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Doula Questions / Concerns

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I interviewed a doula who I feel like I really clicked with, she seems pretty perfect! However, my only aprehension is that she told me she has another client due a week before me, and since the other client hired her first, that if I were in labor, and the other woman went into labor after me, she would call in her back up for me, and have her transition in so my doula could go to the other laboring woman (who hired her first). I had never heard of this policy and was under the impression that whoever goes into labor first would have priority, but I'm not sure. She only takes two clients a month, and said she has never had to call a back up.  Other than this, I really like her, I know its probably totally unlikely that we would be in labor at the same time, I just feel a little nervous about the possibility and feel a little slighted that although we are paying the same price, one has priority over the other.  I also wonder, if she did have to leave, if that would be a major distraction during labor? 


Besides this, I've also emailed like 15 doulas in the NYC area and only a handful have called me back.  any experience with that?

post #2 of 8

That sounds really screwy. Really unlikely that you both will be laboring at the exact same time, but like a really screwy policy to have. I have never heard of such a thing!

post #3 of 8

I agree that the policy is screwy! I mean, if you are paying the same amount, you should have the same priority. If you really feel like you click with her, it might be the best thing to go ahead and plan on hiring her anyway since the odds of you laboring at the exact same time as her are slim though. 

post #4 of 8

Yeah, I think that policy sounds a little weird. Would you be able to meet this other doula before you sign the contract? Even if there was only a slim chance that I'd end up with the back up doula, I'd want to make sure she was someone I clicked with and that she was someone with an equal amount of experience if I was still going to be paying the same rate.


I had a similar difficulty getting doulas to respond to me when I was searching for one during my first pregnancy. I don't know if it's because they all booked up so fast or what, but it was frustrating. Maybe it was because there were limited numbers of doulas that we could afford (I was really surprised to find that the average rate in NYC is $1000-2000 for a doula), but we ended up getting so frustrated with the process and then not really feeling a connection with the two that we were able to meet with and afford that we ended up going it alone. Have you gone through that NYC doula co-op website? We're considering trying to use a doula this time around, so I have some names and contact info of doulas that I've gotten from friends. If you're interested, PM me and I can send you names.

post #5 of 8

I am a doula and have a lot of doula friends and I have NEVER heard of that policy.  I have never had to call backup, though I was at 4 births in one week once (and... apparently got knocked up with this little bambino that same week!! Crazy huh?!).  I take moms with close due dates, I do let them know that I do this.  Sometimes the ones that are a month apart go closer together than the ones due 2 days apart, but I do believe that whoever is supposed to be at your birth will be.... though I haven't used backup ever I have friends who have and it always has turned out to be the best doula for that person.


 I think that continuity of care is so important so if one mom had needed me while I was with another, I would've called my backup and then I would've gone from one birth to the next and then probably co-doulaed with my backup, or if it seemed right then backup could leave, but usually if they've been with a mom for a while I can see us both just staying.  I'm not sure since I've never done that, I'd just feel out the situation intuitively.  But it would seem so so so wrong for me to leave in the middle of a birth.  I honestly don't think I could do that!!!!  I would discuss your concerns with her and feel it out.  Speak honestly about why you don't like that policy.  Maybe it will help her to rethink it?  


And It does not matter who hired her first in my opinion, especially since you're paying the same amount.



post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all your feedback ladies!  After thinking (and worrying over it) I've come to the conclusion that even if she seems like a perfect fit, if one of her policies makes me uncomfortable and will cause me to stress, then its probably not a good fit after all.  I honestly think she might not have fully thought through the implications of leaving a woman during labor, since she's never had two women over lap.  But I'll be sure to specify the reason why we aren't using her.

post #7 of 8

Do you mind if I share this doula's policy with some doula friends of mine to get their feedback on it?! I am very curious if there are any other doulas out there that do this because I have NEVER heard of this policy before. 

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Lindsayjean- no, not at all, I'd be interested to hear if they had heard of it either!
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