Christina Carino-Forrest CD(DONA) Photo

Christina Carino-Forrest CD(DONA)

Belly to Birth

Website: https://www.hudsonvalleybirthnetwork.com/birth-doulas/

Phone: (914) 772-0506

Birth Fee: $1000 to $1350

Fee Details: Certified DONA Birth Doula living in New Rochelle, attending births in Westchester, CT, NYC, the Bronx, Queens and points north or within 45 min from me. I am certified in Rebozo, Spinning Babies and HYPNOBIRTHING. For $1,200.00 my services include: 2 pre-natal visits, Unlimited email and phone support, Continuous labor support starting at your home, nursing support up to 2 hours after birth and 1 postpartum visit about 1 - 2 weeks PP. I provide birth photography services with my Sony DSLR camera at no extra charge. I charge a 150.00 transportation fee for births outside of Westchester, the Bronx and CT. If you truly can not afford $1200.00 let me know and we can work on a price as low as $1000.00. The difference is 1 longer prenatal visit instead of 2 shorter visits and an optional postpartum visit. I will base this rate on your tax returns. I strongly believe every Mom who wishes to have Doula support in birth should be able to have it, regardless of their financial means.

Birth Doula Experience: 5 years and 100 births attended

Birth Doula Certifications

  • DONA International - Certified Birth Doula

Doula Training

Not Specified

Type of Practice: Solo practice

Clients per Month: 2 to 3

Attends hospital births? All Hospitals
I have also attended C-sections and assisted with nursing and skin to skin in the OR.
Attends birth center births? All Birth Centers
I have experience working with midwives. Brooklyn Birthing Center, MSW Birth Center, Danbury Birth Center
Attends home births? Any Home Birth
I have experience attending home birth.

Breastfeeding Certifications

  • Lactation Counselor Training (Healthy Children's Center for Breastfeeding)

College Education

  • MA/MS

Specialized training or previous experience

  • Cesarean birth
  • Clients on bed rest
  • Families conceiving with ART and IVF
  • High risk
  • Home Birth
  • Induced and high medical technology labor & birth
  • LGBTQP Families
  • Multiples
  • Over 40
  • Postpartum mood disorders
  • Prematurity
  • Single parents
  • Survivors of Previous Life Trauma
  • Twins
  • VBAC
  • Waterbirth

Special Services Offered

  • Acupressure
  • American Red Cross First Aid and CPR
  • Aromatherapy
  • Baby-led weaning
  • Belly casting
  • Bereavement doula (pregnancy & infant loss)
  • Infant massage education
  • Military famiies
  • Pregnancy, birth and/or newborn photography
  • Prenatal or postnatal massage
  • Reduced rates for women considering adoption
  • Sibling support (for your older children at the birth)
  • TENS units rental

Relevant volunteer or advocacy work

Active member of the Hudson Valley Birth Network, ICAN of Westchester NY Board Member, Improving Birth Rally Co-Leader

Languages spoken: English

Service Area Map

Area of practice: New Rochelle, NY
Travel Range: 35 Miles
Travel comments/restrictions: I have a 60-90 min response time

Certifications for Christina Carino-Forrest CD(DONA)

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Certification

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Client Testimonials for Christina Carino-Forrest CD(DONA)

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Seth Canetti

Christina was wonderful in preparation for and during my wife's birth.  We had two meetings with Christina to help develop our birth plan and prepare for our upcoming labor.  We really loved the resources that Christina provided in advance and her pain management & coping techniques were invaluable during labor.  My wife felt confident and empowered to go through her labor naturally, and with Christina's guidance, I felt that I was able to provide useful and helpful support during my wife's labor.

My wife labored beautifully and naturally for 15 hours with Christina's support, and although we ultimately needed more advanced medical intervention, we are so proud of our labor and our healthy and happy baby boy.

We would happily recommend Christina and use her for any future births!

Posted 2/17/2018

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Alice Gleason

I could not have had a natural birth without Christina. Other doulas would have been helpful and emotionally suportive, but Christina brought that and so much more. She has tons of knoweldge and skill to help you prepare for childbirth, manage your pain, and avoid unnecessary interventions. Christina:

  • gave me exercises to get my body ready and the baby into a good position;
  • answered all our questions and made us feel more confident and knowldgeable;
  • helped me avoid induction by providing techniques to go into labor naturally;
  • gave us ways to manage my pain during early labor, communicated with us throughout labor, and came over immeidately when we needed her;
  • led me through exercises to help shorten my labor, reduce my pain, and pass the time (getting up and moving around is so much better than just lying in bed waiting for the next contraction!);
  • provided lots of natural pain-relieving techniques that enabled me to get through contractions;
  • helped us decide when to go to the hospital;
  • assisted us in making decisions about my care;
  • encouraged me to keep going and not get the epidural - she helped me believe I could do it;
  • shortened the amount of time I spent pushing and coached me on how to do so effectively; and
  • stayed alert and engaged throughout the long night.

