Are you wondering if you should hire a doula? There are a lot of pros, but there are also some cons. Delve a little deeper into both to find clarity!
PROS of Hiring a Doula
- A Consistent Person for Your Care: Most doulas meet with you one or more times before the birth, stay with you throughout labor, and make one or more postpartum visits. Because of this, they know your concerns and priorities regarding labor, they can help you debrief and digest the labor experience, and they can help with breastfeeding and parenting concerns.
- Support for the father or partner. Fathers or partners can participate to the extent that they feel comfortable. Fathers especially need nurturing and care during this major life transition.
- Resource of Information. You and your partner do not have to worry about forgetting what you learned in childbirth preparation classes.
- Another extra pair of hands. During long births, the partner and doula can give breaks to each other. During intense periods, more than one person may be needed to help you.
- Credibility. You know that unlike the father, the doula has a lot of experiences with birth. You will trust that what the doula asks can be done because you know the doula has helped moms birth before.
- Advocacy. She can not make decisions for you, but can support you in your decisions. Accountable only to the couple, the doula has no conflict of interest with the hospital or doctor. She is ideally situated to facilitate communication between you and the medical staff and to help ensure that you make informed decisions.
- Reduced rates of medical procedures and complications. Doulas are not a magic bullet. If your obstetrician has a high cesarean rate or you are planning an early epidural, a doula, may not be able to overcome that.
Cons of Hiring a Doula
- Hiring the wrong person. Use your intuition when meeting with a doula to figure out if she is a good fit for you. You want to hire the best doula for you! Some doulas may push their beliefs and ideas of the way things should go. Some may not be good at balancing supporting moms and partners simultaneously.
- Hospital staff hostility. This may be the doula’s fault, but more likely it arises from doctors or nurses seeing the doula as an intruder into their territory or as a competitor. Hospital staff may also feel threatened if the doula’s presence leads you to ask questions or resist procedures. In their view, the doula may have made you a difficult patient.
Cost. The cost can be prohibitive for some moms. A great idea is to find a doula in training, the often have to do free births for their certifications.
This list was inspired by – �The Thinking Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth� by Henci Goer