Birth Fee: $1400 to $1600
Fee Details: The way my sliding scale works is that I will feel compensated for my time and expertise if you pay the minimum rate, but if you feel that I have gone above and beyond and would like to pay a little bit more then you have the room to do so. I am happy to discuss fee reductions as needed. Just contact me and let me know what your budget is, and if I can’t afford to take you on for a fee that fits your family budget I will make every effort to connect you with doulas in the area who can. I will be certified as a childbirth educator with BACE-NMC by the end of February 2018 and will post listings for small group classes soon!
Birth Doula Experience: 12 years and 145 births attended
Clients per Month: 1 to 4Attends hospital births? All Hospitals
I re-certified with DONA in January 2017. My certification will be good through 12/31/2019. I have a 8 years experience working in prenatal care as a midwife/ OB/GYN assistant before I resigned to focus on my doula work and childbirth education. My career as a medical assistant gave me an opportunity to learn about prenatal care in detail. I also worked as a Family Planning counselor for 3 years between 2010-2013. Since 2005 I have been working as an on-call doula for low income Latino families in Boston, a grant program that pays the doula a small fee so that women who are non-english speaking and often low-income and education, have support at no cost to them. We provide Doula services continuously through labor and birth, interpret, and help navigate them and their families through the hospital system. I was certified as a birth Doula through DONA international in 2012 and have enjoyed expanding into my own doula practice since then. I taught HypnoBirthing-The Mongan Method of childbirth education for over 3 years and enjoyed seeing how excited pregnant people become in anticipation of a joyful birth through the series, but I recently became uncomfortable with some flaws I perceive in that program, and so have written my own curriculum after completing an extensive childbirth educator program with BACE-NMC. I focus on mindfulness with evidence-based practices and how to take charge of your experience. I will be certified by spring 2018 so please contact me to set up private classes, or visit my website to look for soon-to-come class offerings. I have personal experience with cloth diapering, baby-led latching, baby-led weaning, and baby wearing. I am also trained to give breast feeding support, I am working towards certification as a Certified lactation Educator, and have breast fed two babies of my own.
Languages spoken: Fluent in English and Spanish, converational in Portuguese
Service Area MapArea of practice: Billerica, MA
We have nothing but amazing things to say about our experience with Teresa. We chose to hire a doula because we wanted to be as stress-free as possible during this process. Since we were both first time parents we wanted to have an expert available to help us and she was that expert. Her two visits before the birth were helpful in managing the end of pregnancy and knowing what to expect during the birth.
It was invaluable to have Teresa only a phone call or text away. My last three weeks of pregnancy were met with some unexpected medical complications (which we later found out to be nothing). At that time they wanted to induce me immediately, and with Teresa‘s help we were able to move cautiously and intelligently through this time. She helped us advocate for what we wanted and felt was right, and we were able to get the doctors to work with us and take a different path of frequent monitoring to avoid induction. Thankfully, this allowed me to go into labor naturally at 40 weeks!
Teresa helped me have the birth I wanted. I knew I wanted to labor naturally as long as I could, but I also knew I wasn't against pain medication. From the beginning Teresa was completely supportive and non-judgmental about my choices. I labored naturally for 15 hours, and she made the pain manageable and worked with me to find comfortable positions. She also helped me stay relaxed during my epidural, and when I went to push at hour 28 she helped me get into different birthing positions until I found one that worked on my knees. I truly could not have done it without her!
Teresa is extremely kind, knowledgeable, caring, responsive and is such a pillar of strength during the ups and downs of pregnancy and postpartum. My husband thinks our decision to hire Teresa is the best idea I have ever had and was beyond grateful that he had her support during this time so he could focus on the baby and me. We will definitely be hiring her when we get pregnant again.
My husband and I really enjoyed working with Teresa. She had a very open-minded and informed approach to childbirth. We immediately felt comfortable with her at our first meeting. As our birth date approach, I felt at ease knowing she was on our birth team and that we'd have her support in making any decisions during labor. When the time came she was invaliable in coaching me through it. We loved having Teresa on our team!
