When I was pregnant with my daughter I was on the hunt all over the island for a doula. This being 4 years ago, there was no doula available and no one knew what a doula was at the time. Flash forward 4 years and just as I was looking for a doula again (incase my mum who has been my doula didnt make it on time) I heard of Jasmine who is a doula in Bahrain! I didn’t get to have Jasmine with me during my birth since my mum made it in time and Jasmine just got back from her holiday. However I did get to meet with lovely Jasmine and got to ask her a few questions since I wanted everyone to know that there is a comfortable way of having support for the mum during pregnancy, labor and birth.
What is a doula?
The word “Doula” is Greek for ‘caregiver’ and now we use it to describe a trained and experienced labour companion.
A doula is a woman who gives support through pregnancy, labour, and birth empowering women to have faith in their own bodies and encouraging them to view labour positively.
Doulas do not make decisions orproject their own personal prefernece s; they do help you to get the information needed to make well informed choices.
A doula’s goal is to help the mother have the birth she desires.
What are the benefits of having a doula?
The presence of a doula duringlabour can significantly reduce:
- the length of labour
- the need for epidural
- the need for a cesarian
Why did Jasmine decide to become a Doula?
Jasmine is a mum of two little boys. She had a doula with her first birth and she believes if she didn’t have one she probably would have to have a cesarian.
When Jasmine was pregnant for the first time she just assumed you go to the hospital to have a baby and that’s it. She never questioned it until she had an experience where she had go to the hospital and be monitored for 24hr. That was the worst experience. No one considered what she wanted at all and no one discussed what they wanted to do. She felt completely uncomfortable and that was when she decided she wanted to have a home birth, to avoid being in that situation and atmosphere again. That was the beginning of her research of home birthing and the type of support available. Jasmine contacted the NCT (National Childbirth Trust) who got her in touch with a home birth group and through them was introdued to doulas.
When Jasmine was pregnant for the second time in Abu Dhabi, there were no doulas available then in the GCC. She met a lady who was running refresher NCT classes (antenatal classes) and asked her if she would be willing to be her doula. Around that time is when that lady facilitated a doula course and arranged for a doula company (Nurturing Birth UK)to come and train a group of ladies who were interested in being qualified. Jasmine was the one of the first doulas of 16 women to emerge from that course in 2008
Jasmine has been trained by both Nurturing Birth UK and DONA Int’l the USA equivalent. She is a British and has a good experience in the Middle East having worked in AbuDhabi as well as the UK and Bahrain.