Canadian Doulas Scammed
Imagine being so desperate for connection, validation, and compassion that you fake not one but countless pregnancies and losses so that you can connect with someone in such a deep and personally intimate way.
Someone to listen to you, validate you, and provide you with unwavering support. Someone willing to make you their sole focus with your physical and mental wellbeing a priority. That someone is a doula…
Approximately 50 doulas in Ontario, Canada, have been scammed over the past three years by a 24-year-old individual who faked multiple pregnancies and stillbirths to garner the compassionate support of local doulas.
There is a lot of current discourse surrounding this case, and while many of these conversations question the “pregnant woman’s” mental health, there is a deeper conversation to be had.
As doulas, we provide support. Compassion and understanding are cornerstones of that support. Our desire to care for others through one of life’s most significant transitions is what calls us to our work.
But it is also this extremely high level of one-on-one support that attracts our clients to us. Let’s face it, the average person doesn’t have anyone in their life that provides them with absolutely unbiased, nonjudgmental personalized support at this extensive level. That’s some pretty powerful stuff.
We can’t/won’t discount the impact this scam has had on the doulas who have been dishonestly engaged in a relationship that they would never knowingly consent to. The impact of this will be something these doulas carry with them for the rest of their careers.
As doulas, it is essential for us to acknowledge that our compassion can easily lead to our boundaries being crossed.
We have seen countless doulas overlook payments or even entire fees due to their compassion for others. Compassion can influence us to ignore potential red flags. Overlook our gut instincts. It can influence us to let our boundaries fall by the wayside and even cloud our judgment.
The desire to support a single client who doesn’t have transportation to and from the hospital can lead us to drive them in our own car. Our heartbreak at the circumstances surrounding a client’s pregnancy and what they might face at birth can lead us to make personal sacrifices that are unfair to us, and subsequently, our partners and children.
We want to encourage all doulas to carefully consider every inquiry they receive from a potential client. Have an operational system in place that requires the potential client to sign a doula contract and pay for the service before beginning support. A person’s unwillingness to follow your business’ protocol for onboarding them as a client should indicate to you that this person is not serious about their need/desire for your professional support and may have a hidden agenda.
The bottom line is that we as doulas are incredibly valuable and the support we provide is so important and significant that this individual would go to any length to experience it.
To the doulas who were personally impacted by this, we are so sorry that this happened to you. Your kindness and generosity were taken advantage of and you didn’t deserve this. If you are feeling alone, and find you have the need for some additional support, ProDoula invites you to reach out to us if you feel we can be of some benefit to you. (914) 400-3494