A Postnatal Doula aims to help and support a mother and her family after the birth of a baby. This support can take many forms depending on the needs of the mother, and every situation is different.
Following the birth of a baby in Western society mothers feel they should be able to cope with everything – learning how to adapt to the needs of their baby, as well as healing after labour, doing the shopping, cooking, cleaning, walking the dog, taking their older child to school, exercising and being a wonderful partner. Well, for most mothers this is exactly what life can look like... eventually! However I believe that the first 6-8 weeks after a baby is born is a time for softening, slowing down, healing, bonding, resting.
What does a Postnatal Doula Do?
Creating Space - this is about allowing the mother and baby time and space to discover and learn about each other. To bond. Often mothers feel they need to be managing the home, welcoming visitors, keeping in touch with work, etc. A postnatal doula can help the mother to keep a healthy balance, and works with the mother to ensure she is happy and relaxed. A doula will always try to help the mother to spend as much time as possible with her baby and to enjoy that time.
Who needs a Postnatal Doula?
Any parent who is expecting a baby or very recently had a baby! A Postnatal Doula works with the family and does not impose their own judgements or ideas. Their role is to enable the family to have the best and most positive time with their new baby. They work for the mother, so her needs come first, and what she wants for herself or her baby. Some mothers have no extended family nearby to help, there may be older siblings to care for, perhaps twins are on the way? Many parents feel overwhelmed by a new baby’s arrival – their focus was on the labour and achieving a positive outcome, but the time following the labour can be the most challenging, and unlike labour it can last for weeks!
What can I do for you?
- Listen to your fears, hopes and dreams
- Create space and time for you
- Care about any challenges you are facing
- Celebrate your every day tiny achievements
- Light housework chores
- Helping with older siblings
- Supporting breastfeeding
- Helping with the baby
- Looking after the baby
Please note I am not a cleaner nor a cook, so while I am very happy to help out in these areas remember I am not an expert!
How does a Postnatal Doula work?
Usually I will meet with you (and other care givers) before or after the baby is born. At this meeting you can give me idea of the types of things you expect to need help with.
The days and times of my sessions with you are tailored to fit in with your needs, and each visit is usually a 3 hour session, but I can be flexible depending on travel.
I am an experienced pregnancy and postnatal massage therapist so I can offer a postnatal massage during a session – this hour’s massage will be charged at my massage rates.
- A block booking of 10 hours postnatal doula £150
- or £18.50 per hour postnatal doula or babysitting
- Postnatal massage £45 for one session
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