Photo by flequi, used under Creative Commons license.
I’m only 13 weeks, so this is super early, but I’ve been thinking about how much I’d like a doula with me during labor. I’m not super crunchy, but I plan on having an unmedicated birth and I’m really happy with my choice in hospital and doctor. However, I also think a doula would provide even more support and make it as close to the experience that we want as possible. (There are no guarantees and I’m going to be flexible, but we can try, right?)

Well, the only problem is that my husband is not down with me getting a doula. It’s not the idea of them (he thinks they’re super helpful) or the cost, but the fact that he thinks he can be the advocate and support I’ll need during the birth. I think he’s amazing and absolutely will be great during the birth… but I don’t know that he’ll be able to remember everything from class, worry about me, worry about the baby and advocate for our birth plan while dealing with how he’s about to become a father!

We’re still talking and will probably interview some doulas before we make a final decision, but part of me feels terrible for possibly talking him into something he really doesn’t want. Another part of me is terrified that if we don’t have a doula and he isn’t able to be as supportive as he wants, I might resent him for it.

Am I being selfish, and will I regret not giving him the birth he wants too? I know it’s my body and I’m the one doing the work, but it’s his first kid too and I want him to be as involved as he’s able. — Alyssa.

Comments on I want a doula, but my partner doesn’t. What to do?

  1. Take your husband with you to meet with the doula. A good doula can explain how she can make the experience better for both of you. She’s not there to replace your husband but to support the both of you.

    • THIS!! Exactly this!!

      I am 23 weeks along and we have hired a doula. My guy at first was apprehensive but after meeting her, he totally understood what a big help she would be. She put him at ease with what he would have to do and knowing that he would have someone to talk to besides me when he is worried about what is happening. I mean, there are going to be moments where I can not talk or function in this process.

      So take your man to some doula interviews and I think he will come around and see how she is not only a help for you but a help for him too.

      OH…ours brings snacks!! (mommy appropriate ones and ones for him too!)…maybe mention that?? haha

    • My husband thought he was going to be enough, but he was kinda fluttery and unsure (as I recall) and I was really glad to have my doula there, because I think she helped him almost more than she helped me. At least she was there for him to talk to when I was lost in laborland.

  2. I think that you have to trust your instincts — you’re the one who will actually be giving birth, after all! My husband was super-involved and supportive during labor, but part of me actually felt guilty (guilty!) for how long I was in labor, and the fact that I wasn’t changing positions as often as our childbirth instructor had encouraged, and I wasn’t into doing the breathing. Maybe if I’d paid someone, I wouldn’t have felt bad about being “difficult”.

    Maybe try framing it this way: “Babe, I trust you and know that you’re going to be super helpful during labor — but I also want to be able to connect with you emotionally during labor, and if we have a little help, you’ll have to worry less about the practical stuff.” A doula is someone who’s attended LOTS of births. It will be your husband’s first. It’s nice to have someone around who’s not phased by all the surprises labor has to offer.

    • you’re the one who will actually be giving birth, after all!

      I just want to caution that this line of thinking can degrade the role that fathers can and should play in making parenting decisions.

      • I totally get your point Ariel, but I have to agree with Jill. This is about L&D, not parenting.
        Don’t get me wrong I understand that L&D is a part if parenting but you wouldn’t expectant bio-mom to just go along with the birth plan of adoptive parents.

        • But adoptive parents are no where near the same as a father/parenting partner. That thinking may lead to you doing something your husband/partner just isn’t comfortable with. That could lead to resentment, and you would have to live with that resentment because your relationship goes beyond the birth.

          I would never hire a doula if it makes my husband uncomfortable. Even though I’M the one giving birth, it’s still very important for my husband to have a good birth experience as well.

        • I’d also push back on comparing the relationship between the dad-mom-futurebaby to the relationship between adoptive parents-mom-futurebaby. Adoptive parents aren’t ANY kind of parent until after the baby is born – they don’t have a say because the baby being born isn’t their baby – not legally, and not really until final placement decisions are made after birth. When expectant mothers who are planning to place their unborn child invite prospective adoptive parents into the labor and delivery process the dynamics are very different than they are at any point with a loving and involved expectant bio-dad.

