Dear Medical Providers,
I want to take a little time to explain who I am, what I do, and why we will get along great. Often, when my client mentions a doula to her doctor, she is met with a little bit of skepticism. I can understand the worry. There are some individuals, calling themselves doulas, that give the rest of us a bad name. I am not looking to fight against medical staff. I am not out to control my clients birth. I am actually a soft spoken, calm individual by nature. I think it’s safe to assume we both want what is best for the birthing mother. We both want a healthy mom, and a healthy baby. We also want mom to have the best experience possible. Lucky for us, you get to focus more on the healthy mom and baby side. I get to focus more on the emotional support side to improve the experience.
A little about me, I worked at Primary Children’s Hospital for six years. I have been an EMT-Intermediate. I love learning about our amazing bodies and medical things. However, I am not a medical professional and I do nothing medical in my doula role. I am used to working with nurses and doctors. I respect them. I respect you. I love the medical options we have available to us. I also realize that everything comes with risks. I love that our bodies work so well. I believe in birth and the process. I believe that our bodies work best when interruptions are kept to a minimum. However, I also strongly believe in the safety net of having the skill and professional help. I am so grateful that there are ways to monitor mom and baby to catch problems before they become vital. I am also so grateful that as a doula I don’t need to focus on those aspects but leave them in the providers capable hands.
Some believe that doulas have an agenda, and I’ll let you in on a secret, I do. My agenda is not to push natural birth, medical birth, or any birthing style. My agenda is to help the parents become informed, to help them know their options, and to be a constant support throughout their birth. I think that’s an “agenda” you can appreciate. I have special training in pain coping skills, I also have training in bereavement and tough situations. I use these to help make mom and her birthing partner more comfortable and supported. When you have a room full of tough situations, how wonderful is it to have someone there just to help ease the parents through transitions. We know how much a calm mom makes a difference in birth. That’s my goal. You and the nurses can focus on making sure baby and mom are healthy. I can be a constant and familiar face as you and the nurses tend to other patients, and daily needs.
When the expectant parents have questions regarding procedures or practices, I direct them to the most current research, studies, medical journals and statements. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, The American Society of Anesthesiologists, The American Academy of Pediatrics,The World Health Organization, Medscape, and many others. I urge my clients to seek out the best knowledge and not just to take the words of some blog on the internet.
As you can see, you have nothing to fear as your patient brings up a doula. This is not meant as a wedge between you, but to help raise patient satisfaction. I look forward to working with you soon.