Labor is intense. A doula is there to ease your fears, be present with you, and encourage you through this amazing challenge. She knows that laboring people need someone safe, who brings no judgment to the birth space. Many partners worry that a doula will replace them in the birth space, but a good doula is a partner's right hand woman. They work in tandem to help the laboring person have an amazing birth.
Childbirth education and informative prenatal visits help the doula normalize the birth and postpartum experience for couples. A doula and childbirth educator ensures that you're not walking into labor and breastfeeding blind. You will be well-informed about your options, rights, and resources as parents. A doula does not advocate for her clients with healthcare providers, but instead empowers parents to advocate for themselves.
Hands On Support
Labor is hard work! Parents and babies work in tandem to dance through labor together. But, a lot of times, laboring parents need help! A doula is well-trained in comfort measures, labor positions, and the many variations of labor. Your doula’s "bag of tricks" as well as her experience and training help her make labor as comfortable as possible. "Unmedicated" doesn't mean "totally miserable!" Whether its muscle observation and quiet reminders, or some strong double hip squeezes, your doula will work hard to help you.
What Doesn't a Doula Do?
A doula is not a medical professional. We are not trained to check cervical dilation, diagnose medical conditions, or catch babies!
We are knowledgeable about many variations of labor, common conditions of pregnancy, and routine medical procedures, but we do not make medical recommendations.
We defer to the expertise of your care provider to make those recommendations! However, we are happy to help you know your options and make the best decisions for your family!
Do I Really Need a Doula IF...
I'm Birthing At Home?
Doulas are an integral and important part of the birth team at a home birth! While your midwives and their assistants honor and respect the beauty of physiological birth at home, their role is still clinical. They are present to make sure everyone stays safe and healthy. A doula’s support role is essential to help mom feel supported and encouraged. A doula can work in concert with the rest of your home birth team to make you comfortable and help you labor efficiently.
I’m planning an epidural?
Doulas are super helpful for helping to manage pain, and we know that epidurals can be an awesome tool for managing pain as well! Your doula can help you navigate the choices and interventions that may come alongside an epidural, as well as helping you through your labor until you can receive that pain management strategy. Once you’ve got your epidural in place, your doula can help you with positioning to help baby get into an optimal position for pushing and birth!
I’ve had a baby before?
Experienced moms are amazing. Going through the intensity of labor and birth, and then doing it again? The coolest. Whether you had a doula for your first birth and it went great, or you’re hoping for a really different experience from the first time around, a doula can help you with emotional, educational, and hands-on support. Every pregnancy and birth is different, and your doula can help you navigate the unique challenges and experiences that can arise this time around.
It is a common misconception that doulas are only for “crunchy” parents who want an unmedicated birth, but I believe that all families deserve a doula, because all families deserve to feel supported and cared for in their birth decisions. So, whether you want an unmedicated birth, a medicated birth, or are even planning your cesarean birth, you deserve a doula. Doulas are important for caring for the whole family as they welcome new life.