          I’ve never given birth so I don’t feel qualified to comment on that!

      • Sure, I understand how it could come across that way. But no matter how involved a husband is (and mine was — for almost 2 days of labor) you can’t compare his role to the actual physical experience and toll on the body. And I do think that it’s kind of an unreasonable expectation for him to want to be her *only* support during labor. Would we think that was okay in life? Just because your spouse is your best friend, could they demand to be our only friend?

        Again, I’m not trying to be argumentative or cause drama — I just think that if her partner really wants to support her, he should respect her instincts, which are pretty darn powerful when it comes to labor.

      • Whoa, I’m going to have to strongly disagree with you here, Ariel. There are major, major body ownership issues that you’re missing. I do agree that most fathers should have some say in the birth planning, and I understand the conflict between, say, one partner that wants a homebirth and another partner who wants a hospital birth. However, it’s the mother (and the mother’s body) that will be going through the incredibly intense and transformative experience, and quite possibly painful experience of giving birth.
        There are two things that need to be considered first and foremost: the safety of the mother and child, and the emotional state of the mother.
        You can really see this play out in the worst way in relationships with abusive dynamics. I’ve heard so many stories of abusive partners who refused to allow the mother to get support through a doula or family member, refused to honor the mother’s birth plan wishes, etc.
        Long story short, it’s her body and she 100% has the right to call the vast majority of the shots (barring serious threats to the baby) during her own medical care.

        • Absolutely: abusive relationships are a completely different situation.

    • Thank you, that’s a really good way to frame it!
      As far as me giving birth, I’m actually in line with Ariel’s thinking, which is why I’m asking in the first place. I just don’t feel that I can exclude his feelings in this, because it’s technically my feelings that are making me WANT a doula. I’m truly not worried about the physical, I’m lucky that my hospital and doctor are two of the highest rated for natural childbirth and supporting mothers in the area. But it’s the support and experience of a doula that I want, and it’s his want to BE the support that I want. (I’m not explaining myself very well…)

      Because of how we work and how we try to get our marriage to work, (even when it doesn’t and we scream 🙂 ) it just feels wrong to go with my instincts without considering his as a father because it’s his experience too.

      However, the need to urge, “I DO WHAT I WANT!!!” over and over is strong. 😉

  3. Get the doula! I say this both as a mother and a former L&D nurse. First-time dads are almost universally overwhelmed and are often completely useless…like the one who passed out on my feet.

  4. I’m having the same issue with my mother. She’s a nurse (OR nurse–she’s never had anything to do with birthing) and thinks she can advocate for me but at the end of the day, she’s pro-intervention and won’t put what I want first. I think if anything went wrong, both she and my husband wouldn’t be able to help panicking and doing whatever the doctor says. Plus, I want my husband by my side and not running around arguing with doctors.

    Have you told your husband how much help a doula will be to him? Rather than leaving to get you water or a wet washcloth, he can stay by your side, encouraging and massaging, while she fetches what you need.

    At the end of the day though, a birth is not like a wedding. It’s not an experience that you share in equally. I’m not saying your partner shouldn’t have any say, but it’s your body and you’re the one doing the work so if a doula will help you feel more comfortable and you can convince him, don’t feel guilty about it.

  5. I think its something and someone you both need to agree on. That being said, your doula might not work out how you want her to either. Good luck deciding.

  6. Let him know a doula won’t take his place or overstep his role in the birth, if that’s his worry. If you find a flexible doula, just explain your husband’s concerns and have her there in an “as needed” capacity. Like a back up memory if he forgets anything (so you’ll be more relaxed & focused), and even a wealth of suggestions and answers if either of you need it.

    I’m currently working on our 7th (we’re using a doula in what will be our 3rd home birth), but I remember the first. Always go with your instincts. I had to learn that the hard way. Best wishes, an easy birth, and may the Goddess smile on you and yours!

