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Best 10 Doula Books

Doula Books

The following are some of the best doula books.

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that, at zero cost to you, I will earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase.

What Is A Doula?

A doula is a trained professional who provides emotional, physical, and informational support to individuals and couples during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period.

The term “doula” comes from the Greek word meaning “a woman who serves.”

Doulas do not replace medical professionals or midwives, but they work alongside them to provide continuous support, advocacy, and encouragement to birthing individuals and families.

Their role is to offer guidance, comfort measures, and education to help make the experience of childbirth as positive and empowering as possible.

Doula Books

1. The Birth Partner 5th Edition

By Penny Simkin

“The Birth Partner 5th Edition” is a comprehensive and invaluable guide written by Penny Simkin, an experienced childbirth educator and doula. This well-illustrated paperback provides all the essential information, insights, and support necessary for dads, partners, doulas, and other labor companions to confidently navigate the childbirth process.

With a friendly and compassionate tone, Simkin takes readers through each stage of pregnancy, labor, and delivery, offering practical advice and guidance. From understanding the physical and emotional changes during pregnancy to creating a birth plan, this book equips birth partners with the knowledge to actively participate and provide meaningful support.

Simkin also discusses pain management techniques, including both medical and non-medical options, empowering birth partners to help alleviate discomfort and create a positive birthing experience. The book addresses various scenarios and possible complications, providing strategies for handling unexpected situations while promoting effective communication with healthcare professionals.

Related: Are Doulas Worth It?

2. Cultivating the Doula Heart

By Francesca Lynn Arnoldy

In Cultivating the Doula Heart: Essentials of Compassionate Care, author Francesca Lynn Arnoldy delves into the profound and transformative role of a doula in supporting and guiding individuals through life’s most intimate and vulnerable moments.

With a gentle and compassionate tone, this book serves as a comprehensive guide for aspiring doulas, providing essential knowledge, practical tools, and invaluable insights. Drawing from her own experiences and those of other experienced doulas, Arnoldy covers a wide range of topics, including the importance of active listening, building trust and rapport, and maintaining emotional boundaries.

Arnoldy emphasizes the significance of empathy and emotional intelligence, encouraging doulas to cultivate self-awareness and mindfulness in order to provide truly holistic care. She also explores the process of navigating the complexities of birth and end-of-life experiences, offering guidance on how to approach these delicate situations with grace, sensitivity, and respect.

Throughout the book, Arnoldy’s warm and nurturing presence shines through, creating a supportive environment in which readers can explore their own journey as doulas. Her insightful anecdotes and personal reflections serve as reminders of the transformative power of compassionate care.

Related: How To Find A Doula? 21 Tips To Find The Best Doula For You

3. Nurturing Beginnings

By Debra Pascali Bonaro, Jane Arnold, Marcia Ringel

“Nurturing Beginnings: Guide to Postpartum Care” is a comprehensive and invaluable resource for doulas and community outreach workers alike. Written by Debra Pascali Bonaro, Jane Arnold, and Marcia Ringel, this paperback guide offers a wealth of knowledge and practical advice on supporting new mothers during the postpartum period.

With a gentle and patient approach, the authors take readers on a journey through the various aspects of postpartum care. From emotional and physical recovery to breastfeeding support and newborn care, this book covers it all. The authors emphasize the importance of nurturing and empowering new mothers as they navigate the joys and challenges of early motherhood.

Throughout the guide, the authors provide step-by-step instructions, evidence-based research, and personal anecdotes to illustrate their points. They also address common concerns and offer guidance on handling potential complications that may arise during the postpartum period. The friendly tone and approachable writing style make this book a pleasure to read and an essential resource for anyone involved in supporting new mothers.

