The Best Questions to Ask a Doula

Did you know that the Minnesota Birth Center is a doula-friendly practice? Doulas have been shown to reduce the risk of unnecessary interventions in labor and create a more supportive environment for birth. We love having them serve as part of the birth team, and they’ve been a foundational support through many of our clients’ labors, even during the pandemic!

Our doula internship program is one way to find a trained doula for your birth at MBC. But no matter where you find your doula, it’s important to get to know your doula well and ensure it’s a good fit for you and the rest of your birth team. Here are a few foundational questions to ask a potential doula as you consider your options for support:

#5 – What makes your doula care unique? Every doula brings along a unique skillset and a view of the childbirth experience. You might find it helpful to start the conversation with this foundation question.

#4 – What is your fee for service, what does it encompass, and what is your refund policy? It’s always a good idea to talk numbers with a potential doula. What their fee for service is, when it is expected to be paid, and under what circumstances a fee would be returned are all good points to discuss with a doula before hire so that everyone is on the same page.

#3 – How accessible are you when we have questions before, during, and after labor? There are so many questions that come up when having a baby! You want to make sure your doula is reasonably available during pregnancy, labor, and the postpartum time.

#2 – Will you join me at home while I am laboring there, before heading to my birth location? How will we communicate to know when it is time to connect? Here at the Minnesota Birth Center we find that our clients are best supported when their doula joins them at their home before heading to the birth center. Make sure your doula is willing and available to join you at home whenever needed in labor.

#1 – I am most concerned about ________ when I birth my baby. How would you help support me? It’s okay (and very normal!) to have specific concerns about birth. Do you feel comfortable sharing those concerns with your doula? If not, it’s best to keep looking until you find the comfort and support that you seek.

Bonus question! Are you available for my due date? What backup doula arrangement would you have in place in the event you aren’t available for my birth? We can’t forget these questions! Doulas are amazing, but they aren’t superhuman. Even they might miss a birth on occasion due to a conflicting birth, adverse weather, or other unanticipated situation. That’s why clearly laying out a plan for coverage and having a back-up doula is so important.

We hope you find this list of questions helpful! Have you used a birth doula? What were some of the most important questions you asked your doula before hiring? Share in the comments below!

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