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Doulaing- should I??

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I have the opportunity to doula for a girl in my local area. I would have to do it for free, because she can't affrd to pay a doula. She definitley wants a natural birth, but her famly (inluding BF) are not supportive. She does have a natural minded OB, but she is not very assertive and is in fact very timid.

Now, to get to the acutal issue: 1st- I am due 4 weeks after she is. I am worried that this is too close to my due date, and I could end up not being able to assist her. This is both of our 1st pregnancies. I know that women with their 1st tend to go late, but at the same time- should I take that chance?

2nd- I have not had the opportunity to attend any births as of yet, so she would be my first and I want to make sure that I am best prepared to help her. I guess its normal to be nervous about attending your 1st birth, but with her very timid personality and my lack of experience I'm worried that I won't be able to help her as much as she needs it. (I know that I can support her, but ya know, just worries I guess.)

3rd- (And this is my totally selfish concern- so please don't flame, its last on my list.) is that if her birth does not have the desired outcome, that it will negatively affect my birth that will be following hers by a few weeks.

What do you think? THANKS!!
post #2 of 9
Hi. I think for me, personally, I would go ahead and plan to be her doula (BTW, I am not a doula at all but given the chance I would love to be a part of someone else's birth). I understand since it is your first child you and she are a little nervous. My 1st child was 4 weeks early so you never really know when your baby is going to come. I think she should try to find a back up just in case you will not be able to attend. Also, I think it would be wise for her to talk with her OB and get her to open up more. That way she will have her OB backing her and she won't feel so alone in this decision. Good luck to you!

Chelci
post #3 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoveLife View Post
3rd- (And this is my totally selfish concern- so please don't flame, its last on my list.) is that if her birth does not have the desired outcome, that it will negatively affect my birth that will be following hers by a few weeks.What do you think? THANKS!!

This is the only important consideration for you at this time in your life.
It's not selfish or wrong for you to preserve the magic of your own birth as the first one, and not be influenced or scared in some way by what you see at this this gals birth.

Plus, the end of your pregnancy is a very exciting time for you to become emotionally prepared for your birth and baby, enjoy all the time as your own and not have to think or worry about someone else's birth.

There will be plenty other births for you to attend. Refer her to another doula in your area that needs a birth for certification.
post #4 of 9
A couple of things I would consider:

The hormones in the birth room are strong, often I will get my period early(and I am generally like clockwork) when I am at a birth, I would be concerned about the possibility of the birth stimulating your labour.

You havent been at a birth yet, you dont know how you will react to birth, how it will be at all. This may not be the best time to try it out.

What if it is a 20 hr labour? Can you stand and support a woman for a 20 hr labour when you are 36 weeks pregnant? Long labours are tough at the best of times.

I would be more concerned that attending your first birth at 36 weeks pregnant would be more difficult than you might imagine, more than I would worry that you would have had your baby early and miss her birth.
Doulaing can be very physical and difficult work and I wouldnt recommend having my first go of it at 36 weeks.

Just my humble opinion. You do what feels right, but consider those things.
post #5 of 9
When I was pregnant I did two births one at 18 weeks and another just 11 weeks before I delieverd myself.

Emotionally they are exhausting. Both were short second & third time labors and it still took me days to recover.

since this is your first baby and since you've never attended a birth as a doula before I'd pass. I agree with previous posters on all the same points so no need to repost those.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dewi View Post
This is the only important consideration for you at this time in your life.
It's not selfish or wrong for you to preserve the magic of your own birth as the first one, and not be influenced or scared in some way by what you see at this this gals birth.

Plus, the end of your pregnancy is a very exciting time for you to become emotionally prepared for your birth and baby, enjoy all the time as your own and not have to think or worry about someone else's birth.

There will be plenty other births for you to attend. Refer her to another doula in your area that needs a birth for certification.
Dewi, thank you for this. It made me tear up. I felt so mean for feeling this way, esepcially since she does need the support.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sage.Naissance View Post
A couple of things I would consider:

The hormones in the birth room are strong, often I will get my period early(and I am generally like clockwork) when I am at a birth, I would be concerned about the possibility of the birth stimulating your labour.

You havent been at a birth yet, you dont know how you will react to birth, how it will be at all. This may not be the best time to try it out.

What if it is a 20 hr labour? Can you stand and support a woman for a 20 hr labour when you are 36 weeks pregnant? Long labours are tough at the best of times.

I would be more concerned that attending your first birth at 36 weeks pregnant would be more difficult than you might imagine, more than I would worry that you would have had your baby early and miss her birth.
Doulaing can be very physical and difficult work and I wouldnt recommend having my first go of it at 36 weeks.

Just my humble opinion. You do what feels right, but consider those things.
Thank you! These are all great points.

Quote:
Originally Posted by April422 View Post
When I was pregnant I did two births one at 18 weeks and another just 11 weeks before I delieverd myself.

Emotionally they are exhausting. Both were short second & third time labors and it still took me days to recover.

since this is your first baby and since you've never attended a birth as a doula before I'd pass. I agree with previous posters on all the same points so no need to repost those.
Thanks for your comment. Its nice to hear your experice while pregnant, I didn't even think about recovery time.
post #7 of 9
Good, we all talked sense into you.
So that means you're not going to her birth and will take care of yourself.

You're on the road to being a great doula always worried about everyone else.

Take care and enjoy the end of your pregnancy being carefree and foot loose!
post #8 of 9
I agree, perhaps the best thing you cn do for her is help her find a Doula for her birth. Maybe contact DONA or CAPPA, to see if you are able to look at Doulas in their certification process who are working for free.

I just had a birth 2 days ago, I was with the mom for a VERY intense18 hours..... I'm only 8 weeks pregnant, and was ready to drop by the end. This mom wanted to stand much of the time and it was tough after those many hours, let alone with BOTH of you having big ol bellies
post #9 of 9
All the other wonderful women here have said what I would say, so, yeah that Preserve your birth experience. Save your energy. There will always be plenty of women giving birth, but you will only haver this baby once.

Congrats!
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