Support for Expectant Parents in Substance Use Recovery
The benefits of childbirth education
Childbirth education can help parents-to-be feel more supported, knowledgeable, and ready to make decisions as they prepare for the birth of their child. Attending childbirth education sessions can provide a dedicated time for those parents-to-be to focus on themselves and their baby, and to connect with other expectant parents who are sharing similar experiences.
Unique needs and challenges
Pregnant people in treatment or recovery from substance use disorders can have unique needs — not only physically but also emotionally. These individuals may have been shamed if they became pregnant while using substances. They might feel unprepared for the process of childbirth or have questions regarding pregnancy, birth, and the postpartum time that are specific to their situation. Or they may already be in long-term recovery and want to take that aspect of their life experience into account as they prepare for birth. Traditional childbirth education classes, and possibly even their health care providers, might not have the time available to talk through these specific topics, and substance use treatment facilities or addiction professionals might not have the resources to provide childbirth education themselves.
Benefits to substance use treatment organizations and your clients
You want to provide outstanding care for every client your facility serves, but you might find that you don’t have the in-house resources to fully address your pregnant population. Inner Wild Birth Support wants to help bridge that gap by providing childbirth education classes for your clients, further supporting their efforts to find an empowered, fulfilling path to parenthood and lasting recovery from substance use.
Inner Wild Birth Support believes expectant parents have the right to understand their childbirth options and to be treated with dignity, respect, and compassion. The childbirth education sessions described below are offered for individuals navigating treatment for substance use disorders, by combining childbirth education material with an opportunity for participants to share about some of the added challenges they may be experiencing on their journey of recovery.
Childbirth education offered to the birthing person in substance use treatment/recovery
Offered as a 3-class series (approximately 2 hours per class) in a group setting. Topics of discussion can include:
- Labor coping skills/comfort measures
- Different scenarios possible in labor and birth, along with birth facility procedures and interventions
- Options such as care provider types, birth teams, birth plans, and parenting support resources
- The postpartum recovery time and the initial newborn phase
- The emotional aspects of the childbearing season of life, including the additional component of the substance use recovery experience
Inner Wild Birth Support can also present shorter, stand-alone childbirth education sessions for spouses/partners and grandparents-to-be. Sessions can be scheduled for substance use treatment organizations’ staff members as well, which would aim to provide an overview of general childbirth education key points, to leave them feeling better equipped to support their program’s pregnant/expecting participants with confidence and compassion.
Information subject to change and availability. Class format (frequency, duration, etc.) can be adjusted according to client needs.
Please note: Due to current COVID-19 precautions/social distancing, in-person services may not be available.