I just commented on this, but I feel it's important enough to write a post about.
Apparently, this is 'breastfeeding week' and Moms are invited to 'Go for the Gold' by basically pressuring new Moms to breastfeed their kids, give them the number for La Leche League, etc. This is supposed to generate awareness about breastfeeding.
I really don't think there's any problem with awareness in this country about the benefits of breast-feeding. I think that point has been hammered in often enough.
In fact, I think there's an almost militant stance by some pro-breastfeeding organizations, like La Lache League, that borders on making women feel inadequate and ashamed just for having problems with breast-feeding. Or, even worse, if they end up using formula instead of breast-feeding. Actually, I think they DO make a lot of new Moms feel ashamed if they don't say how wonderful breastfeeding is.
My oldest son wouldn't nurse, and I thank God for the formula companies out there, because even with the help of the "lactation consultant" in the hospital, he simply wouldn't take my breast milk. He started losing weight, and we would have to wake him up every two hours just to try to feed him. We went to the doctor EVERY SINGLE DAY for weigh-ins. He was labelled as "failure to thrive." I felt like a horrible Mother. Finally, when I was completely falling apart, my husband and Mother, who were supportive of ME AND MY BABY, convinced me it would be okay to go to bottles.
And I am SO glad we did. Formula-feeding made him into a strong, healthy, happy little boy.
I don't have any problem with breast-feeding. If you can do it, that's fine. I know that there are all kinds of benefits to breastfeeding as well. But don't look at Moms who aren't breastfeeding like they are pariahs, either.
Because, the thing is, EVERY SINGLE MOTHER I have ever spoken to personally has found it is far more difficult than she was led to believe to breastfeed. Some were able to breastfeed successfully after trying and trying and beating themselves up over it and feeling, as I did, that they were somehow not good Moms. Others, like me, could not. So they fed their kids formula. And I think that's okay.
There's a movement to keep formula out of hospitals?! Wow. That's real nice. Way to support women's choices and let them make decisions about how they raise their own children, people!
Shame on you.
I was a bottle baby. So was my husband. We're good, honest, conscientious, well-educated people.
So I would much rather see some REAL stories about how difficult it can be to breastfeed, and that it is okay to feed your baby with formula if you need to, than more stories pushing breastfeeding onto women as if it is something they MUST do or fail as a mother. We have enough of those already.
More from parenting