After 25 1/2 hours, my son was born at 6:29am. Without Christina, I likely would have been induced, needed an epidural, had a longer and more painful labor, spent more time pushing, and who knows what else. She's not a "light candles and sing to you softly" kind of doula, but that emotional support and love can be provided by your partner/support person. She is a get you through childbirth with her skills, knowledge, and experience kind of doula, and that is exactly what I needed. I am so happy that we hired Christina and will do so again if I ever have another baby.

Posted 1/15/2018

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olga otrokhova

I contacted Christina early on in my pregnancy, she presented herself as a confident woman who knows well what she does when it comes to pregnancy and birth. This was my first pregnancy and delivery, so I had no clue what I was doing and what are the right things to do to prep.Christina provided me with a plethora of valuable information and guided me towards making right decisions in terms of choosing the right hospital and switching from OB to midwife. I wanted a natural birth without drugs and I was able to get it, for the large part because I had right advice on how to prepare myself, my body and my baby from Christina.

On the day of the delivery, most of my birth took place at home. The communication with Christina was seamless, she was instantly available to answer any questions and made her way to our house. It gave me great confidence and moral support to know that she is engaged and on her way. Even I had my husband and mother at home with me, they were also under stress which was translating to me. However, I knew that Christina is on her way and will take things under control. When she arrived it was time to go to the hospital. During the ride, she was in the back seat massaging my back to sooth contractions. At the hospital, Christina was my advocate, she knew what birth I wanted and helped me communicate with my midwife (who was also amazing) and nurses. She supported me every step of the way through the end of my labor (which went fast from the moment we got to the hospital). It was an incredible support for me morally and physically to have Christina by my side. 

If you are looking to have a healthy pregnancy and natural birth as well as need guidance in preparation, Christina is your person. I highly recommend her for any first-time mom ( as I was) as well as any mom who is looking to have calm delivery. 

Thank you, Christina!

We love you!Olga, Leonid, Anastasia and Eva

Posted 12/4/2017

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moe ekayi

Going into my first pregnancy I knew I needed extra help. I needed an experienced doula who can support me through the fear I hold about child labor. From our first conversation, I knew Christina was right person for me. She conveys great wisdom and confidence which provided assurance of the entire child birth process. She was a very strong and encouraging coach throughout my pregnancy. She taught us therapeutic massage and stretches before and during labor and it helped me tremendously to move my baby to ideal position to avoid back labor. During the labor, the pressure points she applied at every contraction help me enormously with coping with the pain. I was induced from 1 cm and I didn’t get epidural until 7 cm! Every contraction coming at 2 min apart for 12 hours, I was asked to get the epidural at 7 cm. She was amazing at determining the position of my baby. When my baby heart rate was dropping the doctor recommended a C-section but she quickly said that it was due to the way I was lying on the bed and she made me move to different positions and my baby heart went back to normal. Right before the pushing, my mind was not clear of what I wanted to do since I was in pain for so long, I asked her that I might opt out for C section. She grabbed my hands and encouraged me that I can do this. My goal is right there and I went through so much of unexpected challenges so not to give up. I trusted her and I started pushing after my OB told me the baby head is out. I pushed for about 6 times and my daughter came out within 10 mins! I am so glad I listened to her and gave all I got to push. She reminded me of my initial goal and motivated me to accomplish what I wanted to do when I was about to give up. With her knowledge, experience and quick thinking, I was able to avoid further intervention such as C section. I achieve the vaginal birth I wanted and I give all the thanks to Christina. I highly recommend any woman who needs great doula like Christina!

Posted 10/13/2017

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Marina Margolina

We found Christina through this website. My husband and I got very impressed by her and her knowledge as soon as we met her for the first time. Her advice on all aspects of the pregnancy, birth and recovery was always timely, professional and very helpful. We had two prenatal meetings with her during which she gave us a lot of helpful information and showed us many exercises that helped us a lot during delivery. She also spent a lot of time working with us on the birth plan. We informed her as soon as the water broke and she was on the phone with my husband on a constant basis giving him very helpful advice until she arrived. From the time she arrived she helped me a lot. She helped in setting up the bar for pushing, helped me into certain positions, and used all the equipment she brought (reboso, scarfs, birth balls, etc.) and made the process much easier. She worked very well with the nurse and doctors, and during moments of doubt especially when the doctors suggested intervention to quicken the labor, she assured me that I could handle the all-natural birth I wanted and I couldn’t have done it without her. She stayed with us after birth as long as we needed her. During the postnatal visit she advised us on nutrition, breastfeeding, baby massage for colic and she always kept in touch afterwards to check on us. We would very highly recommend Christina without any reservations.

