What q's should I ask potential doulas? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 04-18-2008, 11:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm meeting with a doula on Tuesday but don't know what questions I should ask her. Should I just talk about what kind of birth I want and see how she responds? Is the first meeting just to see if our personalities gel? I don't want to seem too formal and break out a notebook with a list of questions but I also don't want to waste anymore of her time if I end up finding out we wouldn't be a good match.

Advice?

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#2 of 5 Old 04-18-2008, 11:27 AM
 
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How I handle my first meeting is getting some background info about the couple and ask some getting to know you type questions. I also let them ask any questions they may have and basically let them feel out if our personalities and philosophies gel. If they feel good about our meeting, I'd hand them my contract to review. (Some may sign then and there, and some prefer to do the signing during the second meeting)

A list of questions you may want to ask:

• What training have you had? (If a doula is certified, you might consider checking with the
organization.)
• Do you have one or more backup doulas for times when you are not available? May we meet
her/them?
• What is your fee, what does it include, and what are your refund policies?
• Tell me/us about your philosophy about childbirth and supporting women and their partners
through labor.
• May we meet to discuss our birth plans and the role you will play in supporting me/us through
childbirth?
• May we call you with questions or concerns before and after the birth?
• When do you try to join women in labor? Do you come to our home or meet us at the place of
birth?
• Do you meet with me/us after the birth to review the labor and answer questions?

Wife, Mother and Doula.
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#3 of 5 Old 04-18-2008, 11:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you, that's a great list to start off with!

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#4 of 5 Old 04-18-2008, 09:59 PM
 
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I always think interview questions are funny (with doulas or midwives really). Of course, when asked I answer them all, no worries. That siad, I think you should see how you FEEL. Anyone can answer a bunch of questions and sound great (just witness the number of OBs who will tell you a wonderful story about VBACs and natural births and such but never consider actually doing any of the things they say).

I think laboring with someone is an intimate thing and you should feel comfortable, like you want to hug this woman, have her rub your feet - like you will feel happy to see her and be helpeed by her when labor is really getting tough.

People so often have questions about how many births you have done or where your certification is from or exactly hhow many meetings you get and while this is not unimportant per se, alone it really doesn't tell you much about the person. Get to know her and see if you like her. If you like her, hire her

Megan Davidson, Labor & Postpartum Doula, Breastfeeding Counselor, Anthropologist, Mom to August (9) and Clay (4), Partner to Shawn.

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#5 of 5 Old 04-19-2008, 02:48 AM
 
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http://www.dona.org/mothers/how_to_hire_a_doula.php

also www.transitiontoparenthood.com has some good stuff too!

Best,
Sharon

Birth doula, doula trainer, ican leader, lamaze childbirth educator, and most importantly, mom of 2 great girls!
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