TRANSCRIPT EPISODE 66 – All About Pregnancy & Birth With Dr. Nicole C. Rankins

Transcript episode #66: How Your Partner Can Prepare To Be Confident And Supportive During Labor With Alice Turner

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(00:00):

I am so excited for this episode about how your partner can best support you during labor and birth.

(00:14):

Welcome to the All About Pregnancy & Birth podcast. I'm Dr. Nicole Callaway Ranking, a practicing board certified OB GYN who's had the privilege of helping hundreds of moms bring their babies into this world. I'm here to help you be knowledgeable, prepared, confident, and empowered to have a beautiful pregnancy and birth. Quick note, this podcast is for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice. Check out the full disclaimer at www.ncrcoaching.com/disclaimer. Now let's get to it.

(00:53):

Hello, welcome to another episode of the podcast. This is episode number 66 and as always, I'm so grateful that you're here with me today. So I'm really excited about this episode. Over the course of the last year, you know, since I started doing this podcast, I've had lots of people ask me about this topic of how can partners best support the birthing person. So I'm super excited to have Alice Turner on. Alice has more than 15 years of experience as a doula and as a Lamaze certified childbirth educator, she has supported more than 300 births and she knows the power of a prepared partner. So during the course of her work, as she's talked to doctors, midwives, other doulas, she identified the need for a convenient way to prep partners for their support role during labor and birth. So she developed this tailored curriculum, she filmed it with dads and a local brewery and that is how she developed Supporting Her.

(02:06):

And she's going to talk about what that is in the context of our interview. Now, Alice is just really dedicated to her mission of helping families have a positive birth experience. So in today's conversation we talk about the role of a support person, why it's important that the support person take time to prepare the things that support persons absolutely should do and things that they absolutely should not do. She gives some suggestions on how the support person can provide physical support to the birthing person and then much, much, much, much more. So I believe this episode is really timely right now. When visitors are limited because of COVID-19 it's likely that you'll only be able to have one person with you during your birth, so it's really even more important now that the partner is prepared, so you're going to find this information useful for sure.

(03:04):

Now, before we get started, as I mentioned, Alice has her program called Supporting Her and it's an online course. I have actually purchased the course myself and gone through it and it is great, so great. In fact, I am an affiliate for the course and I want to be transparent and let you know that as an affiliate, what that means is that if you enroll through my special link, which is www.supportingher.com/nicole then I receive a commission for that. Now this is the first product that I have ever agreed to be an affiliate for because it really is that good. So after listening to the interview, I do hope you check out her course, www.supporting her.com and again, that's www.supportingher.com/nicole. All right. Let's get into the episode with Alice.

(04:07):

Nicole: Thank you so much Alice for agreeing to be on the podcast. I am so excited to have you here because I get a lot of questions about what things support persons can do. And you were the perfect answer for that.

(04:22):

Alice: Yay. I think support people have a vital role and sometimes it's ignored.

(04:27):

Nicle: It absolutely is, which it shouldn't be. Yeah. So I'm glad that you're here to help. Help me and help the listeners learn a ton. So why don't we start off by having you tell us a little bit about yourself and your work and your family.

(04:41):

Alice: Sure. Well my name is Alice Turner. I am a doula and a childbirth educator. My professional life didn't really start off in the birth world. I actually have an engineering degree and worked in bio informatics for awhile. So like crunch data.

(05:00):

Nicole: I love it. I love it. I have an engineering degree myself.

(05:04):

Alice: You understand what we went through for that. So, I worked a lot with data and databases, but I always loved healthcare. I worked in anesthesiology in college and loved working at the hospital. And just so happened that I had a friend that her husband had been transferred and she was pregnant with her second baby and he could only come back for a two week window around the due date. And she got really worried that she was going to give birth alone and she did not know many people that had had two different birth experiences. And I had had two babies at the time with two different experiences. And she asked me if I could be his backup. And I just got so excited about it and started reading and trying to figure out what would I do is her partner and how could I help her.

