So, you’re curious about midwives, yay! This blog will help you feel equipped & confident to choose a midwife that’s the best fit for you & your upcoming birth.
One thing I love about taking the leap from traditional OB care to care with a Midwife is the process of choosing – actually getting to select which Midwife you believe will fit you and your needs best. In American culture we too often forget that our medical providers actually work for us. But when was the last time you actually interviewed your medical provider? Did you hire them because you believe in their philosophy of medicine or just because someone you know said you should use their practice & their practice took your insurance and was accepting new patients?
I’ve found that more often than not, the relationship of authority gets righted when women hire independent midwives.
Side note: hospital midwifery is not the same as independent practice midwifery, but that’s a blog for a different day. With allll that said, let’s actually get into it. Below are my top 3 recommendations for how to choose the right midwife for your birth.
How do I know which midwife to hire!?
You’ve heard the saying “you have to kiss a bunch of frogs before you find your prince”! Well, I’m not comparing midwives to frogs, but the analogy fits. Let me explain. Because of the intimate nature of birth – especially home birth and birth center births – most midwives recognize the high importance of the relationship connection between client and provider. So what do they do? They offer FREE consults! Some midwives will even have the ability to do an informal phone call before you schedule your in-person consult.
#1: Book Several Consults.
Don’t hire the first person you talk to unless you have a really good reason to. Talk to &/or meet with at least 2 – 3 midwives in your area. Then, really pay attention to your experience. How did you feel in their waiting room & their office? Are you comfortable asking them questions? Did you feel heard and validated in any discussion around your birth preferences and opinions? If you have older kids, will they be able to come to appointments & not feel like they’re “in the way”?
#2: Ask them to describe their role in the birth space.
Some midwives are very involved and hands on, almost playing a doula’s role for their clients. Others are very hands off and view their role as lifeguards – there just in case they’re needed. It’s ok to not know what you think you’ll want in this regard as soon as you see that positive pee stick. But hearing the midwives different answers will help you visualize that experience, and one of their answers will likely feel more comfortable to you than the others.
#3: Be Prepared.
Know at least a little bit about the big options in prenatal maternal care as well as labor and delivery, and newborn care. Know enough to be able to have an opinion so that you don’t hire a provider who doesn’t support the preferences you have.