Lessons in co-sleeping

Once upon a time there was a very tired new mother. She didn’t know much about newborns, but if she knew one thing it was that it was VERY important not to let them sleep in your bed in case something terrible happened. Her tiny daughter had other ideas and screamed as if she was being tortured every time she was put down. So for six weeks the new mother stayed awake for most... Read More

Supporting grieving parents The Hackney Doula in The Guardian

An issue I care a lot about is the support parents receive (or don’t receive) after the tragic death of a baby. In my piece in Guardian G2 today, some inspiring people share their stories and insights in to how you can help bereaved parents. I hope it will provide some useful suggestions for those struggling to know what to do or say to offer support. I would also encourage... Read More

Far From Faddish: Doula Survey Shows Dramatic Decrease in Interventions

World Doula Week starts on Thursday 22 March and, while I expect many of you will shrug your shoulders, raise an eyebrow and think ‘World What What Week?!’, this new survey from Doula UK might just change your mind. With over 500 members, Doula UK represents the largest number of doulas in the UK. Its doulas work with women and their families to prepare for the birth... Read More

Dark side of The Baby Show: The Hackney Doula in The Huffington Post

I’ve  come over all foot-stampy in today’s piece for The Huffington Post. You can read more about The Baby Show’s links to the arms trade and the concerns over their chosen speakers here.   Tweet Read More

Dear Mr Anaesthetist

On Wednesday night I made a new friend on twitter. Whilst broadcasting both of our, rather different, thoughts on the Channel 4 documentary One Born Every Minute, an anaesthetist and I collided across our respective wi-fi’s. You can read our discussion here (look out for @welsh_gas_doc). I’ve had similar conversations before in the real world. They generally start off... Read More

Birthplace study: the bigger picture

It was inevitable that yesterday’s Birthplace study would cause the kind of chest-beating, hair-tearing, teeth-gnashing media frenzy that is reserved especially for anything related to birth choices. Ah well! Important to let them all have their fun, eh? Well actually no it isn’t. Being as it impacts on the lives of so many of us I think there should have been a few... Read More

NICE or not?

In case you’ve been living in a home with no electricity, phone, internet and TV for a hilarious Channel 4 reality experiment, NICE (that’s the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) just issued a new set of guidelines on caesarean birth. It covers all aspects of caesareans from a medical perspective and has lots of good stuff in it, like this recommendation... Read More

Help I’m trapped! (Well, actually you aren’t)

If you’re anything like me it’s not uncommon to be dead set on one course of action and then have a complete about face and decide to move off in the opposite way. One minute I’m out for brunch and all set to order fruit salad and green tea but somehow out of my mouth comes a demand for a double chocolate muffin and large latte. When it comes to maternity services... Read More

The Hackney Doula on Comment is Free: fear, fear everywhere

Not satisfied with jabbering on here at Hackney Doula HQ, I was asked to respond to the last week’s Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists’ proposal that, amongst other things, suggested more births should take place outside of a hospital setting and be led by midwives. You can read my Guardian ‘Comment is Free’ piece here. Taking a very deep... Read More

When in Rome/London walk like an Egyptian

As a child I remember an almost paralysing fear of being caught breaking any rules. I once spent a good 15 minutes silently head-down, kicking about having fallen in to a large recycling bin. I did this rather than shout for help and alert teachers to the fact I was in the technology lab when I shouldn’t be. Most of my life I’ve stuck steadfast to the rules and, as an... Read More

The Hackney Doula

Doula UK Recognised