FAQ for Families

Expectant families often have questions when it comes to doulas. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions.

  1. What is a doula?

    Doulas are trained birth professionals who provide emotional, physical, and educational support to expectant families during pregnancy, childbirth, and the immediate postpartum period. Doulas are in integral part of the birth team that enhances communication and helps families navigate pregnancy and childbirth.

  2. Why do doulas cost so much?

    Doulas are self-employed and must cover all their expenses, including continuing education, books, training, supplies, childcare, and taxes. They must reserve space in their schedule to be on-call for up to four weeks for each client.

  3. What if I can’t afford a doula?

    We encourage families to contact us directly at info@palsdoulas.org or by calling 206-329-7257 to be connected with available certifying or certified doulas. Please include: Birthing individual’s EDD, delivery location, neighborhood, and budget range/pro-bono request. 

    We also encourage people to contact Open Arms Perinatal Services to see if they qualify for a doula at no cost. 

  4. What makes a PALS Certified Doula different?

    PALS’ certification process reflects our desire to produce doulas who practice the highest level of labor support. Our certified doulas go through a mentorship process, work through additional education in breastfeeding and childbirth education, and have additional experience learning about social maternal health issues like racism, sexism, gender equality, power and privilege. We feel that our certified doulas are ready to provide services to the vast range of expectant people within the Greater Puget Sound region.

  5. Will a doula still support me if I plan to have an epidural or cesarean?

    Yes! When you are interviewing doulas, you may be surprised to hear they have supported all types of births. Some doulas have a particular cliental that they seem to support more often than others. Discuss your questions and concerns when interviewing doulas. If they do not feel that they can support you well in your desired birth, they should be able to make appropriate referrals to a doula who can.