A growing choice for birthing in USA is Unassisted Birth. I understand the birth takes place at home or another choice location(non medical), and most often the father present (maybe another person) There is no MW or trained birth support person (mostly). The mom has prepared "a nest to birth" and lets birth be birth.

I am a seasoned doula/educator, with a mom thinking with her next pregnancy #4 she wants a unassisted birth--but wants me there as her doula. She has experience negetive hospital birth and positive free standing birth center births( I was her doula then). WOW, love this mom and family but red flags say not without a midwife.

Anyone been in this situation --yet???  What was the outcome?? 

 

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I have and I said no. It was a difficult decision for me to make as well. When it came down to it, I had to think not only about the family involved but also my fellow birth workers and my future. I am not a midwife and I do not pretend to be. If someone looked to me to take that role, for any reason, I could not and would not in good conscience nor would I want to endanger my fellow doulas, put them or midwives in a negative light, or have anyone misconstrue the situation. Unassisted to me means no outside parties involved other than the expectant parents/family. The responsibility lies with them.
I support a woman's right to have an unassisted birth.
If someone wants unassisted birth, it's about being "unassisted". Having a doula is not unassisted.
Know your state midwifery laws!
Doulas at UC, especially if you're known as a doula, puts the doula at risk for getting charged practicing midwifery without a license.

Clients cannot have you sign a wavier, something as routine or uncompilicated as a hospital transfer can become an issue if the hospital is not welcoming to homebirth transfers, they can report the "doula" to the state for practicing midwifery without a licence.

Read the Navelgazing Midwifes enlightening blog posts about "Freebirthing". She had a unassisted birth, and brings a perspective of both a licenced midwife and someone who UC.
Eye opening reading!
http://navelgazingmidwife.squarespace.com/navelgazing-midwife-blog/...
I've had 2 UC and am planning my 3rd ( Ja'11) and i'm a Doula student & we will be having a Doula with us.

90% of the time the Mom & Dad have read up/studied/researched and are probably MORE intune and aware of what is going on with Momma/Baby and they will seak medical help if they need it. They don't want to risk their child's life anymore than you do and if they need help they will get it. Having a MW present doesn't equal a safe birth anymore than being in a hospital does.

UC families KNOW that Doulas aren't MW and we don't want you to be a MW, we just want you to support our husbands/wrangle the kids/ have female energy in the room/massage us/ and be a sister-friend to just BE there. If we wanted a MW we would have fired one.

The 10% who are clueless and think you are a cheaper MW really shouldn't be home birthing. You will KNOW these parents right off the bat and you can say no.

Have you asked your client WHY she wants a UC?
There is a difference between unassisted and unattended, in my opinion. Unassisted is no medical professional and unattended generally is no one present but mom and spouse or sometimes just mom (no doula).

I would not attend an unassisted birth because I would not feel comfortable being in that situation, but I think if a doula is comfortable with it then she should do it. I think a contract needs to be specifically geared towards the client and her situation. You should reserve your right to leave the birth (with or without refund needs to be specified) if you feel that your boundaries are not being respected.

I am a firm believer in following your gut. If you see red flags...run. Maybe you can contract to do prenatals, but not attend the birth.

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