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To Doula or Not to Doula…

By Kay on Tue, Jul 18, 2006

General, Pregnancy

Q: To doula or not to doula; that is the question. My husband’s fine with it, I think it could be nice, but I’m not sure we need one. But then, we were talking to our doctor who suggested that if we were going to try to have a natural, unmedicated birth that we might want to consider a doula. Also, I think my biggest thing is I don’t want to take away from my husband’s part in this and make him feel unneeded. I want us to be partners…any suggestions?

A: Doula – I say go for it! Do your homework and pick a good one that you both get along with personality-wise and is going to be able to offer the kinds of things that YOU want.

It’s all about communication at this point. Most doulas are VERY aware of not stepping on the dad’s toes, but are also a very valuable resource during labor as they have more experience with the whole process and will most probably be more knowledgeable and level-headed about things to do to help you have the best labor possible – especially unmedicated.

I would especially think that in a hospital setting where your doctor most probably won’t be able to be with you through the entire labor, and you never know what kind of L&D nurse or shift changes you may run into, that it would be especially helpful to have one person (besides your husband, of course) that’s consistent throughout. Besides that, it’s also helpful for him to have someone to look to for help when he has a question or may need something, too.

It was so nice having ours there for us, because she could go get Shawn something to eat or drink, and then he didn’t have to leave my side. OR, she could hold my hand and distract me while he took a breather or went pee. Plus, one of the other doulas I had during Kate’s birth (she was just part of the birthing team at Nativiti) was also a massage therapist with knowledge of accupressure. She was a LIFE SAVER as she knew just where to touch, how hard, and when to help get through each contraction.

So, if you can afford it, and you and your husband are BOTH comfortable with the idea, I think a doula is a GREAT resource.

Written by Kay Hesketh - Visit Website

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