I am the mother of 4 beautiful “children” – born in 1977, 1980,
My passion about babies and childbirth came with the
successive births of my children. Before that, I was trained as a
sociologist, worked in personnel and training for two large
The revelation that the different ways people in pain are treated
can fundamentally affect their experiences/perceptions of that pain,
came to me after my third labour. Numbers 1 and 3 labours were
similar in terms of levels of pain - very severe. However, I was
treated kindly and respectfully at the third labour; the opposite
happened at the first labour. My experience and lasting legacy of
the third labour was that it was a joyous event, despite the pain.
It was a feeling of "triumph through adversity". The feelings during
the first labour, which lasted years after, were very negative. They
were resentful and bitter. I now know that this difference was
purely because of the differences in the way I was treated.
Number 2 labour was at home, relatively
quick and effortless. Number 4 labour was an emergency Caesarean,
where I opted for local anaesthetic.
I am thus, experienced personally, in
many different types of birth.
Other experience in the area of
Trained in 1999 with Sylvia McGinnis
as a Doula.
Joined "Doula UK"* at its inception,
Received training from Sheila
Kitzinger on debriefing skills in her 'Birth Crisis Workshop',
Trained in relaxing-inducing massage
Am currently, and have been since
1992, a lay member of the local (West Herts) Maternity Services
Liaison Committee (MSLC). This meets four times a year and
monitors maternity services in the local area.
Trained as a Focus Group Facilitator
(leader) in 2000.
Conducted a focus group for the West
Herts Hospitals in 2003, on ante-natal services. The results
were used in re-configuring the local ante-natal services.
Became a Research Networker for the
National Childbirth Trust in 2001. In this capacity, I read,
criticise and summarise current maternity articles and research
projects. I also attend conferences on maternity and report on
them. This helps me to stay up-to-date on maternity matters.
In October 2006, embarked on a Reiki
course; I have now completed parts 1and 2 of the course and am
therefore able to use this on any women in labour if they so
wish . I have occasionally used Reiki on my clients, when
directed by them. They have found it can help with pain relief
and stimulation of the uterus.
Also of help for pain relief and
uterine stimulation are my skills in reflexology and homeopathy.
In addition, I learnt, through
witnessing a Midwife putting this successfully into practice, a
process of helping a woman in labour which is a type of “hypnobirthing”.
The woman does not need to have practised beforehand so it is
not what is normally known as “hypnobirthing”. The women who did
this with me, all found it of tremendous help during labour. It
seemed to make the difference between being overwhelmed by the
contractions and being in control of them.
Am a member of a sub-group of
DoulaUK – Herts Doulas which can be found on the internet.
So far, I have been a Birth Doula
for about 20 women. They were all very pleased with the
difference my presence made; their partners were similarly very
happy. I can let any potential clients have access to
assessments that these women and men made about my services. A
sample can be read in the “Testimonials” section of this
*To find out about "Doula UK" go to