Testimonials

On pregnancy

Yvonne is a passionate personality who channels her boundless energy toward educating families about birthing, babies and parenthood. Her enthusiasm and commitment to bring the very best care — be it for emotional needs or practical day-to-day tips on pregnancy and baby care — is truly infectious. Without her, I would not be the mother that I am today: confident and empowered!

Melinda

Dear Future Moms and Dads,

I am writing to you in support of my friend, fellow mom and attachment parenting mentor, Yvonne Toussaint.

In the last three years, my life has changed dramatically as I’m sure yours is about to with the arrival of a little one. During that time, beginning with my second trimester of pregnancy right through until today, Yvonne has been with me, sharing in my trials and tribulations as a new mother and helping facilitate and support me.

I met Yvonne through La Leche League, where she immediately and whole heartedly welcomed me and my husband to meetings in the park for the five months leading up to our due date. During this time, she recommended reading material – books and handouts – and thoroughly answered all our questions. I felt that her best piece of advice was to “listen to your instincts.” Out of the countless books and websites I visited, that rang the most true when I was giving birth, when I began breastfeeding and is still very relevant today.

My now almost 2 year old son and I still LOVE breastfeeding and do it round the clock. I am sure that my confidence in being an attachment parent and to following my heart and my son’s lead to continue breastfeeding is in large part due to Yvonne. She is so 100% supportive and through her group, Parent Pub, I met other moms, dads and babes with similar values. We met at her home each month to discuss attachment parenting challenges and again her readings, handouts and enthusiasm brought us together as a community during a time in life that can feel a bit isolating. I owe her a debt of gratitude.

I would not hesitate to recommend Yvonne in any of her future endeavors – she has been there for me for questions as random as what kind of organic mattress should I buy to homeschooling 101. Indeed whenever a question forms in my mind and I need an honest, well-versed opinion, I shoot her an email and she (despite her incredibly busy life) somehow finds time to respond thoughtfully and thoroughly.

All the best as you enter this new phase of life. Congratulations!

Maggie Rawling-Endicott

On childbirth

” – First, let me tell you I’m not American, sorry for the grammar mistakes ! –
 
I don’t remember how I came across hypnobabies childbirth classes. I’ve been interested by birth since I was 14 years old. I remember telling one of my friend how it must be beautiful to give birth in the woods, or at least at home, and how she told me I was totally crazy. 13 years later, and 4 kids later – that same friend had home birth after her first was a not-pretty-hospital-birth, with all the « hospital package ».
 
I wasn’t that fast having kids, at 27 years old I’m expecting my first baby after I met « The » one right here in the US, although he was born in the same country than me. So many miles to meet him. So worth it.
 
All those years I’ve been waiting for this child, seeing my friends giving birth one by one. I kept reading birth stories & learned a lot about childbirth. I often feel I learned a bit too much. I learned things I wish I could override, if only it was possible. Home birth and natural childbirth has always been in the picture. All those TV shows about hospital-medicated births have never been pleasant to me, I found them very dramatic and the simple fact to watch those shows were stressing me out. The bright lights, those doctors with blue scrubs, masks, this cold atmosphere, the machine beeping everywhere, the instruments being there « just in case of ». I felt sad for those babies coming from a warm, dark and peaceful womb to this harsh reality. Welcome to the world… 
 
June 2016, I was finally pregnant again after a miscarriage. It’s a girl, I knew it from day one. The home birth was an evidence, and we saw a midwife early on. We were still seeing my OB/GYN because of my past of miscarriage and we mistakenly did the NIPT test recommended by him, even though we were only 27 and low risk. This test came back positive for down syndrome. Fast forward 6 weeks of intense stress and an amniocentesis later, it was a false positive. After this very hard part of my pregnancy, I stopped seeing my OBGYN and I focus on a 100% natural pregnancy, I wanted to be in control from this point.
 
We also switched for a birth center at this moment. After buying a new house with a lot of renovations that we needed to do by ourselves, we just thought it was better to be elsewhere in case the reno weren’t done at the time of the birth. After looking around, we found a birth center who looked as good as home. It was so peaceful, modern, 
smelt so good and those very deep bathtub made me just sign up for this! Everyone was also super nice, of course ! 🙂
 
When the topic of childbirth preparation came, I looked at the possibilities in the US. I never really understood the difference between Lamaze and Bradley method – my instinct felt like it was too popular to be really good. I like to « swim against the stream ». I then learned about hypnobirthing and hypnobabies, and read birth stories about both of them. The first one looked more simple to learn but the birth stories & videos were way less beautiful and peaceful than hypnobabies. I didn’t really care of how much « work » I would have to do to have my beautiful birth, so I contacted Yvonne with hypnobabies! I think we talked about an hour,  and I remember her telling me that she slept trough her entire birthing time (except for pushing her baby out !!!) thanks to hypnobabies. I didn’t really believed her at this point and I was thinking she was exaggerating and overselling me the course. Haha sorry Yvonne ! But I signed up because everything she said was so positive and so great, I thought even if she was lying, this childbirth preparation was awesome anyway. 
 
When we met Yvonne, I could just say by seeing her she actually didn’t lie to me. It was just an instinct/feeling thing. She wasn’t the kind of woman lying to make things looks prettier/better. She was just speaking the truth. And after reading birth stories and watching videos from hypnobabies, I definitely knew it was possible. Lot of those videos and stories were from first time mom, which I am ! It was very comforting.  But it was also so hard for my mind to accept it. To accept that birth can be easier and more comfortable, to accept that birth can be calm and peaceful.  As a first time mom, you hear so many things about birth. Scary, very scary things. You also have your very own fears. All of this is pretty frightening. How can you have a beautiful birth experience when you’re already frighten months or even years before the « D DAY » ? It’s truly impossible, I think. How a human body could open comfortably that way, how can you not just fight the discomfort without a good childbirth preparation like hypnobabies is ?
 
