What is a doula? And what’s in a doula fee?
A doula is a rare and magical creature that provides continuous
support during pregnancy, labor and the early postpartum
period. professional labor support to women during the
childbearing years. Her role is
to provide a loving, non-judgemental environment for
mothers to give birth. A doula uses relaxation techniques,
encouragement, massage, and physical support. She offers her
deep understanding and knowledge of pregnancy and the birth
process when you have questions or concerns.
I love being a doula. I love supporting new and growing
families. I love how it makes me feel. I love how it makes the
mom feel. I love witnessing a baby coming into the world. This
work was meant for me. I love what I do!
I have been asked numerous times over the past several years,
“why do you charge so much”? Aside from the obvious cost of
my doula training, books, advertisement (brochures, website,
business cards, ventering at events) continueing education,
workshops and materials for keeping my birth bag stocked. There
are so many other hidden costs to take into consideration.
• consultation on average is 1-2 hours
• 2-3 prenatals that are on average 2-3 hours each
• travel time to prenatals, the birth and postpartum visit can
range 30-60+ minutes each way
• the birth can easily be 10+ hours and most first time
moms average 24 hours are more
• on call starting at 38 weeks until the birth, can you really
put a time on that?
When I’m on call, I never leave home without an extra set of
clothes, my birth bag, my camera, my cell phone and charger. I
make sure I always have cell service, or that I’m near a landline
that my client can reach me on. I don’t travel more than 1.5
hours away from where the mama is planning to give birth. Most
times my husband and I take separate cars to dinner, a family
function or a sporting event. I have walked out of Thanksgiving
dinner, a birthday party and the movie theater to attend a birth.
Most first time parents think that a doula only spends a few
hours with them during their birth. As a doula, I consider an 8
hour birth as pretty fast. The average time I spend at a birth is
16 hours. Most first time births last at least 24 hours, and the
longest birth I ever attended was over 50 hours. I spend another
8-10 hours in prenatal and postpartum visits, and another few
hours on the phone or email and up to 7 hours of travel time
for each client. So on average I give each client 40 hours or
more of my time. I then have to pay taxes, deduct for vacation
and sick time, contribute to an IRA (doulas need to plan for the
future too), continuing education, communication expenses,
The birth of your baby is more important than your wedding
dress, the newest electronic device and getting a coffee a day at
starbucks for an entire year. Think of having a doula present at
your birth as the best ling lasting investment you will ever make.