I met Teresa when I arrived to the hospital to give birth already 5 cm dislated. My original doula had an emergency and couldn't make it to my daughter's birth. Teresa made me feel at ease from the moment she called while we were on our way to the hospital. I was already in active labor and a lot of pain. She got right to the point in a respectful compassionate way that just made me feel like she knew what she was doing, and even though she didn't know me at all she was going to take care of me.
During the birth she helped in so many ways. She helped me move, she kept me hydrated, she encouraged me, she told my husband how he could be helpful, she worked with the nurse and midwife, she narrated what was going on when I was kind of out of it, she knew my birth plan, she spoke in my husband's native language, she took notes and photos so we could remember this amazing experienc, she was just my absolute reassurance. All the birth team at Mt. Auburn was fantastic and thankfully the midwife and nurse were very open to the role of a doula. I was able to have an unmedicated birth in a tub, just like I had planned. It was so hard, but Teresa made me feel like I could do it and it was awesome!
I will forever be grateful for her stepping in at the last moment to be my advocate. I would recommend her a thousand times. Thank you, Teresa!
Teresa was a wonderful part of the birth of our daughter, Lucia. Her prenatal visits helped us prepare for labor and delivery, articulate our preferences, and build a relationship with her. We were so glad we hired a doula, because Teresa was the only person we knew beforehand who participated in the delivery of our daughter. She was a terrific help navigating the care at the end of my pregnancy, cared for me when I was laboring at home, helped us know when to go in to the hospital, and made sure we got the best care we could at the hospital. Our delivery went very smoothly and I was able to forgo epidural anesthesia thanks to her support. We also submitted the fee for her services through our FSA health savings account with a letter of medical necessity provided by our midwife.
My husband and I first met Teresa while taking her Hypnobirthing class. Immediately, my husband and I looked at each other and said she has to be our doula! After knowing her for only a few minutes, we instantly saw her genuine warmth and compassion. We were drawn to her amazing humor and also her ability to be so down to earth and open in sharing her own experiences with pregnancy, birth, and parenting. Teresa is so passionate about supporting families with pregnancy, labor, and birth and she has this incredible way of being gentle and calming while also bringing a tremendous strength and innate wisdom at the same time. As first time parents, my husband and I were understandably anxious and had many questions regarding our pregnancy and plans for our delivery and Teresa made herself always available either via text, phone, or in person to answer anything we needed and never once did we feel judged or persuaded in any certain direction like we had with other care providers. When our birth plan didn’t go as planned due to medical complication, Teresa was there for us every step of the way, answering all of the questions we had and literally giving us her hand to hold and supporting us with the decisions that needed to be made. She was able to provide us comfort and reassurance during many difficult and uncertain moments and help guide us through. Hiring Teresa was the best decision we made for our birth and we truly can’t say enough how grateful we are to her. We view Teresa now as part of our family and we know the connection we made during our pregnancy and birth will be one we share with her always. If you’re on the fence in any way about hiring a doula don’t be, and definitely definitely hire Teresa!
Without Teresa I would not have had the confidence to plan for and pursue the choices that felt right to me for my son's birth. I had a serious psychological block about the idea of being immobile during labor and so knew I wanted to aim for an unmedicated birth. It was also important to me to have a lot of control over even very standard monitoring and procedures during labor, and to be able to focus my energy internally without a lot of commentary or interference. Teresa was *amazing* for all of this, and everything went just as I'd hoped. She came to our house at 5am after texting with my husband about updates as I'd been having regular contractions that got closer and closer together over the course of the night. She showed up full of positive and calm energy and encouraged me to rest and relax and move through the contractions as they occurred. We went to the hospital at 6:30am and I was already 7cm. I labored in the hospital throughout the morning and Teresa kept the whole scene at bay, communicating with me, my husband, and the nurses in a way that allowed me to be completely focused on my body and its processes. I was not always the picture of serenity to say the least but she was unflappable and totally encouraging the whole time. My son was born at 1:30pm after just 20 minutes of pushing - I was 100% thrilled with how labor had gone and cannot imagine doing it without Teresa's help. We also really appreciated the planning and educational meetings we had with her in advance. It made us more comfortable with her and helped us think through a plan. She also generously agreed to attend a meeting with my NP at my doctor's office so we could put some formal instructions in my chart. We just had our postpartum visit with her and everything is going well. We will always have a special place for her in our hearts and much gratitude for the whole experience.
