Hiring A Birth Doula? Is It Worth The Cost?
I hear many people talk about how great doulas are, but they sometimes hesitate at the cost. I have moms ask if it is worth it. My short answer is YES! I also believe that every mom should consider if she can afford it now or not. On the other hand, when addressing that issue, there are more than one ways to skin a cat as they say. You can do a payment plan, barter, give up your daily Starbucks coffee and use the money towards a doula, find one in your price range, pay with your HSA, etc. I have seen some really creative solutions for moms who feel it is important.
So, I guess the question goes back to whether you feel a doula is important at your birth. Let's first look at what you get when you pay $950 for a birth doula. A Blissful Birthing TN client gets all these great things in her doula care with us.
Prenatal education visits
Text, email and phone support
Birth plan writing
Educate you about what to expect in the hospital
How to stand up for your rights
Online Childbirth Class
Support while laboring at home and hospital
Dad Support: Help dad engage in birth as much as he desires
1 postpartum visit
Postpartum Benkung Belly Binding Session
That is a pretty good list of services, right? Now let's look at it from a monetary value. Did you know that whether you hire a doula at 1 month pregnant or 9 months pregnant, you get charged the same? I feel like it is similar to showing up at a fancy restaurant to hurriedly cram in the delicious food before the buffet closes in 10 minutes. Wouldn't you rather have 2 or 3 hours to eat? With that comparison in mind it is better to hire a doula as early as possible in pregnancy.
Now, let's break it down by costs.
Prenatal education visits (six 2 hour visits: $65 x 6= $390)
Text, email and phone support (2 hours a month on average: $300)
Birth plan writing ($120)
Educate you about what to expect in the hospital ($120)
How to stand up for your rights ($120)
Local resource connection (priceless)
Emotional support (priceless)
Online Childbirth Class ($100)
Support while laboring at home and hospital (16 hours is a typical labor: $65 x 16= $1,040)
Dad Support: Help dad engage in birth as much as he desires (priceless)
Breastfeeding assistance ($120)
1 postpartum visit ($120)
Postpartum Benkung Belly Binding Session ($150)
From a financial view point, the $950 birth doula fee is a steal! It is way worth it for all you get. You are hiring a professional who goes to births all the time and has worked hard to prepare herself to coach you through the process.
Still feeling a little reserved about hiring a doula? Worried about having a stranger at your birth? Actually the truth is that if you hire a doula she might be the only one you know at your birth. Typically, your doctor at birth will be whomever is on call that day. You might have never met them and might not even like them or their philosophies. The nursing staff will also rotate every 12 hours. You could go through 6 different nurses during a typical hospital stay. That is alot of nurses! You also won't know the lactation consultants, food service people, photographer, other hospital personale, or even the pediatrician that serves your baby. You will meet tons of new people during your birth. Wouldn't you want a familiar loving person to be with you during this time to guide you, alert you to what is normal and not normal, cry with you, listen to you, & remind you of who you are and what you want at your birth? I sure want to be nurtured like that during my most vulnerable time of life. One of the biggest draw for me is that she does not change shifts like the doctor or nurses. She is with me during my pregnancy, early labor, birth, and the postpartum time. Your doula sees your whole story and carries it in her heart. She is the knowledgable friend who is just a text or phone call away. What amazing support to know that I can reach out to my doula anytime I need her without working through other staff members. That personalized service is special and crucial for birth satisfaction.
Still not convinced to hire a birth doula? Ever thought of taking one for a test drive? A Pregnancy Membership is for you! For $100 you get a pregnancy doula and access to our exclusive online childbirth class. The pregnancy doula will meet with you one time to make a birth plan. After that, she is available for text, phone, or email support the rest of your pregnancy. She will not attend your birth, but if you change your mind you can hire her for that. Why not try it? $100 for 9 months of support? That is about $11 a month. Who can't afford that for peace of mind and better birth satisfaction?!
Hopefully, I have given you a couple of things to think about today as you ponder what you can afford at your birth. Maybe you even see the birth doula expense a little differently now. There are so many options out there for you to choose from and we want you to get the support you need to have a Blissful Birth.