Four in ten women are sent home from hospital too soon after giving birth, according to a report.
Some said they were rushed out just two hours later and described the ordeal as so traumatic that it contributed to post-natal depression.
Midwives also say they are being forced to discharge distressed women who are struggling to breastfeed for the first time just to free up a bed.
A report by the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) includes a survey of nearly 500 women in which 40 per cent said they were discharged before they were ready.
This included 9 per cent who said they were rushed out of the hospital, with some being distressed, in pain and struggling to cope with the new baby.
One woman said: ‘I had great care with my first baby, with the second I was rushed home within a couple hours of giving birth, distressed and in pain, probably still in shock, which contributed to my post-natal depression.’
Another mother said: ‘I definitely feel that staff are under huge stress and the quality of care is affected.
‘After I had my baby I felt awful and wanted to stay overnight but was told no, that it was not a hotel.’
Additionally, a survey of more than 3,000 midwives and maternity staff by the RCM found that women are not receiving enough home visits after the birth.
More than a third of staff said they did not have enough time to go through the basics such as feeding, bathing and breastfeeding with mothers.