Doula in Waco Area...

Updated on October 04, 2009
E.D. asks from Clifton, TX
19 answers

This was a little longer than expected*

I had planned on atending birthing classes with my husband, and he too planned on being by my side and supporting me through labor. After one class he had an anxiety attack from being in a classroom within a hospital.... I know some women will say he should suck it up and deal with it, but I too have had panic attacks from what others consider minor events. ANYHOW! : ) He still wants to stay by my side during birth, but he suggested I get a seregate mother (he meant doula or midwife, lol). He is still VERY supportive and after talking to his friends and me talking to mine we're not sure if a "coach" is needed.

I would like to go natural as long as possible, lol, but have an epi on backup as I have had sciatic nerve issues and an epi might be my saving grace. Do the doctors and nurses 'coach' you through it esaily enough, or should I seriously consider a doula???

Any suggestions on local doulas or great advice on labor and birth, I'll happily take it! Thanks!!!

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answers from Waco on

I had a little girl 17 months ago with a midwife, Christine Miller. I highly recommend her. She is affiliated with Providence hospital. She stayed with me the whole time at the hospital and is such a very sweet lady. If you want anymore info just let me know!

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answers from Austin on

I had a doula to help us in the hospital... and she was AWESOME! When we have a 2nd child... I will hire another doula.

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answers from Houston on

I noticed that some ladies suggested that a friend there would be just as good. Here's the differences between a friend and a doula:

1)A friend is free, doula is about the same cost as a good class or free if you get someone working on getting their certification.

2)A friend may know a little of birthing, especially if they have had a baby themselves, but is there for emotional support more then anything. Doula will be specially trained on natural pain relief, and how to help you focus during labor.

3)A friend will be emotional support (possibly informational) during pregnancy, before labor. Doula can give you more information during pregnancy especially on how to get your baby in position prior to labor, then the typical friend (and midwife even more so.)

4) The most important in my opinion and why I got a doula: A friend will be there supporting YOU during labor. A doula is there for BOTH you and your husband. A good doula will explain things to your husband and help keep him engaged and calm. Most husbands do not know how to help you and this scares them. The doula will empower him with knowledge and gentle coaxing.

5) A friend asks "what do you need?" A doula automatically knows what may help and offers it when you can only answer yes or no questions.

6) A friend will support you when the DR makes some suggestions such as pitocin, epidural, or cesarean (which are usually suggest in the midst of a contraction, go figure.) A doula will help you understand (while calm) what the situation is, what your options are, and the risks of each option. She will support your decision but will help you to truly make your own INFORMED choices so you won't feel railroaded into anything.

7) A friend will assist if you ask to get in a position but the doula will know the different possible positions to offer to you and help you and your husband achieve these for optimal comfort and baby positioning.

BTW- some midwives are open t being hired as a doula.

As you can see, I strongly promote doulas. In my case, something went terribly wrong and I was literally dying and in more pain then you can imagine, but my doula helped me to be focused and calm. She was also there while I was in surgery and helped my family members through it.

Have a great birth,

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answers from Houston on

A doula would be a great addition to any birth...natural or otherwise. Labor can be long and stressful. Your husband will need a break and he'll feel better about leaving you if you have someone at your side. A doula will answer your questions and be your advocate if there are certain interventions that you'd like to avoid.

My doula was irreplaceable during the early hours of my labor. She stepped back a bit once my whole "team" arrived--two friends joining my ex--but was there for any questions or to make suggestions for pain relief.

I can't make a suggestion in Waco, but can highly recommend that you hire one.

Just a side note, I used a birth center so it was no big deal (my midwife actually provides a doula as part of her services), but I've heard stories about women encountering problems trying to bring their doulas into the delivery room. It can become a problem if the doula tries to intervene based on your decisions made beforehand. Something to talk about with whomever you hire and your OB.

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answers from Austin on

Midwives will help "coach" you through it, but don't count on any doctor or nurse in a hospital if you are trying to go natural. They tend to push what makes their lives easier, which is the drugs. I highly recommend getting a doula. I had hubby and a midwife with 1st child coaching me the whole time or I wouldn't have made it. The second time was in a hospital and I only saw the doctor at the very end when I was actually pushing. I made it natural because of the spouse and havng done it before.

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answers from Austin on

You are very smart to be considering all your options. A doula would be a huge help in your situation. I am a doula but completely booked around your due date. Here are 2 doulas that you might want to contact.

Olivia is active in our local group of doulas Central Texas Doula Association. You can reach her at

Another doula that I don't know personally has a website

You might also try searcing or www.

