Really, Postpartum Doula duties are dependent on the family and how old their children are. With a brand new infant, the biggest necessity is knowing what they, as parents, should be doing. Oh, and also sleep. Sleep is SO important!
Really, “what parents need to be doing” is more about priority and routine than anything else. Parents have great instincts - they know exactly what to do! A Postpartum Doula is there to help them understand that they are already experts in their baby. A doula helps parents ease into the routine and schedule that works best.
Your Partner in Childcare
Questions do arise, like why does my baby have acne weeks after birth? This is common, due to hormonal changes from womb to birth. These issues can cause much anxiety, warranting non-stop googling and unnecessary treks to the doctor’s office. A Postpartum Doula is a wealth of knowledge, there to answer and assess these worries.
“A lot of parents have anxiety because there's so much info out in the world. Not to mention all of the people wanting to give you advice,” Anne says. “Parents have a sense of ‘I need to be doing this a certain way.’” A Postpartum Doula weens clients away from that thought process, asserting that everything doesn't have to be a certain way, but you can definitely make a plan that works for your family. The biggest lesson tolearn is that you are not in charge, the baby is!
General duties of a Postpartum Doula may include:
Watching the baby while parents get their adult life together
Helping to organize and clean the home while baby has quiet time
Make homebase more liveable
Talk with clients; “Not having an adult to talk to during the day can drive you mad,” Anne says. “All of a sudden your life is about babies and that’s all you have to talk about.”
Look for any signs of postpartum anxiety or postpartum depression
Refer help on these issues and others that may be beyond their qualification
Help the non-birthing parent develop a strong relationship with the kid
Help parents achieve goals they have set for themselves
Sleep train the infant, which happens at 6-or-7 months. More on this in a later blog post!
To sum it up, Chicagoland Doulas owner Anne says “a typical daily goal as a Postpartum Doula is to take care of the child if the parents need a break, but also have dinner on the table on the table for the parents to enjoy.”
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