(06:00):

Alice: And it turned out he came back and she went into labor and he was there, which was great, but I was so devastated that I wasn't able to serve in that role. And then I thought, you know, I think I've heard about this as a job. I think that people do this and that's when I found the world of birth work and doula work. And as soon as I went down that path, my computer programming days were pretty much gone and I was sold. So yeah, that was 15 years ago, so. Yeah, I've helped at about 300 births. Then with couples, I have been teaching Lamaze childbirth education for nine years now and that's what makes up my day. I'm either planning a class, I'm doing videos, I love doing videos on different aspects of childbirth education or doula work, working with families or working with my online course, and partners, so.

(07:02):

Nicole: Awesome. Love it. Love it, love it. It's amazing. Amazing how life experiences will steer you in the direction that you're supposed to go.

(07:09):

Alice: Absolutely. I did not think that that was my future, but I'm so glad that I found it back then.

(07:15):

Nicole: Yep. Absolutely. Now, speaking of, you talked about, you know, what you do for partners, a lot of your work focuses on helping partners specifically and how did you get interested in really honing in on helping partners get ready for their role?

(07:32):

Alice: Yeah, that's interesting, and whenever I'm asked this question, I sometimes come up with different answers and it just over the last couple of years it's sort of just dawned on me that being an engineer in college, I had, most of my peers were men. And so I had, most of my study groups were men. Most of you know, the people in classes were men. And I felt like I really related to the male role when it, when I started being a doula, I really felt like that I was helping both the birthing person and the supporting person equally. And I also felt like in traditional childbirth education classes, sometimes partners weren't given enough attention and there wasn't a lot of time in classes really to focus on their role. And what I saw, which was magical is if you can give dads and partners just a little bit of guidance that they really can thrive and, and have such a better experience, enjoy themselves, be better partners and themselves, have positive experiences during birth and when they have a positive experience, I think they step into parenthood in a better way. And I felt like it, it doesn't take much to really support them and bring them up to where could be, to have had that positive role.

(08:57):

Nicole: I love that. I never really thought about how the partner's experience during birth can influence their experience as a parent. So that is really, really, insightful. Something that I hadn't really thought of.

(09:12):

Alice: Yeah, it's, it's one of the coolest things I think of doula work to see a couple really come together in birth and come together and lean on each other and support each other and, and go through something that is so challenging and just, just see each other in a different way. I think that's cool. Really cool.

(09:33):

Nicole: Yeah, absolutely. And then also so too, I think it's great that we are like really finally realizing that the partner has feelings and thoughts about things. And you know, back in the, not so long ago, sixties and seventies, they sat in the waiting room and no one really cared about their thoughts or feelings about the experience, but they really do have thoughts and feelings and want to be involved and want help. So it's great that you have these things available.

(09:59):

Alice: Yeah, it's so true. It's changed so much and I think if there's even more room for change when we look at, you know, complications and, you know, things that could happen after birth that I think partners could play a role in being another set of eyes and, and really advocating. And so I think it's even going to change even more positive.

(10:24):

Nicole: Well, sure. Well, let's talk about that. So what do you see as the role of the support person during know pregnancy, birth and postpartum even?

(10:35):

Alice: Yeah. Well I think that they support people can really help help their partners find their preferences, you know, learn, uh, encourage them to research, talk together about preferences for birth. I think that's really important. And take an active role in education. Not check out and say, Oh, well, you know, childbirth education isn't for me or the tourism for me. But really leaning in and taking, taking on the role of, I really suggest that partners can take on the role of, I call it the data manager because there's so much information to organize and keep track of from, you know, doctor's appointments and what supplies should you have, you know, what are your resources in your community that you should, you know, have available. And if they can take on that role, it's taking some of the burden off the person who's pregnant and, and doing a lot of the heavy lifting and labor.

(11:35):

Nicole: Yeah, that makes a whole lot of sense. And why is it important that the support person actually take some time to prepare as opposed to just kind of showing up and going with the flow...

(11:49):

Alice: Yeah, that's a good question, because it is an absolute unknown birth is not something if you haven't been through before, you likely don't have a good idea of what happens. Because our exposure to birth, a lot of times it's what we see in the media. I can't even watch it. I just, anytime somebody gives birth on TV, it's just the worst.

(12:18):

Nicole: Like just stop it.

