What Is a Birth Doula?
A doula brings unique care, support and advocacy to your labor and birth experience. We are trained in emotional and physical support, and can help you find evidence-based information to help guide your birth preferences. I work closely with birthing people and their partners to help them have their best birth possible.
Best said by DONA International:
A Birth Doula
- Recognizes birth as a key experience the mother will remember all her life
- Understands the physiology of birth and the emotional needs of a woman in labor
- Assists the woman in preparing for and carrying out her plans for birth
- Stays with the woman throughout the labor
- Provides emotional support, physical comfort measures and an objective viewpoint, as well as helping the woman get the information she needs to make informed decision
- Facilitates communication between the laboring woman, her partner and her clinical care providers
- Perceives her role as nurturing and protecting the woman's memory of the birth experience
- Allows the woman's partner to participate at his/her comfort level
It is common for dads and other birth partners to have questions about a doula's role, and have concerns about being upstaged or pushed out. On the contrary, having a doula present allows a partner to support the birthing person in the ways they are best at. Birth partners and I learn from each other during the labor process. They help me learn more about what that individual laboring person responds to, and we work together well to provide comprehensive care to them in that moment. In addition, having a doula present can help the dad or partner take care of themselves during what can be a long event. Knowing that someone else familiar is there to stay with the mom can provide the space for dad/partner to take a break, eat a meal, or take a nap.
Studies have shown that doula supported labors/births have fewer complications, require less medical intervention, and result in healthier babies and higher breastfeeding success rates. For more information on the role of the birth doula, as well as information on postpartum doulas, please visit DONA International.
For more information about the birth doula services I offer, please see the "Services and Fees" page on this website.