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Did you have a post partum doula?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I am a certified post partum doula, but I haven't begun practicing yet as I am waiting until my ds is able to go four hours away from mamma. I think it is a great concept and I've been through a two day workshop to learn about it, but I don't know anyone who has actually hired one. I don't even see it mentioned much on these boards. I'm hoping some of you who have had a post partum doula can tell me what she did for you, what you liked, what you wished she had done, etc. Also, how did you find out about your ppdoula? Thanks!
post #2 of 7
I need some enlightenment

What does a post-partum doula do?

I have had 2 hb with a mw.

Thanks
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
A post partum doula goes to a new mama's home in the first few weeks after birth to make her life a little easier and allow her time to bond with new babe and support her in becoming a mother. the ppdoula may fix a meal, do a load of laundry or light cleaning, occupy the older kids so mama can concentrate on just the baby. May also draw a bath or give a foot massage. The post partum doula can also help in showing new moms ways to sooth the baby, how to use a sling, and basic breast feeding help. I think another important role is to listen to her birth story and generally support her in following her mothering instincts. I see it as filling the role of supportive mother or sister for those who live away from family, or whose family is not as supportive of their parenting choices.

So that's it in a nutshell, but if anyone has anything to add or has had different experiences, please share!
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
Bumping this up in hopes of getting some responses!
post #5 of 7
I think it is a great concept esp. for people who do not have tons of friends and family to help. I am also interested in learning more about it. I was a professional cook in my former life so I was thinking that it would be a good way to keep feeding people while helping out new moms. How are you training? Also, what are the normal rates? I think it would make an excellent shower gift.
post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally posted by pegmom
I was a professional cook in my former life so I was thinking that it would be a good way to keep feeding people while helping out new moms.
You should SO DEFNITELY look into it!

I didn't use one last time. I stayed home the first few weeks. DH stayed home the first two (he was not that helpful to me - I really could have used a been-there, understanding female.) Though I really could have used an "expert" to come in and give me reassurance. Stupidly, we told my sister not to come the first 2 weeks because we wanted to "bond" with the baby. Both of us were overwhelmed because my son was "high needs." When my sister finally came on week 3 she helped me SOOOOOOOOOO much! She just held my son most of the time, giving my tired arms (and sanity) a break.

I tried calling up a "baby nurse" around that time (desperately) but they were all booked.

This time.... I plan to follow the 40 Days of Rest rule that women observe in undeveloped countries. Women stay in bed, recuperating from birth, while their mother's, SIL's, aunts, sisters, (you get the picture) help around the house. Last time, I was so gung ho about being up and about, I ignored my El Salvadorean friends plea to stay off my feet. I suffered some prolapse issues and I think that was the problem.

I think this is a big problem in this country - most American women are very independent and proud of how quick they can go about their lives after the baby is born. I now think this is a huge error and women need to REST after birth. I know C-section moms who just go right back into the swing of things 3 days after birth.

Anyhoo... I'm going to set up PP help way in advance (sister flying in) but I do need more back up. I need someone to take my soon to be 4 year old DS to the park and keep him happy while I'm resting.

Problem is, the postpartum Doulas around here charge $25 an hour, which is a lot. One company said they only do a minimum of 20-40 (I forget) hours per week. Though I am very fortunate because I can afford it (and I will pay it if I have no other recourse) but most people can't.

I would really LOVE one that COOKS!!! So, we shall see....

That's a good idea... I'll look into some sort of home-cooking delivery service.

My big "problem" is that my regular babysitter will be away for a month when my baby is due, so I really need to find someone before then.
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
$25 dollars per hour?! That is a lot in my opinion, but then again, maybe they have some special service to offer, like being trained in giving massages, or baby massage, or being a certified lactation consultant or something like that. I think around here 10-12 dollars per hour is normal, and people do contracts for a certain number of hours but those can be used in any way that the mama and her ppdoula agree on, all in one week, or five hours per week for four weeks, or whatever. From what I've learned it's pretty much up to the doula to decide how she wants to sell her services.

As to how I got trained, I went to a workshop that a local doula and childbirth educator held, but I think the national doula organizations have post partum doula certification programs, too. But as far as I know you don't have to have any certification, anyone can basically call themselves a post partum doula and start working.
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