Phase III: Pondering

“Knowledge precedes word and deed.”[2]

The focus of this phase of the training turns to providing the doula trainee with exercises, information and tools to begin an assessment of her personal, familial, cultural, community and societal beliefs and concepts of the birth process.  Through self-reflection and values clarification, trainees will develop their own birth philosophy.  By doing so, they will begin to develop a respect for the fact that each woman has her own often dearly-held ideas about birth.  From this place of respect and empathy, the doula can begin the process of the requisite skills needed to effectively support a birthing mother despite possible differences in their values.

In this phase we go on to explore the history of birth, the socio-political and economic impacts on birthing practices in various cultures, medicalized versus naturalistic birth models of care, challenges that doulas face and the opportunities for improving the overall maternal child health in your community through volunteering, starting a doula career, or pursuing other birth related career options.

At the end of this phase and at future times throughout the training, the trainee will have opportunities to revisit her values statement and have the opportunity to revise it as necessary in the light of new learnings and ‘aha’ moments inspired by her training and practice experiences.


Next Phase — Phase IV: Preparation