Hiring A Doula

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What is a doula?

A doula is a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional, and informational support to the mother before, during, and immediately after the birth.  Some doulas are postpartum doulas.  They provide emotional and practical support during the postpartum period.  

Why hire a doula?

Numerous clinical studies have found that a doula’s presence at birth

  • Tends to result in shorter labors with fewer complications.
  • Reduces negative feelings about one’s childbirth experience.
  • Reduces the need for pitocin (a labor-inducing drug), forceps or vacuum extraction, and cesareans.
  • Reduces the mother’s request for pain medication and/or epidurals.

Research shows parents who receive support can:

  • Feel more secure and cared for.
  • Are more successful in adapting to new family dynamics.
  • Have greater success with breastfeeding.
  • Have greater self-confidence.
  • Have less postpartum depression.
  • Have lower incidence of abuse.

In Colorado?  Sign up for a Bradley Method Class or Breastfeeding Class!

What questions do you ask when interview a doula?

The first question to ask a potential birth doula is whether she's available around your due date.  Other questions to ask, assuming the doula is available are: 

  • What is your training?
  • How many births have you attended?
  • Are you familiar with my doctor/midwife/hospital/birth center?  
  • When would you join me during labor?
  • What is your experience with the Bradley Method?  
  • How would you work with and involve my partner?
  • Why did you become a doula?
  • Tell us about some of your birthing experiences, including your own (if applicable).
  • What's your fee? What does your fee cover? How many visits or hours?
  • What's your refund policy?
  • Do you have anyone else due near the time I'm due?
  • Do you have a backup arrangement with another doula or group of doulas in case you're not free when I go into labor? Can I meet them?
  • Can I talk to a few of your recent clients?


After the interview, try to imagine the doula at the birth with you.  It’s important that you and your partner feel comfortable around this person.  She should be warm, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable.  Ask yourself if you feel like she communicates and listens well?  Make sure she has experience with natural birth and will be supportive of your choices.  It's also a good idea to check a few references. Ask what they liked most about the doula and whether there’s anything they wished she had done differently.


In Colorado?  Sign up for a Bradley Method Class or Breastfeeding Class!

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