Why should I hire a doula?
Many research studies have shown clear benefits to having a doula present for labor and birth. A doula 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. Your doula makes you, the laboring mother, the focus of her attention. You may have a different nurse at shift change and your care provider may go back to the clinic to other patients or home to rest, but your doula stays by your side through your labor and birth.
Do you meet me prenatally?
Yes!! I like to meet you for a free, no obligation interview so we can get acquainted and find out if we will be a good fit for each other. I can answer questions and discuss my services in greater detail. After our interview I plan to meet with you one to three more times to discuss your birth wishes, help you formulate a birth plan, and educate you on comfort measures, positions for labor, relaxation and breathing techniques, as you wish. I direct you to evidence-based pregnancy and birth information.
How can you help my husband/partner and involve him?
I want your partner to be involved in ways that feel truly comfortable to him and comforting to you. Your partner is usually the person who offers the greatest emotional support to you and I work to strengthen that support. My hope is that the two of you feel closer and more connected because of your baby’s birth.
How will I get in contact with you if I have questions or when I am in labor?
Once we have signed our contract and a deposit has been made I will be available to you by phone or email to answer questions and we will meet for prenatal visits. From the time you are 38 weeks until you birth your baby I will be on call for you 24 hours a day.
When I am in labor do you come to my home or meet me at the hospital?
I offer active labor support starting at home, or I will meet you at the hospital – whenever you feel like you want me to join you. I will attend a planned home birth if you have a certified midwife (CNM or CPM) present.
How long do you stay after the birth?
I will stay for one or two hours or until baby is latched on and is breastfeeding. I usually stay until things feel settled and you are ready for some family time.
What things do you not do?
I do not offer medical advice.
I do not do clinical tasks.
I do not make decisions for you.
What if you and I disagree about something related to birth?
The birth you are looking forward to is your own. I am your doula to support your preferences. I will work with you to help you gain knowledge and confidence in choosing a direction for your baby’s birth.
What if I want a natural birth?
Birth is a normal, natural process and God designed your body to birth your baby. Most mothers are coming to birth from a position of wellness and strength. If you want a natural birth, you have a reasonably normal labor, you secure good labor support and prepare yourself ahead of time – it can be done! I will be there to support you in this. Of course, no one knows exactly how your labor will go so some flexibility is a good thing.
What if I want an epidural or other pain medications?
Absolutely, you may choose an epidural or pain medications! I will support you no matter what birth preferences you choose. A mother who chooses an epidural for pain management still needs calming support and information about what to expect. There are positions I can suggest which will be an asset to the mother with an epidural.
Will you be with me if I have a Cesarean birth?
Some hospitals and some anesthesiologists will allow two support people in the operating room. In this case your partner and doula will be allowed to support you during surgery.
At which hospitals do you provide doula services?
CHI St. Francis Health, Breckenridge, MN
Essentia Health, Fargo, ND
Sanford Health, Fargo, ND
Lake Region Healthcare, Fergus Falls, MN