Doulas Don't Support Births
It’s not uncommon to hear someone say, “I would’ve hired a doula, but I already knew I wanted an epidural,” or, “I almost hired a doula, but then I was scheduled for a cesarean.” Time and again this notion that doulas are only for home births, or birth center births, or unmedicated births, is passed around the birth and parenting forums on the web as if it’s the rule.
But that story stops here. It’s time you know the truth: doulas don’t actually support births at all, they support you.
And that means that whether you’re preparing to birth in the comfort of your own home, or under the supervision of a medical care team at your favorite hospital, you can count on your doula to be there. Whether you’re planning an unmedicated birth, or you’ve already met with your anesthesiologist to create a pain management plan for your labor, your doula will be there. Whether your goal is as few interventions as possible, or you’ve already scheduled your induction or cesarean, your doula will show up and support you.
-Doulas support people who want home births, and those who don’t.
-Doulas support people who want hospital births, and those who don’t.
-Doulas support people who birth with medication, and those who don’t.
Obstetricians support births. Midwives support births. But doulas? Doulas support the people giving birth.
They support the families welcoming a new baby. They share information, time, and energy with people preparing to bring more people into the world. They offer their knowledge, their strength, and their hands to clients as they navigate pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum. They help parents prepare for parenthood, whether it’s for the first time, or the fifth!
Your doula is not invested in the type of birth you have, or where you have it, they’re invested in you. They’re invested in the vision you have for your experience, whatever that looks and feels like for you.
So the next time you hear someone say something that suggests doulas don’t support “that type of birth,” you can tell them they’re right—doulas support you, no matter the style or place.