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Doulas!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Who is having a doula??

 

I'm having a homebirth with a midwife and her daughter who is acting as assistant.. so I don't think i will need one, provided my husband gets on it and gets serious about childbirth education and what he needs to do to support me.

 

Are doulas at homebirths extraneous?? I totally see their worth in a hospital/birth center type setting ( i did a training three years ago but never went through with full certification because I felt like a fraud wanting to be in the profession and not having been through it myself) .

 

I am thinking a postpartum doula would be very helpful. My midwife is amazing and her visits are like 1.5 hours long each time and she's very holistic- but I feel like having someone over at least every other day to help with postpartum specific healing herbs, foods, breastfeeding help, etc... would be invaluable- especially since my mother isn't coming for at least 2-3 weeks after baby is born, and my own mother is not very knowledgeable about the herbal/nutrition side of recovery. I AM very knowledgeable on it but i'm not going to be up for preparing things. It would also be nice to have someone who will just without a doubt BE THERE, I have lots of acquaintances (i hesitate to say the word friend... because it seems like I always have to reach out and half the time I get flaked on) who say they will help out- but i cannot rely on their word. 

 

the only issue is $, pp doulas charge by the hour.. but I think it's worth it.

 

What has been your experience? 

post #2 of 10
I think you should book one in. Your partner sounds as if you're not sure he knows how to support you, your friends aren't dependable and moms not coming for a while. Add in the body image, anxiety and other stresses you've experienced. You might want to book one in 2 hours a day. Long enough to chat, do stuff but short enough to save some $ and remember you'll be tired.

My experience I've had nannies and aupairs for #3,4,5. 1st I had an older aunt who was amazing she moved in for 2 weeks. I miss her, she did night time get me baby, diaper etc. The support of a woman is very helpful when you're bleeding, leaking, sore and emotional
post #3 of 10

I had a birth doula for my first for a planned hospital birth, but we never made it to the hospital. Because I was a younger mom, a charity paid for her and I saw her frequently through my pregnancy. It felt so good to have someone to talk to about birthy things and feel supported in my pregnancy when a lot of people around me acted not so nice.

 

My second birth I had a homebirth and did not hire a doula. I felt kind of abandoned by my partner during the birth and sort of regretted not hiring a doula.

 

This birth, we will probably hire a doula either for labor support for me or labor support for the kids: which one is kind of up to discussion still.

post #4 of 10

With my son we did not hire a doula but I wish I had. We were in a very small freestanding birth center and my midwives were amazing and supportive and we were the only ones there so all the focus was on my birth, my husband and I had taken childbirth ed classes together and he was 100% there for me throughout labor...but there were just certain things I feel like a doula could have helped with. For instance, I had pretty intense back labor the whole time and we just were not prepared for that. I feel like a doula could have thrown in some more pain coping techniques for me to use...

 

postpartum my mom came for a month and acted as my pp doula. She was awesome. If I hadn't had her I totally would have hired someone (or wanted to as we were pretty short on cash at the time)

 

This time is a bit different because we'll be in a hospital (we've moved far from  the birth center and my old midwives).  I hired my doula when I was like 11 weeks. She is my neighborhood homebirth midwife too so she has been the bomb and knowing she'll be with us in the hospital and while I labor at home is incredibly relieving.  My mom will be here again for postpartum though I'm hoping to heal faster this time and not need her for a full month.

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

revolting- How did you feel abandoned by your partner? 