Best of luck to you

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answers from Waco on

I've heard good things about Sondra Johnson. I think she has some affiliations with Hillcrest.

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answers from Austin on

Don't know any doula's but the nurse that helped with my first delivery was wonderful at helping me through... I had my daughter after hours and the doctor who was on duty was ANTI Lamaza (this was a long time ago) and was NO HELP AT ALL.

Good Luck... You will do great!!!!



answers from Austin on

I would definately consider a doula. I had two hospital births - one an unscheduled C, one a VBAC with an epidural, and I so wish I had a doula for the VBAC. It would have been nice to have an experienced advocate. I wanted to lay on my left side, but the nurses kept telling me it was messing up the monitors. I was in labor 22 hours, and was achy all over (everywhere not numb from the epidural) from lying flat on my back that long. The last nurse I had told me that if I had lain on my left side, labor would have gone quicker. And I knew that, but was "just the patient." Get a doula. The coaching for actual delivery was okay, but the labor experience...I regret having let myself be bullied.



answers from Corpus Christi on

If being in a class room in the hospital set your husband off,best to get someone who will be there. Some times just someone to hold your hand helps. I went natural with both of my children and had no problems but if you have a back problem best to have something if needed. It may be called but it is true that once over you do not really remember much because you got the best present anyone can get a baby. Good luck.



answers from Longview on

I would seriously consider a doula. The nurses and Dr.'s will of course be kind, but they will not work you through the process like a doula will. I had my first baby natural and it was really important to have support. A great resource is "Spiritual Midwifery" by Ina May Gaskin it gives you a lot of real life stories of women giving birth naturally. I wish I had some names of Doulas in the Waco area. I lived there for three years so I will do some research and get back to you. Good luck you will do great!



answers from Houston on

I would suggest for you to get a doula. That way the doula can privately coach both you and your husband on breathing techniques and tricks to deal with the labor pain. You may not need your doula with you during labor at the hospital, but if you want her there I'm sure she can be there with you.

I was like you, I wanted to go natural as long as I could but kept my options for an epidural or other pain meds open. What happened to me was that my stage 2 and transition labor progressed so fast once I arrived to the hospital they had not time to get the anesthesiologist to give me and epidural. So I was so glad I had taken the birthing classes because if I hadn't the pain would have been too much for me to bear. My husband was a great coach helping me through each contraction, but if we hadn't had any coaching it would have been awful!

Good luck, I'm sure everything will work out fine!



answers from Austin on

Congratulations! I would defenitly suggest a doula. I didn't have one but I did had my mom there to help support both my husband and I. He held one hand and my mom held the other! The good thing about a doula is she is a professional and her purpose is to help make labor more calming and productive for both you and your husband. Moreover when the time comes you and your husband will be surprised at how STRONG your husband will be for you. My husband also struggles with anxiety and didn't even want to be in the delivery room but agreed to be in the room because I wanted him there. He was so anxious for the entire nine months but when the time came and I was in pain and completely depent on him ... He became like a different man. completely strong and wonderful even when we had to do an emergeny c_section and I was starting freack out he tickled my fsce and told me everything would be fine.
I think it will be the same with your husband. So do what you can to lower the anxiety level about the birth for both you and your husband for now. When the time comes you will be shocked at your strengh and HIS!



answers from Austin on

I would definitely consider a doula! It sounds like having a 3rd person who's main focus is on you would be a great thing for both you and your husband. She will also help you if there are any difficult decisions you haven't thought about, or if any arise while you are in labor. My delivery was very prolonged and my midwife was invaluable, even after we had to transfer to the hospital. When I had to make the decision about a c-section she made me realize that I had put in the work, and the most important thing I needed was a healthy baby with a healthy mother. She made me and my husband feel that I wasn't a failure and that the c-section was o.k. She helped us make the right decision extremely quickly. She saw the complication coming and prepared us before the decision had to be made. Without that, my son could have had serious complications. And afterwards, she made sure that our original birth plan was carried out as much as it could be. She was invaluable.

If your husband (bless him for being sensitive!) may have problems during labor you both will feel more comfortable with someone else there just for you. A doula will also be able to help you post delivery.

Check with a local birthing center, or you could contact your local La Leche league. They are both going to be able to recommend someone excellent. You do need to do it now, though. You're already pretty far along!

