pregnancy, birth & postnatal
"If a doula were a drug, it would be unethical not to use it"
- Dr John Kennell
Given this quote, a very simple definition of a doula is a person trained in childbirth who provides continuous emotional, mental and physical support to the woman and her partner during the pregnancy, birth and postnatal period. This is in addition to the medical care offered by the midwife and medical teams. The doula is an advocate for the women's wishes within the maternal medical system.
The act of physical birth is deeply entwined with the mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of the woman and the event. When we acknowledge this, the woman and her family-with the doula’s assistance- are empowered to direct the course of events to their own satisfaction. To this end, the services of a doula are bespoke for the clients that she is working with.
Continuity-of-care is usually not an option for most pregnant women in the larger cities. I consider this to be one of the most important things for a happy outcome for mother and baby through the birthing and postnatal period.
“It is a matter of the woman being comfortable, not stressed, in a place where
she feels safe, without people fussing, without other people stressing, without anyone else trying to have her baby for her, no clocks, no timing, no telling her what her body already knows.”