  7. I had the same issue. My husband has a bad track record when it comes to being supportive during illness and medical treatment. Because of that, I also wanted my best friend at the birth. He was opposed, and probably offended. I was very honest about how I felt and what limitations I saw in his support. I was also worried that he might simply need breaks for food or rest.

    Ultimately, I decided I needed to do what was best for me. My husband and I discussed my friend’s role as we wrote our birth plan.

    Our little boy is 12 days old and the birth went great. I loved having two support people to cheer me on. And, my friend remembered all the affirmations I wanted while my husband was able to soak in the birth.

    I probably would have been ok without the extra support person since the midwife and nurse were so supportive and would have played a greater role if she hadn’t been there. But I felt so much better knowing I would have everything I needed during the birth.

  8. I was in labor for 3 days with my first. I thought I had enough support with my partner, best friend, mother, and aunt. But, by the end, everyone was exhausted, emotional, and mad at each other. I wish I’d hired a doula to help organize them, as well as provide me with experienced support.

    You may be lucky enough to have a short, uncomplicated labor, wherein your partner has a pretty easy time too. But that’s not the norm with first births. I say, hire the doula, and if you feel like you don’t need her or she’s getting in the way, send her home. That way, you’ll be better safe than sorry.

  9. One thing to note – the doula isn’t there to advocate for you. She can’t technically speak for you (in practice, some can sometimes) the way your husband can. What she can do is hold the space – make sure you have time to talk about decisions, and help remind you about what and why you wanted to birth the way you do, plus provide an extra set of hands for on-hand pain relief and rest.

    One thing to tell your husband – I was in labor for 26 hours. The first part of it was easy, and we went to the hospital about 6-7 hours in because of some complications, and were sent home to labor at home all night.

    So by the time we drove back to the hospital, Eric had been “on” with me for about 16 hours. He had slept maybe an hour on the floor while I labored and tried to sleep between contractions. By the time the doula came, he was exhausted, needed a quick nap and some food. Neither one of which he would have been able to get and not leave me by myself. My doula really helped me there. She was as much for him as she was for me.

    Also, my doula was a useful sounding board prior to the birth when potential complications arose. She was worth every penny we paid her.

    • This. My labor was short, only about 5 hours of active labor, but my husband did need to pee occasionally! Plus, you know, you end up with a newborn at the end of all that labor–it’s really nice if one of the parents has slept more than 5 minutes in the last day.

    • Exactly. Doulas do not advocate. Your husband does. She is there for support, for BOTH of you, before, during and after delivery. She can talk to you about your options, help you with relaxation techniques and likely help with breastfeeding problems after. And she’s great to give the hubby a break. She is not a replacement. A good doula will always give the husband the lead because the birth is about the family, not about her. She’s just there to facilitate the event.

      My hubby had concerns about being replaced during the birth, he WANTED to be an important part of it and didn’t want that role taken away from him because he gets to play such a small role during the pregnancy, it’s his first chance to really participate actively. We met with a group of doulas who talked about their services and after that he really wanted to have one! He wanted to have their support and advice available to him during the delivery too, someone he could turn to when I was screaming to ask “Is that normal?” so he would know when he should be concerned.

      I hope you guys find a solution that works well for your whole family:)

      • This is REALLY good to know; it’ll be good for him to have someone as informed back-up just in case he’s unsure and doctors are pressuring him.

  10. I agree that you should have your husband meet with the doula. I gave birth at a hospital with midwives in attendance (one of the health care options that we have in Ontario). My husband was so grateful for their presence. He felt like he could be there for me while the midwives were there to help us make the important medical decisions. We took prenatal classes with our midwifery practice but my husband didn’t feel like he had to memorize every single detail because we knew that our midwives would be there for us, too. Also, we knew all of our midwives ahead of time and weren’t meeting them for the first time in the hospital. It’s amazing how comforting a familiar face is when there are lots of people in scrubs running around.

