Pregnant women should be able to trust, absolutley their caregiver and the information/education they provide. But they cannot. Our hospital system for birthing women, is indeed, a broken system, with many who work in it, out of touch with reality. The problem with many staff is they become institutionalised, often out of necessity as they must follow the ever increasing policies and protocols. They certainly don’t have the capacity or the will to think outside the square. I observed a young woman who came into a hospital to give birth to her 3rd baby. As she leaned over the bed and quietly experienced a surge (contraction), the midwife asked could she rate her pain level on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the “most severe”). Midwife told her it looked like an 8!! So, of course, the woman, who seemed confused by the question, reluctantly agreed with the midwife. There was no reassurance or positive support or even a congratulations offered. No smile, no understanding, no support for Dad. The midwife managed to totally disempower this birthing woman with one sentence. The midwife was ‘in charge’, not the woman. The very sad thing about this story is that the midwife actually believed she was very experienced and was doing a good job. The lack of knowledge and understanding of a birthing woman’s needs was glaringly obvious and certainly has a negative impact on how a woman labours and gives birth. To avoid this – please employ a doula!