chapter  Chapter 9
What women want from their maternity carers and why the industrial model cannot deliver
WithLis Garratt, Mavis Kirkham
Pages 28

In my interviewees’ accounts the issues of control, relational care, security, trust and good communication were very much in evidence, reflecting the findings of previously discussed research on birthing women’s needs. 1–5 All stressed the importance of the human qualities of their carers. They wanted to be cared for as individuals, by individuals who engaged with them and worked with understanding, compassion, humour and all the other attributes that encourage good relationships. What caused them distress was the feeling that they were being processed by a system which neither knew nor valued them as individuals; as Lynne so eloquently put it, being treated like ‘an object on a conveyor belt of vaginas’.