Posted 9/17/2017

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Jamie Rosenberger

I can't imagine my birth experience without Christina! I was already happy with my decision to work with Christina based on all of the useful information and support she provided about formulating a birth plan and working up toward labor and delivery. As a new mom, I was amazed at all of the things she brought up that I wouldn't have even known to consider. Not only that, but Christina proved to be very supportive and experienced in helping me navigate my relationship with my doctors to make sure everything went the way I wanted, especially when they were pressuring me to be induced early because they were worried my baby was large. I knew I didn't want that, and she helped support me in that decision and work together with them in a informed and empowering way (and as it turned out the doctors overestimated her size).

But it was when I went into labor that working with Christina was most valuable. She is a physically and mentally strong, solid, steadying force. She was right there with me unwavering for 14 hours, along with my husband. The counter pressure she used on my hips and my back really helped me to make it through the intensifying contractions without drugs - she is such a powerhouse! She also allowed me to just mentally go to the place I needed to be without worrying about anything because i knew I had an advocate who knew what she was doing and who i fully trusted. Christina was an absolute rock and I definitely plan to work with her again for #2 :)

 

Posted 3/15/2017

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Kat Galic

Amazing doula, I couldn't have done it natural without her. I think she really found her calling with this profession. Christina helped me through a two day labor and my baby was over 9 pounds! I was using the hypnoborthing technique and she was always reminding me of my affirmations (which we went over when she visited at home beforehand). There were times when I really thought i couldn't go on and wanted to quit, but she got me up and doing my exercises to speed up the surges which worked. My hospital was in CT (with a midwife) and she was willing to travel. When it came to the actual birth, she took wonderful pictures of our family which I will always cherish. Definitely will use her again if we have another baby!

Posted 8/20/2016

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Shirley Lin

Christina is an amazing doula who guided me and my husband through our first pregnancy. She's incredibly knowledgeable, experienced, and professional, all of which helped us have the mom-centered, intervention-free child birth that we very much wanted. Putting together a childbirth plan with her demystified the prep work for labor, and we relied on all of the advice she provided during her two prenatal visits. She has a very pragmatic, easy-to-follow style that worked well for us (especially when came to reminding me to do my exercises for strength or opening up the pelvis)!

My pregnancy was considered high-risk but once I made it past 32 weeks safely we realized that our then-OB-GYN and hospital would not allow me to deliver completely on those terms and needed to switch so late. Christina supported us during this stressful period and thankfully had current knowledge of OB-GYNs and hospital L&D practices in Westchester.

When I went into labor, Christina responded right away. At our home and at the hospital, she helped us with pain management techniques, applied pressure herself, and made sure I had a calm environment, etc -- all in the middle of the night and after having pulled several all-nighters attending other births.

Surprisingly, my labor lasted under three hours! My daughter arrived healthy and (with Christina's help) nursed immediately. I attribute all this to Christina having given us such sound advice and the (relative) calm that came from being empowered at each step of the way.

Posted 6/12/2016

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Riki Lieberman

The first thing I want to begin by saying is that without Christina I would certainly have had a c-section and nobody wants to have that! I went into labor in the middle of the night at 3 am, Christina arrived to the hospital shortly after and did not budge from our side till I delivered the baby 18 hours later. She then stayed post birth to help with breastfeeding and to take some beautiful pictures. Christina is super dedicated and helped me in every way possible throughout labor. She helped with positioning so that my labor would progress properly, she helped me with nausea, pain...She was there for me for whatever I needed. 15 hours into labor, they realized that the baby was posterior and lodged under my bone and so we started attempting to push so that she would progress downwards. Christina suggested positions that would help the baby dislodge, the doctors knew nothing of how to dislodge the baby and were threatening ceseraen. Christina coached and encouraged me throughout the 3 hours of pushing, and she suggested the position that eventually turned the baby and allowed her to be delivered vaginally. I have no words to thank her for saving me from a c section. I would never go through a birth without her. Whoever hires her, is lucky to have her as their doula. I also forgot to mention that she came twice to our house, teaching us positions for getting through the beginning stages of labor as well as helping me write a birth plan. During labor and delivery, she made sure the doctors and nurses were following my birth plan. Thank you, thank you!!

