Servicemembers are serving overseas each and every day and on the home front their families keep the home fires burning. Life for military families goes on, while the Servicemembers and Active duty military are serving their country. Sometimes a Servicemember will leave his wife and while deployed they are blessed to find that the wife at home is pregnant. This is welcome news but sometimes a challenge for military families, especially for young first time parents. There is now a program to offer support and direct aid for the military wife at home who is pregnant.
This is a new service, that offers specific pregnancy support and assistance to partners, spouses and military Servicemember wives who are at home when their Servicemember husband or significant other are deployed. Operation Special Delivery is a DoD supported program that appoints an assistant, or trained volunteer to help the pregnant spouse or partner that faces pregnancy at home without their husband or partner because of military duty.
The volunteer is called a Doula, and is a person who has been specially trained to deal with issues and emotional situations dealing with pregnant women. They are a font of information and referral, as well as offering in person practical aid and assistance as the pregnancy comes to term. The effort and assistance of the doula is to help relieve some of the stress and assist in the process of support for the military spouse or partner who would otherwise have to face pregnancy alone. A Doula is not a doctor or a nurse, they are not as such a medical professional, but more of a trained volunteer who is able to give aid and support for the period up to and including the actual childbirth.
The specific program began because of the efforts of one woman, a South New Jersey lady named Patricia Newton. She responded after September 11th in the manner that she could, she is a trained pregnancy doula who began the program to give support to military wives, spouses and girlfriends of Servicemembers who had to face pregnancy alone while their Servicemember is on deployment. Utilizing the ability of the Internet to communicate, she recruited other Doulas in other areas, and set up the program. The program is aimed specifically toward those women who lost partners or husbands during September 11th, and also those whose husbands are serving or have been called to active duty since September 11th.