Emily, Andy, and Jonah
First let me say that my wife and I are so glad we had Teresa with us before, during, and after the arrival of our son. Teresa is very good at what she does and her presence at the birth of our son was key to the positive experience both my wife and I had.
We also took a semi-private hypnobirthing class with Teresa before our son was born and it was a great experience. Teresa knows a lot about birth, delivery, and hypnobirthing techniques and she teaches and guides with ease, humor, compassion, listening, and openness. We highly recommend the course!
My wife and I both felt immediately comfortable with Teresa when we first met to see if we would be a good match. She listened attentively and asked good questions of us, getting us thinking about what we hoped our birth experience would be.
Although we had a positive experience overall, my labor and delivery process was a very long one, and had its difficult moments for sure. Teresa was there, either in person or by phone, the entire time (over two days) and made herself available even when we didn't need her right away. We both felt cared for and attended to by her. She helped to create a calm and natural environment, even in a highly medicalized hospital setting, and even the hospital staff noted how peaceful the room felt. Her calm presence helped us so much. She also asked good questions of the hospital staff and was not afraid to speak up, although she also took a back seat when necessary. She did a great job not only caring for me but also caring for my wife, making sure she was staying hydrated and nourished. Really, having her there with us was exactly what we hoped it would be and we comfortable and happily recommend Teresa to any woman and/or couple who are looking for support during their labor.
I'm so glad we had a doula for our second birth and was happy with Teresa. With my first birth, I didn't have the gentle unmedicated experience I wanted; I felt bullied by the hospital staff, unsupported, frustrated, and unhappy. I was glad to have my son, but the experience left scars. My second birth was much better and vastly different. I was able to labor at home on my own and with my husband's support, for a long time. We actually stayed too long, and there wasn't time for Teresa to help me labor. By the time we finally called her, we had to leave. We, with Teresa, raced to the hospital in late labor in the car! I was 10cm when we got to the hospital; our daughter was born less than 30min later! My labor was unmedicated and it was a redemptive experience that healed old scars.
Teresa is a calm presence. There were huge benefits to having her part of our prenatal and birth experience. She's down to earth. Upon meeting her, we felt that she was easy to talk to and nonjudgmental. She's sweet and would bring us treats from her garden. Having a sounding board for our past experiences and fears and hopes for labor was invaluable and it contributed to our success. My daughter was breech and I went through many efforts to turn her, including a very painful (successful) ECV. Teresa was helpful in suggesting techniques for turning the baby: inversion, rebozo sifting, and acupuncture. She was very supportive during a stressful time, checking in regularly to see how I was doing. Her presence was comforting. She was supportive and calming when the midwife had some difficulty stopping my bleeding. She was friendly and deferential to the staff, but knew her way around the hospital. I'm grateful she was part of our birth. We'd absolutely recommend her. Teresa gave us a lot of confidence that helped make a better experience.
Having Teresa as our doula was easily one of the best decisions we made around the birth of our daughter. I felt a connection as soon as we met her, and our first conversation assured me that she had both the scientific medical knowledge and the warm, intuitive people skills I was hoping to find in a doula. Each time we met with her, I felt calmer and more confident about my upcoming labor and delivery. She took the time to get to know me and quickly rooted out my insecurities about my body’s capability to give birth without interventions. More than anything else, those conversations with her helped me overcome my fears.
When my labor proceeded much more quickly than we anticipated, it was the breathing and relaxation exercises she taught me that got me and my husband through it. And when Teresa arrived at my house to help us, she took one look at me and told us we had to get to the hospital right away. If it hadn’t been for her knowledge and expertise, our baby probably would have been born in my bedroom! She calmly and quickly helped us get to the hospital, where my daughter was born 19 minutes after we arrived in the delivery room. So even though I didn’t get to have her nearby for much of my labor, she was an absolutely invaluable part of my birth experience. I will always be infinitely grateful for her kindness, her know-how, and her generous spirit!
