A woman who gives emotional and physical support to a Woman in Labor.

A Doula originally meant ‘Slave’ in Greek. But today in Modern America it is a woman who assist a birthing woman physically, and emotionally. We are the hands to hold, that voice of reassurance.

There are many kinds of Doulas.  Some take a passive stance between hospital staff, others like myself take on the shield.

Doulas are taught to follow each woman’s wish. A Doula’s roll is to guide and guardian ship. We are to help educate with fact, science and good wisdom. A good Doula will lead the life they preach, eating well, exercise and steadiness of the mind.

Doulas and natural living: A good Doula can help you get back to a more natural way of living, and for many women, pregnancy is a catalyst for many life changing factors.

Loads of women stop smoking, drinking, and generally attempt to improve their diet.


Living a natural life, or at least as close to it as possible. While pregnancy for some is a time when they are feeling round and wide, other women are appreciating their new forms, and Doulas can help a woman regain her sense of direction by sharing whats normal and not so normal about this new stage of life.


It clearly needs to be noted that Doulas are not clinical support. While many Doulas do come from extensive medical backgrounds like myself, we leave the diagnosis and prescriptions to the midwives and pregnancy medical support.

While Doulas can tell you what diets are proven through numerous studies and reports, are most advantageous for you in your pregnancy. We can’t advise our Mothers.

However, there are some Doulas who are midwives and nurse practitioners, and they can diagnose and prescribe herbs and medications if indicated.

*Please note, its not always good practice to have the person who’s delivering your baby be your Doula, unless you are comfortable with being your own support, or  your partner. It can detract from the situation if your labor support has to go in to delivery mode when you need them the most.

Birth is a transition, and we are to be guides. guides have a great deal of responsibility, we have to see to it our charges meet their destination safely and whole!

What does a Doula do? I compiled a small list of things we do:

-Pain management:

Doulas, through training and years of experience have learn some very

simple and affective maneuvers to help keep the baby moving, and ‘pain’ to a minimum.

-Emotional support:

A Doula can offer guidance for a birthing woman, knowing the birth process and knowing whats normal, and understanding that every woman has the strength and will to give birth on her own, and as nature has intended. The Doula can remind her of that innate knowledge. Touching the heart, and offering encouragement. or sometimes. Standing silently, as the mother wishes, beside her, and just rubbing her shoulders while nature strengthens the woman.

Now some math on Doulas!

In 1993 189 first time mothers from the province of Johannesburg, South Africa were followed to see how the mere presence of a Doula at a birth could positively influence the relationships of the couple, the birthing mother and the infant.

But midwives and Doulas don’t need statistics to know the facts. (This is one of many studies)

Statics for Doula assistance:

…………………….Control………………. Doula……………… Doula

……………………( no Doula)………..(observing only)…..( Active supporting)

Length of Labor:.. 9.4 hrs………………….8.4 hrs……………………..7.4hrs

Epidural:…………..55%……………………… 23%……………………….8%

Pitocin:…………….43%……………………….32%……………………….17%

Cesaren Birth:……18%………………………..13%……………………….8%

Forceps:…………..26% ……………………….21%……………………….8%

*Data taken from Birthing from With in: Birthing without pain “Don’t give Birth without a Doula”-Michel Odent, M.D

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