The 6 weeks classes were awesome. My husband learned so much about birth and pregnancy, he feels like he has a true role to play during the birth of our baby, he’s not going to be this guy who will watch me not knowing what to do.  I/we learned so much about hypnosis. I was a skeptical one. I’m not anymore… I was a scared one. Even though I always wanted a meds free birth, I thought I was care bear looking for an unicorn, because I think I have a « low pain tolerance » . I’m not scared anymore. I’m so confident I’ll have a beautiful and comfortable childbirth…. I also thought hypnosis wouldn’t work on me. Let me tell you, that’s impossible. There isn’t « receptive » people, I learned it can ONLY work, because it’s very natural, it’s like thinking you can’t cry – yes everybody can cry even the toughest one. This class is a commitment, you also have exercices everyday and somedays it can feels overwhelming, but thanks to hypnobabies I already had a very easy 3rd trimester. 
 
Before the birth subject come on the table, you get the « 3rd trimester is the worst! It feels like an eternity! ». That’s not true. I am very comfortable and I am 40 weeks 4 days pregnant today. I’m driving around, walking every day, sleeping well… And I owe that to hypnobabies because I’m so relaxed. I don’t feel any pressure that my baby needs to be born, that I need to be induced…I’m waiting patiently for her. I’m enjoying our last few days together, resting and doing my hypnobabies exercices. 
 
Now that I’m so close to meet our baby, I know that every path my birthing time will take, It will be the right one ! I now feel very knowledgeable about birth, so I know that we will be able to make the right decisions when the time comes!”

Mathilde

April 4th – There were three births. My husband and I were born into a new world; PARENTHOOD. My daughter, 8 pounds 1 oz was also born! She entered peacefully and safely via vaginal birth at 6:47 pm and this is how the story goes:

CHOOSING THE PERFECT BIRTHING CLASS:

So here I am, 6 weeks pregnant…..I need to find a birthing class that will reflect my lifestyle and beliefs! I searched the Internet for hours and read dozens of reviews on different women’s experiences with birthing classes. I started to see a common thread, a pattern…and it went a little something like this: Lamaze =PAIN MANAGEMENT, Bradley method= PAIN MANAGEMENT, Hospital offered birthing class= PAIN MANAGEMENT … Etc. Are you seeing this scary trend? I don’t know about you but I’m not interested in pain.

So I dug a little deeper, I started googling things like “peaceful birth”….”natural birth”…..”pain free birth”.

All of these searches led me to one place, HYPNOBABIES! I started watching videos of beautiful home births, water births, and peaceful hospital births. These women actually looked happy to be giving birth.

It didn’t really take much convincing for me to know this is the route I needed to go! Some of my friends called me coo coo for coco puffs because I actually believed I could be in “labor” and be under hypnosis at the same time!

HYPNOBABIES AS MY BIRTHING CLASS.

I called the Hypnobabies instructor in my area. When I spoke with Yvonne Toussaint I felt an immediate connection. She shared her inspiring Hypnobabies birth stories and thoroughly answered all of my questions (Is this real? Am I a good candidate? What if people judge me? What if I’m scared?) She motivated me to trust myself so I was motivated to get to class and start learning.

Our class was very diverse, that made me comfortable. There was food…now I’m really committed.

We learned about how our thoughts and feelings and WORDS affect our pregnancy, birthing time (labor) and actual birth!

We learned weekly relaxation techniques that enabled us to become so relaxed that we actually put our own selves into a state of self hypnosis. Being in self hypnosis helped my mind to receive suggestions regarding peaceful, joyful and a more comfortable birthing experience.

We learned how to properly prepare for birth by being prepared mentally, physically and emotionally!

We learned an entirely new perspective on pregnancy and birth. Not only are we replacing popular terms such as labor, pain and contractions with words like birthing time, discomfort, pressure waves. We are training our minds to EXPECT A POSITIVE BIRTHING EXPERIENCE!!!

BIRTHING TIME BEGINS!

When my birthing time started I was eating. I figured, ah…this is just a pressure wave…couldn’t be the real thing. It continued for the entire day and throughout the night. I kept feeling these waves until the next morning ….I would describe this sensation as a sound wave traveling upwards in volume…then descending and disappearing for a while. I started getting excited, I couldn’t sleep. This might be it!

On the morning of my daughter’s birth my widwife tells me I probably have a week to go before I’m ready to give birth 😂I insisted that she come my house to check me because I had been feeling intense waves and I became a little anxious….. I needed to know if it was time. When she comes through the door she says “some women think they’re at a 7 and are really at 2 (centimeter) Turns out I was at a 7… she decided it would be a good idea to break my bag of waters (which I did not want and stated that in my birth plan). I wasn’t really focusing on my birth plan so I decided to break the waters……..I was then told to start pushing…I pushed for a long time…..and realized I forgot to hydrate and replenish as we learned in our Hypnobabies class! I began to get tired.

We arrived at the hospital and about 6 hours later, our baby was born!!! There were a couple unexpected (unwanted) occurrences here and there but thanks to Hypnobabies we were able to have a peaceful, fun and easy, vaginal child birth.

Interested in Hypnobabies?

I must say this now; Hypnobabies is wonderful! It is a very useful course that gives you tools to keep control over your own pregnancy and birth!! I learned tools such as “bubble of peace” which is a self created atmosphere designed and programmed by you to protect yourself from negativity. I learned self hypnosis techniques to help myself relax at will so that your physical birthing sensations are not only bearable but possibly even enjoyable …..might as well give it a chance! These are tools women need and the power is in the PRACTICE.