    Explain to your husband that birthing is a long process and can be extremely hard on the partner. The doula is only a small part of the team that will bring your baby into the world. In my story, during 45 hours of labour and delivery, I had support from my husband, mom, dad, sister, 4 labour and delivery nurses, 2 anesthesiologists, 5 obstetricians and 2 midwives!

    Good luck!

  11. Hiring a doula was about the best thing we did during our daughter’s birth! Our situation was different, however, because my husband was not confident at all about not passing out during the process & it was because of this that we even found out what a doula was! We ended up having two during the birth because one was training under the other. I ended up getting induced, getting an epidural & having my little girl vacuum extracted, but the doulas were supportive of us through all our decisions.
    My advice for you is to remind him that he’s just one person & if your labor goes on for hours & hours he might appreciate a break to eat, if nothing else. 😉

  12. Labour is long and he will be with you the entire time. He’s not just your support person, he’s part of the birth and that can have a toll of it’s own. A doula can support you both and the process. She isn’t there to take over, but to create space for you and your partner to create the birth you want. While friends and family can be great, having an experienced and professional support person is so helpful. I loved my doula. She provided amazing support for us throughout my pregnancy and our birthing day.

  13. Almost to-be father (wife’s due in a bit over a month) and I’m glad we got a doula, especially after reading books and going to our birth class. So many things could go wrong I’m looking forward to being able to have that support for me that everything is OK (or not OK) so that I can focus on supporting my wife.

    • We had an early (and rather frightening) birth at a hospital. We didn’t have a doula, but we did go for the nurse-midwife option. With this support, I feel I was able to be very present for and supportive of my partner during labour. Moreover, we were able to focus on each other and our birth experience.

  14. Doulas are for husbands too! If he’s open to interviewing some candidates, then give it time and let him talk to them with you. My husband LOVED our doula and he was the first to suggest we hire her again for our second child’s birth!

    The doula’s role is different from that of the father. My husband was by my side the whole time, holding my hand, encouraging me, giving me sips of ice water. My doula was focused on more practical things – helping me use the bathroom (you need to pee during labor!), giving me energy boosting snacks, suggesting positions to try, etc.

    When our son was born, it was awesome to have her there taking photos so my husband could just be in the moment and look at him and snuggle with us. When it was time for us to be alone she discreetly left.

    It was wonderful – honestly, if he gives it a chance I’m sure your husband will love having a doula there. If he is supportive of you having a natural birth like it sounds it is, this will be an asset for HIM too.

  15. I would also suggest having him at interviews. When we interviewed doulas, my SO was there. the first one we met actually had a father-to-be call her, so we were able to “see her in action”. When we went out to the truck after the meeting, I asked, “So?”

    He said, “Hun, it’s your decision in the end, but she’s awesome!” We hired her the next day and now my macho-man-hunting-fishing-construction worker partner is the most pro-doula guy you will ever meet. Anytime one of our friends evens mentions pregnancy he blurts out, “Get a doula. You need a doula. Here’s our doula’s card.” It’s great!

  16. My husband and I used a doula, Kathy, for the birth of our first child. It was the best decision we could have made and it helped us to have a natural birth. As previous folks have noted, a doula helps the father take breaks, get food, and remain calm. They also help both parents in being knowledgeable and calm about the birth process. When I had panicky questions during labor, my husband didn’t know the answer, but Kathy did.

    After our birth, my husband told me that I listened to Kathy better than I listened to him. He would suggest that I drink water, take a walk, or eat and I would refuse. But if Kathy suggested the same exact thing, I would do it. I’m not sure why, but that’s how it worked with us.

    DONA (Doulas of North America) has a good article on dads and doulas, which you can find here:

    http://www.dona.org/PDF/DadsandDoulas.pdf

    Good luck

    • I was just scanning down comments and wanting to post that exact PDF. I’m a doula and I’m always saying that I’m there for the partner (it’s not always dad or a man, remember) as much as for the pregnant person. I never intrude on their time, and I’m happy to step out of the room if they need time alone, but I’ve never had a client’s partner regret hiring me, though they often seem hesitant in the beginning.

