The “Judgement-Free Zone”: Do We Really Mean it?

So many times I hear clients apologize for a decision, choice, or viewpoint in a prenatal session.  They believe that, as a doula, I’m there to promote a certain style of parenting or birthing, and that if their ideas fall outside of that normal zone then they need to make condolences for that choice.  This is an idea that has been perpetuated in common understanding of a doula’s role; but it’s not the role we want or desire to provide to our clients!

It’s a lot like the ideology of utilizing the ‘judgement-free zone’ with friends; you make a comment and apologize for behavior, and your friend will say something to you along the lines of “Hey, don’t worry about it, this is a judgement-free zone”.  The thing is, that judgement-free zone implies acceptance of an idea or behavior, that the person waving the zone is not making it personal.  This is exactly what Annapolis Area Doulas provides to their clients.

It’s important to understand what this looks like in any setting, from birth to postpartum.  A doula can provide that safe place free of judgement without question.  This is somewhat harder for friends and families to do.  They are supportive of the mom on a different level; bringing protectiveness and a background that sometimes can be clouded by their own differences in choice.  The way family and friends communicate their support for these different choices can be difficult in the moment.  A doula’s impartiality helps here tremendously.

The doula gives support to each choice a woman is making as a parent.  Support that sometimes means holding up, or bearing the weight of the choice, in light of these other parties present that might bring in suggestions against the choice being made by the parents.  Each doula in our agency is committed to giving assistance to each family’s needs, without second thought or question. 

Our support is truly un-biased; meaning it is open-minded, inclusive of choice and easy to communicate.  We remain impartial to reflecting our own ideals or what others might believe is ‘best’; what is best is the choice you are making, and yours alone matters!  The level of detachment from our own personal choices makes us the most objective doulas because we’re able to fully support your needs!