So what’s the bottom line?

If you’re wondering if Hypnobabies really “works” just ask yourself do YOU work?

Aren’t you made for birth? That’s already your instinct. Hypnobabies is there to remind you of your own power and ability to create the pregnancy and birth you really want. Hypnobabies is there to help you make informed and educated choices for your family. So to say it plainly, yeah it works, as long as you make it a priority. You get out of Hypnobabies exactly what you put into it. If you really want your dream birth, then have it!!

Ps. Yvonne Toussaint, instructor of Hypnobabies in Woodland Hills, is a God send. ❤️

Ppppeeeaaaaacccceeee!

Nica

I chose Yvonne based on my interaction I had with her on the phone when I called to inquire about her class.  I could tell instantly that she was passionate about the hypnobabies experience.  I like that she had personally used hypnobabies for all her births.

At 40 & newly divorced I found myself with a surprise pregnancy, something I had hoped and prayed for, for a long time but it never happened when I was married.  From the moment I found out I was pregnant I made the decision to embrace everything about this experience as it would most likely be my only shot.  I felt so blessed to be carrying this baby & I wanted a birthing experience that was natural and one that would allow me to connect with my sweet baby.

After hearing positive and personal reviews from my cousins and sister in law who all used hypnobabies, I knew this is what I wanted.  As the father of my baby was unwilling to commit to this birthing class I had my sister and my mom as my coaches.

I wanted to walk away from my hypnobabies class feeling more confident and prepared.  What I walked away with was so much more.

Even though I have been an RN for over 15yrs I learned so much about my body and what to expect leading up to, during and after my birthing time.  I found Yvonne’s classes educational and this eased a lot of my anxieties about birth.

Yvonne played the role of teacher and guide.  She did an excellent job with teaching the content, but more importantly she was my guide.  She guided me each week through hypnosis, allowing me to just be present to the moment, relaxed calm & at peace.  I was very diligent about the self study and hypnosis tracks.  I only mention this because it is such an integral part in getting the most out of this birthing technique.

My birthing time started early in the morning of our last hypnobabies class.  I  enjoyed my birthing time for a few hours at home before going to the hospital. I was able to stay calm and embrace each pressure wave, connecting with my soon to be born son in way that was magical & very spiritual for me.  I was able to walk around, reposition myself and remain in hypnosis in the hospital setting.  The staff at West Hills Hospital were amazing.  After 34hours in my birthing time, it became medically necessary for me to have a c-section.  Hypnobabies hypnosis techniques allowed me to stay calm and focused as I requested to not have a lot of sedatives.  I was totally present at my sons birth.  Although I did not have the ‘natural’ birthing experience I had hoped for, Yvonne’s classes prepared me for being open to what my birthing experience was going to be.  She guided me in a way that allowed me to embrace something unexpected that many moms have a hard time with.

A bonus that I was not expecting is how these techniques helped me after my son was born.  I still use some of the relaxation cues to relax after a stressful day.

If you want to feel prepared and empowered, connect with your partner or coach as you embrace your birthing experience, I strongly recommend you take Yvonne’s Hypnobabies Course.  You won’t regret it!

Char

I took Hypnobabies with Yvonne in the spring of 2016. She is hands down one of the most passionate and genuine instructors I’ve ever had in my life! Not only was Hypnobabies an amazing journey for my husband and I during pregnancy, we received support and personalized advice from Yvonne about our specific situation, which I’ll share:
We were planning for a home birth which is why we were enrolled in Hypnobabies in the first place ( Yvonne referred us to an awesome midwife as well!). At about week 20 of my pregnancy, my OB would not clear me for a vaginal delivery due to a prior medical condition. I was devastated. I called Yvonne in tears and she encouraged me along with my midwife to get a second opinion. We ultimately ended up birthing through a scheduled c section after 4 second opinions and I was able to use my Hypnobabies techniques to stay relaxed during the entire birth and recovery period. I appreciate all that I learned and practiced (the most important part) during my Hypnobabies classes. There were some challenges learning how to breastfeed, so I was happy to use my tools and techniques then as well.  And I still use the techniques today, especially when things get crazy, which they often do as a new mom! A huge thanks to Hypnobabies and Yvonne for this skill set!
(Note from Yvonne: This awesome couple was so committed to attending class that they drove over an hour each week!)

Shanna

Before baby was born:

All I knew and was conformed to think about labor was that I was going to be in pain…a lot of it. And that the only solution was to get the epidural. However, even before I got pregnant, I knew I didn’t want to get an epidural. Friends left and right were in disbelief that I wanted to have my baby without any pain medications, even calling me a “super mom” for making the choice. I had a desire to birth my child naturally just like so many other women in the past have done successfully. So I was lucky to have done my thorough research and found Hypnobabies. Hypnobabies reprogrammed my mind to think about labor as the time I get to birth and finally see the baby I was growing within me. This course got me excited for my birthing time. I learned methods on how to relax and embrace the pressure waves that I was going to experience, rather than fear them. Hypnobabies also allowed my husband to be part of the preparation for our baby. Weekly, we went through scripts together, did our home play together, and communicated about our thoughts and concerns. After the six week course, we walked away confidently knowing that our birthing time wasn’t going to be a scene from a television show, but rather a joyous, relaxing, and calming time in which we finally get to meet our son.

