How do I Choose the Birth Doula that is Best for Me?
Discuss with your partner the qualities you want in a doula.
Consider services, skills and trainings, experience, their role in your birthing experience, your price range, and their knowledge of alternative care and supplemental services.
Develop the list of qualities you desire in a doula and start looking for the doula who best fits your vision of birth and your lifestyle.
Interview your doula candidates by e-mail or by telephone. Some questions you should ask doula candidates:
- Are you a certified birth doula and, if so, by what organization?
- How long have you been a doula?
- How long have you been certified?
- What does your doula package include?
- How many births have you served as a birth doula?
- How many births have you served as a doula that are similar to the one I plan?
- For un-medicated VBAC or multiple births: How many un-medicated births have you served as a birth doula in which the expectant mom delivered without pain medication?
- How many births have you attended at this birth setting (your hospital, birth center, homebirth)?
- Have you ever worked with my care provider?
- How many births have you attended with this practice?
- What supplemental training or certifications do you have? (Are you a trained or certified breastfeeding counselor, Spinning Babies, TENS machine management, reiki, rebozo, herbalist, massage therapist)
- Who are your back up doulas and will I get to speak or meet with them?
- If my baby comes before 37 weeks or I need an induction, what are your protocols?
Narrow your list to 3-5 candidates and schedule in-person interviews.
Schedule a one-hour for each in-person interview
It is important you feel "chemistry" with the doula, and that she is qualified and prepared to help you achieve the birth you have prepared for. Use this time to tell candidates about your expectations for a doula. Describe your birth vision, philosophy, and how you are preparing for your birth. Discuss the kind of guidance, assistance and relationship you are interested in having with her.
Ask these questions about her services:
- What are her skills or training (acupressure, reiki, rebozo, myo facial release, Spinning Babies, massage)?
- What will she bring to this birth experience?
- Ask if she offers additional supplemental services.
Feel free to ask for references from clients who have had births that are similar to the one you hope to have. For instance, if you are planning a VBAC, ask for references from successful VBAC clients she has served. If you are planning an un-medicated birth, ask for references from clients who had an un-medicated birth she has served.
Choose your doula
Doulas tend to hold space in their calendars for potential clients with whom we feel a bond. Tell candidates you personally interviewed that you have made a decision.
Click the link for a detailed description of my doula services.
A customized Birth Doula Package can be designed to meet your individual or family needs, lifestyle and cultural birthing preferences.