Posted 5/4/2016

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Suzanne Lynch

Christina helped me plan for a vaginal birth, including preparing a detailed birth plan and findingo the right childbirth prep classes. Unfortunately due to a combination of factors, I had a C section. She was present with me in the operating room - held my hand through the scary part - and helped my baby latch when she was put on my chest. She also took photos which was great. She is very knowledgable about all things baby and volunteers her time teaching a free breast feeding class at a hospital. She also visited after the birth and gave me some tips on my baby who is having some gas issues. She knows her stuff.

Posted 3/18/2016

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Britney Archer

I had a scheduled c-section in Virginia for my first birth. This time around, I wanted to do everything that I could to avoid another c-section. That included hiring a doula. From our initial meeting, I knew Christina was the right doula for me. She is very straight-forward. Her own experience and passion for an informed, empowered birth experience made me sure that she would be extremely helpful. 

Throughout my pregnancy, Christina was incredibly helpful. She always responded to texts and calls quickly. She guided me to asking the right questions and making sure I knew which parts of my care I could control or have a say in. Her resources helped me a lot when I had some complications. the information she provided my husband and I about options we had and choices we could make during the labor and delivery stages was invaluable. She provided us with medical research to help us make educated choices on our own. She never judged or tried to change our minds, just gave us information to decide for ourselves. 

During my labor and delivery, Christina was awesome! She fanned me with the peppermint essential oil to help make me comfortable. She applied pressure on my hips during contractions. and she reminded me to breathe. Christina continued to let me make my own choices and feel empowered to do whatever I wanted or needed. She was there constantly, so my husband could take the breaks he needed. With Christina's help, I got the VBAC and birth experience I truly wanted. 

Posted 2/29/2016

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Ivan Manolov

Christina did a tremendous job for us and it's hard to describe how grateful we are for her competence and composure. My wife's labor lasted 25 hours and was quite physically and psychologically testing; had it not been for Christina, it would have been much more painful and stressful, and we would have been much more likely to make a serious misstep about when to go to the hospital. Labor began slightly before midnight, when we were about to go to bed, so we were already tired; we would not get to sleep for well over 24 hours more. Once labor began, the frequency of contractions progressed quickly from 10 minutes down to around 5-6 minutes. By that point, Christina had already arrived at our home (she was quick to do so once she heard about this pattern). However, from that point onward, the frequency of contractions went back up and until about 8 pm the following evening it was all over the place - 5 minutes apart, 20 minutes apart, etc. Christina was with my wife at every moment and did a ton of exercises and massage with her to make the pain more tolerable and to help increase the frequency of contractions, as well as support her emotionally and help her stay calm. This was very important, because it helped preserve my wife's energy and morale for the actual delivery. The hospital had told us not to call them before contractions were only 4 minutes apart. When the pain grew stronger and we did call them, they reiterated that my wife was probably too early in labor, given contractions were spaced so far apart. Despite that, Christina correctly made the judgment call to head over to the hospital. When we arrived there, my wife was 9 cm dilated. From there, my wife only labored for around 4 hours in the hospital until she delivered. Christina was also tremendously helpful during delivery itself, reassuring my wife and helping her stay calm, which helped my wife make good choices about epidural, not having an episiotomy, etc. Thank you, Christina!

Posted 2/11/2016

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Eric Warshauer

After interviewing many Doulas, we knew right away that Christina was the right match. She has a fun, easy going attitude and lot of helpful knowledge and techniques. Above all she emphasized that we were a team and made sure to help me to help my wife. It was great to have a second pair of hands to take care of all the little details while I was focused on my wife as well as to advocate for us and our plan. We had a great birth experience with Christina and I highly recommend her. 

Posted 1/18/2016

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Britney Archer

I had a scheduled c-section for my first child and felt like it was unnecessary. Through my first pregnancy, I felt like I wasn't getting all of the information in an unbiased manor and that influenced my pregnancy and delivery experience. When I got pregnant with my second, I knew I wanted a doula for support and to increase my chances of having a VBAC. I found Christina and immediately felt like she would aid me in the process immensely. 

Christina was always available and responded quickly to questions or concerns I had. I had some issues with irritable uterus throughout my pregnancy and she always helped me deal with it. She empowered me to make it clear to the doctors how I wanted to be cared for, as long as it was medically sound. And she helped give me different language to feel better about dealing with my ongoing contractions. Positive language can be so powerful!

Christina provided us with invaluable information to guide our decision making for our birth plan. She even gave us additional resources when we had questions or didn't realize something other than "the norm" was an option. She never judged our decisions, but simply gave us the information so we could guide my pregnancy and delivery with the knowledge of our opti

Posted 1/15/2016

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David Gelardi

As first time parents, you are filled with so many emotions - my husband and I had no idea what we were getting ourselves into but one thing we knew for sure was that we were going to have a doula to support us.  I interviewed many doulas in preparation for the big day but Christina stood out right from the beginning.  She came to our home and answered all our questions, she helped my husband and I feel confident that we would get through the process together and on that big day when I was overcome by pain and wanted to quit, it was Christina who looked straight into my eyes and reminded me that I had the inner strenght to deliver my baby.  My husband tells everyone how much he appreciated having Christina at our birth, she explained everything to him as it happened and kept him company during  those long hours of waiting.   I highly recommend Christina and plan on having her as our doula when baby number 2 comes around.  

