Ashley Fryer, Birth First Doulas

Ashley Fryer, Portland Doula

I came to doula work understanding the long-term impact that pregnancy and birth have on individuals and communities. My intention is to provide the space and support for families to grow in the unique way that is right for them. Working together we will explore physical and emotional comfort measures, natural pain coping techniques, and ways to help you feel empowered through birth. I recognize the unique challenges of dealing with fertility and alternative conception methods as well as building a family outside the cultural norms. I provide a trauma-informed approach and work collaboratively with each member of your birth team. I am also prepared to support families through unexpected loss and complications. I recognize the privilege I hold as a white, cishet woman within the birth world and I am committed to decolonizing and abolishing white supremacy, starting with myself.
 
When I became pregnant after several years of trying, I worked hard to have the pregnancy and birth of my dreams. Despite quick and relatively easy labor, I felt disappointed with myself and my experience. I was so focused on how I thought everything should go that I didn’t allow myself to be present – I wish I’d had someone besides me and my husband in the room who could see the big picture. My son is now 6 years old – he is brilliant, funny, and oh so challenging. I often describe working with me to be like working with your big sister’s cool friend – there’s not much you could say that would shock me, I know all the best secrets, and I don’t bring any of the baggage your actual sister might. My sense of humor is dry and sometimes inappropriate but my approach is spiritually grounded, empathic, and supported by a community of wise elders.

Partnership Model

Giselle Edwards and I work in a doula partnership because it allows us to show up authentically for our clients and also balance being moms to young children – oh, and we also really like each other! Working with us means bringing on two doulas who are committed to supporting you in your vision for your birth. Our own lived experience has taught us that there are so many ways to bring your baby into the world and you deserve passion, wisdom, and support through all of it. We bring excitement, humor, and a deep understanding of parenthood’s unique joys and challenges – which begin with birth, but certainly don’t end there. Hiring us means two brains and hearts joining your birth team. We’ll both get to know you and your family at prenatal and postpartum visits. While you may only see one of us in the delivery room initially, you’ll have a fresh and rested doula (who you already know) ready to jump in, should your labor journey ask it. We know that a new baby means big changes to your life and identity, both as an individual and as a family, and we’d love to explore those changes with you.

Ashley Fryer & Giselle Edwards, Birth Doula Team

Training

N
DONA Birth Doula Training with Mother Tree Birth
N

DONA Postpartum Doula Training with Mother Tree Birth

N

Intensive 6-Month Internship with Mother Tree Birth

N
Adopting Trauma-Informed Care for Birth Professionals with Mother Tree Birth
N

Culturally Competent Care with CineMed

N

Adult, Child and Baby First Aid/CPR/AED with The Red Cross

N

Basics of Lactation Management for Doulas with Lactation Education Resources

N

Racism in Perinatal and Pediatric Health with Nurturely

N
All Pregnant People: Trans Birth for Birthworkers with Collaborate Consulting/Trystan Reese 
N
ICEA-trained Childbirth Educator
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BA in Anthropology

Areas Of Specialty

N

Unmedicated Birth

N

Surrogacy

N

Adoption

N

Single Parent Support

N

IVF Pregnancy

N

High Risk Pregnancy/Birth

N

Medical Induction

N

LGBTQIA+ Families

N

Polyamorous Families

N

Body Positive/People Of Size

N

Postpartum Doula Care

N

Trauma Informed Care

N

Survivors Of Sexual Abuse

N

Recovery From Addiction

N

Pregnancy Loss/Infant Loss

N

Abortion Support

N

Childbirth Education

N

Mother Blessing Celebrations

N

Baby Sign Language

N

Baby-Led Weaning

To contact Ashley or schedule a
free interview, please

Ashley’s Testimonials

“It gives me chills to think about Ashley’s impactful work and how she made our birth experience align with our hopes and values. As first-time parents, the prenatal meetings with Ashley helped us imagine what is possible and envision a birth experience that aligned with us. Her intuitive nature, incredible knowledge, and nurturing presence allowed us to put aside any fears and really think about how we wanted to welcome our baby into the world. For our actual birth, her presence was nothing short of remarkable. She gave pivotal cues of touch that felt so nurturing, cues of physical position changes at crucial times (from back to knees to start pushing), and cues of remarkably encouraging language that led the hospital team to use similar words. The encouraging language ultimately felt like our baby was entering life by way of a choir of women having our backs and encouraging me with so much love as I pushed baby into the world. For our first time going through the laboring experience, Ashley helped give us the confidence we needed to make this one of the most amazing experiences of our lives and to really help us as parents to capture the love between us as we welcomed our baby.”

kirsten & Darren, portland

“I cannot recommend Ashley and Giselle highly enough! My husband and I were looking for a friendly familiar presence to guide us through a hospital birth where we weren’t sure who our nurses and midwife would be. We chose to work with Ashley and Giselle because they were both so warm, positive and empathetic, and also because they work as a team and we knew we would for sure have one of them at the hospital with us for labor and delivery. We were excited to work with them from the start, but they exceeded our expectations in every way. In our prenatal visits, they helped us work through our birth plan, fears, coping strategies and postpartum planning. With each prenatal visit I felt more calm, confident and prepared for the journey ahead. Giselle guided me through a wonderful unmedicated birth experience at Providence St. Vincent that went right along with my birth plan. She also helped my husband to stay calm and present, and created bonding moments for us during the labor and delivery. I had a fantastic birth, and am now enjoying a speedy recovery. I could not have done it without Giselle and Ashley. If we have a second child, we will not do it without them!”

Liz, portland

“I only interviewed one doula before I knew I had found my match, and that was Ashley. I know a lot of this will sound over-hyped, but Ashley truly deserves every bit of praise I’m about to give her. From the very beginning, she was organized and an excellent communicator. During our prenatal visit, she asked thoughtful questions and went into detail about what I was hoping and wanting from my birth experience. She was incredibly respectful and supportive of everything I told her and wanted to find out the best way she could support me and my family through this journey – and boy, did she! When it came time to head to the hospital, she stayed in communication the whole time and even offered to bring anything we might need or had forgotten. She even brought essential oils and a diffuser from her house since we’d forgotten ours. Ashley offers a gentle, calm, and grounded presence that makes you feel at ease but also seen, heard, and understood. She gave counter pressure during contractions, offered to get the nurse if we ever needed something, and had a list of different comfort positions to offer as well. When it came time to start making decisions about how to progress during my labor, she helped me feel grounded and confident in my choices. My birth experience was nothing but positive, and I know that having Ashley as a part of my team made that possible. She has been the most amazing doula, but she’s also an incredible human and I’m forever thankful I got to know her through this process!

stevie, vancouver, wa

“Our experience with Ashley was wonderful. I was on the birthing team for my sister-in-law, meaning I was there for the full labor, birth, and the 24-hour stay in the hospital after the birth. This was my FIRST ever experience with birth. In our first appointment, Ashley made me feel extremely comfortable and asked all the right questions that I would not have thought of on my own. The conversation and preparation materials she provided made me feel at ease and ready to be the best support I could be for my SIL – who ended up going into labor almost 3 weeks earlier than expected! Ashley came to the hospital immediately and her presence made me feel immediately at ease. The energy in the room was incredible! It was truly an experience I will never forget. She also came back after the birth to bring coffee and help take care of the baby. She truly has a knack for this type of work. As a support person, I would recommend Ashley to anyone (a partner, friend, or family member) who will be present for the birthing journey.

kate, vancouver, wa