What is a Doula?
The word doula - is a Greek word that means “a woman who serves”
DOULAS are non-medical professionals who support pregnant women and their families in their pregnancy, labor and childbirth, and postpartum journeys. There can be doulas for fertility - supporting those who need help in getting pregnant, a doula for labor and birth, a doula for postpartum - supporting families as they transition to parenthood, or bereavement doulas - supporting families experiencing infant loss or death of loved ones.
As a birth doula, one of our roles is to make sure that you are educated and prepared for childbirth and newborn parenting in mind, body, heart and spirit. It is a wholistic approach, in the sense that, no matter what kind of birth you plan to have or you should have, a doula may be there to support you in all aspects of the mind, body, heart and spirit.
Educate your mind
Practical, evidence-based information
Empower your body
Trust & Confidence in your physical body
Encourage your heart
Enlighten your spirit
Spiritual transformation of you and your family
The role of your doula
The Role of Your Doula is not to provide medical diagnosis. Instead, they will refer you to the appropriate professional and possibly suggest questions that you may want to ask in order to facilitate a good discussion with your provider.
Doulas provide emotional and educational support. They do not perform clinical tasks such as checking blood pressure, fetal heart tones, vaginal exams or any other medical procedure that falls under the legal definition of practicing medicine.
Doulas do not make decisions for you. They will point you toward accurate, evidence based information in order to ensure an informed decision, discuss appropriate ways to convey decisions or preferences to your care providers and remind you of previously stated decisions. The responsibility of all decision making lies with you and your care provider.
Doulas do not speak to medical staff on your behalf. They can discuss concerns and options with you, as well as support you in voicing your concerns, ensuring that you have the opportunity to discuss choices with your care provider. It is your responsibility to convey your thoughts to the medical staff.
Doulas cannot promise any specific birth outcome. They cannot overrule you or a medical professional when a care decision has been made or intervene in your care
Do you perform any physical examinations?
I do not perform clinical tasks, such as blood pressures, fetal assessments, vaginal exams, etc. but I am happy to educate you about the physiology of birth and guide you on the optimal breathing and movement techniques in labor.
What are your interactions with medical staff like?
I work for you, not your health care provider or hospital. In that regard, I will build a professional level of relationship and communication with your chosen health care provider to ensure you have the information needed to make informed decisions in labor.
How will hiring you affect my partner’s role during the birth?
I will not replace your spouse/birth partner, rather I work with them. A doula knows pregnancy, labor and birth, and the partner knows the birther — it's a perfect team.