Posted 10/13/2015

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Alexis Cohen

Given that my birth story was three days long it's hard to know where to start but I can say that Christina was a fantastic guide beginning at our first meeting a few weeks before the real adventure began. She had such a wealth of knowledge that I found comfort in. I could tell that I had made the right choice of a doula pretty quickly. I knew that no matter how my baby was born she would be right there by my side supporting me the whole way.

From the moment I called Christina to tell her my labor was beginning to 36 hours later when my daughter was actually born she was an integral part of my journey.  She worked tirelessly with me and my fiancé for hours trying to get my baby out naturally. My daughter would not budge and ultimately after a day and half we ended with a csection. 

Christina was aware of how disappointed I was and continued to be supportive and said all the right things. I am extremely grateful to her for my experience despite the fact it was not how I originally intended it to be. 

I fully intend to ask her to be my doula again when the time is right.

 

 

Posted 9/11/2015

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Deneige Pelletier

Christina was a great comfort to me during my pregnancy when I was very nervous about my upcoming hospital birth! She was always available to chat on the phone amd emails were promptly returned. During our prenatal visit my husband and I both felt a great sense of relief to have her on our team! She stayed in touch during my early birthing hours and came to my home when we needed her. I had a very long labor and she was with us for over 12 hours. I'm sure she was beyond exhausted after applying counter pressure to my back all night but she never complained. I felt very comfortable in her presence and it was safe to be vulnerable with her. She also gave me the confidence to decline having my waters broken when being repeatedly asked, and I truly feel that kept me from needing a c-section, as the labor was hard on my son but we didn't know that until after his birth. She took some great photos as well. I dont think I could have made it through my natural birth without her support! 

Posted 7/16/2015

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Mayra Tello

My birth experience with Christina was one that I will never forget. From the beggining when I met her in person she gave me a sense of comfort and trust that I hadn't gotten from any other doula I spoke to. I hired her and right away I knew we would accomplish my goal of having a natural birth after C-section. From our initial meeting til the day I have birth she was amazing and never seemed unsure or doubtful of my birth plan and what needed to happen to help me get there. She's very comforting and reassuring in every step of the way and I wouldn't have made it through the morning of painful hell without her help. More than anything she's like a supportive best friend who's there to push you through when you feel you cannot go on. At least that's how she made me feel every step of the way. I knew when my son was born naturally that my gut didn't fail me when I chose her. I would recommend to any woman who wants to have a positive birth experience to hire her, you will not be disappointed. I thank God for her presence in our lives and the privilege to call her a friend! 

Posted 7/15/2015

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Lana Savoca

I cant say how grateful I am for Christina. I moved up to New York from Virginia, and I was absolutely terrified of delivering at any of the hospitals up here. I did my research, came to realize it was a crapshoot who would deliver, and the stats on cecarians and interventions are staggering. When I discovered the concept of having a doula, I was immediately interested. But then I met and spoke  wirh a doula and wasn't a 100% comfortable. Then I came into contact with Christina. I cannot tell you how happy I was to meet her. My husband put it perfectly: sometimes you meet someone who is perfect for a role or job. That person is Christina: she was MEANT to be a doula. She immediately put me at ease, we spoke for almhost an hour. She told me how she came to be a doula, her experience, and some of the techniques she and I could go over prepping for labor. Her bubbly, unintimitating personality put me at ease immediately and on our first visit we were laughing almost the entire time she was over our house. She has an amazing skill of balancing her good nature with serious expertise and guidance. We learned more about laboring positions and breathing techniques from Christina then in multiple prenatal yoga classes.

The morning i went into labor, Christina came to our home, helped my husband and I with breathing and labor positions. She came with us to the hospital, all the whole coaching me and helping me get through my contractions. At the hospital, she brought a "bag of tricks", yoga ball, rice sack, robozos (long scarfs that were the single best items for pushing Ava out naturally!), even Chapstick and peppermint oil. At some point I only had the option of having one person in my delivery room: I chose Christina. This is how much I valued her help and guidance.

If you can believe it, an hour after my delivery she left to another labor an hour away in New Jersey! A real trooper, all the while positive and full of love. Thank you Christina!

