Here is a great article on a new study outlining some of the many tangible benefits of having continuous labor support: http://www.marketwire.com/press-release/Continuous-Labor-Support-Reduces-Risk-Cesarean-Section-Other-Adverse-Outcomes-Women-1397061.htm
Someone I know was recently talking about the birth of their first baby and how she didn't realize that the experience she had then was so extreme (in a bad way). She had limited resources and providers available to her at that time... My gut feeling is that, while you wouldn't wish a horrible birth on any living soul, it probably was a good thing that she didn't know what she was missing to know that her birth wasn't typical.
Labor support of any kind could have made a huge difference in the flow of her labor from the get-go. Those of you with experiences with a doula or other labor support person--what specifically did you feel your doula did to make your birth better?
Doula, wife, mother of four, equestrienne, comedian, dreamer....