(12:20):

Alice: Right? Right. So if without some kind of education, they don't really have a good foundation to know, you know, what is this gonna look like and what should I expect and what can I do to help? So none of that is very intuitive, really for a partner, unlike someone who's going through labor, they might sort of be able to have some intuition on how they should move or how they should act or breathe. But a support person doesn't really have that. So education is really powerful.

(12:50):

Nicole: Yeah, that's another good point. That as the birthing person or you may have some more kind of insider knowledge because you're feeling the pregnancy. Although we know that childbirth education is important for the woman or birthing person as well. But definitely yes, the partner, you don't have any sort of feeling, there's not like a physical connection sort of thing. So definitely makes sense to people.

(13:15):

Alice: Yeah. Yep. Exactly.

(13:17):

Nicole: Yeah. Yeah. So when it comes time to prepare, let's give folks some concrete advice and things that they can do. So if you had to think of three absolute like must haves or must do that a support person should do, what are things that they should do either before pregnancy or during pregnancy? Like three things that are, you absolutely must do these things.

(13:42):

Alice: Awesome. Okay. So I would say my number one is to talk to your partner about their preferences for birth. So you should be on the same page and be ready to help them with their preferences and know what their preferences are and, and maybe even help define them if they don't know. But, you should know, you know, how they want it to go. And just as an aside, if someone's support person is not their partner, if they are a single and maybe they have a mom or a sister or someone else that's helping, they definitely should. This follows the same three rules. They need to be on the same page too. So whoever your support person is really needs to know how you want it to go. I've seen that not go well when someone isn't on the same page and it can cause some awkward situations and you know, people get confused and it does not go that well.

(14:44):

Nicole: Absolutely. And that I can think of, imagine a time is like you should get an epidural or you shouldn't get an epidural is probably a big one that people really need to like rally around or decide what they're gonna do.

(14:56):

Alice: That is an excellent example. That's excellent. And that discussion should not happen, you know, when full on labor contractions every five minutes.

(15:06):

Nicole: No, let's talk about that beforehand.

(15:10):

Alice: Right, exactly.

(15:11):

Nicole: So definitely get on the same page. Talk about things ahead of time. What are a couple of other things?

(15:16):

Alice: So I know I've talked about it a lot already education, but I think support people need to be educated, need to know what should happen, have options, you know, think about their strategies on how to help. So come in with some real sort of skills and or some cheat sheets that they took from a class. And then my third one is actually for after the birth. That all of that support and the skills that you use in labor can really transfer to those first weeks of, you know, breastfeeding support and just, you know, being there to help bring their partner food, um, bring water, you know, just really being present and making sure recovery goes well I think can go a long way too. So not checking out right after the birth, but still leaning in for, you know, that early phase.

(16:13):

Nicole: Yeah. Nice. Because let's be honest, our healthcare system doesn't do a great job necessarily of preparing women for that postpartum period or providing support. So it's a great transition if you're already doing it during birth. And just to use those skills to transition into that, especially the immediate, like I would say first, like you said, four weeks or so afterwards when everybody's trying to figure out what's what

(16:38):

Alice: Absolutely. Yes I am. I am totally in agreement that we could do better as far as the healthcare, and society for families. It's, it can be rough. Yeah.

(16:50):

Nicole: Yeah, for sure. For sure. Now those are three things that they absolutely should do. What about three things that they absolutely should not do when they're supporting the birthing person?

(17:01):

Alice: Yes. I do have a list of those too. I probably have more than three. Some of them are funny. So one thing they should not do is not take care of themselves during labor. Yeah, labor is long and so many times I have a scene, you know, dad's just, they're like, no, I'm not going to eat. I'm not gonna. I mean, in a nice way. Maybe they're like, I don't need to go to the bathroom and take a second. I don't need to eat or rest because I want to be there and be ready. But it's really not smart because as soon as the baby is born, sometimes we see partners like that's when they think that's when they crash and they're not any good apps to help with the baby. So, you know, they need to be drinking their water, taking moments to go to the bathroom, taking moments to step outside of, they need to, you know, get food.

