Rachel Dolan Wickersham Photo

Rachel Dolan Wickersham

Women's Way

Phone: (630) 750-9444

Birth Fee: $1200 to $1500

Postpartum Rate: Not specified

Fee Details: I offer initial interviews free of charge. Once under contract, I charge a flat rate which includes two to three prenatal visits, the birth, and one to two postpartum visits. My fees are on the higher end because I am also a Certified Professional Midwife, but I am very willing to adjust my fees if there is financial need. In addition to Doula services, I offer Monatrice services for an additional fee under select circumstances. Feel free to inquire about these enhanced services.

Birth Doula Experience: 21 years and 400 births attended

Postpartum Doula Experience: 15 years and 15 families served

Doula Training

Not Specified

Type of Practice: Solo practice

Clients per Month: 1 to 2 births and 0 postpartum families

Attends hospital births? All Hospitals
I have personally given birth in a hospital setting twice - once by cesarean, once by VBAC. My third was born at home. As a doula, I've attending births in over 20 Chicago area hospitals. I am familiar with the routines and staff at many of these facilities.
Attends birth center births? All Birth Centers
Illinois first free-standing birth center is now open in Berwyn at the PCC Clinic. I would be happy to attend births there.
Attends home births? Any Home Birth
My youngest child was born at home. I have experience both as a homebirth doula and as a midwife.

Childbirth Education Certifications

  • Lamaze International
  • former Bradley Instructor

Breastfeeding Certifications

  • I've offered breastfeeding support for over 20 years, referring to local IBCLCs as needed.

Other Relevant Certifications

  • American Heart Association BLS (Basic Life Support) Certification
  • CPM (Certified Professional Midwife)
  • DONA International - Birth Doula Trainer
  • HBC - Home Birth Consultant
  • LM (Licensed Midwife)
  • Neonatal Resuscitation Certified (American Academy of Pediatrics)
  • LM - Licensed Midwife (Wisconsin), CNA - Certified Nursing Assistant, BEP Certified State of Illinois Vendor, Nursing Student @ DePaul University

College Education

  • AA/AS
  • BA/BS

Specialized training or previous experience

  • Cesarean birth
  • Families conceiving with ART and IVF
  • High risk
  • Home Birth
  • LGBTQP Families
  • Multiples
  • Over 40
  • Postpartum mood disorders
  • Single parents
  • Special needs babies
  • Surrogacy
  • Survivors of childhood sexual abuse
  • Teens
  • Twins
  • VBAC
  • Waterbirth

Special Services Offered

  • Acupressure and/or acupuncture in labor
  • Aromatherapy
  • Belly casting
  • Military famiies
  • Monitrice services
  • Reduced rates for women considering adoption
  • Sibling support (for your older children at the birth)

Relevant volunteer or advocacy work

Currently - President, Illinois Council of Certified Professional Midwives. 2004 - 2006 Executive director, Chicago Community Midwives 2000 - Co-founder, NorthEastern Illinois Doula Association

Languages spoken: English and some spanish

Service Area Map

Area of practice: Addison, IL
Travel Range: 30 Miles
Travel comments/restrictions: none

Client Testimonials for Rachel Dolan Wickersham

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L. Dostaler

We are intended parents and had a beautiful girl through surrogacy this year. As the intended mother, I wanted to have a doula involved to help ease our surrogate’s labor, to help explain things to us during the pregnancy and labor and delivery, and to help get us more involved in the labor itself. There were also so many parties involved in this untraditional birth that I also believed that a doula could facilitate communication between us all before and during the birth and encourage our surrogate and the husbands to discuss any concerns they had. Rachel did all of this and more. What surprised me, but shouldn’t have, was how non-judgmental and empathetic Rachel was during this unusual pregnancy. She was supportive and open at all times. She brought in a back up doula as well and both were ultimately present for the birth. This decision allowed for support of both our surrogate and us through out the pregnancy and birth. The day of her birth, our OB said our daughter was going to be born via a c-section because of her position and was not particularly optimistic for a vaginal birth. Rachel was on the phone with us through out the night advising us on helpful positions and keeping us calm and focused. When our surrogate was ready to call her in for active labor, she came armed with specific knowledge on how to deal with this particular problem and set to work to help our surrogate and involve all of us in making her comfortable. She attended to everyone’s needs. Our daughter was born naturally with no complications-a fact we owe fully Rachel. Even the husbands who were skeptical about the need for a doula acknowledge now how helpful they were. We had the most amazing birth experience; we came together like family-our doulas included-to comfort our surrogate and bring our daughter into the world. We have no hesitation in recommending Rachel. She is a wonderful doula!