    • You are about to embark on one of the most physically and emotionally difficult things you will ever do. I think it is important to let your partner feel heard, but understand that in the end, it is your decision. I really wish I had a doula during the birth of my children. I didn’t know about them then.

      • Yes, this. I know that your husband is and should be involved in decision making since he is a parent as well, but it is your body. Period. I have had two children, I never had a doula for either but I WISH I had a doula at my first. Seriously. Your husband can read all the books in the world about L&D and he will very likely still be overwhelmed at the birth. I think birth is a very emotional event for the husband and you need him to be able to be in that moment, not just taking care of you. Having a doula can help support BOTH of you. I think doulas are invaluable! (I would have had one at my second but I had a team of three midwives, so I didn’t really need another woman in the room.)

  17. I understand his hesitation, but all the above answers are correct- a doula is there for both of you. For when his hands get sore from rubbing your back and you STILL need lower back pressure, to let him take a pee, to take pics when the two of you are baby bonding. A doula is like a day-of co-ordinator for a wedding. She is there to handle all the extras so you two can focus on whats going on. My husband and I are looking into it ourselves now- but because we have two midwives and a midwifery student we may be set!

  18. A doula is not a commentary on how supportive your husband is capable of being….My husband was initially dubious of whether or not we needed a doula. He and I are pretty in sync and he felt he would be able to be everything I need. Then we talked to a friend who had been in labor for 2 days. She eventually had a really sweet birth of her sweet baby boy. Her husband was exhausted. He had spent the last 40hours worrying, feeding, rubbing, supporting her and he was totally thrashed. A few days later he told her “next time, we are getting a doula. For me.” Need I say that my husband came on board very quickly after talking to this friend’s husband?

    I think he makes a good point and it is what ultimately won MY husband over. We don’t know how long we will be in early labor or hard labor. We don’t know what we will end up needing from our partners. Doulas are not there to step between the two of you or to somehow do whatever he “can’t” do. No no no. They are there to help. Many times they are there to help the nonbirthing partner support the laboring momma and they do that by supporting them. Reminding HIM to eat, pee, sit down, close his eyes while mom rests. Taking over pushing on your back or hips at hour 12 when dad can’t feel his feet anymore from sitting on the birth ball with you sleeping inbetween contractions on his lap. He would have a teammate in the right doula. You will be busy and will not be his teammate that day. The hospital may be rad but they will not be able to spend 1:1 the whole time. It could be very beneficial to have someone who is there for the long haul, has a bag of labor support tricks up their sleeve and who is not invested as deeply as family.

    I think intervewing some doulas is a great idea and I don’t think 13 weeks is too early to talk about this stuff. You only get more hormonal and the ticking of the 40ish week clock only makes decisions seem that much more important.

    Maybe talk to some Doulas and then see if they have any families they could recommend where your husband could talk to another Dad who had a positive doula experience.

    Let him know that the right doula is there to help him as much as you and the right doula can really help you BOTH get the very best out of whatever your experience ends up being.

    Goodluck momma!

    • Amen. I went into labor at 9pm on a Tuesday night and my little guy wasn’t born until 5am on Thursday. My husband and I barely slept in all that time, so it was a rough way to start off our new life with our sweet baby. My husband is an amazing guy and handles medical situations very calmly and assertively, we both think after the fact it would have been amazing to have a doula there to help us out! I never thought I would snap at him in labor but I have vague memories of being very short with him while I was in some intense back labor. I ended up getting an epidural after 24 hours of labor because I was sooo exhausted (which I definitely did not plan for), but my husband was concerned about me so he stayed up while I fitfully dozed. I wish we could have had a doula help me out while he got some much-needed rest! I was at an amazing hospital that really respects your birthing plan with very kind and supportive nurses, but those gals get busy and can’t always be there. I wish my husband could have gotten to enjoy the birth of our firstborn without all the added pressure and stress and being my sole support team in the delivery room. Take your partner to doula interviews, and make the decision together 🙂

  19. Tell him that you’ll need all the support you can get! Two people is better than one, especially if one of them is trained and experienced! Plus it means that he can take a break to gk to the bathroom, get a snack or even take a nap (essential things, especially in a long labour).