 

 I'm really curious to see how my partner acts during the birth. After our last ultrasound (at 28 weeks) he finally "got it" that we are actually having a baby and has started doing his version of nesting to get ready for the baby... which involved painting everything and buying power tools and finally cleaning his junk out of the second bedroom... and bugging his mom to get us the carseat and stroller she said she would. He's also finally reading the stack of baby books I have post-it noted and highlighted... and we're planning on taking childbirth classes (for his benefit mainly) ~ so I'm doing everything I can to prepare him and let him know that I'm going to need him available constantly during the birth, but it's still a risk not having a dedicated trained labor person because it's his first time and I have no idea how he will be. He says he's going to be the best doula ever... so we'll see. I really don't want to hire a birth doula, because I have a  midwife and her assistant and my partner- 3 people seems like the perfect number and I don't want tooo many people because I want a really small intimate home birth, don't want to mess with Ina May's sphincter law :) 

 

postpartum doulas..... on the other hand... I want so badly. I emailed one the other day who works on a sliding scale of 18-30 per hour...at that rate we could afford maybe 4 hours of help on the lower end of the sliding scale per week.... 2 visits of 2 hours each. Maybe it will just be a wait and see on call thing? I don't know. feeling so overwhelmed!

post #6 of 10

I kind of want a birth doula... just can't figure out if its worth if financially. I know my husband wants to be helpful and supportive, I just don't know if he'll know what to do to be helpful and supportive since this is our first birth. I do have a local friend (I don't know her THAT well, shes good friends with a friend of mine so I know her from events with that friend) who is a doula, but she has had epidurals with all her children (which is fine and totally her choice!) but somehow that makes me feel like she might not be as supportive of a completely natural birth (though I could certainly be wrong). She's a postpartum doula as well and breastfed all her children for extended amounts of time, so I'm thinking of hiring her postpartum if I need help.

post #7 of 10
If my mom wasn't coming, I would want a pp doula. In the grand scene of things, birth is much shorter and recovery is much longer . . . Especially with your firstborn it can be hard. I needed my mom to give me water, make me food to drink, help anywhere necessary, etc. I would save and go for the pp doula if I were in your position.
post #8 of 10
We aren't using one. I like to labor and birth as alone as possible, so it doesn't make sense to have an extra body there. But, I know they help a lot of people smile.gif
post #9 of 10

My SIL had a homebirth and she used a midwife and a doula. The midwife was more like the medical care provider, making sure all the logistics were in place, and the doula was more like the one in the kitchen fixing ice chips so her husband didn't have to. Does that make sense? Although really it was a pretty chill birth and I'm not sure they were all 100% necessary, especially since I was there too (as photographer, but I was just hanging out until the Big Moment, and I totally could have made ice chips).

 

I didn't have a doula with my first, but I wished I had. I thought that with my mom and husband there I'd have all the support I needed, but I had a hospital birth with the on-call doctor because my usual doctor wasn't on that day, and it wasn't great. We could have used more support, and there was no person whose job it was to tell me "hey, you are in pain. Better change position!" and stuff like that. If DH had said that I'd probably have slapped him, because what could he know, stupid guy? And I probably wouldn't have taken it well from my mom either, because it was really just her job to hold my hand and BE my mom, so there was probably a doula-shaped hole where I could have used some well-placed advice and support but didn't have it. With my second I brought my SIL (the one with the homebirth) and she read her best friend's doula manuals and did a GREAT job supporting me at my second hospital birth. Although she wasn't a trained doula, she was very good about reading my statistics about how it really was ok that it was taking FOREVER to have the need to push, and was supportive/informative in ways that wouldn't have worked from my mom or DH. Of course, that time I also had an awesome doctor, so everything about that birth was different, but I still called the DH/Mom/SIL/Good Doc combo my "A" team and am inviting all the same folks to this birth.

post #10 of 10

Yogini - Once the midwives came, he spent most of his time in another room.When he did come into the room where I birthed, he sat on the other side of the room silently. He felt like once the midwives came, he had finished his job. I had tried to get him to participate in the hypnobabies program I did last time, but he made fun of it and complained about it constantly, and he refused to read anything else. He always struggles with dealing with other people's emotions and knowing how to support them in areas outside of pregnancy and birth stuff. If he didn't have strong preferences otherwise, I'd probably hire a doula for me and have him focus on supporting and caring for the kids, but he balks at the idea, so I don't know what to do.

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