What a Doula is NOT

A Doula giving a massage.Doulas are an integral part of the Birth Team. With all the benefits that come with having a doula, it is worth stating what is not in their scope of work so that one’s expectations can be reset. Here is a list of tasks your doula cannot perform:

  1. Perform clinical tasks (blood pressure, fetal heart checks, or vaginal exams). The doula will help with breathing, relaxation and other comfort techniques, and make suggestions for progress.
  2. Make decisions for you. The doula will help client get the information necessary to make informed decisions. She will also remind you if there is a departure from your expectations and wishes. The doula shall support your
  3. Speak to clinical staff on your behalf. The doula will discuss your concerns with you and suggest options, so that you or your partner can speak to clinical
  4. Deliver Babies. A doula is not licensed to deliver your baby. Should you have an unexpected delivery at home, please call 911 emergency line and stay calm. See my article about the unexpected delivery.

Your doula does not displace your primary Birth Partner nor is she part of your medical team. Instead think of your doula as part of your intimate Birth Team whose main job is to add comfort and ease to both you and your birth partner while you navigate through the unknown terrain of childbirth. She is surely a valuable asset.

About the Author:

Patricia GrubePatricia Grube is a certified Pre/Post-Natal Yoga instructor who teaches classes at Yoga Works in Los Angeles.  Patricia has a thriving birth doula practice and has guided hundreds of couples through their childbirth experience (www.serenitybirth.com).  Additionally, she is a published author and recently co-authored a new book called, “Posh Push: Modern Girls Reveal Secrets to a More Natural Birth” now available on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009LQS32G.

You can visit Patricia’s website at www.serenitybirth.com

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