Writing a birth plan is a great way to get your ideas of what you would like your labor and birth to be like across to the people providing you care. Obviously this isn't a promise that it will go this, but this can be a great way to convey the spirit of what you're looking for in your birth.
Time Required: 60 minutes
- Brainstorm a list of some of your desires for the birth.
- Arrange them in order of importance.
- Learn what you can about the options you've chosen to see if they are compatible with each other.
- Learn about the policies where you'll be giving birth.
- Begin by forming bulleted points for each phase of your birth: Labor, Birth, Postpartum, Baby Care.
- Remove any points that are unnecessary. An example might be, if you know that it is standard at the hospital or birth center to allow visitors, don't ask for visitors.
- Show the plan to your partner. Discuss their concerns.
- Show the plan to your practitioner(s) and your doula.
- Have everyone, including the pediatrician, sign the birth plan.
- Give copies of the birth plan to the hospital/birth center, and everyone involved.
- Keep the original with you in your labor bag.
- Keep it simple and short!
- Keep it positive in tone. Let those around you know how to help you.
- Be flexible. Remember that you're not always going to get everything on your birth plan.
What You Need
- Labor Information