Guide to Hiring a Doula
- Use the search feature on the “Find A Doula” page to find doulas who are available for your due date, and pick a few that interest you. Some doulas include links to their personal website where you can get more information about them.
- Contact the doulas you are interested in. You might ask them some or all of the following questions:
– What training have you had?
– Do you have one or more backup doulas for times when you are not available? Is it possible to meet with them?
– What is your fee; what does it include and what are your refund policies?
– Tell me about your experience as a birth doula.
– What is your philosophy about birth and supporting people through labor?
– Is it possible to meet to discuss my birth plan and the role you will play in supporting me through birth?
– May I call you with questions or concerns before or after the birth?
– When do you join me in labor? Do you come to my home or meet me at the birth location?
– How often and when do we meet after the birth to review the labor and answer questions?
- Once you have talked to a few doulas on the phone, it is a good idea to meet at least two of them for an in-person interview. This is an opportunity for you to see how you feel in the doula’s presence, and ask more questions of the doula. Since doulas support both the pregnant person and a partner (if applicable), it is strongly recommended that both attend the interviews.
- When you meet with a doula at an interview, pay attention to how well they listen, how well they communicate, their comfort with you and your birth choices, and their level of knowledge and experience. The doula with which you feel most comfortable may be able to offer you more support than the doula with the most experience.
If you need any help during any step of this process, please call the PALS Doulas Referral Line for assistance at 206-329-7257.