During and After birthing time:

After feeling 3 pressure waves, I knew my birthing time had began and started listening to my Hypnobabies tracks. Even though my birthing time was for 31 hours, it all seems like a blur now. What I do remember and what I do owe my success of birthing my son naturally was the tips Yvonne provided during our Hypnobabies sessions. I thought of each pressure wave as a hug from my soon to be born son, instead of “pain.” As I listened to my tracks, my husband read me scripts and cue words in the background. Our journey was perfect for us and a lot of it was because of Hypnobabies. We were given the proper tools to execute our dream birth. These tools weren’t absurd or “hippie”…rather a lot of reprogramming of the mind. So thank you Hypnobabies and thank you Yvonne for making our dream birth come true!

Emily

My husband and I had the best birthing experience! Hypnobabies helped us by providing us with the tools we needed to stay positive and believe that our birthing time would happen exactly like it was meant to be. During my pregnancy I was given the tool of my “bubble of peace” to keep negativity and negative stories away. We had our baby boy at a birthing center who respected all of our wishes and thanks to Yvonne we made educated decisions. The best part of hypnobabies was giving us the knowledge to know what to expect and giving my husband a true role in the process. We wanted to make sure he was a part of the process and not a bystander. Hypnobabies allowed him to be a part of the birthing process every step of the way!

Ailin

Yvonne introduced us to Hypnobabies when I was pregnant with our second child. Our first birth went well, but I’d always felt there were a few things that I wanted to be different. As Yvonne is a trusted breastfeeding advisor for our family, I turned to her for advice for our second birth. In fact, we had several conversations over several months as I slowly came to my own decision. Yvonne patiently explained the Hypnobabies process many times and was always open to answering my questions and doubts.

She helped us decide between taking the course in person or doing the home study. Ultimately, we chose the home study and a session of the home study advantage with Yvonne. She was very accommodating with our hectic schedule and worked hard to find a time to meet that suited everyone. Meeting with her was so helpful, encouraging and inspiring. Our session helped solidify the Hypnobabies techniques in my mind and helped my husband understand the process better as well. I highly recommend Hypnobabies and Yvonne to any family looking to have a natural birth.

Melinda (on the Hypnobabies Home Study Advantage)

Trust your instincts. From the moment I became pregnant I felt like I was overwhelmed by advice from family and friends with good intentions, but I had a more natural approach in mind for how I wanted to bring my baby into the world. Yvonne was so helpful by not only listening to all of my fears, but giving me the courage and strategies to talk to family and friends about our approach to parenting. She empowered me to understand the strength of my own body so I no longer feared childbirth, but I was looking forward to meet my new baby. During those first few scary days at home she was there for me coaching me through the initial struggles with breastfeeding, always letting me know to trust myself as a mother. I can’t thank her enough for sending me off as a mother in such a positive place!

Erin

On breastfeeding

I always wanted to be pregnant and I’ve always wanted to nurse my baby. When I found out I couldn’t become pregnant, I wasn’t going to let that stop me from my desire to breastfeed my child. When we started the adoption process I researched inducing lactation. With the help of my online research and additional resources and encouragement from Yvonne, I was able to successfully supply our newborn with my own breastmilk and have been exclusively breastfeeding him for the last 9 months.

Yvonne has taught me to trust my instincts. To listen to my heart and my son and the best thing for him, is my love. Yvonne is one of the most nurturing, companionate and motivating woman I’ve ever met. Before our son was born, we hired Yvonne to coach us through the ways of attachment parenting.

We attend the Le Leche legue meetings where Yvonne leads so many of us through the ins and out of breastfeeding. She is our go-to “person” when it comes to all things baby. I have even sent her photos of my sons dirty diaper. Even though Yvonne has 3 children, is a wife, a leader and wears many hats, she always responds to an email I’ve sent. She is an amazing soul and I am a better Mom because of her.

Jennifer

Yvonne is one of the most dedicated women I know. Her volunteer activities could take up the span of a full time job and the women and men she serves so benefit from her tireless efforts. I am one of those women. My twins were born 6 weeks premature and they could not breastfeed until their official due date and with her help and moral support I pumped and had my babies practice breastfeeding as often as we could. They are 18 months old now and we have never looked back. She was there for me when I didn’t have any community support and still remains an active resource. When I came to my first LLL meeting, she called another twin mom to offer me additional help. She truly bent over backwards to lend us a hand. I still often go to a meeting or two to be inspired by her leadership. She is a true gem — she represents selfless community support at its heart. When I think about the values that I want my children to understand — teamwork, sharing, altruism, and loving communication — Yvonne embodies them all. I deeply respect her efforts on behalf of so many. You will be in good hands in her company and under her care.

Dr. Leslie Koifman, Ph.D.

At 3 months old, our daughter, Mina was showing less and less interest in breastfeeding. I was so distraught. From the moment we learned we were pregnant, Mani and I knew we wanted to breastfeed. To me, if I could make food unlike any found on the planet and specifically designed for her needs, I was going to give it our all in the hopes she would feed as long as she wanted. Unfortunately, my mother passed away before Mina was born so I felt very vulnerable as a new Mom. I remember the first day I talked to Yvonne. I had been searching online for answers to why she wasn’t drinking any milk. THANK GOODNESS I found the La Leche League website and immediately found the number to Yvonne Toussaint, the local Leader in the San Fernando Valley. I left a message and received a return cal within the hour. Coincidentally, she was having a meeting that afternoon which she asked if I could make. I couldn’t miss it! The parents started showing up, and they were from all different backgrounds with one common vision. They all knew the importance of breastfeeding and it was really relieving to hear the mothers talk and to know we were all kind of going through the same experiences and challenges with our children! After a short time, it was time to go. The meeting sped by and I was inspired yet still puzzled. I started gathering everything up and getting Mina “ready” for her car ride home when Yvonne noticed that I gave Mina a pacifier. She asked how long I had been using it for and if there was any correlation to the drop in feeding. It was then that we realized that the pacifier was weaning my baby! I instantly threw it away. We haven’t had ANY complications with feeding since and Mina is now 2 years old! Aside from breastfeeding, I am enamoured by Yvonne’s parenting style and ability to answer questions with an open mind. She is extremely choosy in her advice to allow us as parents to develop our own, perfect, parenting style. Since my mom is not here to help, aside from spiritually, I have naturally enjoyed observing other mother’s in LLL and can say with love that Yvonne has indefinitely helped fill the void that I felt by becoming a young mom without my mom here to help along the way.

