Why? Why why why why why why why why why why whyyyyyyyy would anyone do this?!
The only good thing about child birth, surely, is the little bundle of joy that comes out at the end of it all. The nine months leading up to that point, and especially the few hours immediately preceding it, are not exactly heaven on earth, I think it’s safe to say.
So if you don’t have to go through it, why would you chose to experience the pain? I’m all for sharing the journey of pregnancy together with your partner, but this just seems a bit cruel, doesn’t it?
A company called Ultrasound Baby Face have said it is the first in the world to offer dads-to-be the chance to experience what it is like to be in labour.
The company said their new-fangled machine (read: torture device) will show an insight into the pains women experience during birth.
Of course, it’s not going to be exactly the same sensation, as simulations never are, but the company is offering partners a 30-minute labour experience to feel something similar to what their pregnant other half is going through.
During that time they will have to wear a bump while carrying out a range of tasks including picking up toys and climbing over hurdles.
They will then have a TENS machine (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation) strapped to their stomach and will have to endure short shocks for seven minutes.
As you may well be aware, labour rarely – if ever – lasts seven minutes. So I’m not sure it’s really fair, if you’re mad enough to go for it in the first place.
A spokesperson for the company said:
It’s a chance for the man to show to his partner that he is there for them and to help them experience a little bit of what they’re partner is going through.
It will hopefully be a bit of a giggle for the woman as well. Something to make her feel a bit better about everything she has ahead.
One woman from the company, who has tried both child birth and the machine, said:
I’ve given birth and while our machine is not as painful as contraction it will hopefully give the man an insight into what the woman is going through.
For seven minutes they’ll have short sharp pains with the intensity increasing. I have researched whether anyone else is offering anything similar but can’t find anything.
Jamie Lowe, 25, of Bristol Live, the rolling news programme on Made In Bristol TV on the Made Television Network, was the first reporter to experience the equipment on behalf of Bristol Live.
The experience is currently only available in Bristol, but if you want to book, you can do so here. Sessions cost £25.
Then again, if it’s pain you’re after, just ask one of your mates to kick you really hard in the balls. I’m willing to bet you’ll find someone in no time who is prepared to do you that favour. Probably for free as well.
Or, if you’re after a bonding experience with your partner, why not try a spa day – a much nicer way to celebrate child birth, rather than the everlasting memory of excruciating pain.
Just a thought.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.