Maris Stella Birth is partnering with Molly Maguires to bring a new kind of childbirth education for expectant dads for the first time March 26, from 7 to 10 p.m.
A small study from the Journal of Perinatal Education concluded that the current models of childbirth education treat the paternal role as secondary. The study further notes that this is a problem for men who increasingly both want and are expected to participate in domestic aspects of life, including birth. While this study was conducted in Sweden, it applies to American fathers as well. Most childbirth education classes in the U.S. provide no specific information for fathers.
The Western notion of birth has gone through many metamorphoses.
“We live in a transitional age where fathers are expected to participate in the birth room, but they do not have the role models to show them how, because their own fathers were expected to sit in the waiting room,” says Debbie Castelbuono, a birth and postpartum doula and owner of the local doula practice, Alcyone Blooms.
This is why Rebecca Tammaro of Maris Stella Birth developed a new kind of childbirth education to fill in this gap. It is called Pints with Papas, and it has been modeled off the Australian Beer + Bubs, which has seen an overwhelming success and has expanded to cover all major Australian cities, with plans to cover New Zealand as well.
One Beer + Bubs participant noted, “I learned more in two hours at this dad’s birth workshop at the pub than I did in seven weeks of hospital antenatal classes.”
Mimicking the Beer + Bubs’ conversational atmosphere, Pints with Papas covers everything from what not to say to a laboring woman to how you can go to bat for you partner if things get ugly with caregivers, all while providing practical information on what dads should be doing during each stage of labor.
Expectant dads can register online at marisstellabirth.com.
With some statistics showing male postpartum depression to be as high as the female counterpart, Tammaro hopes that this initiative will be one small step in the right direction for community support of new and expectant fathers.