What do doulas do?
October 31, 2011 5:19 PM Subscribe
What is it like to be a doula?
posted by showbiz_liz to Work & Money (9 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
In my post-college period of casting around for potentially interesting careers, I've begun keeping a list of jobs that I think might interest me, no matter how weird or crazy. For most of them, I know how I'd get there and what, generally, they would be like- teacher, city planner, therapist, hell even carpenter- but the one thing on my list that I really have NO idea about is being a doula.
A friend of mine was a doula in college, and worked pro-bono in our university hospital. She is a wonderful and interesting person, and she's the one who got me thinking about this in the first place. She made the work sound very compelling, but she was, after all, doing it part-time in college, so I'm sure the experiences of a professional doula would be quite different.
I know that, in America, the training is sort of... free wheeling, so how would I choose the best/most credible program? I gather that some doulas work through agencies or hospitals, and some are sort of 'free agents'- how does that work? What's the difference? What are the working hour like- obviously you'd need to be up for an entire birth, but is it generally a 40-hour week, or less than that? That sort of thing.
I plan to seek out some doulas in my community to talk to, but I thought that if anyone here had experience to share or blogs to point me to or something, it could be useful.