Frequently asked questions

Birth Doula

What is a birth doula?

A birth doula is a trained professional that works with birthing women and families to prepare them for labour, birth and postpartum.

What does a birth doula do?

The birth doula:

  • consults with the couple during pregnancy to discuss any goals and possible fears regarding the birth and postpartum period
  • works with the couple to create a list of birth preferences
  • educates the couple on comfort measures for labour
  • helps the couple to have a positive mindset for labour, birth and postpartum
  • helps to set up the birth space
  • provides comfort measures such as light touch techniques, hip squeezes, counter-pressure, aromatherapy, birth affirmations and aiding in position changes
  • she may offer tools such as a tens machine, birth comb (for acupressure points in the hands), and the rebozo (traditionally a shawl) used to provide relief to the woman in different birth positions
What a birth doula does NOT do?
  • do NOT provide medical advice
  • do NOT diagnose medical conditions
  • do NOT interpret medical data/information/scans
  • do NOT perform vaginal exams
  • do NOT provide fetal heartbeat monitoring
  • do NOT assess positioning of the baby in utero
  • do NOT perform any assessments of the newborn
What is your service area for births?

I am happy to travel within a 1 hour radius of Holmview, QLD for a birth. I do require the birthing woman to be in frequent contact with me, in order to know the best time for me to leave so I can ensure I’m there to support you. 

Obviously, no one can ever know how short or long labour will be, and traffic etc so it’s important to keep these things in mind too!


What if you can't make the birth?

I do everything in my power to make sure I can be at births, however there are some instances where this may not be possible for example – I’m unwell, or we’ve had a highly infectious illness like gastro in our home within the last 48 hours, or some other family emergency that couldn’t be anticipated.

HOWEVER – I do have a community of fellow doula-sisters who I can turn to for a backup in case I can’t make it! I will also do my best to support you virtually via video chat if needed!

What if I decide I don't want to go ahead with the natural birth plan?

My only goal is that you, the birthing woman, feel supported, informed, empowered, and held during your labour, birth and postpartum. So if you decide you are unable to cope using the methods we’ve been trying I will absolutely support you and your choices! 

What's the difference between a midwife and a birth doula?

The birth doula is a trained professional who specialises in providing physical and emotional support and comfort to the birthing woman. Birth doulas are NOT medically trained, therefore cannot provide medical advice or expertise.

The midwife is medically trained and is regulated by AHPRA, and therefore have more legal requirements, for instance, they sign an agreement with their hospital or company, that says they can only work for a set amount of time before they need to leave to go home after shift, so they can sleep. Whereas a doula isn’t bound by such laws or requirements, meaning she can be with the woman for more of the labour and for the birth.

When will you arrive to help me in labour?

Personally, I will ask you to stay in frequent contact with me during late pregnancy especially, and ask that you let me know when you:

  • start losing your mucous plug
  • when she starts feeling braxton hicks
  • have regular contractions 
  • have a bloody show and/or leaking of waters etc.

I ask you to rest as much as possible in early labour and to call me when labour has progressed a bit further and you’re needing the extra support. That way I can ensure I’m well rested and can be fully present and ready to support you for active labour and final stages of birth. Of course timing will vary per person; but I open communication is the key here!

    Do you attend ALL births?

    I am happy to attend hospital and home births, however I will not attend free births (i.e. with no midwife present).
    I am also more than happy to attend a caesarean birth if clearance is given by the hospital.

    Postpartum Doula

    What is a postpartum doula?

    A postpartum doula supports, listens, nourishes, and essentially cocoons the mother and her family in the postpartum period, ensuring she/they feel held and heard. 


    What do you do as a postpartum doula?

    As your postpartum doula I will hold space for you to share all your big emotions surrounding your birth story,  your journey into parenthood, and anything else life brings up!

    I provide breastfeeding, infant sleep and newborn care support; I provide evidence based resources to help you make informed choices in how you care for your baby; and can help link you in with any other services you may need. 

    I am here to support the whole family unit in the adjustment to adding a new baby/s to the family.


    Who do you support?

    I support a wide range of families including:

    • Parents with other children
    • First time parents
    • Parents of multiples
    • Mothers recovering from either vaginal or caesarean births
    • Parents with mental health struggles
    • Parents of premature infants
    • Parents of infants with special needs
    • Mothers who are breastfeeding, mixed or bottle/formula feeding
    • Single mothers
    • Single fathers
    • Parents who have experienced birth trauma
    • Parents with minimal support around them
    • Parents who have adopted
    • Parents who have used a surrogate
    • Surrogate mothers (the birthing woman)
    • Parents who are fostering
    • Families of different cultures
    • Parents who are grieving after infant loss/stillbirth…

    ….the list goes on….

    If you’d like in-home postpartum support lets chat!

    What does a postpartum visit normally look like?

    When I arrive at your home, you will be greeted with a warm smile and a big hug (if you’re a hugger!).  We will sit down together and chat about how everything has been going since we last spoke; you may choose to share your birth story with me – which I LOVE to hear!!; we’ll discuss any concerns you have with yourself or your baby; and I’ll ask if you have any goals for the day and I will help you to achieve those. 

    We’ll chat about what feels most overwhelming for you on the day and what you really feel you need on that given day, and I’ll work with you to make that happen. Sometimes this will be for you to have a long nap while I watch baby,  or you may like to go out and have your  hair or nails done (or even a massage!) while I mind baby (while staying nearby), 

    I will spend some time doing a bit of a tidy up around the home too just to allow your body to rest. I might also make a meal or snack for you, or even help you to feel relaxed and nurtured.

    If I feel you would benefit from some evidence based resources I’ll also send those through after our time together. 

    When should I hire a postpartum doula?

    If you’d like to ensure you get booked in with a postpartum doula, it’s best to let them know asap. As far as timing goes though, I care for mothers until around the 18 month mark if they’re wanting extended support and I have the availability. If you require support beyond that I would be open to discussing this further too, but this would be on a case by case basis. 

    All the things a postpartum doula is NOT..

    We are not just glorified nannies, cleaners, nurses, babysitters or chefs… we have a lot of experience, training etc and we take our role very seriously. 

    We are trained in postpartum care however we are not medical professionals and therefore cannot give medical advice. If we notice something that could be of concern, we will refer you to see the relevant healthcare provider. In many cases, I’ll have someone to recommend, for example a lactation consultant (IBCLC) for breastfeeding support, psychologists, women’s health physio etc.