We're starting a Doula Myth series where we want to break down some common doula misconceptions so that our community can know exactly what to expect from us! First up in the series to bust: Doulas hate OBs.
It turns out that there is this misconception that doulas are going to births to wage wars with their clients' obstetricians. Well, actually, there ARE some doulas who are hired with the intention of "fighting" with medical staff to make sure that the birthing woman gets what she wants. Thrive birth doulas don't do this, and believe it or not, our clients don't want us to! Our clients are smart, capable people who (often times with the guidance and expertise a doula has to offer) can make decisions about their own care providers and their own birth choices. And when they need help, they know who to turn to for options and support.
Believe it or not, we think obstetricians have some pretty amazing unique skills. We can't safely remove babies from wombs in operating rooms! Some of our clients have either desired or NEEDED the expertise of an obstetrician and we've been fortunate to work with some fantastic OBs. We want to leave the medical stuff to the medical professionals. In the birth setting, we want the obstetrician to be the obstetrician, the midwife be the midwife, the nurse be the nurse, and the doula be the doula.
We trust you to decide who is right for you and your birth. No matter who you've hired as a care provider, we provide fantastic doula support for you and your partner.
If the doula is doing her job well, then why wouldn't an OB love to have her there? It just means even more support and education for their patients. This isn't always the case. There are circumstances where hospitals are actually banning doulas from practicing in their establishment! We're disheartened to hear that women are hiring doulas to go into the hospital with their fists in the air ready to fight (so to speak). That's not the way birth was meant to be. If you feel that you don't have a trusting and comfortable relationship with the care provider(s) you have hired, your doula can help you search for a care provider who suits your needs better. We love going to births because we know that creating a safe, comfortable, and trusting environment for women is ultimately healthier, safer, and will leave the birthing woman feeling pleased and joyful about her birthing experience. Who wants to look back on the most important experience of their lives with negative thoughts and feelings? Who wants to spend the most intimate, special, and intense day of their lives fighting?
Who wouldn't want to feel happy, joyful, safe, comfortable, and loved on the day they meet their new baby? When you hire a doula who you trust, this is the reward that you reap!
Doulas are not medical professionals. Fantastic doulas are experts on childbirth, how to support women in childbirth, and how to communicate. Let's leave the medical expertise to the people who have medical degrees. And if those aren't your people, then that's cool, too! We'll help you figure out your options. We want you to feel totally comfortable with everyone on your birthing team. Sometimes it's an OB, sometimes a midwife, sometimes a doula, sometimes a partner, sometimes a mother or mother-in-law. Sometimes it's in a hospital, sometimes in a birthing center, and sometimes it's at home. We can't guarantee that your birth will go according to your plan (because they rarely do!) but we can support whatever choices you make along the way. What we 100% guarantee is that if you hire a Thrive doula, you will be supported by a fabulous, non-judgmental professional whose only goal is to be present with you while you need her and to help you prepare for the birthing experience that you desire.
I was in a conversation with a friend who said that she didn't need a doula because she got all of her birth plan items "checked off" on her list. I said that was lovely and then asked how she felt when she was in labor and giving birth. Her reply? "Scared."
While a birth plan can be helpful to you and your care provider (and we can certainly provide you with resources and guidance on creating one), it goes so much deeper than that! Your birth doesn't have to be scary. It can be intense, powerful, beautiful, joyful, and amazing.
Doulas don't exist to fight for your birth plan requirements with your OB. Doulas have skills that go far beyond checking things off a list. Doulas are fantastic communicators. They are brilliant observers. They are lifelong learners. They genuinely want you to feel amazing and loved. They are passionate about birth. They are passionate about mothers and babies. They are experts in childbirth and all things pregnancy, postpartum, and early parenting.
If you want to know more about what a doula and client relationship looks like, contact us for a free consultation. Are there any other doula myths you would like us to address?