    Make it clear that the doula will in no way be replacing his support but just augmenting it. They do a great job of reminding you to change positions, eat and drink, something which it’s hard for mum and dad to think about in the moment. It’s also useful to have someone experienced on hand to tell you when to go to the hospital (if you’re having a hospital birth) and reassure you that things are progressing normally. Something which neither you nor your husband will know (presuming this is your first child). Also, a doula is there to support *both* of you. My husband said he found it almost traumatic to see me in labour ( someone you love is in pain and you can’t stop it) and having someone to support him as well as me was really useful

    Plus, having a doula leads to better outcomes! Surely your partner would want that 🙂

    My mum is a midwife in the UK and paid for us to have a doula (we’re in the US). She’s seen firsthand what a difference they make to labouring women and highly recommends then. Having just been through my first birth, I would also recommend getting one!

    Meet some doulas with your partner. Get them to explain their role and how they can help.

    Good luck!

  20. When I look back at the birth of my daughter, the only thing I wish I’d done differently is have a doula. We didn’t have any close family or friends that we wanted at her birth. The whole idea of that was just icky to me. We also had no friends with kids, so even though we went to a birthing class, we were not prepared for what came. Sure our bags were packed, our ipod charged and loaded, and our birth plan typed up with jokes inside to make the readers laugh and let us know they actually did read it. But when it came to giving birth, oish, I wish I had someone there to help me who knew what she was doing.

    Our hospital has 40 L&D rooms, every one was full that day. My Midwife delivered 5 babies in the time I was there so I only saw one (they changed shift during my time there) a total of 3 times. Once to say hi. Once to check me before I opted to have an epidural and last when I delivered which actually only took less than 10 minutes of pushing (it was crazy fast). I don’t think I saw a nurse more than 10 times for a few minutes a pop and I was in L&D for 12 hours until birth.

    During that time your partner has to go eat, has to go out of the room. It’s hard on them too. I guess I figured a nurse would be around or something, but there was no one, just silence and the awful movie choices I had on their tv. My husband went down for lunch and that’s when my contractions kicked into high gear. I’ll spare the gory details, but will say, they were gory I was doing fine coping until then, breathing, focusing, doing fine, but when they intensified and I tried to get in the shower (no tub rooms available) and it didn’t work and gory stuff I knew would happen but didn’t know would happen (if that makes sense) happened… well it was bad. I couldn’t get my focus back, couldn’t breathe through the pain, couldn’t bare it anymore and was completely freaking out when my husband came back in. That was a good 45 minutes I was alone and that resulted in my deciding to go ahead and have an epidural. I just couldn’t do it, and as wonderful as my husband was (and is!) there was no way for him to help me get back to a place of peace.

    The point here is, not to scare you, but as great as your partner is and will be during the birth, he won’t be there every second, and you need someone. And having a doula, takes the stress off of him, and gives him support as well when you won’t be able to. A doula, while primarily for the birthing mother, is there for the family too, I believe. Maybe that will help him see how important having someone outside of you and he there is.

