are some FAQs to answer most of your questions,
but your best bet is to choose your doula according to their personality,
your intuition, and overall personal dynamics.
once you get closer to choosing, let's talk over a cup o' tea...
What training and education
do you have?
I am a DONA
certified labor doula. Certification consists of completing an
extensive reading list, a training course, hands-on birth experiences,
and evaluations from doctors, nurses and doula clients. There
are also essays and a few other criteria but that basically covers
certification for pretty much all certified doulas. I have been
working as a doula for approximately the past 5 years. (However, I believe a doula's
best qualification is her intuition and I would recommend
choosing a doula according to your intuition.)
I am also a Lamaze certified childbirth
In addition, I am a Natural Health Consultant,
which is another passion of mine, and one of the things that led
me to become a doula.
Do you also offer
Postpartum Doula Services?
Currently, my doula services are solely
available for Labor support. There are doulas who do both but
I find it difficult because of scheduling. Labor support requires
24/7 oncall services. Doing both can be difficult to coordinate and potentially
disappointing for one of my clients so I have opted to concentrate
on one discipline.
What is your philosophy about childbirth
and supporting women and their partners through labor?
My personal philosophy is that women were
made to give birth naturally without much intervention and that
everything should be done to support this. (However, to be fair, there is a reason why each of those interventions came into being and a good doula knows that used judiciously, one small intervention at the right time can prevent bigger interventions down the road.)
Of course my wish is
for every woman to have the MOST natural birth that is right
but only you and your partner can make those decisions
I am simply there to facilitate and guide you
else is up to you.
I will assist you in making informed decisions
about your care and I will be your hands-on guide throughout the
When do you try to join women in labor -
at our home or at the place of birth?
I prefer to join you at your home so that
we can work together through early labor and determine the best
time to go to your place of birth, but depending on circumstances
and your preferences, I can also meet you there.
Will you meet with us to discuss our birth
plans and the role that you will play in supporting us through
Yes. Usually I meet with a couple at least
2-4 hours in order to conduct a prenatal interview and do some
hands-on work with positioning and labor comfort techniques. And
generally, this is our time to get to know one another and feel
comfortable so that when I show up for your labor we are all on
the same page and I don't need to ask you a lot of unnecessary
questions when you've got "labor brain."
At this time we will also go over many aspects
of your pregnancy and upcoming birth; your hopes and fears, your
preferences for hypothetical scenarios we may encounter, medical
and emotional history, why you chose to have a doula and what
you want me to do and not do.
May we call you with questions or concerns
before or after the birth?
Once we have signed a contract, I am your
doula. You may call me for anything leading up to the birth and
afterwards. I will help you gather information and resources,
do research for you and assist you in any way that I can.
Do you work with one or more backup doulas
for times when you are not available?
As doulas, we generally work with a backup
to ensure that someone will be there for you during your labor
and birth. I work with a few different backups, depending on availability
and personalities, and can provide you with all their contact
information once I have tailored the best match.
May we meet them?
That is up to you. Usually, clients
are satisfied to speak over the phone since it is a very rare
occurrence that a backup doula is required, but again that is
up to you. FYI, I have never needed to use my back-up (knock on
What are your doula fees, what services does
it include and what are your refund policies?
My fees are $1200 for local births and
$1500 for nyc births. There are circumstances when
this will be more or less depending on your needs and wishes.
Once we've talked we will determine within what price range your preferences for doula services fall. *If this is out
of reach, I will consider ANY REASONABLE request.
A nonrefundable deposit is due at
the first prenatal home visit and the remainder is due within
2 weeks prior to your due date. Any additional fees or tips may
be paid at the postpartum visit.
My services include a pre-interview, about
2-4 hours of labor support preparation to get comfortable with
each other and your desires for your birth. At this time we will
also go over labor comfort measures, pregnancy complaints and
I will be on-call 2 weeks before and up
to 2 weeks after your due date. I will then either come to your
house or meet you at the hospital when labor begins. I remain
with you for the entirety of your labor and for at least one hour
postpartum to initiate breastfeeding and establish a good latch.
Within a week I will usually follow up with
a postpartum visit to your home to answer any questions, go over
the birth and generally see how everyone's doing.
Refund Policy: I
will make every effort to provide the services described within
your contract. Sometimes this is impossible (for example, with
a very, very rapid labor). If my failure to attend your birth
is due to my error, I may refund a portion of the fee, depending
on the amount of prenatal time we have spent together. If my failure
to attend your birth is due to circumstances beyond anyone's control
or your failure to call, I will retain the entire fee.
Other possible services:
Private Childbirth Education
Mother/Father & Baby Photography (postpartum)
Belly Casting, Belly Painting and Birth Art (commissioned)
Murals for the Nursery or Children's Rooms (commissioned)
Will you provide references?
Yes. I will give you names and numbers
at your request.