Our Birth Doulas
A Very Special Doula Service is Now Available
We have wanted a birth doula component for our ABC Doula & Newborn Care clients for years that specialized in all the things that our clients particularly need; multiples, high risk births, and pregnancies after loss. We have been searching for that perfect doula (or two!) for years, waiting for the right experience to come our way. We finally found what we believe is the perfect team to offer to our clients with Jen and Heather.
Jen brings a blend of sensitivity and gentleness—and humor—to our families that want an experienced birth doula who is ready to support you through a high intervention birth. With 15 years of working in a hospital system as an educator and running tours to familiarize families with their future birth locations, Jen understands the cooperative relationship between care providers and doulas in a high risk setting. Her agenda for births it to support the family emotionally with information and physical comfort, and to collaborate with the hospital professionals to give families the best experience all the way through. Although she supports high risk and low risk births with equal skills, Jen bring the special doula magic to working with families in high risk setting, without striving to exert control, influence or bring any private agenda to a client’s birth. Jen has supported many twin pregnancies and wanted to offer a service specifically to families who may not feel they qualify for typical birth services. She knows how to make a cesarean magical and welcoming, how to support partners doing skin to skin if the birthing person is unable, and how to facilitate breast or chest-feeding with everyone who wants to be involved.
Heather is the perfect backup to support the birth process while Jen is teaching classes or off-call during family time (scheduled in advance). Heather has extensive training and certification from Full Circle Birth and also has the joy of continuity of care by following up with families offering postpartum care after the birth. She and Jen will meet together with you during the prenatal visit to familiarize themselves with your requests surrounding care, and she will step in as needed to give educational and emotional support.
What is offered?
Our birth doulas offer an interview initially to make sure you feel 100% supported and confident of her care. If you decide to move forward, a prenatal appointment is scheduled to help us get familiar with your desires about the birth experience (about 90 min). If needed, an additional private class can be scheduled to further prepare your home or partner for labor or welcoming babies. Both doulas will attend your prenatal appointment to get familiar with your needs, and be ready to support your birth.
The biggest benefit to having a birth doula is having someone be ON CALL 24/7 for you for the last several weeks of your pregnancy leading up to birth. You can call your doula and have her join you at home or at the hospital whenever you are ready for her support. (Don’t worry if you don’t know for sure; she has extensive experience and will know what to suggest.) She will then stay with you for the entire birth process, through the baby’s first feeding, to make sure everyone is settled before she leaves to go home to rest.
Follow up is also included with a postpartum visit (1-2 hours) to answer any questions about the birth or to check in on the family, and your doula will continue to be available for 3-6 months for text support as needed. Heather also offers postpartum care to her birth families, and all the team at ABC Doula & Newborn Care can provide extensive postpartum support after babies arrive to support your family seamlessly.
Multiple births add an element of complexity to pregnancy and labor, and births are often highly managed. We know the cesarean rate is also significantly higher for families expecting twins and triplets, but that doesn’t rule out the need or value of doula support, in fact we will extend the on-call (including text services) from 34 weeks until birth so that your doula can be ready to support you, even if babies come early.
Why a high risk specialty?
All birth doulas support a birthing person and their partner. The reason we have chosen this specialty is that our clients need someone who is not only “open” to supporting medicalized birth, but someone who is experienced, comfortable, and supportive of making the more technical aspects of birth feel normal, empowered, and safe for families welcoming their babies. This comes from a wealth of experience of working in hospital systems, collaborating with the staff, and understanding interventions in a way that supporting the decisions your highly respected medical providers need to make for the safety of your baby.
Could we support a homebirth or intervention-free birth? Certainly, and our doulas have all the skills for that. However the majority of our clients need someone who is not disappointed with a cesarean, but rather celebrates the arrival of babies and the becoming of new parents to the exclusion of the way the birth unfolds. Because the cesarean rate is over 30% of all births, and for our multiples and high risk mothers more like 50% or higher, we wanted a birth doula who can bring the magic into the hospital room, before, during, and after a cesarean. Because for the vast majority of high risk situations, families will not have the choice to avoid interventions, but rather need to understand why the intervention is being used, what the desired outcome is, and to help the parents will benefit with gentle explanations and time to make informed decisions.
Have a question?
How do you know if our birth doulas are right for your situation? Give Kimberly a call and she can help you wade through the questions that would help determine if the doulas are available during your due dates, and also how our service operates. If you feel comfortable moving forward and they have an opening, a meeting can be set up to see how everyone fits.
Most of our families utilizing our birth doulas also request postpartum doula support. Because we don’t have control over whether things go as planned or not, we can be there to support you in a comprehensive way after birth if recovery is more than you imagined.
When you are planning for a baby or multiples and want to inquire about a birth doula, please fill out the form below and we will be in touch quickly to let you know what is open around your due date.