  21. A good doula is there just as much to support your husband as she is to support you, and I think that’s the thing that husbands (and birth partners in general) fail to grasp and what makes them hesitant to hire one. They envision the doula as a person who usurps their role, but in truth a doula tailors her role during labor to match what the family needs, so, if your husband is playing a very active coaching role, the doula will likely fill a very tertiary role, getting drinks and snacks, taking over when he needs to use the bathroom, ordering the first meal after birth, etc. If your husband forgets something you learned in class, she can simply lean in and remind him. And the doula will provide him with the encouragement that birth partners so seldom get because everyone is praising the mom (which, of course, they should, but birth partners also work hard and deserve some encouragement).
    I think the most beneficial reason to have a doula is that since a doula is not emotionally attached to the situation in the same way as the family is, the doula is able to maintain a calm head when stressful thing happen, and help to keep you both in control of your experience. The doula can say “the medical team is talking about a departure from the birth plan. Do you want to ask any questions or thunk about it for a while?” A doula can’t tell the hospital staff to do anything on your behalf, but she can help the two of you to keep your voices during an overwhelming and confusing situation, and that is the number one thing that helps you to have an empowering birth experience even when things don’t go as you hoped.
    When I was pregnant with my son, my mother was my birth partner. She was much like your husband, she thought she could handle all the responsibilities of being my birth coach and that a doula would only butt in on her role. After the birth, however, she became the biggest cheerleader for doulas I know. She tells everyone that no one should have a baby without one. I think for her the best part was being freed up to support me and participate in the birth on an emotional level, rather than being stressed out with all the clinical stuff. She didn’t feel like her role was usurped, she felt like she was free to really be the loving partner instead of having the sole responsibility of making sure I was progressing normally and my birth plan was being followed. But now that I’m a doula, I attend all kinds of births where partners do take on the main clinical roles to ones where partners are happy to hand clinical responsibilities over to me and just focus on emotional support and involvement.
    If you guys decide against a doula, I recommend a really thorough child birth education class. The best ones are 8-12 weeks in length with classes lasting several hours a piece. Bradley classes area great choice for the husband who wants to do it all.
    Good luck and have a great birth!

  22. My hubby was the same, he didn’t think I needed a doula, but I kinda put my foot down after having a awful medicated first birth, I was set on a unmedicated birth with minimal interventions and I knew a doula would help me get that if it was at all possible. He in the end trusted me and put his own bruised ego aside and now after our amazing birth of our precious daughter he is also a doula convert and claims he would never let me labour without one lol. He was pissed with me at first, he was offended, but I knew he needed the emotional support too even if he wasn’t going to admit it. Our first birth was traumatic and long and he felt that he let me down. Our doula built us both up, helped us process and trust our birth professions again, she also gave us heaps of educational stuff, books to read and she had some great ideas to get baby into the right position for birth. At the birth she was awesome and her and my DH where a great team. Go for it, I’ve never heard a DH say the regretted the doula being there 😉

  23. Birth is a marathon, not a sprint. Although it will be a special time for you and your hubby, most likely you are both going to be exhausted and the doula doesn’t just support you, she may also support him.

    I would think of it like a wedding planner. You don’t NEED one, but gosh, wouldn’t it be nice to have someone taking care of the details on the big day, so you can focus on being the bride (laboring mama). During my birth at home, all I really remember is me and my husband, the midwife and all of her support (amazing!) is fuzzy. It will most likely be the same with the doula. I don’t know of anyone who has ever said. Gosh, I wish I hadn’t gotten that doula! She was totally worthless! lol

    Good luck, mama!

  24. Having a doula makes a WORLD of difference. My husband was the same way with our first; he wanted to be my only support, but I insisted on having my mom there. I am so glad I did because when he was tired or wanted to run out for some food he didn’t have to worry about me being left alone. I ended up having pitocin and an epidural because I didn’t know anything about child birth (aside from the 6 hour class we took) and we didn’t have a birth plan advocate, like a doula. We moved to a different city before I had our second and one of my close friends was training to become a doula. Since my mom wasn’t going to be able to be there I asked her if she would be interested and the difference was night and day. She had knowledge that neither my husband or mother had, and there’s something soothing in being supported by someone who understands what your body is going through from experience (I know not all doulas are mothers, but it helped me a lot). For our third there was no question about whether we would have a doula or not and it was my dream birth. There really is a lot that a doula can bring to the table that your husband needs to consider. Yes, your partner should be a big part of it, but when it comes down to it your comfort and safety are the name of the game and it helps to have a player on your team that knows the rules. 😉 Good luck, and congratulations!

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