Related: Top 17 Questions To Ask A Doula

4. The Doula Book

By Marshall H. Klaus, John H. Kennell, Phyllis H. Klaus

“The Doula Book: How a Trained Labor Companion Can Help You Have a Shorter, Easier, and Healthier Birth” is an invaluable resource for expectant parents seeking support and guidance during the birthing process. In this book, authors Marshall H. Klaus, John H. Kennell, and Phyllis H. Klaus delve into the important role of a doula – a trained labor companion who offers emotional, physical, and informational support to the mother and her partner.

With their expertise and experience, the authors provide a comprehensive overview of the benefits and significance of having a doula present during childbirth. They discuss the various ways in which a doula can help create a more positive birth experience, such as offering comfort measures, providing continuous support, and advocating for the mother’s preferences.

Drawing on extensive research and real-life stories, the authors highlight the positive outcomes associated with the presence of a doula, including shorter labors, decreased pain perception, reduced need for medical interventions, and improved overall satisfaction with the birthing experience.

Related: Best 10 Postpartum Books

5. The Doula Business Guide

By Patty Brennan

The Doula Business Guide, 3rd Edition: How to Succeed as a Birth, Postpartum or End-of-Life Doula, written by Patty Brennan, is a comprehensive and invaluable resource for individuals looking to establish and excel in the doula profession. With a warm and knowledgeable approach, Brennan provides readers with all the necessary tools and guidance to thrive in the birth, postpartum, or end-of-life support industry.

In this third edition, Brennan’s expertise shines through as she offers updated information on industry standards, business strategies, and client interactions. Whether you are a seasoned doula or just starting out, this book caters to all levels of experience, providing valuable insights and practical advice.

Brennan’s friendly and patient tone encourages readers to explore their passion for supporting families during life-changing moments. She covers various aspects of the doula business, including marketing strategies, creating effective partnerships with medical professionals, handling client relationships, and managing the emotional toll that can come with this rewarding profession.

Furthermore, The Doula Business Guide delves into the unique challenges faced by birth doulas, postpartum doulas, and end-of-life doulas, offering specialized tips and techniques tailored to each area of expertise. Aspiring doulas will find step-by-step instructions on how to establish a thriving practice, effectively navigate the industry, and build strong connections within their communities.

Related: 10 Tips For Successful Breastfeeding

6. The Doula Business Guide Workbook

By Patty Brennan

“The Doula Business Guide Workbook” by Patty Brennan is the ultimate resource for anyone starting or growing their doula business. This comprehensive guide offers a step-by-step approach, providing practical advice and insightful tips on how to establish and thrive as a doula.

Inside, you will find exercises, templates, and worksheets designed to assist you in creating a personalized business plan, marketing strategies, and client communications. Brennan’s expertise shines through as she covers topics such as establishing client trust, pricing your services, and managing client relationships with empathy and care.

This workbook goes beyond the logistics of starting a doula business; it delves into the emotional and personal aspects of being a doula. It offers guidance on self-care, burnout prevention, and building a support network within the doula community.

Related: How To Combine Breastfeeding And Pumping?

7. The Doula Deck

By Lori Bregman, Gather Round Games, Ashley Seil Smith

“The Doula Deck: Practices for Calm and Connection in Your Pregnancy, Birth, and New Motherhood” is a beautifully crafted set of cards designed to support expectant and new mothers on their journey to childbirth and beyond. Written by Lori Bregman and Gather Round Games, with stunning illustrations by Ashley Seil Smith, this deck offers an array of practices and insights inspired by the wisdom of doulas.

With a gentle and patient approach, this deck provides a wealth of knowledge and guidance for women during the transformative stages of pregnancy, birth, and early motherhood. Each card presents a carefully curated practice or affirmation, aiming to foster a sense of calm, connection, and empowerment.

Related: Top 8 Breast Pumping Tips For New Moms

8. Why Did No One Tell Me This?

By Natalia Hailes, Ash Spivak, Louise Reimer

“Why Did No One Tell Me This?” is a comprehensive and honest guidebook for expectant parents, written by experienced doulas Natalia Hailes and Ash Spivak. Filled with practical advice, personal anecdotes, and insightful tips, this paperback guide aims to empower and support expecting parents on their journey.

