Birth is a profound experience for both parents and baby. If you have ever asked a parent about the day their child was born, they can retell the story as if it was yesterday. Whether five days prior, five years prior, or even fifty years prior. Why do parents hire a birth doula? Because it is a profound experience.
As a doula, new or seasoned, you are likely aware why the birth experience matters. It is not so much the specific outcome which determines a birth experience. In many cases, how a birthing person is made to feel, if they are heard, and if they are an active participant, they are likely to report a positive experience.
Why hire a doula? Why should clients hire you? Because you can help them be heard, feel cared for, and be an active participant in their birth experience.
Parents Hire a Birth Doula For Continuity of Care
One of the most challenging aspects of modern maternity care is less continuity of care. Many facilities are designed to have whoever is on-call attend the birth. This means your clients could birth with a doctor or midwife they have never even met.
Even for those birthing with their midwife or doctor, they are unlikely to know their nurses or birth assistants. As a doula, you can provide a level of continuity. While your role is completely non-medical, the care you provide is valuable. In fact, research shows parents who use a doula not only report higher birth experience satisfaction, but they are also less likely to experience several interventions.
Doulas Are Like a “Living” Birth Plan
Many clients will ask you about creating a birth plan. Not only is it a great process for them to decide their birth preferences, but it also makes it easy to communicate their preferences to their providers.
However, there are times a client may be distracted, forget to bring a copy, or simply feel overwhelmed. As their doula, you will be aware of their birth plan and preferences. With that information, you can remind them of their options and help meet their goals and preferences if they still desire.
While you are not there to be their voice, you are there to help them find their voice. You can help them speak up if they desire or help guide their partner to speak up.
Hiring a Doula Lowers The Pressure For A Birth Partner
When parents hire you, they can rest assured they have additional support. For some partners, being the sole source of support can be overwhelming. Not to mention, being a parent is a big deal. Even if you are not the one giving birth, it is still an intense experience.
When parents hire you, they have the security of not having to remember all the details they learned in class. Struggling to remember what to do for back labor? Not a problem, that is what the doula is for!
As a doula, this is a great aspect of your service to explain to potential clients. You are not only there for a birthing person, but you also support the parents, and if applicable, siblings too.
Evidenced-Based and Non-Judgmental Support
New parents are often bombarded with information and opinions. It can be difficult to sort through all of it. As a professional doula, you have the knowledge and skills to help provide them with only evidenced-based information.
You also provide them with non-judgmental support as they make decisions with the evidenced-based information you share with them.
Becoming a new parent can be exciting. It can also be scary and unpredictable. With the help of a doula, parents can have a more positive birth experience and transition to parenthood.