Initially we weren’t sure about virtual birth doulaing, with one of the tenets of doula support being a physical presence. We didn’t know if being there virtually could work.
But we did what we always do: listened to women and responded to their needs, on their terms.
Women told us they appreciate having a doula or two in her pocket as they navigate their pregnancy and birth.
They told us they wanted the option of having us at their birth without us being there – benefiting from our collective wisdom, training and knowledge – all the while being supported from a distance.
The flexibility that comes with our antenatal sessions taking place virtually has opened up our calendar and increased much needed availability.
Virtual support during pregnancy
The virtual support we offer during pregnancy is much the same as our birth doula support, it just takes place entirely over email, phone, messaging, and videocall.
Once the contract is signed by us all and you have paid a deposit we will set up a WhatsApp group and make you an admin so you can add your partner, and any other members of your support team, if you like.
You can use this as much or as little as you want, for questions, emotional support, scheduling virtual meets, exchanging information and resources, updates, and anything that’s on your mind.
We can have as many or as few virtual meetups as you like, scheduled as and when, or at regular times. Sessions can last up to one hour each, and at least two of us will join. We can meet with you, with you and your partner, and with just your partner – whatever suits you. If a follow up email is needed we’ll send that over too. Doulas who can’t make the call will be kept up to speed with how you’re doing.
Just like with our face to face meets, we absolutely do not limit the scope of discussion to pregnancy or birth. As your doulas we hold space for you as the whole, complete, and complex woman you are.
How does virtual support work?
As your virtual birth doulas we will go on call for you at 38 weeks, ready day and night for your labour to start, just as we would if we’d physically be joining you.
When you go into labour we’re right there for you. We are happy to video call from the very onset until after you birth your baby – there the whole time, from a quiet nest in our own home, holding space, ready to provide emotional support.
You might prefer a lighter touch, giving us a heads up when you think labour might be starting, and contacting us as and when along the way.
It’s completely up to you how we support you during this time. You are welcome to use any medium of communication, in any combination with others. This is your time, so we do things your way, and we will have your back however you want us to.
Within a week or two we’ll offer a postnatal meet to discuss the birth and new motherhood. In the meantime you are welcome to use the WhatsApp group chat for questions and support.
What are the benefits of virtual support?
Benefits are always personal to each individual, so for some women this will be her first choice, and for others a compromise. Here are some of the benefits we have had fed back to us:
- doulas can be with you at home regardless of illness
- more space at home
- ongoing emotional support from wherever you are
- you’ll have the support and input of experienced doulas in your pocket
- more privacy between doula and client during labour
- the same level of commitment with less cost
- more availability for meetings
How much does a virtual doula cost?
This service costs £1600.
We have a number of fully funded and partially funded virtual birth doula places for women who would struggle to pay all or any of the fee.
Please talk to us about your situation. We will help if we can.
I live outside of Greater Manchester, can you still support me?
Absolutely! We don’t have to live in the same area, where we’d have to reach you within around an hour. We don’t even need to be in the same time zone.
I’m not sure what support I need. Can we talk about this before I decide anything?
Always! We want you to have the support that’s right for you. We offer an initial interview to get to know each other, ask questions, and share what’s on your mind. There is no charge for this session and if it’s a good fit all round we can arrange further sessions. If it’s not we can signpost to other sources of support that might work better for you. We want you to have the right doulas for you – even if they’re not us. You can book your initial interview here.