What does "doula" mean?
"Doula" is a Greek word which has come to refer to an experienced woman who offers continuous emotional, physical and informational support to a family before, during and immediately following childbirth.
DONA International has made this fantastic video to explain what a doula does. Video
Why is a doula important?
How is a doula different than a midwife?
Doulas do not perform any of the clinical tasks a midwife is qualified to do. The non-medical skills a doula offers include explanations of medical procedures, informational support during pregnancy and birth, positioning suggestions during labour and birth, natural pain relief measures, help with breastfeeding, and most importantly, a constant nurturing, reassuring and objective support as well as first-hand knowledge and understanding of what the labouring mother is going through. A doula is not trained to monitor your or the baby's vital signs, check your dilation, or administer medications.
How will you advocate for me during labour?
As a DONA International Certified birth doula, I am bound to a Standard of Ethics "The doula advocates for the client's wishes as expressed in her birth plan, in prenatal conversations, and intrapartum discussion, by encouraging her client to ask questions of her caregiver and to express her preferences and concerns. The doula helps the mother incorporate changes in plans if and when the need arises, and enhances the communication between client and caregiver. Clients and doulas must recognize that the advocacy role does not include the doula speaking instead of the client or making decisions for the client. The advocacy role is best described as support, information, and mediation or negotiation." Essentially, I will not speak to the medical staff on your behalf, but I can help you in obtaining the information you need to help you make an informed decision.
Does a doula replace the Father to Be?
Absolutely NOT! Her presence strengthens the partner's role. Pressure to know what to do for the labouring mother is removed. The doula's experience helps her know the physical and emotional needs of the woman so she can then show the partner how to better help the mother.
When should I hire you?
Ideally, the sooner the better. That way we have sufficient time to get to know each other and time to plan your birth. I only take one client in a 14-21 day spread, ensuring that I am there for your delivery. However, if I have the availability, and am hired towards the end of your pregnancy, there is a lot we can accomplish in those last few weeks before your due date.
What is included with your fee?
Please click here to see what is included with my doula services.
Please email me for information on my availability and fees.
Do you offer a consultation?
Yes I do. This is usually a one hour visit, done either in your home or a coffee shop. It's a chance for you to ask me any questions you have, and to see if I am the right doula for you. Once we have the interview I hold your spot for 10 days, so if you decide to hire me your spot is still available.If you decide that I am NOT the doula for you, it's appreciated to let me know, otherwise at the end of the 10 days, your spot will become available to others.
I'm planning a c-section, can I still hire a doula?
Yes, definitely! Please click here for more information.