What is a Infant and Pregnancy Loss Doula and how do we support parents?


by Julie Royston

Death is inevitable and something we all must face, but what about when life hasn’t even begun. For birth parents, the news of a loss can be so traumatizing that it can leave them grieving from the moment they are told. Some are told to come back tomorrow to induce labour, others can have a miscarriage at home, some find their little one never to wake, calling it sudden infant death syndrome and other’s need to make a choice to abort when they feel no other option is available.

All of the above scenarios happen far too often. Statistics show that 1in 4 pregnancies result in a loss. The Home Hospice Association of Canada offers birthing parents an opportunity to gain support and work with an Infant and Pregnancy Loss Doula. What is an Infant and Pregnancy Loss Doula? Most people are aware of the term Birth Doula. When you have conceived, you are able to contact a Birth Doula, who can offer you support and guidance throughout your pregnancy.

An Infant and Pregnancy Loss Doula can offer you guidance and support, after hearing about infant or pregnancy loss. During this time of loss, a Doula is there for you in the hospital, home, or clinic and may advocate for you to make this disheartening transition as comfortable as possible. The Doula may also help with the preparation of funeral arrangements, and or memorials. The Infant and Pregnancy Loss Doula may spend days or even weeks by your side to help you grieve while offering support and resources to you and your family. The Home Hospice Association provides the birth parent (s) with a Doula, like me. This service is free of charge, as it raises funds through donations, allowing you to grieve, without the thought of having to pay for this service.


Julie Royston is an  Infant and Pregnancy Loss Doula from the West Island. Her passion has always been in the helping field. Her qualifications range from special needs counsellor, to a qualified nursing aide, both in the home care setting and at a Palliative care phase of life. She can be reached at any time by email: guidance@julie.care or on Facebook @Infant and Pregnancy Loss Doula. Her website is www.julie.care 


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