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Questions for fellow pp doulas

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

(but anyone, feel free to chime in :)

 

Just curious if you have any thoughts on this-

 

I'm not a terrific interviewer and am always looking for ways to improve.  I just have trouble answering questions on the spur of the moment, and getting my thoughts out cohesively and concisely, even though I have a lot of knowledge and experience with supporting families. 

 

SO, anyway- in a recent interview, the dad was pressing me to tell them when they could expect their (as yet unborn) baby to sleep through the night, and how a doula could help them achieve that.  I do not believe in baby/sleep training and don't believe there is any certain time babies do STTN.  In my own family, and in the numerous babies I've worked with and heard about, there is such huge variation, there is no way I could say 6 weeks, 6 months, 1 yr.  It is so different with every child, and they STTN at various times and then they don't.  Anyway, I felt like we were going round and round and he was getting more agitated at my seeming non-answer, and I was feeling like they thought I was pretty incompetent if I can't answer such a basic question about babies.  They couldn't understand why I would be saying what I was saying, if all their friends and what they've read indicates that at some point you train the baby to STTN (and I"m sure their pediatrician will verify it, too!).

 

 

So is there anything else you can think of for the next time this comes up (since I'm sure it will!) or did I do the best I could in that situation?  Obviously, if STTN is very important to them, we're not a great match, so I'm more than fine with not being hired.  But if it's just a new-parent, not really understanding how babies work kind of thing, I'd like to give realistic expectations and sound professional at the same time.

 

Thanks for any input!

 

 


Edited by Awaken - 3/20/12 at 2:37pm
post #2 of 6

Honestly I probably wouldn't have gone into a ton of detail and would have simply said that just like adults are different so are babies.  If he pressed me I would just repeat myself and leave it at that.  If he kept pressing I would say "well do you have any other questions because that one I truly can't answer?"  Then I would move on.  Some families want concrete answers to everything.  

 

Another approach I sometimes take would be saying something like "well I wish I had a crystal ball and could answer that question for you - can you imagine the amount of money I would make?" and then would smile and move on.

post #3 of 6
I like to drop the number 5. 5 hours is considered sleeping through the night. This helps frame reasonable expectations for infant sleep.

smile.gif

We then can talk about normal/common infant sleep/feeding patterns an how to get the most sleep as a family.


Ease exhaust any typos, set from my itouch.
post #4 of 6

I, too, have difficulty, sometimes with on the spot questions so I feel your angst.

 

Regarding deposit, I ask for $150 at signing of contract and then require payment weekly, on Friday. Seems to work for me.

 

~A

post #5 of 6

It could be that they interviewed someone else who gave them concrete answer(s).

post #6 of 6

Not a doula but maybe, in addition to the info you gave, say that it's "normal" for a child to wake for the first year or something.  Just so they know that while babies may not need milk at 10 months in the night, they need that emotional connect of mom and that's normal.

 

Just some thoughts.

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