The Top 3 Reasons Your Partner Wants a Doula Too.....
I've met with many couples where the partner is unsure about this whole "doula thing".
"Isn't it my job to support you?" they'll say. Or "I don't want to feel useless."
I've even heard, "Whatever you want, Babe, I'm not important." (not true by the way).
I've also met with couples where the partner knows they want all the help and support they can get because lets face it, birth is overwhelming and the unknown can be scary. The more the merrier, right?
Most partners are probably somewhere in the middle of these two mind sets. I can tell you that most often partners are the first ones to come up to me after a birth, filled with gratitude and relief that they didn't have to do what they just did, all on their own. They didn't have to remember all they "crammed" into their brains during childbirth class and they had someone in the room to offer a helping hand, a suggestion for what to do, and a soft spoken "everything is going right" when things got intense or overwhelming. Partners need care too: a chance to step out for a bite to eat, some air, a leg stretch--and to know that their laboring partner is well taken care of. It's a HUGE weight lifted. That is the goal of doula support for the partner--never to replace, but to compliment and highlight the amazing connection that exists between the two parents and help the support partner SHINE and be exactly what the birthing person needs to help labor progress smoothly and comfortably. That may look like showing the partner how to do counterpressure for uncomfortable back labor, or the doula may do that, so that the partner can hold mom's hand and tell her "I'm so proud of you". Whatever that looks like for your individual family, is what we will do.
Let's talk for a minute about the top 3 reasons partners rave about doula support...…….
1. Doulas Know Birth
We have training and experience that allows us to be comfortable and confident in the birth process. When your nurse or provider is out of the room and something different starts happening, you can count on us to reassure you that "this is normal" or to have a pretty good idea when we need to get the attention of someone medically trained. We also know the best positions and comfort measures to use to help your labor progress as smoothly and comfortably as possible.
2. Doulas Hold Space
What?! Weird term, I know. What it means is that we help create an atmosphere of informed consent. We help educate you prior to labor, so that you know what you want for your birth and at the very least, know that you deserve to be asked before anything is done. There is always time for a "yes or no" from you and your partner, no matter what it is. Having a doula on your team lets your care providers know that you're serious about being an active participant in your own birth story. We will remind you to ask questions when necessary and to be confident in your power of choice.
3. Doulas Allow Freedom
Freedom? Freedom to do what, exactly? Good question..................freedom to FEEL. Having a doula by your side allows the partner to experience the baby's birth and all the emotion that goes with that. It allows them to be in those intimate, once-in-a-lifetime moments that you can't get back. The partner doesn't have to be the "strong one".