(18:02):

Alice: This is a marathon. We need to take care of ourselves. The other one, which is that darn phone, sometimes even if I always tell partners, like even if you are getting texts from her mom, right? Mother-in-law's texting you, whenever you're looking at the phone, you look like you're, you know, surfing the web. Nobody knows what you're doing on the other side. Right? And the best thing you can do is just use your phone in the bathroom to try not to get on your phone. Really be engaged, don't check out, don't. And it's hard because labor is long, so being so engaged for a long time can get really tiring but it's so important. So yeah, so being disengaged is definitely a no, no. And then my last, no, no is focusing on the negatives or, what I call like that verbal support is something that I see partners do this I also see healthcare providers do it.

(19:12):

Alice: And what it looks like is something like saying, Oh, you've done it this whole really long time or gosh you look really tired and that really doesn't help anyone. I mean it could be all true. You know, it's true, it's true. But nobody who was going through labor needs to hear those things. And I went for like an easy tip. I tell people like imagine that you are your partner's running a marathon and you're one of the fan cheering stations. Like you're on the side of the road mile 20. If you would not yell that out, don't say it in labor. Like you would not say you look really tired, right?

(20:00):

Alice: You've been running a really long time. It just doesn't help. And it's really easy because you think you're being kind and saying like, Oh, I know you're really tired, but if you can just turn it around and say something like, you've been working really hard, like you've made a lot of progress, or, yeah, just think of all the contractions you've already done. You don't have to do those again. You know, some kind of something. Turn it around in a positive way is huge. So no negative. I need to take notes on that myself. Well, you know, I have this dream of someday I'm talking to like doing an OB resident. Talk about those little tips because it's very easy. I think a lot of people, you know, so many, I've seen healthcare providers come in and say, you've been at this a long time and you just see her face just, you know, change.

(20:56):

Nicole: Right, right. That makes a lot of sense. And that mindset piece is so important.

(20:59):

Alice: Oh my gosh. Huge. It's huge. Yeah.

(21:02):

Nicole: Yeah. So what about physical support? One of the things that partners often play a big role in is physical support. So what are some things you recommend?

(21:13):

Alice: Yeah, one of the easiest things that can have a lot of impact just on the sensation of the contraction is something called counter pressure. You've probably seen this before, right? That just that hand hand or two hands that goes right at the lower back kind of top of the butt, right? During a contraction and something about just putting old pressure right? That makes it feel better and it's not something that you need a huge amount of techniques. It's good with communication if you know, if your partner says, you know, push harder, push lighter up, down, you know, kind of mastering that communication. But that's an easy one. And the other two, my other two are also pretty easy. One is holding hands or just basic physical touch. And that is great for when she has an epidural. You know, sometimes when someone gets an epidural it's like, Oh, she's not hurting anymore. I'm just going to go get on my phone. Right. There's the phone. But just being close, like putting a hand, holding her hand or putting a hand on a leg or just kind of that physical touch just shows that you're there. And then for, especially during pushing, one of my favorite physical support techniques that I recommend is having a, or a couple washcloths that are wet lips and cool water. Oh my gosh. It feels so great. Put around the back of your neck or put on your head or head and it is just a lovely little pick me up and, and a cool down.

(22:54):

Nicole: Yeah, I love that. And, if I recall, don't do you have a free download of physical support?

(23:02):

Alice: Absolutely, yep. I have a 10 physical support tip sheet that people can download.

(23:08):

Nicole: Okay. So we'll definitely say at the end how to grab that. So guys, you will definitely want to grab that free download from Alice cause she has some great, great tips. So now I like to, when I have folks on, especially who aren't physicians or health or nurses I should say, that are at birth and have the experience of seeing birth in a different way. I just love to ask a couple of questions about like, things that you've seen at births that have been memorable for you. So what is like, and you said you've been at over 300 at this point. So what is one of the most memorable moments you've seen or memorable couple of moments?

(23:46):

Alice: Yeah. You know, what pops into my head, first off is one of my clients, dad was, you know, pretty nervous, pretty squeamish, started out kind of on the side of the room. Definitely wasn't familiar with just being in healthcare environment, you know, and it was like he totally transformed. By the end of the birth. He started kind of stepping in more and being more active with, you know, helping positions or helping with breathing. Then she labored in the shower and he was right there. And then at the end, the doctor who was catching the baby said, do you want to help catch the baby? And he said, sure. And so he had one hand and helped kind of, you know, guide baby out and onto his wife's stomach. And yeah, it was, it was really cool how he, in just the time of being there was, had a totally different experience than I think he thought, you know, he would have.