Congratulations! I know it's going to be an amazing experience for all 3 of you!



answers from Houston on

Hi E., chances are your husband will make it through ok. It is sometimes different when it's about bringing your child into the world :). However, I would definitely get somebody to be with you in the room just in case it becomes too overwhelming for your husband. It probably doesn't even have to be a Doula although I've heard they are really good. The classes about childbirth are very educational.I never knew there was so much I didn't know when I went to classes for my first baby. It's nice to know what to expect at each stage of the game and for someone else to know so they can encourage you and help you work through intense moments and remind you about the length or strength of contractions, help with a message or sitting you up, getting you ice chips,or calling a nurse for you. You never know how helpful the nurses will or will not be. I've had four babies and I was still glad I had someone there to help move IV wires when I had to get up to go to the restroom or to walk with around the halls to get the process moving along(natural birth) and especially after an epi when you can't walk. I've had an all natural birth and epidurals so I'm pretty experienced! :)
Most hospitals let you have at least two people in the room so your husband isn't excluded if you have a friend or relative helping you. Bottom line you need someone to be your advocate if you are in need or have not so great nurses or a doctor that isn't very supportive and you really want to go natural, but also to help you work through important decisions should any problems arise and to give you perspective and let you know when it's time to change the birth plan if that becomes an issue. When you are going through strong contractions you won't want to be worried about how your husband is doing. If anything the extra person can help monitor both of you. Hope this helps!
(Mom of four 6,4,3&1)



answers from Victoria on

i didnt take any birthing classes. i was enduced with my first. my husband was down "there" when i gave birth. the nurses and doctors will tell you when to push, but you will feel it too. when i didnt push there was an intence pain that wasnt there or would go away when i did push. i regret letting my husband see the birth because it really freaked him out. we told my brother about this and when his baby girl was delivered he did not go down there at all. it does make since to me now why in "the old days" they wouldnt let men in the hospital room...some guys just cant hack it, and that is ok. your husband would not force you to do anything you didnt want to do and i appericiate your kindness towards him. i did have the epi and other meds because i was enduced. i am a very private person and didnt want anyone in the room besides the people that needed to be and my husband. ( one nurse and one doctor). oh this they did not tell me. after delivery i got very shakey i didnt feel cold but i was trimbeling like i was cold. i basically thought i was going into shock...spoke to other women they said they were cold...this time i will try the warmed blanket even though i was sweaty..and warm socks. i also got sick (threw up) after. other than that it was fine and all my fears about labor were gone. i even told my husband right after that wasnt so bad i could do that again!



answers from College Station on

When I was pregnant with our first, my husband was unable to attend the birthing classes with me (we had to live in separate states for one semester!), so I asked a good friend of mine to attend with me and to attend the birth as my "coach," even if my husband made it back to me before the birth (which he did, by a few days). My attitude was similar to yours--I wanted to do it naturally, without any drugs, but I was willing to have the epidural and/or other drugs if I felt like I needed them. Even though my friend was there to help if I needed it, I remembered the breathing exercises on my own, and was really quiet during it all as I concentrated on breathing to control the pain. I was glad someone was there, however, who knew what I was supposed to do, in case I had forgotten! So I would urge at least a friend (perhaps you have a friend who has done labor naturally before?--though no worries if you don't; my friend hadn't had any kids at that point), even if you don't get a doula.

My husband, by the way, was very little help during that first labor & delivery. He kept asking IN THE MIDDLE OF CONTRACTIONS if I was sure I didn't want drugs. Finally I told him to shut up and not to talk to me during contractions because it messed up my concentration on breathing which in turn made the pain more intense. He did get much better with the subsequent deliveries. :)

(Oh, and I've given birth to all three of our children without any medication. And each one gets easier and faster!)



answers from Austin on

Typically a midwife will not act as a doula if you are having a hospital birth. If you are having a hospital birth you should for sure consider hiring a doula. If your husband has extreme anxiety about hospitals I suggest you hire a midwife and stay at home or go to the birth center in Killeen. I am pregnant with my third child. It will be my second homebirth. I also have trouble with sciatica and the best thing for that in labor in hot water, either from a shower or the tub. The birth center in Killeen has a wonderful, large, jetted tub that works great for labor.
Your best option for having a natural labor and giving your baby the best start in life is to be attended by a midwife.


P.S. Do not expect your doctor or nurse to act as your doula. It will not happen. You will see your doctor at the end of your labor when you are ready to push the baby out. And the nurse will most likely have several patients to take care of, you will not be the only priority. This is different with midwifery care.



answers from Sherman on

My son in law and I both were in the delivery room with my daughter was giving birth to my grandson, and there were no birthing classes attended by any of us. The nurses were the best at coaching then when doc came in he kept everything moving. Therre was lots of support and coaching. I went to classes when I had my daughter but that was 24 years before Andy was born. Don't worry the classes are nice but not a necessity.

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