With Teresa by our side, we made possible what seemed, at times, impossible: to welcome our son in a beautiful, unmedicated vaginal birth! When at 36 weeks we found out that our son had turned head up, Teresa showed us exercises to help him turn, encouraged prep work (chiropractic, acupuncture) and researched the various delivery options for us. She was always there to answer questions, to calm our nerves and support us in any possible way. A pivotal point for us was when Teresa offered to attend the version attempt. We were nervous as we were told, that, if the version failed, we would have to schedule a C-section, which we felt very uncomfortable with. Teresa was terrific: not only did she put us at ease during the attempts by guiding my breathing and encouraging me, she also advocated our interest in a vaginal breech birth after the version attempts failed. While we started seeing an OBGYN who is experienced and extremely skilled in vaginal breech deliveries, Teresa did an enormous amount of research for us, helping us to feel confident with our decisions (and also be comfortable with Plan B, a family-centered C-section). A few weeks before my due date we were able to meet Susanna, who is a certified midwife and works as a back-up doula for Teresa. We felt extremely comfortable with Teresa and Susanna, who both are extremely skilled and knowledgeable birth workers. A few days later (10 days before my actual due date), I went into labor, which progressed so rapidly and smoothly that we almost didn’t notice that this was the REAL thing and our son well on his way. We called an ambulance, Teresa met us at the hospital and, before long, I delivered our beautiful, absolutely healthy baby boy – feet first. In hindsight, the prep work, the research, and learning to listen to our gut feeling to make the right choices - all of which Teresa encouraged - gave us the best and most empowering birth experience. Thank you, Teresa, we are forever grateful!
My baby girl is now 6 weeks old, and as I look back on my birth experience, I remain ever grateful to have had Teresa Vittorioso-Fortin as a member of my support team. In my initial search, I sought a doula as I would a medical professional. After beginning my work with Teresa, I came to realize that working with a doula is so much more than a professional-client relationship, as she is involved in a highly intimate once-in-a-lifetime experience in a more personal way. Teresa exhibited the perfect balance of professionalism, friend-like supportiveness, and humor. Humor is important when preparing for childbirth. From the beginning of our working relationship, she listened closely to my preferences, and watched my husband and me attentively to get to know us as a couple.
I now appreciate that childbirth is much more than simply pushing a baby out. My labor experience began with a day and a half of laboring at home. Teresa's support through this phase was critical. As a first time mother it would have been easy for my excitement to get the better of me. From the beginning, Teresa helped us to establish the tone and energy of our birth experience. It was important to us that my husband play a primary support role during the birth, so a major part of Teresa's work with us was to provide him with the tools necessary to be the best partner he could be. Without Teresa's sage advice throughout, I am certain the outcomes of our birth would not have been as overwhelmingly positive as they were. Without hesitation, I would do it all over again in exactly the same way, especially hiring Teresa. I will remain ever grateful that Teresa came into our lives.
Teresa Vittorioso-Fortin is nothing short of amazing. I was astounded by her dedication, dependability and passion for her work as a doula and birth advocate. She is an incredibly warm and thoughtful person and I was impressed by her ability to read situations and know when her support was needed and when to step back and let others take the reigns. The birthing environment can be intense and Teresa manages all of the nuances with grace and ease. She always puts the mama and partner first and is a strong birth guide and natural leader. Although my experience did not lead to natural childbirth, Teresa provided such a tremendous amount of support, always advocated for me in time of need and gently reminded us of the various methods and birthing options at our disposal.
Teresa truly helped to make this experience a great one and I will always be so thankful for her expertise and support!
Our family was incredibly fortunate to have Teresa with us during the birth of our son this past November (2013). He was my second child, and after a long and challenging induction with my first I was facing another induction three weeks early and was nervous. I wanted to do hypnobirthing again and to find a doula who was familiar with the techniques and who could help bring me to a place of calm. Lucky for us, Teresa is a trained hypnobirthing instructor! Heading into the induction, my midwife thought it would be a quick birth because I was already dilated and almost entirely effaced. Almost 35 hours later, Teresa was still by my side, despite being six months pregnant herself! She led me through hours of affirmations and visualizations and literally poured water on my belly for five hours straight! She had the most peaceful, reassuring presence. My husband and I could not have felt more supported and in better hands than with Teresa, and are so thankful we were able to share the birth of our son with her.
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