With years of experience in the birthing community, Hailes and Spivak understand the importance of providing unbiased information and emotional support during pregnancy and childbirth. They tackle various topics, including pregnancy discomforts, labor and delivery options, breastfeeding, postpartum care, and everything in between.

In an approachable and conversational tone, the authors address common misconceptions, break down complex medical jargon, and dispel myths surrounding pregnancy and childbirth. With the aim of arming parents-to-be with knowledge and confidence, they provide evidence-based information while also acknowledging that each birth experience is unique.

Related: Breastfeeding Resources (Information, Apps, Books, Podcasts)

9. The Doula’s Guide to Empowering Your Birth

By Lindsey Bliss

The Doula’s Guide to Empowering Your Birth is a comprehensive and indispensable resource for expectant parents, written by acclaimed author Lindsey Bliss, who is an experienced and passionate doula. This paperback equips parents-to-be with the knowledge and tools needed to have a positive and empowered birth experience.

With an empathetic and compassionate approach, Lindsey Bliss guides readers through every stage of labor and childbirth, ensuring that they feel supported and well-prepared. Drawing from her own expertise and wealth of experience, she provides invaluable tips, advice, and practical information that covers everything from creating a birth plan to pain management techniques.

In this book, you will find a step-by-step guide to understanding the physical and emotional changes during pregnancy, a detailed explanation of different childbirth options available, and the guidance necessary to make informed decisions about your birthing experience. Lindsey Bliss also emphasizes the importance of effective communication with healthcare providers and loved ones, ensuring that your voice is heard and respected throughout the process.

Related: Best Pregnancy Resources (Information, Apps, Books, Podcasts)

10. Nurturing the Family

By Jacqueline Kelleher

In “Nurturing the Family: A Doula’s Guide to Supporting New Parents,” Jacqueline Kelleher offers a comprehensive and compassionate guide for doulas, as well as anyone who wants to support new parents during this transformative phase of life. With her wealth of knowledge and experience, Kelleher provides essential insights, practical tips, and heartfelt advice to ensure that every family feels supported, nurtured, and empowered throughout their journey.

Drawing from her years of working as a doula, Kelleher highlights the importance of emotional and physical support during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period. She dives deep into the various challenges that new parents may face, offering gentle solutions and strategies to navigate common issues such as sleep deprivation, breastfeeding challenges, and postpartum mood disorders.

How Doula Books Can Help?

Doula books can be incredibly helpful resources for both expectant parents and aspiring doulas. Here are a few ways in which doula books can assist:

1. Education: Doula books provide in-depth information about pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum care. They cover topics such as different birthing techniques, labor positions, pain management options, breastfeeding, and newborn care. By reading these books, parents and doulas can expand their knowledge base and better understand the various aspects of pregnancy and childbirth.

2. Empowerment: Reading doula books can help parents and doulas feel more empowered and confident during the birth process. These books often emphasize the importance of advocacy, informed decision-making, and effective communication with healthcare providers. By understanding their options and rights, individuals can actively participate in their birth experiences and make choices that align with their values and preferences.

3. Emotional Support: Pregnancy, childbirth, and early parenthood can bring about a wide range of emotions. Doula books typically address the emotional aspects of this journey, offering guidance on managing fears, anxieties, and stress. They may also share personal stories and experiences from other parents and doulas, helping readers feel understood and supported.

4. Practical Tips: Doula books often include practical tips and advice for both parents and doulas. These can range from creating birth plans and packing hospital bags to creating a soothing environment at home for postpartum recovery. Such books can offer valuable insights into comfort measures, relaxation techniques, breathing exercises, and ways to cope with the different stages of labor.


Doula books serve as comprehensive guides that educate, empower, offer emotional support, provide practical tips, and highlight the role of doulas.

Whether you’re an expectant parent or a doula-in-training, these resources can greatly enhance your understanding and experience of pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum care.

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