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Doulas, how would you want this handled?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

My doula(and friend!) has been on board to be my doula since October, I haven't really used her for any pregnancy related questions/advice/etc. yet, and we only met up for coffee and to hash out what I want a few weeks ago.. but it was all planned she'd be my doula for quite a bit, and was excited to have her at my birth.. but recently I've found out I just can't afford her $500  fee, I really can't afford ANYTHING with what we have to pay out of pocket for our midwife(just found out on Saturday our insurance isn't picking up as much as we thought). There's absolutely NO way we'll have a way to save $500 between now and April with the $1500 we're paying out of pocket + $100 birth kit + rent, utilities, etc.

She's so excited to be my doula, that it's really paining me that I have to essentially tell her never mind because of finances. I don't know how to bring it up :( How would you want a client to bring it up to you? 

post #2 of 7

Just be honest with her, let her know how much you value her and her services. Let her know of the unespected expenses and ask if there is a payment plan that will work for the both of you or if there are any services you could provide as trade. 

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

I can't make payments :( Well, guess we could, but we just paid down quite a bit of debt and DH refuses to "owe". I did used to do daycare(which is how I know her!), maybe I could ask if she'd take x amount of date nights, on-calls, etc. to pay down the fee :D

post #4 of 7

I would definitely accept childcare as a payment, if it were me. Especially if it was on-call childcare, which is always tricky for me to come up with when I have a client in labor. Just work out how many hours would be the equivalent. Depending on how she's doing financially and how busy her practice is, she will probably want to keep working with you, especially since you are a friend. Every doula I know has the "everyone deserves a doula" philosophy.

post #5 of 7

This just happened to me and it was no big deal.  My client was honest with me and because I already felt committed to her as a doula, I attended her birth free of charge.  Not sure if your doula will be able to do that, but for me it was not a problem to take this one birth as a volunteer birth.  My client eventually paid me what she could (about a third of my regular fee), when she could (even though I didn't expect it).


Things happen and most doulas are pretty understanding people.  :)

post #6 of 7

I would just tell her your would love for her to be there but you cannot pay for it with the other expenses. If it were me, I would probably just do it for free, especially for a friend. That's just my opinion though.

post #7 of 7

If this happened with one of my clients I would want her to be honest and upfront with me about it - I am always willing to be open to payments, negotiating or bartering.

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