The nature of a doula and the partner illustrate two very different roles, individually essential, however, when coupled together the true benefits are revealed. The work that has been put in during the pregnancy ensures that both the partner and doula know the exquisiteness of this woman. With such knowledge comes unconditional support for the soon-to-be mother as she moves through her labor. It’s important to remember that there is nothing that can replace the physical love and support of a partner.
It is very difficult to see the person you love experience any kind of pain, even if it is beneficial; for example, contractions. A dad may be alarmed by the natural processes and reactions during birth, maybe even ask “How can I fix this?” where the doula, armed with an intensive training, experience and instinctive knowledge will see the signs and know what support is needed and where it is to be applied. Because it is so important for this woman to feel encouraged and empowered through every contraction, the doula’s sense of serenity and objectivity gives her the ability to ease the dad’s concerns; letting him know that the sounds and frustrations are normal. The wisdom of a doula is the bridging factor between the profound love of a partner and the uncertainty of the birthing woman.
It is expected yet impossible for the modern father (to-be) to know everything about birth after four childbirth education classes and a generic book on what to expect when expecting! He is expected to know the physiology of pregnancy, labor and comfort measures. He is expected to be well versed in hospital protocols, medical language and routine procedures. Moreover, he is expected to be the sole support for the mom and have an ability to read her needs based on the emotional and physical signs of labor. This is a huge job with an overwhelming amount of pressure attached. Imagine reading a couple Poly Sci books, watching the world news, visiting the White House and then be expected to run the country. Having a doula allows the dad to take a nap, get something to eat, take a walk or even a shower, all the while knowing that his partner is in hands of the doula; the hands of a “woman who serves”. If and when dad wants to take a more active role in the birth, the doula can and will assist him with helpful ways to best support the mom.
Birth is incredibly complex; with many layers and emotions that are shifting moment to moment. It takes patience and a willingness to reach deep inside of yourself to find that Devine light; a renewed faith and sense of power. Your doula is there to take on any responsibility that is presented to her as she supports the whole family and protects their sacred space. Thanks to the doula, the couple can come together in a new way as they learn what it means to truly surrender.