Updated: Apr 28
AUTHOR: Lee Reicheneder
The first few months, even the first year of parenthood after the birth of a new baby can be challenging, regardless of whether it’s a first child or not. It is a time where everyone in the family is transitioning into their new roles within the family unit and a Postnatal Doula can ease the transition.
A Postnatal Doula’s role is to mother the mother, looking after the family unit as everyone transitions into their new roles with the newest addition to the family. Including but not limited to supporting siblings in bonding with the baby as they learn their new role in the family unit (including helping siblings).
The Doula may or may not assist in the following ways depending on the individual Doula’s packages/services offered: debriefing the birth experience, providing informational support, referrals, resources, basic household cleaning, preparing meals, looking after baby/children so parents can have a sleep or even go out for a bit, picking up shopping, looking after older siblings so parents can enjoy some 1-on-1 time with baby, providing educational support on family or baby-related topics, offering reassurance and may also offer a range of other services.
All of the additional help a Postnatal Doula provides helps to ease the stress on the family unit, helps each member of the family unit adjust to the new family dynamic. In a society where parents are often expected to race back to work or get back to normal duties, a Postnatal Doula helps the family to rest, recover, and bond when at home. This assistance has been demonstrated through studies to really assist families by way of facilitating competence as well as better responsiveness & relationships along with providing the necessary practical or informational support families often need.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR & ARTICLE DISCLAIMER: Lee is a Canberra Doula who also spent over 5 years working in the childcare field as a childcare educator (including as a Room Leader); she holds relevant children's services qualifications alongside Doula qualifications. In addition, Lee holds a wide range of qualifications and training in fields that include but are not limited to trauma and natural therapies. Lee is a proud Aspie woman and home educating mother of 5 children (4 of these children are earthside and 2 have disabilities). If you have concerns about your child's development, family member's wellbeing or your own wellbeing speak to your Midwife or Doctor - the information within this article should not be viewed as and is not designed as medical advice. Furthermore, a small commission is made on some of the links provided within these blog articles.
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