(24:50):

Alice: So yeah. That's cool. Yeah, that was cool. And then my other sort of partner story that, that is more, more of kind of a funny story. And this was a planned home birth that was a second time family and we had thunderstorms rolling in Atlanta and often thunderstorms bring on babies. And so sure enough they called and said, I don't know, something might be happening. And I was actually at a meeting nearby and I said, well, I'll just stop by and check on you guys. So I came in their house and the dad had been sick with a cold and this was like 10:00 PM he had just taken some NyQuil. And he said, I'm going to go upstairs and get some rest. I just took some NyQuil. Come get me if you need me. But that's, you know, where I'll be because this was about a week early and he just had no idea that things were moving faster than were because they had a 30 hour first birth.

(25:51):

Alice: And when I walked downstairs and saw my client, his wife in labor, I immediately realized that they needed to call their home birth midwife to get over there and like things are here right now. Yeah. She had that look like it's go time. It was go time. And I mean I felt like I needed to kind of get my hands and slap him awake cause I had to go find him and I said, your baby is coming very fast. And yeah, he did not believe it. Finally we got the midwife and we were down with mom and thankfully the midwife came in just as baby's head started to crown and he was still in this NyQuil phase. And the midwife walked in and she didn't have her gloves on or anything and she said, I don't have my gloves on dad. Why don't you just catch the baby? And he said, okay. And then baby just came out like when you know, one half push and uh, sure enough, you know, an hour earlier he thought he was going to go to bed for the night.

(26:59):

Nicole: That is funny.

(27:01):

Alice: It doesn't always happen the way we think it's going to happen.

(27:03):

Nicole: So exactly. Like every labor, every birth is different. And there is definitely a look when a woman is like an active full-blown labor and you're like, this is, this is happening.

(27:17):

Alice: Absolutely. Yeah.

(27:18):

Nicole: There's no, there's no need for a cervical exam. There's about to be a baby.

(27:21):

Alice: Right, right, right. Yes. And you know, if you've been around enough birth also, if you hear that those pushing breaths, that's a tell too. Like, okay.

(27:33):

Nicole: Exactly. Yeah. Now on the flip side, have you ever seen anything that surprised you or even angered you at a birth?

(27:43):

Alice: Yeah, I have unfortunately. I would say the, maybe the category three of things that upset me when it comes to birth is when women are not respected or like their opinions or preferences are, are just not respected, you know, maybe they prefer and within the hospital policy, you know, if they're saying, you know, no, I want to get up and move around and if they're not respected or if options aren't given that, I know options exist, that's always hard too because I think if someone has a doula, if they don't have a doula and they don't know that they have options for things, then they don't have options. Right. If they aren't presented to them. So, and then just sometimes the rush to intervene can be a little bit frustrating in birth when after you've seen it so much you, you know, that sometimes the body just needs some time and need some privacy, needs some, you know, to be left alone for a little bit and yeah. That, that can be hard.

(28:50):

Nicoel: Yeah. I hear stories more and more about this. It's definitely frustrating. Especially the piece that you say about if, if folks don't know what options are there then and they don't have anybody with them to help them, then they just don't, don't know, which is why childbirth education in general is so important. So you know about your options and know how to slow down that cascade of stuff and cause honestly, really very few things are true, true emergencies where you're like ripping the cords out of the wall, rushing down the hall. Most of the time you have some time for things. And I certainly wish that we could be more patient with birth. That always, like sometimes I have patients look at me when I say, you know, I'll be back in, I don't know, we'll recheck in four, six hours, something like that. Kinda see where things are. And they're like, what can we just, we have time? Like there's no rush. Yeah. Right. Especially in the early part of labor.

(29:51):

Alice: hat's for sure. Yeah. I really wish more people were encouraged to labor at home longer, right?

(30:00):

Nicole: Yes, yes, yes. Like, just like wait until you're in good, strong, hard labor for two hours. Ideally, I think before you come to the house.

