- Date: 2nd Monday of the Month
- Time: 7-9 PM
- Location: 1233 SE Stark St, Portland
- What to bring: Yourself, $5 for non-members, potluck item if it is a potluck meeting
Tea and light snacks are served. Sometimes we have a potluck. Often there is a speaker. Check the Calendar for the most current information.
If you are a member, this meeting is just one of your perks. If you are not a current member, we ask that you pay a $5 drop in fee to help pay for the space (room rental is our biggest expense). These funds help us a lot, but if you cannot pay you will not be turned away.
As a member:
- Parents-to-be can locate you through our “Find a Doula” search tool powered by DoulaMatch.net
- You may attend monthly networking and educational meetings for free
- You will receive discounts to workshops and events sponsored by PDA
- Your dollars will help to spread the word about birth and postpartum doulas in Portland, creating buzz and more work for all doulas.
Click here to check out rates for membership and to become a member.
To join, check out our membership levels and online membership and renewal.
A birth doula will meet with you before the birth and will support the pregnant person and the partner during the labor, birth, and the immediate postpartum period. Most birth doulas will meet with you one or more times after the birth to see how you are feeling.
Common myths about birth doulas:
- They are the same as midwives. This is an understandable assumption, but it’s midwives have a very different role from birth doulas. Midwives attend to the medical well-being of the pregnant person and the baby. Doulas are not medical professionals and do not give medical advice. Birth doulas do not check dilation, they do not listen to your baby’s heart, and they do not “deliver” or catch babies except in extreme circumstances!
- They only attend home births. Also, very far from true. 98% of births in the Portland Area take place in a hospital. Working birth doulas do the bulk of their work in hospitals and are familiar with birth in the hospital setting. It can actually be quite rare for a birth doula to have a home birthing client!
- They only attend “natural” unmedicated births. Traditionally, the people most-likely to hire a birth doula are the ones that plan not to take any pain medication, but the truth is that doulas are experts in compassionate care and can be incredible assets whether you need a scheduled cesarean birth, whether you plan to receive an epidural or whether you plan to give birth with as few interventions as possible. Birth doulas are birth professionals. Being well-versed in labor and birth means that your birth doula knows that things do not always (or even often!) go according to plan and if and when plans change, your doula can help you and your partner process the changes and make decisions in the moment.
Postpartum is a tumultuous time for families. Often a calm, steady presence is just what you need to make that transition a smooth and joyful one.
More coming soon.
Browse Portland Doula Association’s amazing doulas using our Find a Doula search tool. Plug in your due date to search for available doulas. You can read profiles, check availability and read testimonials about our doulas and choose a few to interview.
- Interview more than one doula. There are hundreds of great doulas in this area. They all may be competent, but you want more than just competence you want connection. Birth works best when you trust your team. Take time to choose the doula with whom you really click.
- Ask tough questions. Don’t be afraid to ask about the what ifs. Does your birth doula have a plan for supporting you if she is sick or has a family emergency? What training and experience does she have? Does your postpartum doula have experience with colic? Does she have any breastfeeding training?
- Be yourself. The best doula/client relationships are the ones that are built on mutual fondness, respect and trust.
Portland Doula Association (PDA), based in the Portland/Vancouver metropolitan areas, was founded as a support and education group for doulas serving women and their families during pregnancy, birth and postpartum chapter of their lives. PDA is a vibrant, diverse, multi-generational community of doulas, educators, body workers, and advocates of empowered birthing and confident parenting. We offer memberships and educational opportunities for doulas and other birth workers in the community. PDA holds monthly meetings that serve as an excellent opportunity for both education and networking with other birth workers. We hope that you will explore our site, come to a meeting, and consider becoming a member of the Portland Doula Association!
Portland Doula Association was formerly known as the Birth Support Network. The organization is currently undergoing some exciting changes, one of which included a name change in late 2014. PDA is excited for the future of the organization and we hope you are too!