Inclusive

Hey there, lovely viewers! Welcome to my very first vlog. This topic felt too important to me to not share with you face-to-face! Today, we’re going to answer the question we get from folks – “I’m not fat, can I still work with you?” The answer is a resounding yes! And it’s a yes with a lot of other pieces too, so let’s dive into today’s topic, why folks of all sizes can and should work with a size-inclusive doula. Let’s talk about the birth support we offer here at Big Fat Pregnancy. So, grab a comfy seat, maybe a cup of tea, and let’s get started!

You know, when it comes to doulas, there’s a common misconception that they’re only for certain people, specifically usually for thin, wealthy, white cis-women. Or at least those are the only folks who can access doulas.

At Big Fat Pregnancy we believe every person, regardless of their gender, ability, sexual orientation, gender, family structure, etc. can benefit from having a doula.

A doula is like a really good friend who has your best interests at heart, and also knows A LOT about birth and babies.

Hiring a doula can, and should be open to anyone who wants one, we talk about access to doula care and some of the systemic issues with this in an upcoming blog.

So, maybe you’re all the way at the beginning and don’t even know what the heck a doula is?? Well, a doula is someone who provides mental, emotional, physical, and informational support to expecting parents before, during, and after childbirth.

I view a doulas role as your cheerleader and birth mentor, helping you find out what matters to you on your journey to parenthood while also hopefully fostering empowerment in the birther and their support person or persons to work towards a birthing experience that is as positive as possible.

Before we get into why you should have a size inclusive doula, let’s talk about why having a doula in general can be a game-changer for your birth experience.

The Power of Doulas

Postpartum Essentials - a line art drawing of a mother and father cradling each other and a newborn on the father's shoulder with a beige background with green water color circle and gold glitter accents

First and foremost, doulas offer invaluable emotional support. They are your steadfast companions throughout this transformative journey. Whether it’s a reassuring touch, a calming presence, or just a listening ear, doulas provide the emotional stability you need during those intense moments.

Knowledge is power, right? Well, doulas are a treasure trove of information. They help you understand your options, explain medical procedures, and guide you through the decision-making process.

Let’s not forget about physical comfort. Doulas have a bag of tricks to help ease the discomfort of labor. From massage techniques to positioning suggestions, they often have magic hands, making sure you’re as comfortable as possible.

 Advocacy is a significant role doulas play. They act as your advocates, ensuring your birth plan is respected and your wishes are heard in the birthing room.

Now, let’s bust a few myths that might be holding people back from considering a size-inclusive doula like myself or Emily:

  • Myth #1: Size Inclusive Doulas Only Work with Plus-Size Clients

Size-inclusive doulas have expertise in supporting birthers with larger bodies, but their skills and knowledge benefit everyone. No one is excluded from our care.

  • Myth #2: Doulas Only Support “Healthy” Bodies & Pregnancies

This couldn’t be farther from the truth. Size-inclusive doulas support all bodies, regardless of health status, because you don’t owe anyone health and we believe that everyone deserves support.

  • Myth #3: Doulas Only Support “Natural” Births

I would hope all doulas do this, but Size-inclusive doulas support your birthing choices, whether that’s an unmedicated vaginal birth, a medicated pelvic birth, a cesarean birth, or any other path you choose. It’s all about your preferences and what makes you feel most comfortable. We focus on knowing the issues and challenges that we see arise most with fat folks so we can best serve our clients and we are there if they need help navigating barriers that come up on their journey to birth.

Benefits of Size-Inclusive Doulas

So, what are the perks of working with a size-inclusive doula? Let’s break it down:

  • Empowerment: Size-inclusive doulas empower you to make informed decisions about your birth, helping you feel confident and in control.
  • Judgment-Free Zone: They create a judgment-free zone where your body is celebrated, respected, and supported throughout the birthing process.
  • Tailored Support: These doulas understand that different bodies have different needs. They tailor their support to ensure your comfort and safety.
  • Inclusive Expertise: Size-inclusive doulas may specialize in supporting birthers with larger bodies, yes, and we also can play a role in birth support for folks with ED’s, in recovery, chronic health issues, etc.

As a size-inclusive doula practice, inclusivity goes beyond just body size. We celebrate all family structures, orientations, genders, and abilities.

Your unique identity and family unit are welcome and respected here. And if we’re not the best support, we have a robust referral network to other doulas we know and love who might be a better match. It’s all about ensuring you get the support you truly deserve.

So, there you have it, folks! Size-inclusive doulas are for everyone! Your body is strong and capable no matter the size, and it deserves compassionate, respectful support during childbirth.

Postpartum Essentials - a line art drawing of a mother and father cradling each other and a newborn on the father's shoulder with a beige background with green water color circle and gold glitter accents

And Remember, when you work with Big Fat pregnancy you’re not just getting a size inclusive doula; you’re gaining an advocate, a friend, and a champion for your birth experience.

If you’re expecting and considering hiring a doula, I encourage you to explore our services and book a consultation to get to know us more! You deserve a birthing experience filled with love, respect, and empowerment, no matter your size or identity.

Thank you so much for joining me today. If you found this vlog helpful, don’t forget to share it.  And as always, if you have any questions or want to share your own experiences with Big Fat Pregnancy, email us at bfp@bigfatpregnancy.com. Until next time, take care, and remember, you are capable and worthy of the birth experience you desire. Bye for now!