Yula Paluy, a Birth Doula trained with Cornerstone Doula Trainings. I work with clients in SF, East Bay, & Marin.
Whether you plan to birth at a hospital, a birth center, or at home, what matters is that you feel informed, safe, and empowered during this transformative period. It will be my privilege to help you prepare for the birth that you’d like to have, and to support you during labor so that you have as healthy and easy an experience as possible. I consider doula work important because it provides clear and direct support to women exactly when they need it.
My inspiration for becoming a doula was witnessing the positive effect that doulas have had on my friends’ birthing experiences. Research shows that having a doula leads to several benefits, including shorter labor, reduced need for painkillers, lower rates of c-sections, easier breastfeeding, and greater self-esteem.1,2
My background is in psychological research. I conducted research at SF State, UC Berkeley, UCSF, and Stanford, where I examined the effects of language and of shared humor on physical and emotional experience.
My practice as a doula is informed by all of my training, experience, knowledge, and skills. I continue to educate myself daily on best birth support techniques and the latest research on established and alternative medical practices. I also work with low-income and high-risk women as a volunteer doula at CPMC Mission-Bernal.
You should feel comfortable with the person you hire to be your doula. I suggest that we meet first in your home or in a cafe for 45 minutes or so, get to know each other, and see if we click. This is a free meeting with no strings attached, though you may offer me coffee, tea, or water, at your discretion. :)
If we decide to work together:
The short version — my service to you will include 3 in-depth prenatal meetings, phone and email support, 24/7 on-call availability from 37 weeks on, full in-person support during active labor, and one postpartum meeting.
The services can be customized to fit your needs. Sliding-scale fee based on your household income.
See detailed version!
1. During our prenatal meetings, we will discuss your hopes, concerns, and questions around birth, and formulate your birth preferences. I will walk you in detail through what to expect during the different stages of labor, answer any questions you may have, and recommend other providers based on your needs (massage therapists, acupuncturists, postpartum doulas, and so on). We'll explore various techniques to help with the intensity of labor, such as breathing, positioning, visualization, counterpressure, eye and physical contact, and more. We'll practice these techniques to discover what resonates with you.
2. I will be available to you by phone and email from the moment we decide to work together, and will be on-call 24/7 from 37 weeks on.
3. I will accompany you in-person through labor and for a few hours after birth until you are ready for time alone with your family. During labor, I will provide you (and, if present, your partner/close others) with continuous practical, physical, and emotional support. Part of that is making sure that everyone is hydrated, fed, and as rested, supported, and comfortable as possible. I will also act as a medical interpreter/advocate to ensure that you have full understanding of any proposed medical treatments (if they come up), and that you are able to communicate your preferences.
4. We will meet a few days after the birth to go over your experience.
If you have a partner, or another support person, they’ll ideally be present during our meetings (including, if possible, the preliminary “do-we-click?” meeting), and we will plan jointly how I can best support you and them through this shared experience of preparing for and going through childbirth.
It’s important that everyone who wants to have a doula is able to afford this help. I therefore charge on a sliding scale based on Bay Area income levels. Here’s what you can expect to pay for my services of 3 in-depth prenatal meetings, phone and email support, being on-call 24/7 from 37 weeks on, full in-person support during labor, and a postpartum meeting:
Your household income: Your fee:
I also have a special fund that allows me to offer doula services to those with income below $30K — if you are able to contribute, please let me know. If your household income is below $30k, please get in touch with me to talk about working together (if I’m fully booked, I may be able to recommend someone else for you).
.Doula! (also available here): An intimate documentary filmed in England showing three doula-supported births
.Microbirth: A documentary that charts the origins and importance of the human microbiome
.Birth Story: A documentary about Ina May Gaskin and the Farm Midwives
.The Business of Being Born: A documentary exploring the history and function of obstetrics and of midwifery
.Natural Hospital Birth: The Best of Both Worlds
.The Doula Book: How a Trained Labor Companion Can Help You Have a Shorter, Easier, and Healthier Birth
.HypnoBirthing: The Natural Approach to Safer, Easier, More Comfortable Birthing
.Like a Mother: A Feminist Journey Through the Science and Culture of Pregnancy
Bay Area and Beyond
.UCSF Laughter Yoga class or UCSF Laughter Yoga + Meditation class free classes! :o)
.Hypnobirthing Audio Tracks: free on the Internet Archive
.Contraction Timing App: simple and free
.Natural Resources SF: classes and resources
.Then Comes Baby Oakland: classes and resources
.Birthways Berkeley: classes and resources
.Safebabydoula: baby car seat installation and safety education