Rogue: a dishonest or unprincipled person who rejects conventional rules of society in favor of following their own personal goals and values.
Visually, one can’t tell the difference between a professional doula and a rogue doula. There is no difference in title, no name badges stating that a doula is rogue.
Actions make it easier to differentiate between a professional doula and a rogue doula. Some or all of the items below can help you spot a rogue doula.
Often come with an opinion or agenda and are ready and willing to share it. They are usually anti-intervention and believe they have a duty to save women from their care provider. They believe that medical professionals are the enemy rather than as a partner in the care of your body, birth, and baby. But actually, safety is the priority of your medical team and a good experience is possible wherever you choose to deliver.
May offer you medical advice, tell you your provider is wrong, or encourage you to go against medical advice. This may be demonstrated by unhooking clients from fetal monitors, advising on treatment, or even going so far as to tell clients to lie about when their water broke so as to avoid going into the hospital. I think it goes without saying that these practices are highly dangerous and can lead to very unfortunate consequences.
May make you feel guilty about your birthing and parenting choices because they are not the same choices they would have made.
Speak for clients and challenge the medical team’s recommendations.
Through meeting and working with local nurses, doctors, and midwives here in Nashville, we are even more aware of the implications rogue doulas have on the way doulas are viewed. Music City Doulas is working hard to set ourselves apart. All of our doulas are trained and either certified or working towards their certification. Additionally, they all carry their own liability insurance and are CPR/First Aid certified.
Unfortunately, rogue doulas are often trained by an organization, but choose not to certify because they ‘don’t align’ with their training organization’s scope of practice or requirements.