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Doula Questions?

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
So, my search for a doula may be nearing an end. I finally heard from one today that sounds very promising. I put a message up on her website this morning and she called me within 20 minutes of it being posted, which I took as a good sign. We had a good, long chat about the services she provides and her personal views. I really liked everything she had to say. We discussed price and I explained how finances are very tight for us with me being a full-time student, and she explained that she never turns someone away because of money and would be willing to lower the fee if that is the only thing that keeps us from hiring her. This was very relieving to me. Money really was the only thing keeping us from getting a doula in the beginning, but I feel like we would benefit from it so much I just had to check out my options.
She said she would like to meet with us and see if we think it would be a good fit. So, I'm wondering if anyone has any advice about what to look for and what to ask. I don't personally know anyone that has had a doula and therefore don't really know what it is I'm looking for. I get a good feeling from her so far and am very excited to meet her face-to-face to see how comfortable we are with each other. Any details I should know about??
post #2 of 3
Congrats on getting close in your search! I don't have personal experience with this but I think that having a good comfort level face to face will go along way. It sounds like you may be on your way! I would also ask her for some references so you can ask some Mama's who have used her what the thought of the experience. Let us know how it goes!
post #3 of 3
Having a "good feeling" about a doula is the first step! I am a doula myself and have had some amazing experiences with clients and I felt like both of us just knew when we met each other that it would be a good fit. Other than that, definitely get a few references and actually check them. Also ask if she is certified, where she trained and how long she's been practicing as a doula.

You should also go over your ideal birth with her and how she would support you and your partner in that. Ask how your doula deals with complications or use of interventions in labor. Even if you are planning a natural labor, it's good to have an open mind and have an experienced doula to explain all of your options as far as interventions or pain medication (although I believe that being prepared for natural labor and having that be your intention wholeheartedly is more than half the battle!)

Ask what she does in case of a planned c-section (just in case you end up being breech later on or have another complication- how does she support couples in these situations?) You can also ask if she is familiar with the staff at your hospital/birth center/or if she has worked with your homebirth midwife. You could also ask what is included in their "package" (standard is at least 2-3 prenatal visits and at least 1-2 postnatal visits.) Ask what each visit includes (help with the birth plan, comfort techniques, etc. at the prenatals and help with breast feeding, cloth diapering, etc. postpartum.)

On the DONA web site they have a list of questions to ask potential doulas but I think that a good connection is the biggest indicator of a good match! Good luck!!
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