there are two different types of midwives and that causes a lot of confusion regarding the distinction between the two. most people think that all midwives are the same and that is usually not the case.
1. Certified nurse midwife, CNM, is a woman who is an RN first and then goes to midwifery school to specialize. By the time she graduates she has a master's degree. She can work in the hospital, in a birth center or in a home birth practice. She can work in all 50 states and must be under the supervision of a doctor.
2. The other type of midwives have different titles depending on which state they are working in. Some states refer to them as licensed midwives (LM), registered midwives (RM), certified professional midwives (CPM) and other states offer a permit to be a midwife. These women are known collectively as direct entry midwives (DEM) and cannot work in the hospital. She can work in birth centers and home birth practices, but cannot work in all 50 states. They do NOT need to be under the supervision of a doctor and are independant health care providers. In some states they can also receive medicaid reimbursement.
Here is a website that explains the legal status of DEM's: https://mana.org/statechart.html
There will always be exceptions to the rules, but generally speaking CNM's are more medical as they are trained under the medical model of care. While DEM's are trained in more natural methods under the midwifery model of care.
I would think that the first step is to determine where you feel most comfortable birthing. Then interview a few different providers to see how you feel and if you connect with a particular one. You are looking to assemble a team of people who are going to support you during your pregnancy, labor, birth and the postpartum period. Talk to other mom's who are like-minded and ask for references.
ok ladies, what else can you add to this topic?