(30:11):

Alice: Right, right. For first timers for sure. I mean, yes. You know, it makes a whole different experience than, than getting there early things slowing and yeah, yeah.

(30:22):

Nicole: Yeah, yeah. And then like, you know, I say if you're healthy, stay home as long as you can and usually if your labor is going to intensify quickly, you'll get those signals. Like things are changing fast and you'll get the urge to go to the hospital sooner, but very rarely does labor like ramp up into this super intense thing very quickly.

(30:40):

Alice: Right, right. Yeah. Back to our TV birth, it has messed it up for everyone.

(30:46):

Nicole: Exactly. Exactly. Now, have you ever seen, you know, something that I hear stories of that really bothers me. It's things like breaking people's water or like being pressured with vaginal exams. I mean, I'm not trying to put you on the spot or anything like that, but have you, have you ever seen anything like that in your experience?

(31:08):

Alice: Definitely, yes. I have. I've definitely seen the pressure to have more vaginal exams to see if progress is happening. You know, this one experience it has stayed in my head for so long and it just making, my client feel like they were putting their baby at risk if they were not, you know, getting Pitocin to speed up their labor. And anytime that happens, it's really hard to tell. I mean it's, I can't reassure my clients that the baby is going to be healthy because I don't know, but to play that card of, you know, fear and yeah, that's difficult. The pressure of, intervention, or even vaginal exams that are particularly long or that last, even when, the mom might say, please stop. I've witnessed that and that's not okay. And really hard.

(32:13):

Nicole: I agree. And a lot of that is the culture that doctors and nurses too sometimes exist in. I do think we're getting better and we're coming around and hopefully you've seen the flip side where there are hospitals that are patient and can like really respect women and put them at the center of their birth. But we do have some work to do.

(32:35):

Alice: I think we're getting better too. So at 15 years I've seen a change almost in general positive with birth. So yeah, I mean just doulas in general, being more welcomed into the team, which is amazing. And people having more options for how they want to labor and what they want to do and yeah, I think, I think they're on the right track, so, yeah. Yeah, yeah. Yeah.

(33:03):

Nicole: So let me ask, how have your own birth experiences contributed to your work or influenced your work? I know you have four children yourself.

(33:11):

Alice: Yes. So there's just, I think my births have taught me two things and I'm actually, for some reason, my fourth, third, and fourth babies are the ones that taught me lessons and that those are the ones that happened after I became a doula. The third, I learned the lesson that you can't, first of all doula yourself. So that's not, that does not work. I had a doula and I had no idea that I was in transition and I had all of those things that we teach people about transition of the desire to stop and the belief that, you know, it's never going to end and, and I couldn't see myself and realize that I was in transition. It was only my doula that said this, you're feeling like this because you're about to have a baby. And I had no idea.

(34:08):

Alice: None. I was like, I remember looking at her thinking, Oh, what is she talking about? So that is amazing too, just to have that insight that even when you're going through it, it's hard to know that you are where you are. So that's cool to know. When I work with clients and I remember at the time thinking to myself, remember how hard this is so that when you work with people, you can remember how hard this is because it fades. It does fade. Yeah. And then my last birth, I went 11 days past my estimated due dates and I really learned, I have some, and I have a lot of empathy for clients that go past their due date because that is really hard. It is very difficult you know, a slog of just like, when is this going to be over? And yeah, so not a lot. I definitely, I mean sometimes the end of pregnancy is just hard.

(35:13):

Nicole: I think there's a meme or you know, that says like every month is 30 days until like the last month of pregnancy. That's like 1000.

(35:21):

Alice: I love that. Yeah, totally.

(35:26):

Nicole: So I'm sympathetic to women because there are some women who get to that point and they're like, I am just tired of this. So whatever needs to be done to evict this baby from my body, please can do something. So I tend to be, you know, flexible about what I don't push induction at all. And actually I don't do like, I don't do prenatal care anymore, but for women who come in and they're like 40 weeks and some days and a favorable cervix and they're just like, I just, I just want this to be over with. Like I can understand that. Yeah.

(35:54):

Alice: It's hard. Your mind after. It's almost like after you get past that, the date, it's just you're done. You're done.

