As you seek God’s heart for your birth and prepare for the type of birth you long for, make sure to pray about adding a doula to your birth team!
After experiencing one birth without a doula and one birth with a doula, I can honestly say that it made a HUGE difference and I can’t imagine giving birth again without one.
A birth doula is someone who provides physical, emotional, spiritual, and informational support to you and your partner throughout the labor and birth.
Here’s what that looks like…
- She gives you amazing massages
- Knows all the right pressure points to make you feel more comfortable
- Gives you yummy drinks and snacks throughout labor to keep you strong and feeling good
- Suggests positions or activities to help labor progress faster
- Helps you make informed decisions
- Makes sure you feel empowered, heard, and that you call the shots for the birth
- Makes you feel like the most loved, cared for, supported woman on the planet (so much so that in my case, I didn’t even want labor to end for a while)
From my experience both as a doula and a mom in labor, here are 6 reasons you want a doula:
1. Shorter labor
Um, yes, please! Statistically, birth doulas shorten labors by an average of 6 hours. For me, that’s worth the investment right there! They are able to offer suggestions throughout the labor to help the baby move down quicker and keep you at peace so that labor is able to progress faster. They also help you labor at home longer so that you don’t get to the hospital or birth center too early, which can slow or stall labor.
2. Less pain
Once again, yes, please! Through their comfort techniques, massages, pressure points, and position suggestions, they greatly help reduce any pain you are experiencing. Plus, they really help your mental game and help you stay in a relaxed place of peace – both of which play a big part in decreasing pain.
3. Peace of Mind
This is probably the most important thing for your labor experience. If you are able to keep your mind and body at peace, your labor will be much more comfortable and progress quicker. And you’ll be able to enjoy it for the gift God created it to be! A doula will offer the information and assurance you need to keep you at peace throughout the labor. She’ll help you know the best time to head to the hospital and help you make decisions throughout the entire labor that you feel confident and peaceful about. Her expertise and knowledge can provide the assurance and encouragement you need when anxiety starts to creep in.
4. Less likely to need any interventions
This is huge! Moms who have a doula have a 40% less chance of the birth ending in a C-section, and 30% less chance of feeling like they need an epidural. They also have fewer inductions, Pitocin intervention, and vacuum or forceps deliveries. Isn’t it amazing that the presence of a trained and caring doula can produce those types of results?
It’s because she is able to help you make better-informed choices, stick up for your rights at the hospital, labor faster so the hospital doesn’t pressure you for a C-section, help you arrive at the hospital later so that they don’t put you on a clock too early or pressure you for Pitocin early on, and feel comfortable and empowered so you don’t feel the need for an epidural or pain meds.
She helps you labor in the best positions so that your body is able to naturally birth well the way God designed without needing interventions.
5. You and your partner get to enjoy the birth more!
Don’t we all want that? I so believe that God designed childbirth to be a gift for us to enjoy. And having a doula present really helps both of you enjoy the whole process and gift. I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed my labor with my husband and doula loving on me, worshipping with me, massaging me, affirming me, bringing me drinks & snacks, and hugging me through my strong contractions. It was truly heavenly. And I can honestly say, I ENJOYED it!
But that’s because of the confidence and peace she brought into the room, the suggestions she had that felt so heavenly, and her tender care for both of us. I was able to trust her judgments and suggestions and turn my thinking brain off and just get in my birth zone and enjoy. I let her and my husband do all the heavy thinking and discussing while I just enjoyed being in my zone with God.
And my husband was able to enjoy the birth so much more. He didn’t feel pressure to be there for me every single second and always know the perfect thing to say or the perfect place to touch to make me feel more comfortable. He didn’t have to run from massaging me to getting me a drink to trying to get a second to pee and send a quick text. He could leave the room for a minute without feeling guilty because I was in great hands with my doula. It took the pressure and anxiety off him so he could just be present and enjoy the whole experience with me.
6. Enjoy the postpartum time more
Statistics show that moms who have a doula at their birth report a greater satisfaction in motherhood in the following months. They report that their babies cry less and report greater feelings of bonding with their babies. Pretty amazing!
We don’t know all the reasons for this, but some of it is because moms with doulas tend to have more satisfying and healthy birth experiences. And a great birth experience allows you to enjoy your postpartum time more. If you have a traumatic birth experience, it takes a while to emotionally and physically heal from that during the postpartum time.
Researchers also believe that having a female present throughout the birth to care for you empowers you as a new mom. If you feel extremely cared for in the birth, you get filled up with all you need to care for your new little one now. The confidence the doula gives you during the birth transfers into motherhood.
Less postpartum depression and more enjoyment in the first few months of mommyhood? Yes, please! Sign me up for a doula!
So there you have it, 6 reasons I highly encourage you to get a doula for your birth!
If you want to learn more about what a doula offers, the difference between a doula and a midwife, and why I recommend hiring a doula, check out this video I made :).
And if you’re looking for a Christian doula in your area, click here to check out my doula page. I’m starting to populate it with like-minded doulas around the U.S. (And if you know an amazing doula you think I should list on here, send her to my doula affiliate program where she can sign up!)
And if you are a doula who would like to be added to the list, you can read about my doula affiliate program here.
If a doula made a difference at your birth, I’d love to hear about it in the comment section below! Why would you recommend getting one?
To your beautiful birth,