Michelle

You have been an amazing champion along this breastfeeding journey. I have learned and keep learning so much from you! Thank you so much for your continual support and encouragement.

As I navigate being a mom, LLL is one place where I feel free to put my foot down with my kids, speak my mind – successes and struggles, and where I meet moms who understand my attachment parenting, where I can confidently nurse my children in public. I don’t feel overly crunchy or like a helicopter parent.

In a sea of new mamas and with every need pressing, thank you for taking the time to respond so quickly to e-mails, addressing individual concerns, and sharing such valuable information. You are so thorough in our discussions, addressing each persons needs and questions, and yet you are still eager to learn more. Thank you for being attentive to the mamas and a strong advocate for our little ones.

My husband is my biggest advocate, and we are so grateful for you. Even after just one meeting with you, he is still very appreciative of and impressed by your thoughtful organization.

Even when there are dozens of things to address, you make me feel like my situation matters. You have reminded me to trust my instincts and to not let outside pressures dictate how I raise my babies. Watching your example of tandem nursing encouraged me to be much more confident to tandem nurse my little ones. And I’m successfully doing so!

Being surrounded by mamas who don’t hesitate to breastfeed is so empowering! You provide a safe place to do so, even as a first-timer trying to figure out the intricacies. I’m still learning to be brave, especially around friends and family. Almost every time, they offer me a blanket. I’m finally able to kindly refuse (usually) instead of feeling pressured and awkward.

Thank you for all that you do. Thank you for being an advocate for me to trust my mama instincts and reminding me that I’ve got it. I really appreciate you!

Leela

I’m a full time working mother with a 5-year old child that still enjoys nursing to sleep at night, and often times in the morning when she wakes up. Bed sharing works very well for our family since my husband and I are both away from our child so much during the day. We’ve decided to allow our daughter to self-wean when she’s ready. Since I’m not aware of many other families that have continued the nursing relationship to our child’s age, we’ve remained very private about it. Yvonne has been incredibly supportive and understanding as we go through the different challenges of nursing an older child. She’s provided resources and information about dentists that are pro-breastfeeding, as well as shared her personal experience of how it was for her to nurse her older son. Yvonne is such a champion of breastfeeding moms and dads, and it’s so comforting for me and my family. I know that when my child is ready to wean, and I have any struggles, I will get the support and guidance I need from the amazing Yvonne! Thank you!!

Sybil

Motherhood can be overwhelming at times, but the first few months of being a new Mom can be scary and frustrating too. Of course the overflowing LOVE you have for your child makes it all ok. That AND having a someone you can rely on to listen to any issues you might be having and actually provide ideas/solutions that could work. Luckily for me, that person was and still is Yvonne Toussaint.

My son just turned 2 and there have consistently been new challenges to face as a parent, but for me breastfeeding at first was the most troublesome. I had a very hard time getting my son to latch for the first few months of his life. I was determined to breastfeed and wouldn’t give up despite the pain I was going through (physically and emotionally). I had some guidance from the lactation nurses at the hospital before being discharged, and learned how to pump so that I could exclusively provide my child breast milk. When I got home from the hospital, I looked up my local La Leche League chapter and that’s when things turned around for me. Yvonne listened to my issues and responded to my late night emails when I needed someone most. She provided me with excellent references to reach out to (like a craniosacral therapist… something no one had mentioned to me before and it totally helped my son with his latching issues). After 3 months, my son latched and it has been wonderful every since. I just fully weaned him at 23 months old. It was an emotional experience for me… lots of crying, hormonal stuff, etc. Once again, Yvonne was there for me when I reached out for guidance on when/how to wean. I don’t know what I would have done over the last 2 years if I didn’t know Yvonne and know that she was available to me as an excellent resource, community leader and friend.

Candice

I will be forever grateful for meeting Yvonne and the effect she has had on my breastfeeding relationship with my daughter. I truly believe that we are still breastfeeding at 15 months, and continuing, because of the nurturing atmosphere Yvonne creates and the gentle guidance she provides.

Yvonne was the first person I contacted when I felt like something wasn’t quite right in the first two days of breastfeeding my daughter while still at the hospital. I had met her at a breastfeeding workshop while I was 8 months pregnant. I had already been to a breastfeeding “class”, but my sister had invited me to Yvonne’s workshop because I felt I still had more to learn. I was expecting something like a how-to-breastfeed but she also gave us an education on the benefits of breastfeeding, which further strengthened my desire to exclusively breastfeed. I’m glad I met her before I needed help, otherwise I may not have reached out and could have settled for supplementing with formula. She had been so encouraging to call her if something hurt while breastfeeding. She was so ready to help, she gave out all her contact information to whoever wanted it. I was glad to call her from the hospital and get the help I knew she could offer. She was so encouraging when I called! She celebrated that I was attempting to breastfeed and conveyed there was a light at the end of the tunnel. I was on the right path and she was going to guide me thru the bumps in the road.

