Mila Kunis is taking future mommyhood very seriously. Besides practicing prenatal yoga to make sure she and baby are as healthy as possible, the actress revealed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show that she plans on having a natural birth. "I did this to myself, I might as well do it right," she said.
That is quite the controversial statement—one that could get many a mama and mama-to-be in an uproar. Obviously, there's more than one way to give birth, and natural birth isn't for everyone. But apparently daddy-to-be Ashton—who is learning Russian, Mila's native language, so they can raise their child to be bilingual—is being super-supportive of the decision, even watching birthing documentaries with her. (Um, can you say best dad-to-be ever?!).
"We looked into the midwife aspect of [birth], spoke to my OB/GYN and realized the hospital I'm going to be laboring in does have a midwife, you know, doula type of thing," she said. "So I'm gonna do it as all-natural as I possibly can unless there's an emergency or something [goes] wrong."
Good for her! But note to Mila: there actually is a difference between a midwife and a doula. Midwives (who can range in credentials from non-accredited to certified midwives and certified nurse-midwives) take the place of an ob-gyn, and they deliver the child.
Labor doulas are more like birth coaches. Unlike nurses or doctors, a doula is in the room at all times during the birth. Her job is to educate the mom about the birth process and help her relax during what can be a stressful time—through using nonmedical techniques to lessen labor pains, like massage, a birthing ball or getting into various positions rather than just being flat on your back. She is also an advocate for the parents when all of this new, crazy information about childbirth is swirling around them, explaining step-by-step what's going on throughout the birthing process. The biggest difference, though, is that a midwife is there to focus on the baby, and a doula is there to focus on the mom.
Whatever Mila's final birth plan entails, I hope her labor goes smoothly! It's a lot of work, but the end prize—a beautiful baby!—is well worth the effort.
TELL US: Are you planning on hiring a doula?
Image of Mila Kunis courtesy of Featureflash/Shutterstock.