We work with a lot of expecting couples that are embarking on this journey for the first time and they usually have a lot of questions. Answering those questions is one of the best parts of our job, because we love helping educate people and connecting them to resources that they need. Most people these days know what a Birth Doula does or at the very least have heard the term. But more often not there are a lot of misconceptions about Postpartum Doulas. Many people think that a Postpartum Doula is there to help those with postpartum depression. Others might have heard that a Postpartum Doula is similar to a nanny. And while we do work with clients with postpartum depression and some of our Doulas have been nannies in the past, those definitions barely scratch the surface of what we do as Postpartum Doulas.
At it’s very core, the role of a Postpartum Doula is to support parents following the birth of their baby. That support could be in the hospital within hours after the birth or it could be greeting you at your front door that first night home from the hospital. This in-person support can take many forms so we’ve compiled some of the most common ways a Postpartum Doula can help you as a new mom, new dad, or even a new grandparent! It isn’t uncommon for our Postpartum Doulas to work with families anywhere from 3-6 months, although there is no minimum to the amount of care we provide.
If you’re currently pregnant we recommend chatting with friends who have used a Postpartum Doula, Night Nanny or Newborn Care Specialist to hear first hand how it affected their post-birth experience. To learn more about our team and reserve some support for after your baby’s arrival we invite you to schedule a time to chat with us.
And here we have the ABCs of Your Postpartum Doula!
A- Acknowledgement - She will validate and acknowledge the sacred nature of this journey as well as the ups & downs that this journey can entail
B- Baby Care - If you’ve never held or bathed a baby before it can be overwhelming. Her expert hands will demonstrate how to care for your baby without fear or worry
C- Confidence - All skills take time to learn… parenting is no different. Your doula will boost your confidence & encourage you every step of the way.
D- Diapering - In addition to showing you how to diaper, she can also take over the diapering for a bit while she’s there so you can get a break from baby duty (and baby doody!)
E- Education - Curious about various parenting styles, cloth diapering, baby wearing? Need information on circumcision, vaccines, finding a pediatrician? Your doula can provide education and resources for anything baby related. If she doesn’t know the answer, she can help you find it!
F- Feeding - Whether breast or formula feeding your doula is there to support you by offering tips, answering questions, and making you more comfortable physically while you feed your baby. She may even take over bottle feedings occasionally if you wish.
G- Good Nutrition - Recovering from birth is hard work. Parenting is hard work. And in the midst of taking care of your baby, you may forget to take care of yourselves. Your doula is there to remind you to eat and can even prepare a light meal or some snacks for you.
H- Honesty - If you ask your doula's professional opinion on something she will give you an honest answer. If you’re showing signs of a postpartum mood disorder, she will be transparent with you about her concerns. She is your ally here and will always be honest with you. If she doesn’t know the answer to your questions, she’ll tell you and help you get answers you need.
I- Intuition - It can take some time to get into your parenting groove and it’s not uncommon for your instincts to take a little while to kick in. But when they do, your Postpartum Doula is there to encourage you to trust your intuition which in turn helps build your confidence as a parent!