What is a Doula? A Doula is a person that supports women and couples through pregnancy and birth. At a time when midwives are often stretched running between various women giving birth, a Doula is a calming constant presence from beginning to end. She becomes the labouring woman's advocate and voice, and protects her from all surrounding noise and chaos at a time when she needs to focus most in a place of quiet and calm.
A Doula also helps women believe that their bodies were designed for this task and they should therefore embrace birth rather than fear it. The more they relax into it, the more naturally the body will open up. What's critical is to help women/couples achieve the birth they want. Too many women still have the preconceived idea that if they don't have the perfect textbook natural birth, they have already failed as women and mothers. Nonsense! Our role is to support the mum's choice and help her to achieve a positive birthing experience so she looks back with pride and not horror! If it's an epidural she wants, that is her absolute prerogative to do so.
A Doula is NOT a medical professional. I work in partnership with midwives and doctors and respect their medical knowledge and professionalism. A Doula is unable to perform examinations or any other clinical task. I help communicate with the medical staff to ensure my clients have all the information they need to make informed decisions throughout their labour.