VBAC, or vaginal birth after cesarean, is increasing in popularity and is a viable option for many women who have experienced a prior cesarean. Many VBAC hopefuls seek out the support of a doula and in turn might ask the question, "Do I need a doula with VBAC experience?"
The short answer is no, but more important than the desire for a doula with VBAC experience is the reasoning behind the request. While for some this may be strictly personal preference, which is valid in its own right, others ask for this because they feel that a doula with VBAC experience is more likely to possess certain qualities that are important to them. Attempting a TOLAC, or trial of labor after cesarean, often comes with a wide range of emotions and special considerations for the birthing woman, and it is important that her doula is well-equipped to support her. If you're looking for the best doula for VBAC in Memphis, be on the lookout for these qualities:
1. Is your doula educated about VBAC and equipped to support both vaginal and cesarean birth?
Even if your doula has not attended a VBAC, she should be aware of what the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists' current recommendations are surrounding TOLAC and VBAC. Staying current on this information is part of ProDoula's certification process, and all Doulas of Memphis doulas are educated on this topic. Our doulas have also been trained by ProDoula to support both vaginal and cesarean birth without judgment or bias. We'll never speak to you negatively about your previous births, or even about cesareans in general.
2. Does your doula support your goals for a VBAC? What if those goals change?
During your pregnancy and labor, your doula is your biggest cheerleader on your road to a VBAC. She is there to listen, validate concerns, and to help you navigate the many choices you must make. Most women who are undergoing a TOLAC will go on to have a succesful VBAC, but this is not always the case. Our doulas will encourage you and support you unconditionally, even if your goals and plans change. Your goals are important to us because they are important to you, and we'll never define you by your mode of delivery!
3. Will your doula be able to tune in to your physical and emotional needs during labor?
VBAC often comes with more challenges than a normal vaginal delivery, both physically and emotionally. It is far more important to have a doula who can stay attuned to your needs than it is to have a doula with VBAC experience. You want a team of doulas who is fully focused on you and what you need in the moment, not on achieving a certain outcome. We want you to feel supported at all times, whether you need extra encouragement or physical support. It's always about you and your needs!
The best doula for VBAC in Memphis is knowledgeable, supportive of your goals, and attuned to you. At Doulas of Memphis, we are committed to providing The Gold Standard for labor support in Memphis. Contact us today and tell us your story!