Will hiring a Doula mean that my husband or partner will be left out?

It is wonderful if your husband or partner will be supporting you for your birth.  Even better to have a Doula supporting you both!  Doulas recognise that your husband/partner is likely to know you best, and that you may turn to them for reassurance and strength.  Meet your Doula in advance to find one that you are both comfortable with.  An experienced Doula will want to find out what kind of role the partner intends to play during the birth and then work out how she can enhance this, for example teaching the partner some effective pain relief techniques, or helping the partner understand the different emotional states that they will see in the mother during labour.  There are times when your partner may need a rest, and the Doula can step in until they return.  The Doula has the experience of attending numerous births and is current on the latest obstetric and breastfeeding research, allowing her to provide reassurance to both mother and partner during labour and to help the mother and partner to advocate for themselves during the birth.