I have been unscientifically studying the attitudes of expectant parents for some time, in regards to attendance at childbirth class. While we health care professionals have dialed down the number of classes in the series from seven (1980s) to four (2000s), the number of expectant parents attending our convenient drive through classes has dropped well below 33% of all parents giving birth.
Emma Dalton-Brown writes in the Jamaica Gleaner News, she basically doesn't WANT to know about birth, not from a class or even from a video.
The Listening to Mothers Survey II reports that, although most women who attended childbirth classes stated they were more confident in their ability to give birth, a majority of the mothers also reported they had more trust in their hospitals (60%), were less afraid of medical interventions (58%), and had greater trust in their caregivers (54%) after attending classes (Declercq E. R, Sakala C, Corry M. P, Applebaum S. Listening to mothers II: Report of the second national U.S. survey of women's childbearing experiences. 2006 New York: Childbirth Connection.). Eighty-eight percent of the mothers reported a better understanding of their maternity care options (Declercq E. R, Sakala C, Corry M. P, Applebaum S. Listening to mothers II: Report of the second national U.S. survey of women's childbearing experiences. 2006 New York: Childbirth Connection.). The Listening to Mothers II report did not examine whether there were differences in knowledge and decision-making actions between women who attended classes and those who did not.
There is still merit in Childbirth Education classes ~ we just have to take the time to attend. Just as new parents will have to take time to parent their baby, love their baby, feed their baby, stimulate their baby, educate their baby, play with their baby. Be certain a full and happy life is full of the right things....