techniques, it will work. HypnoBirthing works for all types of thinkers and personality types.
Will I be in a trance or disconnected from the experience?
No, Think about a time when you were lying in bed, not quite awake and not quite asleep, either. It’s a very peaceful, relaxed state. You’re aware of things going on around you (such as music playing, the wind blowing, traffic outside, etc.), but you just don’t care. You could wake up if you wanted to or if you needed to, or you could go to sleep. This is the place HypnoBirthing teaches you to reach during your birthing. You will always be aware of what’s going on around you; you will just be intensely focused on staying relaxed that you will choose to ignore anything that isn’t important. You are always in control. While using HypnoBirthing®, you will be in a heightened state of awareness. You will feel more in tune with yourself and more connected with your baby. You will not be passive. You will simply have learned how to get out of the way of your body and let it do what it was designed to do. You will be in tune with your instincts and will do what your body tells you that you need to do.
Will my mind be under someone else’s control?
No, All hypnosis is self-hypnosis. No one can guide you into a state of hypnosis unless you want them to. Once in a state of hypnosis, no one can tell you act in a way contrary to your core values or cause you to believe something that goes against your core beliefs. It’s up to you to choose which suggestions you will accept and which suggestions you will reject. If someone tried to manipulate you into doing something that you didn’t want to do, you would come out of hypnosis instantly. You are always in control.
Does my birth have to be exactly like the quiet, serene births in the videos in order to be a successful HypnoBirthing®?
No, Some women labor quietly, others make a lot of noise. The important thing is to listen to your body and do what your body is telling you to do. Women who labor quietly often become vocal during the birthing phase as they’re bringing and breathing their baby down. There are two good reasons it’s good to hear noise at this time:
1. It shows you are not holding your breath.
2. Making a low noise helps to channel your energy downward, which helps the effort of moving your baby down and out.
I’m a Christian. Is HypnoBirthing® against my religion?
No, The level of hypnosis, or relaxation, that HypnoBirthing® teaches you to reach is the very same as the levels of hypnosis you pass through every day when you fall asleep or wake up. All hypnosis is self-hypnosis. No one will be exerting mind control over you to get you to do evil things. Having been raised Christian myself, I believe that hypnosis is a wonderful tool given to us by God. That said, if you do not feel comfortable with the idea of hypnosis and cannot get past that by viewing it as the guided imagery and deep relaxation that it is, it will not work for you and you should find something that will work for you.