Searching for a birth doula can be a challenge for some, ideally, the worst would be to have too many candidates to choose from! Personally, I feel like every invitation I’ve received to be apart of a birth has been decided based on a “gut feeling”; an emotional, spiritual connection that unites us in a common purpose: to have a happy, healthy birth in whatever way you define that to be. As you make these first steps into your newfound parenthood – regardless if it’s your first or fourth time – remember it’s all about creating an atmosphere of support that makes you feel the safest, happy, and comfortable. This is true when deciding your doula, care-provider, or birthplace.
Below, I’ve composed a list of questions to help you get to the heart of things when interviewing for your birth doula. I invite you to include more questions that are unique to your circumstances and to allow the conversation to flow organically away from this structure to get a better sense of what it would be like to work with a doula in your upcoming birth.
- What is your approach to birth? What is your birthing philosophy?
- How were you called into the doula profession?
- How do you define your role in a birth?
- What do you look for in a client? A passion towards self-advocacy, interest in learning about birth, emotional connection, strong communication skills, etc.?
- Do you support specific birthing preferences, like Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC), hypnobirthing, homebirths, etc.?
- Can you tell me about your certification and training? Do you do any type of continuing education?
- How long have you been a doula?
- What type of packages or additional services do you offer (breastfeeding, body work or binding, massage, robozo, placenta encapsulation, etc.)?
- How much are your fees and how do you schedule payments?
- How do you structure the prenatal and postpartum sessions?
- Can you tell me about your back up policy? How and when do you arrange that?
- At what point do you consider yourself to be on-call? How do I reach you during the on-call period?
- At what point do you come to assist during labor? What needs to be present in my labor for you to come for support?
- Do you provide support for planned Caesarian births? What does that look like?
- How long do you stay after the birth?
- What is your favorite thing about birth?
- Is there anything else you’d like us to know