How do doulas compliment midwives during a birth?
First off, let’s just all recognize how deservingly and understandably busy midwives are! 🤗
That being said, midwives can’t often provide all the cool birth facts, and pain management technique examples, that a doula can and does cover!
A midwife is responsible for your medical care, and doesn’t necessarily have room to be your emotional support as well. Not that they CANT and DONT love, nourish and honor you through your birth, but they have a specific role in your birth and things going on in their brain throughout it, and that can distract them from being emotionally-centric to you, while a doula only has to focus on wrapping you in love, support, autonomy, and hip squeezes.
The little touches matter. Your doula probably knows your favorite blend of essential oils, your husband and child’s name, where you keep your toothbrush in the home, and your favorite meal, all to make your birth experience that much more comfortable, in addition to everything your midwife is doing to make your space the best and the safest.
A doula can come to your home before you either transfer to the birth center, or before your midwife comes to your home, and help you work through early labor. With some midwives, this can make the difference between whether or not you get transferred because at some point they get tired, they go beyond their legal capacity to be present, or they end up leaving because you’re too early, and then end up coming back later, when they could have been resting and have been more effective in their medical role, had you had someone with you to get you through the early end of the race! I have personally experienced the let down of my midwife coming to my home and being told I’m only 1cm. If I had had someone to get me through the early stages of my labor with my first baby boy, I always wonder if I would have still been transferred to the hospital that morning, for no medical reason.
If god forbid a transfer does happen, your midwife doesn’t always go with you, whether they can’t or they just don’t, mine with my first never showed. Your doula will not abandon you in your scariest moments. It is my job to make that less scary for you, and rather keep you in a position of power, control, and confidence by keeping you informed as possible. We will still work as close as possible to your birth plan.
Be weary of a midwife that doesn’t recommend doulas, or doesn’t think you need one, because she has got you! Midwives that are intimidated by doulas, are doing something wrong and don’t want their clients fully educated because they are not practicing autonomy, period point blank. There are midwives in the area that I would never recommend or would never work with again, due to some of the above reasons (abandoning clients, chastising doulas, etc), feel free to ask via message, I’m happy to share experiences!
If you desire an amazing team, I highly recommend In Due Season Birth Center & Family Wellness. I absolutely love working with Lucie, Khamissa and any of their birth assistants. They are literally the only licensed midwives in the Tampa FL area that I would even consider allowing to be apart of my intimate pregnancy and birth, and I don’t just say that, I mean it, because I have actually used their Pregnancy Wellness services for my short-lived pregnancy with Elian, and I have never felt more informed or respected, even in my times of grief.
And if you need a doula to compliment your midwife-assisted birth (or any birth for that matter), consider me there! I can work in any setting and support you anywhere because birth, anywhere and anyhow, is my passion. ❤️