(36:04):

Nicole: Yeah. Yeah. So why don't we end with, what is your favorite piece of advice that you like to give to support partners?

(36:14):

Alice: Yes. So my favorite advice, if you know nothing about birth and it's your first time going through it, if you can just be present, just continue to be present. Like listen to what's going on, pay attention, be available for questions for helping, you know, that goes a long way. That goes a really long way just to show that you all are, you're in it, you're part of the team, you're not on the sidelines, but you're, you're there. So that's my favorite.

(36:51):

Nicole: I like that. Love that. Love that. And why don't you tell folks a little bit about your course? Supporting Her. I have actually gone through her course and it's, it's very good. It's not very long useful information on how to support the birthing person, how to help advocate for the birthing person if need be. This is the first course that I've decided to be like an affiliate for because I just thought it was really good. So I just want to give you an opportunity to talk about the course and then where people can, can find you and then lots of the free information and YouTube videos and all that stuff that you have as well.

(37:29):

Alice: Sure. Yeah. Thank you. Thank you so much. I love that you went through it. That really makes me smile and it's exciting. So Supporting Her, it actually is a course designed for the partner. For dads and partners, whoever's doing support and it's online. It's about, it started off at two hours. I think that we're at about two and a half hours now. The course goes over some really basic skill building ideas like how to do verbal support, physical support, and then also includes things like logistics about the hospital, how to communicate with your care providers, really giving whoever's going to support that competence and skills and just helping to reduce anxiety around their role and so that they can step into that role and be their best at it. It's kind of the way that it is set up is really in three different types.

(38:34):

Alice: It's all, there's video, but the third of it was studio recorded. A third of it was recorded in a live class that we held in a brewery for partners, which was super fun and a third of it is actual partner interviews, which is my favorite part and a lot of people loved hearing from people that have gone through it before, gone through birth and what their experiences were. And then there was some handouts, which I always encourage people to print those out and put them in their bag for the hospitals so they can refer back. Which one of them is the cheat sheet that you mentioned that you can download for free. And it is the 10 ways to provide physical support and labor. So, and then the module that we just added that makes it about two and a half hours is a labor practice module.

(39:27):

Alice: And what I've found, just getting feedback is that people who are looking for some more information about just preparing for labor. And so it gives some strategies on how to practice and some videos that kind of go through the patterns, different patterns of labor so that you can practice what you would do, you know, try different positions out and try your breath and, and just sort of prepare that way, which I think is important. And especially if you've ever done a sport for the first time, you know, the first time you try to throw a Frisbee, you're not very good. But if you, you know, throw it a hundred times, you're gonna, it's gonna feel more comfortable. And I think labor is the same way. If you practice, practice some of those positions and the breath and you know, vocalization and all that, it's not going to feel so foreign or weird or awkward at the time. So yeah, that's Supporting Her.

(40:24):

Nicole: Love it and guys, it's very, very reasonably priced as well. Like very affordable.

(40:29):

Alice: Yeah. $49 and it is at www.supportingher.com and you can find the cheat sheet there as well. So, and I can give you a link to you want to look.

(40:40):

Nicole: Absolutely, and we'll put that in the, in the show notes. And what about your, you do videos as well. So tell us about your videos.

(40:47):

Alice: Okay, awesome. Yeah, I love doing videos. It's just another way to try to reach people and talk about birth, which I love to talk about. I starting in December, I did one topic a day for a hundred days, a hundred different topics and yeah, so there were about about eight minutes or so on average for each topic and you can find them on YouTube. Alice Turner is my channel, but I also put them all in a free course called Birth A to Z. And if you are interested in it, go get the course for free cause it's all organized by topic. You know, if it's an anatomy and physiology section, it's in that section. Or if it's like coping techniques, there's a section for that. So really short little learning about each topic and kind of a light light style that's not too heavy and you can kind of watch a few and get some takeaways from those. So and then, yeah, yeah, I put it together now it's more on a weekly schedule, but you can find that channel.

(41:56):

Nicole: Okay. Okay. And then Facebook or Instagram, are you on either of those as well?

(42:00):

Alice: Yep. So on Facebook Supporting Her and then Instagram the, it's @supportingher_class. So yeah. Awesome.