Yvonne helped me thru those first weeks of questions and concerns, and is still there for me. From day one, she suggested attending her La Leche League meetings. She knew exactly what a new breastfeeding Mom needed! To be around like-minded Moms and Dads, going through the same struggles, having the same worries, shedding the same tears, all doing their very best. The atmosphere at her meetings is comfortable. It allows everyone to speak freely and share. Her stories of her own three children, along with the other parents attending the meetings, help soothe worries about our own breastfeeding journey. There is a moment that is stuck in my memory where she has said, “You are exactly what your baby needs”. Sometimes that’s all I need to remember when having a tough moment. If I’m dealing with some baby tears or a sleepless night, hearing those words, words that came from a La Leche League meeting, it alleviates the situation. She lends books and magazines, sends online articles, responds to emails and phone calls, and researches any issue she isn’t immediately familiar with. She will do anything she can to help you! If she doesn’t have a solution, she will find one! I know I can trust what she says. She references her sources when sharing facts, giving me piece of mind that she has done her research and is sharing factual data.

I’m so inspired by Yvonne’s commitment to helping families with breastfeeding. Her commitment to the breastfeeding community is something I wish to emulate. She has shown me the beauty of breastfeeding by helping foster the confidence I needed to believe in my own body. To say I am grateful to her would be an understatement.

Stefanie & Mercy

Yvonne is a lovely woman and mother with a very kind and helpful spirit. I met her at one of the LLL meetings she led when my daughter was 6 weeks old. I’d seen a lactation consultant earlier in the week because I had a plugged duct and milk blister, and my daughter’s latch still didn’t feel right. Yvonne was kind enough to help me before the meeting started. She made me feel more confident in my baby’s technique, and commended me for my positive attitude. As moms and dads filtered into the meeting (at a park), I observed Yvonne assist parents parents with loads of various questions and concerns with ease. She is very clear and calm in her approach to all matters. I went to a different meeting when my daughter was 14 weeks old, and she helped me work through my concerns on returning to work full-time. She has a great lending library, and lent me an informative book on the subject. It really helped! I’d also like to note that Yvonne is great at returning emails when I have questions. I recently asked her some questions about introducing solid foods, and she got right back to me with several helpful suggestions! I appreciate Yvonne’s commitment to her work, and highly recommend her support to mamas seeking help with their new babies. She has three lovely children of her own; I’d say she’s doing something right!

Rachael

Where do I begin! Yvonne has been an amazing inspiration to me as a mother! I first met Yvonne pregnant with my second son attending a LLL meeting. I knew breastfeeding was the best option for my son but I experienced so much pain and no support breastfeeding my first child that I knew I needed help this time around. However, Yvonne not only provided me with amazing facts and benefits but she has supported me through all my ups and downs.

When my son was born, breastfeeding did not come easy for him and caused me to worry especially when he was less than a week old and the doctors told me to take him to the ER since he was losing weight. As I stood there in the ER at 10 at night in the waiting room filled with germs and sick people everywhere, I broke down and emailed Yvonne asking for help. Within minutes we were on the phone and she was encouraging me to trust my instincts as a mother. We left the ER knowing I was acting with the best intentions for my son. As Yvonne assured me that as a mother I would know what to do. My son was just fine and within days gained weight. He is now a healthy toddler still nursing and very happy!

Yvonne has helped me become a stronger person and has opened my eyes to all the wonderful possibilities as a mother!

Natalie

Yvonne was a literally a life saver for me and my daughter. I did not find out about the La Leche League until my daughter was 6 or 7 months old. The moment I found the group, I met Yvonne, and the rest of the gals. It was a very inviting experience. I was extremely shy and waited my turn until we were allowed to ask questions. I thought I bombarded everyone with my questions, but I was so overwhelmed, I had no other choice. She offered countless advice or ways I could increase milk supply (since this was my biggest struggle after going back to work), how to position my daughter to feed better, and encouragement throughout the week when I didn’t see her (especially when my family and friends were suggesting that I stop breastfeeding at my daughter’s first birthday). If it was not for the help of Yvonne, I would not have been able to breastfeed for 19 months while achieving my master’s degree, working full time, and being a wife and a mother. I now am a advocate for breastfeeding. I want to eventually become a La Leche League Leader and a Lactation Consultant. I would suggest going to Yvonne for any and all breastfeeding needs and support. It will be one of the best decisions you have ever made in your breastfeeding journey!

Ashlei

Fortunately I had an uncomplicated natural childbirth with no major problems with breastfeeding (BF), but when I left the hospital, I received NO detailed information from the lactation nurse. My husband and I started attending LLL while our baby girl was still a newborn, and met Yvonne, our local LLL leader, who is simply AMAZING!

We gained so much support and a WEALTH of information regarding the benefits of BF from her. She even tried to share this information with my mother who only breastfed me for less than one month. Armed with this new found knowledge, I am proud to say that I continue to successfully breastfeed my now 23 month baby even though she is eating solid food and despite others, including my mother, who has encouraged me to wean my baby off breast milk. Like Yvonne would say, “Why would you stop giving your baby the MOST natural and MOST nutritious food specifically designed for your baby?” Yvonne has helped my husband understand the importance of his support for me so that I can successfully BF. She has given us wonderful resources regarding BF and parenting. I love the bond I share with my daughter through BF. I can’t thank Yvonne enough for all her encouragement, support, and friendship!

