Frequently Asked Questions for Begin Within Birth

Frequently Asked Questions

Doula Services


Mommy Nutrition

Birth Assisting

Doula Services

1. What is a birth doula?

A birth doula is a person trained and experienced in childbirth who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after childbirth.

2. Where does the word “doula” come from?

The word “doula” comes from ancient Greek, meaning “Woman’s servant.” Throughout history and in much of the world today, a cadre of women support a woman through labor and birth, giving back rubs and providing continuous emotional support. Like their historical counterparts, birth doulas know how to help a woman in labor feel better.

3. What effects does the presence of a doula have on birth outcomes?

Numerous clinical studies have found that a doula’s presence at birth:

  • Tends to result in shorter labors with fewer complications
  • Reduces negative feelings about one’s childbirth experience
  • Reduces the need for pitocin (a labor-inducing drug), forceps or vacuum extraction
  • Reduces the requests for pain medication and epidurals, as well as the incidence of cesareans

4. What effects does the presence of a doula have on the mother?

When a doula is present during and after childbirth, women report greater satisfaction with their birth experience, make more positive assessments of their babies, have fewer cesareans and requests for medical intervention, and less postpartum depression.

5. What effects do the presence of doulas have on babies?

Studies have shown that babies born with doulas present tend to have shorter hospital stays with fewer admissions to special care nurseries, breastfeed more easily and have more affectionate mothers in the postpartum period.

6. Does a doula replace my doctor, nurse or midwife?

No. Doulas do not replace doctors, nurses or midwives. Doulas do not perform clinical or medical tasks such as taking blood pressure or temperature, monitoring fetal heart rate, doing vaginal examinations or providing postpartum clinical care. They are there to comfort and support the mother and to enhance communication between the mother and medical professionals.

7. Does a doula make decisions on my behalf?

A doula does not make decisions for clients or intervene in their clinical care. She provides informational and emotional support, while respecting a woman’s decisions.

8. Will a doula make my partner feel unnecessary?

No, a doula is supportive to both the mother and her partner, and plays a crucial role in helping a partner become involved in the birth to the extent he/she feels comfortable.


9. I see a client log-in button on your website, how does that work?

As soon as you become a client of mine, I will send you, by email, a password and log-in for my website. Once you log in, you will have all of the resources I formerly gave clients by paper, at your fingertips, on your computer. This is an effort to have all resources in one, easily accessible location, as well as an effort to go green. If you have any problems with log-in, please email me at

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10. Can I do yoga while I’m pregnant?

In a healthy, uneventful pregnancy, exercises such as yoga can actually enhance and benefit a pregnancy in numerous ways. Always check with your care provider to make sure you are cleared for any exercise.

11. Can I get a group of friends together for a private yoga class that you will teach?

Yes! Just email me with any questions, and for a quote. The more people in the class usually means it is less expensive for everyone. I can teach you a class at any location, (such as someone’s home or a yoga studio) that you choose.

12. I’m not pregnant, can I still take yoga from you?

Yes! For years I taught a hybrid of Ashtanga and Vinyasa yoga, before I ever got involved with teaching prenatal classes. I am classically trained in Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga.

13. I’ve never done yoga before and I’m not flexible, can I still do it?

The analogy I’ve always used to answer this question is this… You don’t lift weights because you’re strong, you lift them to get stronger; it’s the same with yoga, you don’t have to be flexible, with consistent practice you will become more flexible, among other things… calmer, more content, more present, and more fit.

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Mommy Nutrition

14. What is a certified holistic health coach?

It is a holistic nutritionist that focuses on the “primary foods” in our life, (career, relationships, physical activity and spiritual practice) as well as “secondary foods” which are the actual things we eat and drink. A CHHC works to balance out both types of foods so you can lead a fulfilling and inspired life.

15. I already had my baby(ies), can we still work on nutrition together?

Absolutely. I work with all women who would like to improve the quality of their life, and improve their relationship with food.

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Birth Assisting

16. What is the difference between a birth assistant and a doula?

A birth assistant’s role varies from a doulas role because a birth assistant is supporting the midwife, also called a midwife’s assistant. A doula has more of a labor support role for the client. A birth assistant often does clinical tasks that a doula would not do, such as, taking temperatures and blood pressures, and assisting in repairs.

17. Can I have you as a birth assistant?

Yes, but only for a home birth with TLC Birth/Marilee Pinkleton, CPM. Because being a birth assistant is a collaboration with a care provider, at this time I currently only have that arrangement with TLC Birth. Please see or email me at for more information on birth assisting.

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