Soon, I will complete my doula training and be able to start taking clients. For me, being a doula is a natural offshoot of my work as a therapist. I spent 10 years working with people who have survived sexual assault and domestic violence, and another 7 (almost 8!) years supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Because all of the above people often can and do become pregnant, I feel like I have a unique skill set to support people during pregnancy, labor, and delivery.
I've already finished my training to be a loss doula. Loss doulas are a little different from labor doulas. A loss doula supports people who are miscarrying, having a stillbirth, or whose child is not expected to live long after birth. When I've talked to people about this aspect of my work, one of three responses occur. Either 1) they react with horror, "Why would you ever want to do that?" ; 2) they recognize it as a necessary service, "I'm glad you do that, but I couldn't handle it."; or 3) they join the club of people who never wanted to be in that club. "That happened to me. I needed someone like you." (Or, hopefully, "I had someone like you, and they helped through an incredibly tough time.")
Combining these two fields, plus my role as a therapist, will allow me to support people through a pregnancy after loss, something that many people are not necessarily prepared for (medical professionals included!). Because I'm a therapist, some of my services are billable to insurance, which sets me apart from other doulas. I'm looking forward to updating you all about my journey to being a doula!