But, what does a postpartum doula actually do?
Much like a birth doula does during childbirth, a postpartum doula supports, informs and encourages a family during the first few weeks home with baby. The postpartum doula offers in home care in the following areas:
- light housework (wiping down counters, straightening up, wash and fold laundry, change bedsheets),
- meal preparation (pick up groceries on the way over, fix lunch, prep and/or cook dinner, organize snacks),
- assisting with baby care (diaper changing, burping, bathing, swaddling, or just holding baby while mother showers or naps),
- baby-wearing tutorials (moby, woven wrap, or structured carriers),
- baby feeding information and tips (latch, position, bottle prep and feeding),
- companionship (listen to the emotional needs of the mother, allowing the space for physical and emotional healing after the birth),
- sibling adjustment (including siblings in day to day activities of the newborn, and working on any new behavioral quirks that may have appeared after baby),
- partner adjustment (listen to the partner, allowing the space for emotional healing and processing after the birth, offering ways to bond with baby and support the mother),
- space and time organization (setting up specific areas of the house, or tools, in order to streamline baby care and routines for all)
Basically, a postpartum doula takes care of all the things surrounding the parent and baby so all they have to do is feed, rest and bond.
What is the difference between a postpartum doula and a baby-nurse?
A baby-nurse is responsible for taking care of the newborn, while a postpartum doula is responsible for taking care of the mother-baby dyad. A baby-nurse meets the needs of the baby, while a doula will meet the needs of the pair: parent and baby, together, in order to promote bonding.
As a postpartum doula, what is your parenting philosophy?
As a postpartum doula, my parenting philosophy is irrelevant. As your doula I encourage you to discover your own parenting philosophy and to become comfortable and confident in your role as parent. You are in charge and you have your own instincts, I am there to support you in those.
Do you support families with multiples?
Yes, a postpartum doula is an excellent extra set of hands for families of multiples. I am happy to support all families.
What is DONA, International?
From DONA's website: www.dona.org "Pardon us for bragging, but we are the oldest, largest and most respected doula association in the world. Our founders are among the foremost experts on doula care, and DONA International certification is a widely respected measure of quality and professionalism. We are an international, non-profit organization of doulas that strives to have every doula trained and educated to provide the highest quality and standards for birth and/or postpartum support to birthing women and their families. To that end, we promote continuing education for doulas and provide a strong communication link among doulas and between doulas, families and the medical birthing community."
How long does a postpartum doula work with a family?
Families employ postpartum doulas anywhere from 3 days to 12 weeks, depending on the family. Postpartum doulas are usually contracted for 2-3 weeks at a time, with a minimum of 8 hours per week, and will add on weeks as needed.
Are you infant CPR certified?
I am CPR certified for infants, children and adults.