Effective Doula Phrases – Birth Ways International Doula Training

Doula phrases are helpful for when we find ourselves in situations where we know that our clients need more information (and possibly a little space) before consenting to something and we might feel at a loss for words.

In my 30 years as a doula there some phrases I have found useful many of which can be used together with the BRAINS technique of working towards full information before consenting to a procedure:

B - What are the benefits of this procedure you are suggesting?

R - Can you tell me the risks of doing this?

A - What are some alternatives to taking this action?

I -  What is my intuition telling me?

N - What if we do nothing?   Can we take a break, have a bath, go for a walk and check in on this in ½ hr?

S - Sign a waiver.

effective doula phrases

I found some other phrases in a resource listing responses to racist comments and I found many of them also applied to birth settings.  While we do not speak for our clients, we can suggest these phrases to them or use them where appropriate: 

Could you please repeat that?

Did you just say that ________?

So, what do you mean when you said _______?

I am not sure I understood you correctly, did you mean that____?

Excuse me but did you mean to say something that might be interpreted as offensive?

When I hear you say ________, it makes me feel anxious/worried/afraid.

What evidence do you have to support this suggestion?

It sounds like we are assuming _____, what if we assumed _____instead?

effective doula phrases

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