Illawarra pregnancy and birth support FAQ's
“If a doula were a drug, it would be unethical not to use it.” John H. Kennell, MD
What is a doula?
A doula is someone who is trained to provide non-medical educational, emotional and physical support during pregnancy and childbirth. The word doula is a Greek word meaning "female servant" and has been used to describe a professional birth companion since the 1980's.
A doula provides continuous support to a woman (and her partner) during their baby's birth and this continuity of support has been shown to increase maternal satisfaction and health outcomes for both the woman and baby .
Having a doula join your birth team gives you the advantage of a support person who is not freaked out by any of the sights or sounds of childbirth, they remain calm and provide unwavering care and attention. They do not judge your choices or push an agenda. They provide kind and understanding help.
What is the difference between a midwife and a doula?
A midwife is a medically trained professional. They are responsible for the medical care of you and your baby. A doula is a professionally trained birth support person. They are trained to provide unconditional emotional, educational and physical support during your pregnancy and birth. In most maternity units in Australia a midwife may be responsible for multiple patients so will often be in and out of the delivery room until its close to the birth. As your doula I will attend you when you need my presence and provide continuous support.
Why would I hire a doula?
Pregnancy and childbirth can be a confusing and overwhelming experience. Everyone likes to offer advice (wanted or not!) and tell you what you should do. As your doula I help you navigate your journey towards parenthood and help you discover what you want and find your own voice. This unbiased support is invaluable and thousands of woman around Australia are now discovering the benefits of hiring a doula.
Do you offer payment plans?
Yes! Please contact me to find out information about the payment plan schedule.
Do you support single mums-to-be?
Of course! I support every type of families.
Do you attend home births?
Yes! My insurance covers me for hospital & home births.
I live outside of the Illawarra, do you take out of area clients?
Depending on availability and the distance, please contact me to discuss my travel fees.
I’ve heard doulas only support ‘natural’ births, is this true?
Not at all! Doulas provide non-judgemental support. I believe women are the experts on their bodies and know what is best for their baby’s births. I trust your judgement and fully support your choices.
My partner is very supportive and involved, will a doula take their place?
A doula is there for the BOTH of you. A doula NEVER takes the place of a loving partner. The bond you share is unique and I respect it deeply. Your partner knows you better than anyone else and that loving bond is central at such an intimate event like the birth of your baby.
I help support the both of you so that you can be an even better team. I can provide help to your partner by ensuring their needs are met (food, drinks, rest breaks etc) so that in turn they can give you their best. Sometimes even the most prepared partner can forget everything they read in the birth book or birth class and I can gently suggest different comfort techniques so that they can help you. One of the great things about having a doula for your birth is the calm presence I bring, because I am not emotionally attached to you in the same way your partner is, I can remain level headed and provide focus if things become difficult or overwhelming.
In our prenatal appointments I get to know what both of your visions for birth are, some partners want to be an active support person while others prefer to be present only. We can develop a plan that ensures both of you are comfortable with my level of support.
Your partner is an expert on you and I am an expert on pregnancy and birth – the combination of us both means you have a perfect team to support your birth!