Posted 6/27/2015

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Lana Savoca

I cant say how grateful I am for Christina. I moved up to New York from Virginia, and I was absolutely terrified of delivering at any of the hospitals up here. I did my research, came to realize it was a crapshoot who would deliver, and the stats on cecarians and interventions are staggering. When I discovered the concept of having a doula, I was immediately interested. But then I met and spoke  wirh a doula and wasn't a 100% comfortable. Then I came into contact with Christina. I cannot tell you how happy I was to meet her. My husband put it perfectly: sometimes you meet someone who is perfect for a role or job. That person is Christina: she was MEANT to be a doula. She immediately put me at ease, we spoke for almhost an hour. She told me how she came to be a doula, her experience, and some of the techniques she and I could go over prepping for labor. Her bubbly, unintimitating personality put me at ease immediately and on our first visit we were laughing almost the entire time she was over our house. She has an amazing skill of balancing her good nature with serious expertise and guidance. We learned more about laboring positions and breathing techniques from Christina then in multiple prenatal yoga classes.

The morning i went into labor, Christina came to our home, helped my husband and I with breathing and labor positions. She came with us to the hospital, all the whole coaching me and helping me get through my contractions. At the hospital, she brought a "bag of tricks", yoga ball, rice sack, robozos (long scarfs that were the single best items for pushing Ava out naturally!), even Chapstick and peppermint oil. At some point I only had the option of having one person in my delivery room: I chose Christina. This is how much I valued her help and guidance.

If you can believe it, an hour after my delivery she left to another labor an hour away in New Jersey! A real trooper, all the while positive and full of love. Thank you Christina!

Posted 6/27/2015

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Amy Parks

I had interviewed a few doulas over email and phone but just could not seem to find the right match. I teetered back and forth on whether or not having a doula was something I could afford or even needed. I thought perhaps I would be too "in my head" and that having a stranger there leading up to and on the day of my babys birth might somehow be awkward or annoying. Pretty late into my pregnancy, I decided to look on doula match one last time. Im not sure if it was her picture or her bio but something drew me to Christina. We chatted briefly over email and then a lengthy call and we just clicked. I didnt even need to meet her in person, I hired her based on the initial phone call, which says a lot.

Her 2 prenatal visits were informative, fun and thorough. My hubby and I particularly liked the hands on techniques she showed us for pain management and wound up using them while I labored at home. Christina was available and responsive to any and all emails or for a quick chat when I found out I had Group B Strep which made me very nervous.

When I went into labor, she was on call and in touch with us. My active labor progressed very quickly so unfortunately we did not have time for her to come to our home but she took it upon herself to leave for the hospital anyway when things looked like they were moving along. She showed up when I needed her most (unlike my midwife!) and was by my side coaching me, reminding me, advocating for me and baby. She helped set my mind at ease and I felt confident I could have an unmedicated birth by rememebering all the things she had told me along the way and knowing she was right there.

When baby was born she took some amazing photos and helped us settle in to our room. She helped with initial breastfeeding, changing of the baby and anything else my husband and I needed. I cant say enough and would recommend her highly to anyone! Shes a special woman and I now consider her a friend!

Posted 2/23/2015

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Shani Benjamin

I'll start off by saying that Christina is amazing!!

The birth of our twin girls in late september was a bit of a roller coaster ride. Our initial plan was for a vaginal birth, but a few days before our scheduled induction we decided to go for a planned c-section because of the babies positions.

Christina came to our home and with alot of patiance and endless knowlege got us ready for the induction, answered all our questions in person, on the phone and by e-mail. After the decision was made, she gave me the support and I needed before the surgery. She was there helping me right after leaving the O.R, answering any questions I had, helping me get selttled in and making sure the nurses knew all that we have discussed before the birth. My family lives abroad and I felt that she trully cared for me and the girls just as a mother would.

When the time comes, for our next birth I have no doubt she will be there by my side.

Shani 

Posted 12/1/2014

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nicoleta iliescu

Christina was our doula at the birth of our son in August 2014. We picked her because when we first met Christina we really liked her personality and knowledge, and we felt we can get along very well. It turned out we made a great pick!

At the birth of our son, she was very helpful for both me and my husband. She was prompt in coming to our place in the middle of the night when my labor began and really helped diffuse the initial anxiety of a first-time mom and dad. Throughout my long labor at the hospital she was very supportive and used a lot of tips that really eased my pain. She was there when we first met our baby, helping us to connect with him (and taking our first pictures as a family).

We are grateful for her patience and her support!

Posted 11/2/2014

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Dora Villamar

Christina is a phenomenal doula. Her knowledge and personality are sure to keep you calm and reassured during the prenatal and birthing experience. 

At six months pregnant I changed to a midwife and wanted to have a doula as well. After seeing her profile and testimonials knew she was the right person.

