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Anyone birth partnered a friend? Any tips?

(10 Posts)
twoflakesanight Mon 02-Nov-09 21:07:05

One of my dearest friends has asked me to be there in a birth support/doula role and I'm nervous! Done it twice myself but that's not quite the same - wondering whether anyone has any top tips for me - it's going to happen any minute!

luciemule Mon 02-Nov-09 22:45:16

Do whatever makes her happy! You are there to support her, whether that means rubbing her back, providing her with sips of fruit juice and chocolate buttons or simply helping her focus on a beautiful seashore scene with waves (contraction waves)coming and going. If she's frightened, reassure her, listen to what medical staff say and relay back if she's not heard everything and just try to feel her mood as to what she wants.
She's asked you because she feels most comfortable having you there. Some women like to be quiet during contractions and she might not want to talk/be touched and others like to be vocal. You'll soon know or ask her in the early stages.
In the first stage, make sure she's relaxed, reassured and happy to keep up oxytocin levels and help the labour to remain active. You'll be great.

twoflakesanight Mon 02-Nov-09 22:50:54

Thanks Lucie - yes, actually I'm better prepared than I'm giving myself credit for. Eek - it's exciting! And such an honour - funny to be on the other side of things waiting anxiously for The Call. Thanks for all advice - it's good to hear x

luciemule Mon 02-Nov-09 23:04:09

So are you a doula or did you just mean a doula type roll?

luciemule Mon 02-Nov-09 23:04:31

role - whoops!

twoflakesanight Tue 03-Nov-09 21:10:59

Oh doula-like role! I'm not a pro by any means, but had both mine at home and am all for natural birth and birth not being a medical procedure and her first birth was an induction and epidural and all quite distressing. Her husband's ill and won't have the stamina for the hwole thing (though I think they'll be surprised by how quick it is this time).

Disenchanted3 Tue 03-Nov-09 21:13:00

Just a word of caution, I had sailed through my own 2 births before I was my sisters birth partner,

when I was in labour I was calm & relaxed but I hated seeing my sister in pain and felt useless, i was a wreck, luckily my mum took over but if I were asked again I would be hesitant!

twoflakesanight Tue 03-Nov-09 21:21:20

Yes that's precisely my worry! Also I'll be telling her constantly 'it's alright, it'll all be fine' and actually what if it isn't!? Two midwives will be there and she's pretty sure she wants to go to hospital, but feels like a big responsibility. And am sure I'll feel useless too - used to cackling with her in the pub; not massaging her and whispering in her ear.

luciemule Tue 03-Nov-09 23:19:02

you could always check out some birht doula websites and see what they offer in their birth service section and make sure sure kind of mirror those things. Above all, you just being there will be the most important thing. Also, double check a few things before hand that she will/will not like, such as if she'll want you to hold her, massage her, talk to her etc.
When it comes to it, she might act completely differently than how she/you imagine!

twoflakesanight Mon 09-Nov-09 14:13:30

Hey Luciemule - sorry I never got back! Was all academic in the end; she went into labour in the middle of the night and had her baby within the hour; there wasn't even time to call me! All doing fine; no tearing or anything! Thanks for tips though. x

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