This paper discusses the thesis that nurse-midwifery will grow and flourish in a climate of economic constraint and competition if every nurse-midwife assumes both the responsibilities and privileges of professional maturity. This maturity is based on the concept of interdependence in relationships with clients, physicians, and nurses, and other nurse-midwives. These relationships are also built upon mutual respect and trust. Concerns for client self-determination at the expense of safety, paternalism/maternalism at the expense of client autonomy, expansion of midwifery practice into medicine, and the extension of professional limits of practice beyond one's level of competence are discussed. The final goal of healthier mothers and babies with access to care for all women requires nurse-midwifery care in cooperation with other health professionals. No one professional group can meet this goal alone.