Her prenatal visit with my husband and I was incredibly helpful, her experience as a mother and doula made me feel confident and assured that my labor goals were attainable. She taught us pain manangment techniques and most importantly breathing techniques which came in very handy during labor. 

I reached to Christina days before my labor started with questions of signs and symptoms I was having, she always responded promptly. During my labor she arrived to my home when I could no longer manage my pain and quickly unloaded her bag of doula goodie supplies and proceeded her robozo, hot compress, massages, yoga ball techniques, among other techniques. By the time we got to the hospital I was already 4-5cm dilated. 

I was able to use a tub and was a little disappointed that the jacuzzi feature didn't work and the nurse said engineering would have to fix it..despite this Christina went ahead and fixed it herself..a real go getter. She pushed me to keep going when I wanted to give up...she gave me hope. With every stage of labor she changed the pain management to fit the intensity appropriately.  I went from being hot to cold to hot again and she's accommodated me every time and never failed to kept me hydrated. She and my husband worked together with her techniques, and I felt protected and cared for every second. I ended up having to labor in the hospital for 4 hours and 16 minutes, many thanks to Christina. 

She is the most caring and nurturing person which makes her perfect as a doula. I would recommend her wholeheartedly. She is passionate, dedicated and knowledgable in what she does, a true gem!

Posted 9/4/2014

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Ahmed Tufail

We selected Christina based on the reviews we found on this website and i am glad we did so.

Within a day of meeting her, our OB decided to induce the labor . I called Christina and within an hour she was in the hospital (pretty far from where she lives). My wife had 24 hour labor and Christina was with us all the way.

We were very nervous as we felt that we might end up in C- Section, but Christina kept motivating my wife. She kept monitoring the contractions, help her relax and changing her posture. After all the hard work, my wife managed to delivery normally.

I personally believe that I couldn’t had made it without her and I am grateful for her support.

 

Posted 8/2/2014

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Kali Kalika

Christina is incredibly knowledgable about all things pregnancy, labor, and birth. Any question I brought to her (and there were countless questions), she provided tons of helpful information. Christina was incredibly quick to respond to my many emails even late at night. She took a great deal of care gathering evidence-based information to share with me which I found incredibly helpful and reassuring. She has a strong presence (IDEAL when someone is advocating for you), a sense of humor, a buoyant spirit, and a strong passion for women having the freedom and support to birth the way they choose. She works wonders with the rebozo and the comfort measures she taught and practiced with my partner and I were so essential. I am grateful for all Christina did for us!

Posted 7/3/2014

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Natalie Parsehian-Mendoza

  At the hospital when contractions were at their peak was when I knew we needed her as part of our birthing team. When things got rough, we got tired, or there was any question of our birth plan Christina was there to assist and resolve all of it.  At the very end when I had doubted myself and was so tired I didn't think I would last another second Christina was the reassuring voice that helped guide me through to the birth of our daughter.  When our sweet girl was born Christina stayed to make sure all of our wishes were carried out according to our birth plan and if there was ever a question Christina brought it to our attention.  She helped Dad, took pictures of our first moments together as a family which were priceless and helped me to clean up and get what I needed to keep myself comfortable.  As a certified lactation consultant she assisted me in those first moments of breastfeeding.  She didn't leave the hospital until we were all settled in and there wasn't a question left to answer. 
Christina also visited our home for a postpartum visit and helped with breastfeeding and provided moral support for a very tired but grateful new Mom and Dad.
She will be a part of our next birth and words on paper can't begin to describe what an important role she played as a part of our birth team and welcoming of our family. 
My husband and I are extremely grateful to have had her as part of our team that day and give her the highest recommendation.  We don't know what we would have done without her. 


Posted 4/10/2014

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Natalie Parsehian-Mendoza

From the start I knew I wanted to have an unmedicated and intervention free birth.  I had done all my research and had made up my mind.  My husband and I were having our first child and we were both nervous, elated and anxious at the same time.  I had read and learned that having a doula minimized intervention and made the birth experience more comfortable all the while  offering more support for Mom and Dad.  Our decision to have a doula with us at our birth was one of the best decisions we have ever made.  Choosing Christina was "The Best" decision that we made as a family.  Having Christina from the very beginning was like having an open encyclopedia to every question about the birthing experience we could think of.  If she didn't know the answer she found it using any means necessary and willingly.  She was an intricate part of our support system.  She provided us with evidence based materials and always respected our wishes and decisions.  When labor started Christina used all the techniques we discussed and practiced during my pregnancy via home visits, phone and late night emails.  She was ALWAYS available to answer questions or return phone calls and emails.  She comforted my husband and me mentally and physically using rebozo and techniques she showed us during our prenatal visits.   With every growing contraction she counted the minutes and used pain relief techniques with her hands and rebozo which were an indispensable part of my pain relief during labor.  I can not express how important this pain relief was when contractions got stronger and more painful. She also taught my husband these techniques during prenatal visits and they both used these techniques on me together during labor. She never left our side for a moment. 