Judeen

I can’t say enough about Yvonne. When my daughter was 6 weeks old and tiny, I was struggling with breastfeeding and post-partum depression, and I reached out to Yvonne via LLL. I wasn’t expecting much from someone who volunteers her time to tens to hundreds of moms daily. I wrote her a very long email and she responded immediately: “come to a meeting”, among many other thoughtful and supportive comments. I hadn’t left home for more than 30 minutes with my baby before (yes, I wasn’t coping well), but she told me I could use a cover and dads are welcome and I did it, I went for 2 hours with my husband and sat in a park on a blanket with my baby girl. That was exactly the push I needed, and that was the beginning of my recovery journey. She answered all my questions lovingly and re-assuringly, listened to my difficult birthing story which was a large part of my healing process, she was extremely loving to my daughter and very welcoming of my husband. Even though she talks to a ton of moms, she remembers all our names (including dads!) months later. She’s got a beautiful relaxed nature, and is extremely loving and accepting of all, including a negative whiny mom (that’s me when I started going to meetings!). She was just the support I needed to continue breastfeeding, as I had a lot of push back from family (not husband though!) for my decision.She taught me on my first meeting to remember that, both, my daughter and I went through a difficult birthing experience and that my role is just to be there for her, accepting and loving. She’s knowledgeable in her field, full of energy, full of love for others and can give support and empathy endlessly. Easy to talk to, she even makes me open up about private feelings in front of a crowd of people. Yvonne also introduced me to a group of lovely parents who I am still friends, and who helped me also be the mom I am today, happy and still breastfeeding my baby, who’s not so tiny anymore! I can’t believe it’s been over a year since my first meeting, I wouldn’t be as confident, proud and nurturing as I am today if it wasn’t for Yvonne.

Thank you Yvonne, I don’t think you’ll ever know the impact you’ve had on my family. I will try and continue to spread your message and love, cuz I got a lot of it!

Heba

Even though we’ve never met…you’ve been super supportive for my twin daughters who are breastfeeding.  The first time I got in touch with you because one of the new mommies was having difficulty with the baby “latching on.”  You gave her some sound advice which was the answer to the equation.  You are a genius!

Anita

I am truly thankful for you getting me back on my breastfeeding track! I am currently exclusively breast feeding, we got the latch going 🙂 If it wasn’t for you, I feel like I would just give up, I was losing hope, but now we are exactly where I always imagined to be, feeding wise. So, once again, thank you!

Svitlana

I just wanted to say that I have been SO blessed by Yvonne.  She took it upon herself to help me when I knew very little about being a mom or breastfeeding.  I’m pregnant with my first child right now.  I started attending the La Leche Meetings, not knowing what to expect.  I was blown away by the positivity, love, and support.  Yes, we talk about breastfeeding (at all stages – which is so very helpful for me to learn right now), but we also talk about just being a mom/parent in general!  I have referred this meeting to several people because I feel like all pregnant and nursing moms should be in it.  Yvonne is so giving of herself and also models as a really awesome mother to her kids and a great wife to her husband.  You can watch her, as an example, during the meetings, and that’s been great for me to observe as well.  Yvonne is always available and willing to help, and I feel comfy talking to her about anything!

Erika

On parenting

Yvonne has been a great source of inspiration and incredible resource regarding breastfeeding as well as babies growing into bigger children.  Time and time again she has answered in great detail with a vast amount of information a question or concern I have had.  She has given me advice in person and in emails which I have kept and read many times over.

I have attended her meetings and remembered some of her stories or words in times with my sons when I wanted to be a better and more positive mother than my own.

Yvonne has made an impact on me and my children that will make me and my boys better people.  In an age where loss of compassion and empathy seem to be rampant, it was refreshing to have guidance from a truly wonderful person and mother.

Joy

On friendship

Yvonne and I met over 15 years ago and have remained friends across-country, as I moved back to Chicago when I was expecting my first child. After 2 C-section births and my third child on the way, I phoned Yvonne and shared my reservations about scheduling a third C-section. Thanks to Yvonne’s encouragement I successfully had a “double VBAC” (vaginal birth after 2 C-sections). When I was expecting my 4th child, I again contacted Yvonne for support. She shared about the Hypnobabies program which she had just used with her first birth. Contacting my local Hypnobabies instructor, I did the home study course, and my husband and I successfully had another natural birth with our fourth daughter, this time with joy and confidence.

Happily, my 5th baby was born using Hypnobabies and Yvonne’s support from across the miles. This has been such a gift in my life and without Yvonne I have no doubt that I would have had c-sections number 3, 4 & 5 if I was even able to have these precious babies. You have a gem on your hands. I only wish I was closer in distance to reap the benefits and support of my dear friend and a wonderful instructor. I wish you all the best in your childbirth experience, and congratulations on your new gift. Enjoy the process it is awesome.

Mary

Yvonne is one of those unique souls that from the moment you meet her you know you’re in safe, trusted, caring, and knowledgeable hands. It’s interesting because I actually grew up with Yvonne and if you asked me to describe her 25 years ago and again today, I’d describe the same artistic, empathic, and humble person who is always engaged in your best interest. She’s always been on a hunt for knowledge and coincidentally a natural teacher. She is the main reason I choose the “natural” birthing route. From the moment she first learned she was pregnant with her first child and decided on the Hypnobabies program…I was hooked. How was I hooked? She engaged me often on the art and principles behind Hypnobabies that I researched it myself (and no, I wasn’t pregnant nor had plans to become pregnant at the time). I realized the Hypnobabies mindset is something you can leverage in many parts of life. Centering yourself, staying in your positive bubble, and envisioning what you want to experience, for example. When a couple of my friends (that Yvonne didn’t know) became pregnant, I asked Yvonne if she would speak with them about her experience. Not only did she share her experience but offered any references, books, etc that she had. To this day they still look to Yvonne for advice from parenting to breastfeeding to healthy recipes 😉 When I became pregnant and started the Hypnobabies home course, Yvonne was there every step of the way with two kids in the background and her third also on the way (we were one month apart) never missing a beat to support me, answering any questions I had and wanting to know about MY experience!! I’m happy to say we had an amazing pregnancy and birthing experience and are blessed with a beautiful baby who is full of joy. Everyone should be so lucky to have Yvonne to be there for support to advice to everything else in between when it comes to birthing and parenting.

