Any input is appreciated!!
Any input is appreciated!!
I'm a doula, and just hired my first doula :) Some questions I'd ask/LIKE to be asked are:
-Do they only do certain births(I know some doulas who will only do birth center/homebirths)
-What happens if you need a c-section? Will they stay and be your support even if they can't go in the OR(afterwards you may be in recovery for a few hours) or do they leave?
-Will they attend or stay for a birth that the mother uses an epidural(either planned or decided in the hospital)
-What is their transfer rate for out-of hospital births?
-What is the epidural rate?
-What is their c-section rate?
-Do they write a birth story, take pictures, etc.?
-Are they trained in massage of any sort?
-If you plan on doing something like Hypnobabies or Lamaze, etc. are they trained or know how to use that for you in labor?
-When do they come for a birth? How long do they stay PP?
-How many prenatal appointments do they give you? Do they meet with your midwife/OB? Do they do a PP appointment?
I'm a doula as well, and I find most of the questions that you find online aren't really the best to find the "right" doula for you.
Here are my questions that I'd ask/like to be asked:
Describe your best doula experience. How did the birth go, what happened, how did the mom cope?
(This gives you a good idea as to what the doula really considers the "gold standard" of birth. Often doulas will just agree that whatever you want is all good, but they may not actually mean that.
What was the hardest birth you ever attended?
How many births have you attended and where do you attend the majority of births?
What is your most used tool at a birth? (It could be, massage, birth ball, her voice, aromatherapy, etc) whatever it is, make sure it seems important to you.
What happens in case you are not available to attend my birth? Who will be there instead?
What experience do you have with breastfeeding?
What personality traits do you have that make you a great doula?
Another doula chiming in with questions I *like* to be asked... (in addition to what others have already mentioned)
What sort of training do you have - please note that I find this question a thousand times more helpful then "are you certified" - some certifications are ridiculously easy to get and being certified doesn't really tell you what kinds of training she has. Did she do any sort of apprenticeship or continuing ed?
I also agree big time with "how many births have you attended" - and it doesn't necessarily matter if it's only a few if you really like her. But, how many births is much more informative then "how long have you been a doula" - 10 births over a year vrs 10 births over 10 years gives you a totally different answer.
Also ask how many clients she takes on at one time, does she work with a partner and how many times has she had to call in a back up? I also feel like it's a good idea to meet her primary back up, just in case. It's a real bummer to have someone show up at your birth because the doula has strep throat or something and have the person be someone that you don't click with at all.
Let's see, I would also ask at what point she plans on joining you in labor - some doulas have specific ideas about how far along you "should" be. Also, if you're planning a hospital or bc birth, some will join you at home first while others will wait until you get admitted before joining you.
That's really great! I really would like to have a doula this time, but so far haven't really found any just yet. :) I'll be talking to DF about it on the way to the appointment, as well as asking about his willingness to move to a different practice, depending on how the appointment tomorrow goes. There's one about 30-45 minutes away, but the list doesn't show a website or anything, just e-mail or phone number, and would like to research before I contact her/them.