Posted 4/10/2014

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angela guglielmo

Christina is the epitome of a Doula. From the beginning to the very end, she always made herself available to me from answering questions and providing research materials and information to even being there for me when I had an episode of pre-term labor. I never felt that I was a client, but a friend/family member. It was that personal connection that put me at ease from the very beginning.

Christina and I share many similar interests when it comes to parenting especially where childbirth is concerned. We both have delivered babies at the same hospital that promotes water births. We both believe in delivering babies in the most natural setting and without medical intervention. Who better help you in labor than a woman that has experienced it for herself.

I went into labor very early in the morning, following New Years Day! Christina was ready and at the hospital in no time, considering the weather was terrible, snow and blizzard like conditions! She arrived minutes before I did, with birthing ball in hand!

Christina took charge immediately. This was my third birth but first with back labor. Christina knew exactly what to do to ease my pain and contraction after contraction she never left my side. She was extremely knowlegable with different laboring positions and various methods of pain control. I have successfully delivered two babies without any pain medication but this time around with back labor...I would NEVER have been successful without Christina's assistance.

I can not stress how great she was! Besides having the knowledge and experience to be a great support person during labor, her attention to detail was impecable. Every single wish that I detailed in my birth plan Christina made sure was fulfilled, going above and beyond of what was expected of her. 

Christina made the birth of my third child a memorable experience. I consider Christina part of my family! If you need a doula, she is the ONE!!!!

Posted 1/13/2014

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SANCIOUS MOORE

Christina was truly amazing! I had a very difficult labor and she made me feel extremely comfortable every step of the way. She demontrated the true meaning of what it is to be a Doula! If anyone is looking for a caring, responsible, nuturing, and well-equipped Doula,I recommend Christina Carino-Forrest. She will make your birthing experience a very comfortable and relaxing one. 

Posted 9/7/2013

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Tom Drapeau

I'm an involved father of a great 6yo boy, who was born via "coerced" C-section in a large assembly-line style hospital. Until my wife had joined and spent time in ICAN, I had never heard the word "midwife" or "doula" before in my life. As we did not have either the first time around, I had some concerns about what my role and involvement would be. Would the doula be in charge? Would I have any say?

I met Christina while my wife was in her second trimester. She's a lovely person, very helpful and knowledgeable about birth. She encouraged me to read a book on being a birth partner. She included me in conversations and treated me with respect.

You'd think that is the norm. Unfortunately, in today's birth world, Dads don't have a specific say or role in birth. However, with Christina, I quickly realized that I could not only play a big role, but that my role would not conflict with hers.

We were dead set on having a VBAC with our second child. When we got the call from our practice on our due date, telling us the sonogram review necessitated a rush to the hospital for another C-section, my wife was inconsolable. Christina stayed on the phone with her throughout the drive, arrived soon after we did and was an extremely calming force in the midst of what had become decidedly not "our plan".

She stayed and spoke with the doctors. I went to the OR, stayed through the procedure and got to touch my new baby daughter. I went back to the recovery room ahead of my wife, and Christina stayed with me while i went skin-to-skin with my baby. She took pictures, videos and preserved this precious time and I was able to share them back with my wife when she arrived in the recovery room.

She stayed with us until we couldn't think of anything we needed from her (trust me, that took a while!) She also drove to our house and brought our 6 year old to the hospital to meet his sister.

She did what we needed. And I'm grateful for her.

Posted 8/16/2013

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Sharon Shay Drapeau

During the pregnancy, her tips for me and my husband were really helpfuspearhead answered my crazy questions and supported my want for a VBAC. But...

Having a CBAC was never the plan. But having Christina as a part of my team was especially helpful. She made dealing with the situation bearable.  She was helpful to my husband when dealing with situations that arose that were not a part of our birth plan. She help me find my voice when I really needed it. 

And I can't forget that she actually saved my baby's life!

My husband was asked to go down to admitting to sign some paperwork. While he was gone the nurses decided to leave the room at that moment as well. My daughter had pooped all over me and Christina took her to clean her off. When she did she started to choke and stopped breathing due to the excessive mucus in her lungs. Christina did what she could to clear my baby's airway but it wasn't enough so she ran with my naked baby out into the hall. I can't imagine what could've happened had I been alone when she started to choke. 

In summation, she was a blessing. 

Posted 8/11/2013

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