Depending on the situation and the needs of the family, (and the wishes of the Dr) I can stay with mom through out prep, or wait in the hall with dad until it is time for him to be brought in. I stay right with the family unit taking pictures if requested, explaining and normalizing everything that is happening. I am able to provide support to the mom while dad provides support to the new baby as they are taken to the warmer to be checked out.
During a cesarean birth, it takes about 2-3 times as long to put mom ‘back together’ as it does to actually deliver the baby. If everyone is A-OK, the staff will usually get baby skin to skin with mom right away, sometimes mom and dad will need help holding the baby.
I stay with mom throughout the whole process, which allows her partner to remain with the baby. If desired I can record some special moments.
Once the family has been moved into the PACU; I remain with you to assist in breast-feeding. Once I feel you are all settled as a family I make an exit and follow-up once you are home. This time frame looks different for each visit, I have stayed with a family until they were settled on the mother-baby floor, and others I left a little before they were released from the PACU.
A cesarean birth does not mean you don’t need or cannot have a doula. We can be even more valuable there to assist in normalizing everything that is going on around and creating a calm and comfortable place in the midst of what could be a very scary place.