(42:10):

Nicole: Alice, thank you so much for coming on to the podcast. This information was so helpful, so useful. I think timely and people are going to find it very, very, very, very helpful.

(42:21):

Alice: Well, I really appreciate the opportunity and I want to support families in this important day.

(42:32):

All right? Wasn't that episode packed with tons of useful information? I know that I learned a lot from that episode and I hope you did as well. Now, you know after every episode when I have a guest on, I do something called Nicole's notes where I talk about my top three or four takeaways from the episode. So here are Nicole's notes from my conversation with Alice.

(42:58):

Number one, I really liked Alice's comment. I found this really insightful about how the partner's experience during birth can really influence how they get started as a parent and how they are as a support person helping the birthing person recover. So I just never really, I guess, appreciated that link of how important, it's not just important to have support during pregnancy and support during birth. It can really help set a great foundation in terms of how your partner will be able to support you after the birth. So getting prepared doesn't just help you during your birth. It also helps you afterwards as well.

(43:45):

Number two, you and your partner or whoever is going to support you during your labor and birth. You absolutely must be on the same page. You have to discuss things ahead of time. You don't want to get into the delivery room and have like, Oh, I thought you were in the epidural or you are getting an epidural or I'm not cutting the cord or I'm cutting the cord, or I do want to do this or I don't want to do that. You really want to talk through the things that you want for your birth ahead of time so that you're on the same page. Your partner knows your wishes, your partner is able to advocate for the things that you want. So take some time to talk about things ahead of time so that you're on that same page.

(44:28):

And then number three is the concept or what she talked about, how you don't know what you don't know, meaning that if you haven't prepared ahead of time, then you don't know the things that you don't know. So when you're presented options and you don't have any education or background about what those options actually are, you can find yourself in a really difficult situation. So that is why childbirth education is so important. It helps you know the things that you should know about giving birth so that you're better able to advocate for yourself during the birth process. So I definitely encourage you to check out my online childbirth education class, The Birth Preparation Course. You can find that at www.ncrcoaching.com/enroll.

(45:21):

The course takes you through what I call my beautiful birth prep process. And you start off by learning how to set the tone for your birth. Get in the right mindset. You learn all the details of labor, you learn about how to deal with that unpredictability of birth and possible things that may arise, how to advocate for yourself, how to get off to a great start in the postpartum period, and how to make your birth wishes in a way that they will be listened to and respected. So check the course out at www.ncrcoaching.com/enroll. There's a 30 day money back guarantee, so if you're not happy with it, you can get your money back and right now the course is deeply discounted because I want it to be as affordable as possible to as many women as possible during our current times.

(46:05):

All right, so that is it for this episode of the podcast. I would love to hear what your partner is doing to get ready for their role as a support person. You can let me know in the All About Pregnancy and Birth Facebook group. If you're not a part of that group, then I'd love for you to definitely join the group. You can search for it on Facebook totally free. We are over 800 women now in the group. Really supportive community, the community manager Keisha is an experienced doula, but I always say that the absolute best part of the group is the women in the group who really support each other and it's a no judgment zone. So check that out, All About Pregnancy and Birth on Facebook.

(46:43):

Also be sure to subscribe to the podcast, Apple podcasts or Spotify, wherever you listen to podcasts. So that you do not ever miss an episode and of course if you feel moved by what you listen to and you find that it's helpful, then drop me that review in Apple podcast in particular, I'd be so grateful for that. It helps other women to find the show, helps the show to grow and I also do shout outs on episodes with those reviews from Apple podcasts. All right, now next week on the podcast I am talking about planned cesarean birth and I had some changes in how I approach this and my own thoughts about this, so I think you're definitely going to find that episode interesting. So do on back next week and until then I wish you a beautiful pregnancy and birth.

(47:37):

Thanks so much for listening to this episode of the all about pregnancy and birth podcast. Head to my website at www.ncrcoaching.com to get even more great info including free downloadable resources on how to manage pain and labor and warning signs to look out for after birth. You'll also find information on my free online class on how to make a birth plan as well as everything you need to know about The Birth Preparation Course. Again, that's www.ncrcoaching.com and I will see you next week.

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