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Old 11-12-2012, 07:12 AM   #29
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Ohio
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Re: Tell Me About Doulas

Originally Posted by JennTheMomma View Post
While I think it's nice you're asking questions, it does seem like you have a chip on your shoulder about anything not mainstream. You also live in Ohio, which isn't the friendliest place for Doulas and Midwives (I have several friends there as well as family and one is a Doctor). That can certainly skew your view of things. Each state is different it seems when it comes to Doulas. The people who employ them, what they want from a Doula and so on. Again, Doulas are not a new invention, they've been around for a very long time, my own mom had a Doula for her births. They are just becoming more popular which is why you hear about them more.
While I would agree that Ohio isn't a role model for "crunchiness," I birthed all 3 of my children at a hospital that 12 years ago had labor/deliver/recover/stay rooms. Babies roomed in. They had one with a deep tub. And, the '08 (I use those because I found them quickly) c-section rates were 16%. My first time around, I was GBS+, my membranes ruptured 12 days early and I did not go into labor on my own. Would up in extended labor and exhausted. I wound up with a bunch of interventions as a result. However, I did not have nurses and a doctor who rushed me off for surgery. I did wind up delivering with a bunch of surgical interns in the room, because we were heading in that direction. However, my doctor was ancient and my first was vacuum delivered. Anyway, I just think it's unfair to bash an entire state.

Even in this thread, I see very differing opinions from doulas as to what their role is. That was my question and ultimately is my concern. I think that it may be an excellent option for people who need an extra support person focused on making sure that they remain focused - encouraging, reminding them that it won't last forever, relieving dad or grandma, etc. As I said, it is not something I would have any desire for for myself. DH and I were happy to be left entirely alone for the majority of my labors with nurses in only intermittently. But, my lack of desire isn't because I think that they wouldn't be useful support people for others. It is simply my personality and my relationship with DH.

But, even on this thread, this isn't the only view of a role of doula that I read. The idea that it is the doula's job to give mom options seems a bit scary to me. I am trying to figure out exacty where the doula gets the education to be qualified to determine and discuss options. I have read that some L&D nurses doula in their spare time, etc. I an see them having the education to present options. However, I wonder how a mom knows if their doula is qualified to offer what appears to be medical advice.

Unfortunately, I think a mom comes in set up for a difficult time when the nurse says let's check to see if you're in labor and the doula replies - she is in labor. Sure, the doula may well be right, but right then she's pitting herself and by extension, her client, against that nurse. Certainly, it isn't a foregone conclusion that things will go downhill, but I can just see that nurse's mind jumping to the conclusion that it's going to be one of those kind of days where everything (even things that don't need to be) is going to be a fight.

Again, I do come at this from the POV of a nurse in a medical setting. All of my patients are sick. I understand that low risk laboring women are a different patient entirely. So, I know that I come to this with the bias of how I feel when a random person tells my patient with serious clots that they shouldn't take the thinner that we wanted her on because it interferes with the high doses of vitamin K that his "natural" remedies company made. I still wonder from time to time if that woman is dead yet from that advice.
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