Death Doulas & Midwifery – Guiding You Through the Grief Process
When you hear the term “midwife” or “doula”, you probably think of the birthing process. But did you know that they can also assist you and your family through the death process? As the International End of Life Doula Association (INELDA) says: “We have accompanied each other through the bookends of life – birth and death – since the beginning of time.”
If you’re familiar with the preplanning process, you likely know that funeral directors are an integral part of the preplanning process. If you’re looking for more support, especially in the case of terminal illness, a death, these support systems can help ease the stress when you get to the funeral home. Below we’ve included some facts you may not know about both, and how they impact your families.
Death doulas come into the picture sooner than the actual death process – oftentimes becoming part of the transition at the terminal illness stage for those who predict imminent death. At this point, the Doula will provide emotional or spiritual support for your family, helping you prepare for the death process, or process the death that has occurred.
Along with processing emotions, they can also start conversations with your family ahead of time about how you would like to memorialize your loved one. At the time of need, you would be more prepared for the conversation with the funeral director about your preferred services.
Death Midwives are not different than Doulas. The Death Midwife’s website describes their role similarly, as to assist families in the death preparation process and start the conversation about memorializing loved ones. They also highlight the importance that becoming a Death Midwife is not a role specifically for women – anyone can become an advocate for families.
The organization calls attention to the significance of removing the negative stereotypes of death. Of course, it is a time of mourning, but having a conversation with someone like a Death Midwife about celebration can help your family navigate the difficult time with a clearer mind.
The Benefits of Preplanning
Having a Death Midwife or Doula to assist your loved ones to start the conversation about memorializing your loved one can help usher you into the funeral planning process with your funeral provider. Learn more about the benefits of preplanning at efuneral.com.