So what’s the point I’m really trying to get across…Yvonne was born to be a mother, a teacher, an advisor, and a friend.

Michelle

Yvonne is warm, caring, supportive, and thoughtful.  She listens and puts her energy and whole and true self into her conversations, interactions, and friendships.  This energy and approach to life is evident in the way she interacts with her family and friends.  She has offered me many insights into how I want to interact and build connected relationships with my children and those who are in my life either temporarily or permanently.  For this I am forever grateful.

Cindy

From a dad’s perspective

Yvonne

Thank you so much for guiding us through the Hypnobabies birthing class.  It was certainly an interesting process to see Cristie transform her mind and prepare for the birthing process in a manner free from pain killers and epidurals.  Cristie did amazing though the entire process and today, we have a precious baby girl.
The birthing process was really smooth.  It was about 8 pm that the pressure waves really began.  Occurring every twenty minutes and slowly reducing in time from that point on.  At midnight, they were about every ten minutes.  And at 3 am, they were about every five minutes.  We called our doctor at that point, and she said take your time and come on in.
Cristie had been listening to her meditations throughout the night.  Settling into the car, she simply closed her eyes and began hypnosis.  We arrived at the hospital and settled in around 4:30 am.  I placed the signs on the doors that we are doing HypnoBabies.  I spoke with the nurses and shared with them that all questions will go through me and that Cristie just wants to stay in her zone.  The nurse staff were amazing.  Cristie had shared with them what our plans were and they did everything they could to help Cristie reach her goal.
The nurse did a check upon our arrival just to give a baseline.  She didn’t tell Cristie how much she had dilated but I had asked and was told 5 cm!  With our past two girls, this would have been about 2 cm.
Cristie was solid!  Listening to her head phones and doing her peace ques with each pressure wave.  I offered scripts, rubbing, water, ice . . . she took the water and ice but preferred the ipod than to listening to me.  As her husband, I just let her find the right path for her and did my best to not screw that up.
Around 7 am, Cristie began to feel the urge to push.  The nurse did another check and again, Cristie did not want to know the status.  With Cristie still in her hypnosis, the nurse discretely shared with me that she was 8 cm!
The pressure waves were so much more spread out than our previous two births.  I remember with our first two, and after Cristie was given the pitocin, I would watch the waves on the screen.  They were very uniform, very high, and very close together.  With the HypnoBabies, these pressure waves were mostly mid range, with a few low and a few high.  The biggest difference were how much more distance there was between each wave.  Cristie was able to handle them all – no problem.
At 7:30, our doctor arrived and did a check.  Cristie had reached 9 cm without so much as an aspirin.  With the help of her doctor (*assisting with a cervical lip), Cristie reached 10 cm.  With our birth prompts playing in the background, our doctor mentioned a few times how great Cristie was doing and how impressed she was with how well things moved along.
At 7:50, the transformation began.  With Cristie able to move her legs (no epidural), she was able to find a position that worked for her.  After four pressure waves, our baby girl was welcomed into the world at 8:01 AM.  It is worth pointing out that the 11 minutes this took, if we had had pitocin, Cristie would have had about 15 or more pressure waves.
Cristie was incredible!  Both our doctor and I agreed that this birth seemed much more intimate than our first two.  That through the HypnoBabies process, Cristie and I seemed much more connected.
Thank you again for helping us obtain the tools and the confidence to make this happen.  It was amazing.
All our best to you in the coming year.
Josh

Josh

One of the best advice that Yvonne has given me which continues to resonate with me till this day is “your daughter feels everything you feel”. I became so frustrated when my wife returned to work and my daughter would NOT take the bottle. I thought my neighbors were going to call the cops because she cried so much. Because of Yvonne’s encouragement and support, I was able to have more patience with my daughter and she eventually took to the bottle. We have gotten so much support from Yvonne, her husband Kent, as well as the other wonderful breastfeeding couples we have met.

Mo

Daddies Welcome at La Leche League

Admittedly, I had my reservations when my wife Donna invited me to join her and our son Georgie at La Leche League. But since I was one of the first guys to crash a females-only baby shower years ago, I thought less than twice.

I was a great comfort to my wife (or so I hope) and son (whom I received bonus play time with as my wife could focus on participating and learning). The other dads provided great comfort to me — especially Yvonne’s husband Kent. Not only did we throw the football around, but we talked about what it was like to be new dads. Had beer been present, I suppose we could have called ourselves, Lo Beer League.

Yvonne is knowledgeable, supportive, empathetic and non-judgment — as is her equally awesome husband Kent!

Andrew Fumento

Yvonne right from the get-go shows you that if you feel like you or your partner are doing something wrong it’s really just a solution that has not shown itself yet and that you are more than capable of giving your baby everything they need. Also that you don’t need to have all the answers or be a expert and that daddy can’t always be the comfy for the baby that mother is, especially at the very beginning. Just being mommy’s comfy is the best possible thing and that’s ok. Yvonne shows Mommy and Daddy just what they need to make baby happy. My wife and I had a tough time at the beginning because it was tough for my wife to get the baby to latch and for me not knowing what to do to help. Then we went to our first class with Yvonne and she showed us that it’s ok to struggle but we just need to keep positive and keep trying and within a matter of a week or two my wife was able to get the little one to latch and exclusively breastfeed. It felt great to know we had help to back us up when we were struggling. Yvonne also has all these great ideas of how to help you with the baby, more than just breastfeeding, but how to connect. She is just a great all around person, the second you start talking to her it makes you want to have a whole conversation with her and just completely change how you look at certain things.

Christopher & Cristina