Q: What does a postpartum doula do?
A: A postpartum doula’s role is constantly evolving according to the daily needs of the family. I assist with anything that can be done to support the mother physically and emotionally, so she can best enjoy her new little one. I make sure she is well- fed, hydrated, and rested as much as possible. I educate the mother and partner on all newborn care techniques. I believe in treating the family as a unit and helping them to “mother the mother” as well as possible. I am non-judgmental and will listen to your ideal wishes for your new life with your baby. I assist with sibling transition and help them understand their new role as big brother(s) or sister(s).
Q: How long does a postpartum doula stay with a family?
A: From my experience, the average stay for a doula is anywhere from one week to three months, depending on the needs of the family.
Q: What are the usual hours a doula spends with a family?
A: I usually spend a minimum of six hours per day or minimum of eight hours per night, and my maximum is 12 hours, five days/nights a week. I am open to working more than five days the first couple of weeks after baby comes home. I am also open to working 24-hour shifts for up to two weeks.
Q: How does the doula assist the parents in their new role?
A: My goal by the end of my stay is to leave you and your partner feeling completely self-confident in your roles as parents. I will support you and build your self-esteem so you can feel assured that you’re doing everything you can to be successful. I will give you techniques to bond with your baby, which will develop your confidence over time.
Q: Postpartum depression is a challenging reality for some mothers. How do doulas assist mothers with postpartum depression?
A: I will create an emotionally-safe place for the new mother. I will educate her and provide resources for her if needed. I will nurture her; I can prepare light meals and make sure she’s well-hydrated, as well as ensuring she’s getting as much sleep as possible. I pre-screen for postpartum mood-disorders and check-in daily to gauge her emotional well-being, and will also provide her with local resources for support.