There has been and still are a lot of debate among doulas about what a doula should do if she was at a birth and her clients turned around to her and told her that they were not planning to call a midwife but instead give birth unassisted. Or whether doulas should or shouldn't support a couple that plan from the start to give birth without medical support; free birthing as it is also known.
For me, it is quite clear cut and if I was at a birth and the parents surprised me by saying that they weren't going to call a midwife, I would say that I would be unable to stay and I would leave. If they told me in one of the antenatal meetings that they were planning to free birth, I would tell them that I was not the right doula for them and I could not be at their baby’s birth. My reasons for seeing this so black and white are as follows:
Kicki Hansard is a member of Doula UK, however any opinions expressed on this blog are personal views and not necessarily the view of Doula UK.