Frequently Asked Questions
What does a doula do?
Doulas provide physical comfort measures, emotional support, information and continous care. I advocate and support the family through pregnancy, labor and the early stages of your baby's life.
** Coming soon ** video blog post - I will discuss the role of a doula in more detail and answer frequent client questions.
I am planning a home birth - do I still need a doula?
Some homebirth midwives require a doula's presence specifically for first time moms. At home, there is less need for advocacy due to the personal nature of a homebirth and my focus can be more on physical and emotional support. My job then involves taking care of your birth team so the whole team is fresh and ready. I may also monitor laundry, cleaning, or birth tub conditions so midwives can focus on clinical tasks.
Is a doula for for me?
Research supports that doulas strongly improve birth outcomes with:
-reduced risk of cesarean
-better bonding for mom, baby and partner
Doulas benefit all families, however doulas can be particularly helpful for:
first time moms
partners who want to be more confident in birth
returning moms who want an improved birth experience
vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC)
families new to the American health care system
families looking looking for support and empowerment
If you think you might benefit from having a doula, or have further questions, please contact us.
What goes into our fees?
We offer this information so that you'll have a good idea of the return on your investment.
Most first labors last 12-24 hours; some can last as long as 40 or more. The average time we spend with a pregnant person during their labor is 15 hours. We spend on average 5 hours in prenatal meetings and 2 more in our postpartum meeting. Phone calls, individual research and responding to e-mails are another 4-6 hours for each client. Editing photography and compiling a detailed, thoughtful record of a birth timeline is an additional 4 hours.
When we make a commitment to be available to attend you in labor, we limit the number of clients we put on our calendar to avoid birth conflicts and ensure that we are rested when you go into labor. We try to schedule four clients per month. When we put your due date on our calendar, we commit to being available two weeks before and two weeks after that date. This means that if we want to spend time with our family on a one-week trip, we add another three weeks during which we cannot accept clients.
WE ARE SELF-EMPLOYED
The rule of thumb is that a self-employed professional's income is half of what they earn, after deductions for sick time, self-employment taxes, health insurance, holidays and business expenses. Communication expenses are high for a doula –cell phones so we are always reachable, a web site, and a computer with a solid internet connection. We also have routine professional and office expenses, childcare costs and unusual transportation expenses. In addition, there are supplies we bring to your birth and give you at appointments and interviews.
TRAINING AND EXPERIENCE
It is crucial and in your best interest for us to keep up with all of the most current information. In order to attend conferences and training opportunities, we often have to limit the number of clients we can accept around the time we will be unavailable, thereby reducing the number of clients we can work with each year. There is also the cost of those trainings.
WE LOVE THIS WORK!
Being on-call requires a high level of personal commitment, including a willingness to be awakened after half an hour of sleep to attend a labor for the next 40 hours. Just to give you an idea - personal family events are missed or interrupted for births. When we attend parties, we will forgo that glass of wine. We cannot take spontaneous weekend trips away, and day-trips have to be judiciously chosen with access to cell service always in mind.
We don’t know any rich doulas. But every doula should be able to make a living and support their family. We believe we offer our services at a reasonable rate when you understand what you are receiving. If you need free or reduced rate doula services, there are ways we can help you find that doula. Please protect our profession by making labor support a valued, competitively paid profession that can attract and keep talented, skilled individuals!
Want to know more?
Visit the blog to find out more about doula services.
Will my OB-GYN allow the doula to be with me in the delivery room?
Absolutely! My experience has been that OB's and hospital midwives are relieved to know a doula is a part of your team. The hospitals in the Foothills area of Colorado are especially eager to work with doulas. Doula support is also helpful during a scheduled Cesarean Birth.