by Kerry Tuschhoff, HCHI, CHt
As pregnant women, we get so many negative messages about childbirth, and they take their toll, making us stay in a state of fear, producing adrenaline and other stress hormones, which cause constriction of the birthing muscles. All of these negative stories and horrid cable TV "birth" shows leave imprints on our conscious and subconscious minds that can only be detrimental to the goal of an easy, gentle and comfortable birth, since they generate fear.
We also get varied reactions to our use of hypnosis for childbirth, natural childbirth in general and our particular birthing plans. It is important to remember that whatever the reactions are, they belong to the person giving them to you, and not you. Natural childbirth using hypnosis is *very* different from what other women do and that's Ok. If its' right for you, then it's right. If you allow others to influence you , once again, it will breed doubt and fear, which will only cause pain.
The best way to avoid these negative fears is to avoid the negative influence. You can help yourself greatly by not perpetuating it; not watching the TV shows, and not allowing these stories from family, friends, and strangers. Just nicely say, "I am planning a wonderful birth and I can't hear that. Please respect my wishes and don't tell me any horror stories. Let's just change the subject. Thanks." (Especially at your baby shower!!)
We all hope that our friends, relatives and co-workers will support our birthing choices and help encourage us, but sadly that is sometimes not the case, even when we assert ourselves as above. Sometimes when you tell people, especially women that you are planning to have a really great birth experience using hypnosis; one full of empowerment and joy, little discomfort if any and that you are so confident and relaxed about this, it brings up resentment and grief that many have not addressed about their own miserable experiences. Unfortunately they may try to convince you in subtle and not-so subtle ways that it will be the same for you as it was for them (or their wives, if it's a man) and may become quite negative about hypnosis and relaxation as nothing they did worked. This is simply not going to be your experience and I suggest that everyone who is using hypnosis for birthing create and stay inside a "Bubble of Peace", where only positive messages about birthing can proliferate!
Just close your eyes and just allow your attention to move to your breathing. Now put your tongue behind your upper teeth to relax your jaw and take a deep, slow breath, to the count of 4................ and as you breathe out slowly to the count of 8, you easily begin to relax and release your body to peace and serenity.... **(Pause)
And another deep, slow breath in now,...........and as you slowly breathe out now you easily relax your emotions and you feel so good...**(Pause)
And take another deep slow breath in, hold it for 3 seconds, ....and breathe out slowly now to your mind...releasing and relaxing any tight thoughts... and you easily let go of all of today's' thoughts.. letting them drift away like little white clouds, father and farther with every breath you exhale....Good..and you're becoming so relaxed now...
Now let your breathing become even and comfortable....Good..
And say to yourself, right now...
I willingly open and expand my consciousness and awareness...(PAUSE)
And I'm completely open to all suggestions of learning, ...(PAUSE)
So that I will have and easier and more comfortable birthing...(PAUSE)
Now you will help yourself so much if you'll choose now to mentally create a very hard plastic bubble all around you. It is a protective Bubble, so nothing can penetrate it at all, and it can be any color you wish, and see-through or solid. Take some time to create it...First, make it very big....and then shrink it down to be very close to your body. Now you know you can control it...so make it any size around you that you feel comfortable with. You might want to have things in there that make you feel comfortable and safe, stuffed animals, pictures of your children, whatever. Just make sure it is all positive for you.