What Happens At Hypnobirthing...

{A humorous take on our experiences in hypnobirthing class, with some positive birth stories at the end}

“Now, I want you to close your eyes, and take a deep breath iiiin…
“…and out

“Breathe iiin…”

I’m doing my upward breathing. And I’m marvelling at how well I’m doing at relaxing and clearing my mind, which in itself is somewhat of a failure to actually clear my mind. But let’s not focus on that. Focus on your breathing, Lottie. Stop listening to everyone else’s breathing to check you’re doing it right, you know how to breathe. Iiiiiin…

“And out…”

The teacher asked us why we’d chosen hypnobirthing at the start of class. We said something about wanting to have a positive pregnancy and birth experience, which is true. Most people said around the same thing. Except one woman. One woman said ‘to reduce the risk of killing my husband in the delivery room.’ She didn’t laugh as she said it. She looked like she meant it

“And in….”

There’s a water jug in the middle of the room, which we all help ourselves to. The teacher walked past it on the way to the loo before relaxation started, and said she was going to ‘fill it up.’ Two of the dad’s answered ‘with water I hope!’ And she didn’t understand what they meant. So they explained that the alternative was a jug of urine. She didn’t seem amused. I, on the other hand, found it hilarious. And so did everyone else once she’d left for the sink

“And out…”

Not to mention that one of the pregnant women then spilt water said water from said jug whilst pouring herself a drink, and shouted at top volume, just in case any of us hadn’t seen what had happened right before our eyes, ‘DON’T WORRY, MY WATERS HAVEN’T BROKEN’

“Good. And now I want you to focus on how your body feels, from your head, to your toes…”

I like this exercise. I feel sort of calm and weightless. This is good, I’m doing it! I’m really getting in the zone! I’m… Hang on, is that… Is somebody snoring?

“Now, imagine you’re walking up to a gate, think about how that gate looks”

It is someone snoring. One of the dad’s has fallen to sleep. Oh no, made eye contact with husband, can now feel him shaking next to me. Am shaking myself. Must. Not. Laugh. Out. Loud

“You’re walking through the gate, and you see a cottage. The door is open, and you’re welcomed inside”

Focus. Snoring isn’t funny. Snoring isn’t funny. You know what is funny? That demonstration they did earlier with a pink balloon and a ping pong ball. The more she pushed on the balloon to show the lengthening of the ‘birth canal,’ the more it looked like a badly drawn penis between her legs. And the more we all ducked and feared for our lives. Especially when said balloon exploded, and the ping pong flew at us, prompting husband to say ‘I just got flashbacks to Thailand’

Must ask about that later

“And on the table is a loaf of freshly baked bread, with real butter. And it’s there just for you. You sit down, and you take in the aromas, and you start to eat”

Or the doll that was pushed through the model pelvis, legs flying everywhere. That certainly didn’t look a smooth delivery. Pretty sure the midwife got kicked in the face by its tiny plastic feet more than once

“And you’re starting to come back into the room”

Don’t think about the birth videos they played earlier, either, or the fact that someone responded ‘no, that was Sheila,’ when asked if we’d seen Daisy’s birth. Because the last one we watched featured an Australian. Why is it so hard not to laugh?

“And you’re starting to breathe normally”

He’s still snoring

“And you’re back in your seat”

Like, really loud

“And now, you can open your eyes.”

I can’t help but feel I’ll need to practice a bit more. My head did not clear

“Well done everyone …Don’t you feel nice and relaxed?”

We all nod.

Better luck next time.


In all seriousness, hypnobirthing is fantastic, and has reframed the way I feel about labour, so I would recommend it to anyone. Nothing like a bit of knowledge and encouragement to make you feel empowered and in control of your own faculties during the most important event of your life, amiright? And the head clearing gets easier… As long as no-one snores. The snoring is definitely a (childishly funny) hindrance.


And, finally, some positive birth stories I’ve come across whilst practicing my positivity as part of hypno homework:

A positive natural home birth, using hypnobirthing, from The Londoner

An artily shot hypnobirthing home birth from The Michalaks, and Hannah Michalak's thoughts on said birth after the fact

A positive third birth, from The Unmumsy Mum, who swears hypnobirthing completely transformed her experience

And a whole host of positive stories on both the KGH website (this is the company we did our course with) and on the Positive Birth Company's blog


back to top