Many families are unsure how to navigate through grief, let alone the death and dying process of a loved one. Death doulas are a fairly new concept for those in need, so it is normal to have questions. Here are some common questions to help you take the first steps toward the space between.
Why should I hire a death doula?
Death doulas provide caring, compassion and non-medical expertise to the dying and their families. With all due respect, the medical professionals provide caring support as well. Death doulas complement the medical and other services provided to the patients.
The patient and family can take this journey with support, comfort, understanding, and experience.
Why should I hire you over anyone else?
I have deep experience in providing kind, compassionate care for families and patients during difficult times. I am well-rounded, with a comprehensive understanding of grief and the dying process. I can also take the mess that the family is dealing with and effectively help organize it all and create a plan to address what is often a complex set of issues.
My compassion and listening skills tend to help patients open up about their life stories, and help create a legacy to be passed along to their living loved ones.
Are you a member of the palliative care team?
I partner with palliative care teams and on occasion have worked as part of the palliative care team.
Do you have any medical training?
I am not medically licensed or trained, but support the medical staff assigned to the patient. Death doulas are a resourceful bridge between the families and all other providers.
Do you work with patients with dementia or who are mentally ill?
I welcome conversations with families of patients with special needs, to better understand if I can be of benefit to the family or if there is a more helpful different resource I can find for them.
Can you provide services when someone is not actively dying?
Absolutely. A death doula can provide planning at any stage, at any time in life, although in general it is during the end-of-life process.
Are death doulas associated with one specific religion?
I can speak into most spiritual or religious traditions, without any exclusivity. This includes buddhism, pagan, atheist, and other traditions. Inclusivity is very important to me and is a key part of my compassion work.
Other frequently asked questions are philosophical, and I’m happy to answer them in person:
- What is the (non-medically) dying process like?
- What happens after I die?
- Have I lived well?
- How do I leave a legacy in place so people understand I was a good human being?
- How do I make the fractured relationships in my family whole?