A Birth Doula’s continuous presence during your childbirth can improve your birthing experience. Since she is beside you along with your support group and heathcare providers, you have an additional member in your birth team.
Before getting a birth doula, there are three important things you must know about her: her education or training background, her experience, and her credentials. During the interview, you must ensure that you (and your birth team!) are comfortable with her presence. But how can you sense that the doula will be the right support for your labor and childbirth?
The following questions are recommended for mothers who wish to interview a doula prior to hiring:
- What training have you had? Are you a certified doula?
- Do you have one or more back up doulas in case you will not be available? (Optional: Is it possible to meet your back-up doula? Does she have the same rates as you? Do you have the same philosophy about labor and childbirth?)
- How many births have you attended? What is your experience as a doula?
- What is your philosophy about supporting families during labor and childbirth?
- Are you available to meet at least once to discuss our birth plans?
- What will be your role during labor and birth? (Important!)
- Are you available to answer our calls for questions and concerns before and after the birth?
- When will you join me during labor? Will you be visiting us at our home or will you be meeting us at the hospital?
- What is your epidural rate? What is your C-section rate? (Or, ask your doula about her philosophy on pain medications and interventions.)
- Are you going to meet with us after the baby comes out?
- Are we going to have a discussion about the labor and childbirth? Will you be able to answer other related questions we might have at this point?
- Optional: Have you given birth? Where? Did you have any medication or intervention? (You can ask this if you want to learn about her personal philosophy on labor and birth)
- Can you provide me with testimonials and character references?
We recommend that you meet your prospective doula in person to decide if they are compatible with your family. As you ask these questions, decide whether they are what you need. Some mothers find the need for someone knowledgeable and experienced. Other mothers feel that it is enough for them to find someone they are comfortable to be with. Figure out during the interview if they can communicate their thoughts well and if they are good listeners. If you feel uncomfortable with a candidate doula, ask more about your concerns. You can get better insight if you also communicate your wants and needs during labor and birth.
If you’re a pregnant woman who wants to know more about doulas, Doulapreneur has you covered with our Birth Doula FAQs. Do you think we should add more questions to the list? Comment below.