Posted 11/26/2011

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Kim Zlatin

We used Rachel for the birth of our daughter in March and I would hire her again in a heartbeat.  I was attempting a VBAC and also ended up with Gestational Diabetes this time around, so I felt like the odds were stacked against me at times.  Rachel was there every step of the way to talk with me about my fears and doubts until I gave birth completely med-free at 40w1d to our beautiful 8 lb. 11 oz. baby girl.  We didn't have a doula the first time and I really believe that my c-section could have been avoided if I had someone like Rachel by my side.  This second labor felt very similar to my first that ended in a c-section, but Rachel kept me focused and we worked through the stalling labor vs. freaking that things weren't going right (that's how I felt the first time b/c of the nurses and midwives at the other hospital).  My husband felt like he could really support me and enjoy the birthing experience as well since Rachel was there to take charge of everything else.  She was firm, but not overbearing in the least.  Even though some things didn't seem like a big deal at the time (like breaking my water at the very end), she knew that I didn't want that since we had discussed it before and gently suggested changing positions and holding off on it.  Because of this and a little bit of luck I'm sure, I ended up with the perfect birth with no regrets.  I know "perfect" is a pretty strong term, but it really was the birth I always envisioned and I can't speak highly enough about Rachel.  I would gladly discuss our experience with anybody looking into hiring Rachel for their birth as well.

Posted 7/9/2011

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Sarah Booten

Rachel is an amazing woman and Doula! She was there during the hardiest time in my life.... Pregnancy was a time of emotional and physical turmoil for me and was there unconditionally, The premature birth of my son who was born at 27 weeks gestation was something that I was nowhere able to handle emotionally and my postpartum depression was so severe and so hard on me and my husband that we both relied on her on many occasions. She is the true embodiment of what a doula should be, kind, loving, epithetic, a friend to laugh with a shoulder to cry on and ear to listen and the most encouraging person I know. She brings a calm in crisis that is amazing beyond words. She was not only there for me, my husband and my son but also my mom! I am a doula myself and aspire to emulate her in my own work as a doula! I would recommend her to anyone any time, she is a true asset to have in birth.

Posted 11/7/2009

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Jacque Shannon-McNulty

I can't even find words to describe Rachel. and my births with Rachel as my doula. Rachel is an exceptional doula, she is truly the embodiment of mothering-the-mother. She is gentle and compassionate, intuitive and incredibly skillful. Rachel is aware of exactly what a mama needs in her birthing journey- even when a mama is not-  and simply, elegantly, meets those needs- a sip of water, physical comfort, sacral counterpressure, a hug, encouraging words, helpful suggestions and even unwavering silent presence. She is kind, loving, incredibly skilled and profoundly helpful. Rachel's presence was instantly calming and grounding for all of us throughout both of the births that we were honored to share with her. She helped me feel safe and pulled me back from the brink, saw the worst in me and brought out the best. She inspired me profoundly. I absolutely adore Rachel and I recommend her unconditionally.

Posted 10/17/2009

Birth Availability for Rachel Dolan Wickersham

= Available. Calendar last updated: 5/25/2015 10:43:38 PM

Postpartum Availability for Rachel Dolan Wickersham

= Available. Calendar last updated: 5/25/2015 10:43:38 PM