Doula Defined

I wanted to do something special when I reached 1,000 hits and that day has finally come! So I’m excited to welcome my first guest writer to the blog!! Her name is April and she is also a mommy. She has 3 children (7, 5, and 3) and below will tell you what her job as a doula entails! Be sure to check out her website and Facebook page, too. Enjoy!

I am a doula…a helper to laboring women. I love my “job”!! Seeing a new baby come into the world is amazing. I will never tire of it. Seeing a mother allow her body to birth her baby is also an amazing thing! I have been at several births now and each one is unique. I have been a doula at births at a birthing center and hospitals. I have supported mothers through all different types of childbirth, from a completely natural one to a c-section and everything in between. There are comfort techniques that work for one mother that might not work for another. There are positions that some moms love and others hate. That is what I am there for….to help the mom find what works for her and encourage her in it.

My job is to allow the mother to do whatever works for her during labor, to suggest positions and offer comfort techniques that the parents might not think of on their own. One thing I try to do is include the dad as much as possible during labor. Dads are a great help for the mom, and I never want to take that place. As a doula, I will suggest things that might work for the mom, but it is totally her decision if she wants to take my suggestions. It is all about the mother and allowing her to have the birth she desires.

I will meet with the parents 3 times before the birth of their baby and we will discuss all aspects of their birth, from helping to write a birth plan to answering any questions they might have. I explain to them how I am able to help during labor, through massage, suggesting various positions (sitting on the birthing ball, hands and knees, etc.) and other comfort techniques (cold washcloth, hot rice sock, help with breathing, etc.). I let the mom know that I will be with her the whole time and my focus will be on her, supporting her! I make myself available for phone calls and let the mom know I will come when she is ready for me.

Being a doula has been a very rewarding experience for me!

Thanks to Julia for allowing me to write this post. If you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments or email them to

April Menking is a labor doula and childbirth educator. She, along with Kelly Hammond and Katie Padilla run Carolina Doulas, a group dedicated to assisting women in having the birth they desire. All 3 are CAPPA trained and would love to work with you. Visit their website, Carolina Doulas, for more information.

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