Home > Success Stories > I Changed Career from a Nurse to a Doula

I Changed Career from a Nurse to a Doula

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 8 Jul 2013 | comments*Discuss
 
Doula Work Qualifications Nurse

For Sue Prentice, 56, from Leeds, her out-of-the-blue redundancy gave her the opportunity to fulfil a career change dream. Although she was shocked at the Redundancy, having worked as a senior nurse at a private hospital for over 25 years, she was also rather excited about the potential to change direction.

Sue explained, “I had always loved my job. Even though it was terribly demanding and not particularly well paid, I felt a real sense of satisfaction as I knew I was good at my job and had made a difference to the mainly elderly people I had cared for over the years. The redundancy was not expected at all, but the hospital became a trust and the terms of employment were changed for many of the staff and we were offered redundancy as an alternative.”

Not the Easy Option

With many of Sue’s colleagues choosing to remain in their positions at the newly-formed trust, her decision to accept the redundancy raised some eyebrows. She continued, “A few people actually said that I was crazy to leave because, at my age, I was unlikely to find another job. Of course, in many ways they were right, but I was not planning to find another job as I already knew what I wanted to do.”

Sue had long wanted to Retrain As A Midwife but, with her age and lack of qualifications holding her back, as well as a responsibility to bring in money to pay the bills, her dream had stayed on the back burner. The redundancy package on offer, while not especially generous, gave her the financial freedom to see if her dreams could become a reality.

Researching a Dream

Sue explained, “As I researched the possibility of retraining to become a midwife, I realised that there was actually a far more suitable role available; one which I’d never even heard of. The more I read about the role of a doula, the more I knew this was perfect for me.”

A doula is essentially an ‘assistant midwife’ that works closely with the pregnant woman in the last stages of pregnancy and throughout the actual birth. In many ways, a doula is a type of ‘surrogate mother’ to the pregnant woman, in a similar way to how tribal births are performed. The doula is a medically-aware, caring professional who is able to support and comfort the pregnant lady, often working alongside a midwife for home births.

Sue continued, “I knew it was the perfect job for me because a trained doula is self-employed but can be connected to professional organisations. As soon as I had accepted the redundancy offer, I signed up to a Doula UK accredited training course which was due to start in two months time. This gave me time to speak to a number of doulas and people connected to the various agencies that provide doulas, and I gained so much information at every stage that I was sure I’d made the right decision.”

The Right Move

Sue concluded, “At my age, I never thought I’d have the opportunity to follow my dream of becoming a midwife, but the redundancy actually gave me a new lease of life. I’m now a fully qualified doula and have assisted with three home births already. There’s no job security as I’m freelance, but I’m pleased to say I’ve had excellent referrals from each birth and I’m gradually building up my network.”

More Success Stories

Read many more inspiring tales of positive career changes in our Success Stories Category of this site.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Kat gale
    Re: Becoming a Paramedic
    I need pinging in the right direction I want a new career change at 48 but don’t no where to start please help
    10 June 2020
  • Pat
    Re: Becoming a Painter and Decorator
    I am looking for a career change. I've done a fare bit of decorating work and want to work for myself any advice would be…
    4 June 2020
  • nita
    Re: Becoming a Mechanic
    I'm 40 I failed myatric I'm working in motor industry I want to do motor mechanics but I'm not sho if there is any chance for me
    1 June 2020
  • Barkerelli
    Re: Becoming a Social Worker
    Hello. I have worked in Adult Social Carr all my adult life after studying Social Policy at university. For the last 12 years I have…
    31 May 2020
  • Ron
    Re: Where to Get Help With Funding a Career Change
    Hi I am looking to move away from IT (engineering programming) and looking to move into Procurement / FMCG…
    22 May 2020
  • Ola
    Re: Jobs You Didn't Know Existed
    I have 19 years experiience working in a secondary school as a teacher now looking to go into social work . Not really sure how I…
    20 April 2020
  • rachet
    Re: Working with Animals
    I am working in the NHS and I have been thinking about a change and I really think I would love to work with animals. I am a country girl but…
    8 April 2020
  • Chrissie
    Re: Working with Animals
    Hi , Im 38 and so bored in my current office job. Ive always wanted to work with animals but life got in the way and ive ended up stuck…
    17 February 2020
  • Pogelswood
    Re: Becoming a Teacher or Teaching Assistant
    I have a degree, BAhons in early years teaching and am looking at becoming a TA. Do I need to undergo any further…
    14 January 2020
  • alihon
    Re: Becoming a Mechanic
    I work in an FE college and I would like to highlight the fact that the advice given here is not correct. There are very few colleges which…
    7 January 2020