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April 03, 2005

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Hear, Hear! I have often felt similarly, though never expressed it half as well. Thanks for another great post!

I just have to say, this is a fabulous post. You have collected in one place much of what I've said over the years.

Oh, I could go on forever in this space, but what it comes down to is, "I agree."

Thanks SO much for posting this.

Yes, motherhood is tough, and i'm not even one yet. There are no 'zleep nazis' or 'schedule nazis' because those are things that typically take place in the home. I'm definitely pro-breastfeeding, but since when is it anyone else's business? I have seen women accosted in malls for giving bottles- by men! How and what to feed a child should be a decision made by the parents, not anyone else. And no one should make a mother feel bad about her choice, or berate her, or tell her she's poisoning her child. And conversely, women should be able to breastfeed wherever they damn well please- that is what a breast is for. Basically as long as a child is not starving, no one outside of the parents (and maybe the doctor) should give a good damn how it is getting nutrition.

You have said it here - what I wish I knew how to say in one post. Thank you.

Thank you for this. I wish mothers wouldn't turn against one another so much, or at least I wish we could listen to one another and support one another. Half the time it seems like moms are too busy competing to have the best kid to actually parent their kids.

Great post!

Sigh.

I want to breastfeed. I want to wear a sling and go barefoot and pop out my breasts at my baby's slightest provocation. I'd give up shaving my legs, too, but my husband says that is non-negotiable.

But I can't breastfeed -- I'm adopting a six to twelve month old. I _have_ to use formula, because there is no way I can produce enough milk taking hormones (which there is no way I would take, anyway).

I think part of the reaction to the LLL is a feeling that women who don't breastfeed are being judged. Thank you for pointing out that this is not the intent of the organization, even if some people have run into the occasional "bad seed" along the way. I agree that people should be less emotional and more rational when discussing EVERY topic, but what can you do?

Thanks again.

Fantastic post. You've said so eloquently what has been on my mind since reading many of the same posts you mentioned.

Yes, there are rabid LLL members, but not many (if any) are Leaders specifically. Alot goes into becoming a LLL Leader and those who across the board judge and impose guilt are not up to the task, IMO.

After doing two breastfeeding counsels last week, I got a call this morning from one Mom. She said "I gave up Friday." and she started to cry. My first words were "No guilt." and we continued to talk more about her son and what we can do about his extreme colic etc... I'm sad that she feels so much guilt and a bit miffed at the misinformation she received from her doctor, but I am not going to push her down further by getting into any of that.

It hurt to be referred to as a "Nazi" and put me immediately on the defensive about my choice and what feeding method I support. Thank you for bringing me back and reminding me why I do what I do (and how I do it!)

Brava.

Echo: Brava.

And Chantal -- your story made me cry. "No guilt." I cried again just now typing it. I wish to heaven a lactation person had said that to me. Thankfully, my mother said it, and my husband did. God bless you in your work (and you, too, Gladly).

Bravo!

Whenever a person is confronted with behavior they feel guilty about concious or otherwise, whether it is praying or breastfeeding or having more children attending church , they have a big furious reaction. What's new there?

It saves them the trouble of doing the hard work.

Beautifully said. I absolutly abhor the use of thw word Nazi in any context other than historical. I'd like to start a movement to get that out of the common lexicon.

Sarah

Well said!

I am a mom who chose to breastfeed my babies when it was still considered a little wierd. It delights me to see people beginning to recognize the benefits to both mother and babe, but I'm horrified to hear that some misguided folk think they have the right to harass people about how and when they feed their babies. Please continue to speak out against this kind of arrogance, you are a gifted writer and will have a far greater effect than you will ever really know.

As someone who has thrown around that particular n-word (but won't anymore--you're not the first to express hurt at the Nazi comparision and while it's meant in jest, I acknowledge the validity of your point and don't want to hurt any feelings), here's why I did.
It's the utter smugness of so many of these mothers. I just feel like saying, "People, it's JUST breastfeeding. Get over yourself." I am doing it, and I love it, and I think it's the best thing for my daughter. Anyone who overcame major obstacles to establish a good breatsfeeding rlationship ought to be proud, and of course there's pride in nourishing your baby from your own body (I adore every roll on Maggie's little body because my milk put it there!). But I am so tired of the people who have to announce with great smugness that they breastfed for along period of time, cosleep, babywear, stay home and so forth. I wonder how insecure these people must be with their parenting. I do many of those things and manage not to tout it to the universe as if I am Mother Superior for just doing what feels right TO ME, and one of the major reasons I like your blog (and miss reading it as much as I used to!) is that you are happily crunchy as the day is long and can write about your life without making it sounds like "I am the Best Mother Ever and anyone who doesn't mother exactly as I do hates their children." That's the feeling I get from most "lactivist" types, that any deviation from the "breastfeed until your child can drive and put it above ANY of your needs like sleep or two mintes peace" party line, like having my husband give a bottle once a day or giving a pacifier, is incredibly negligent mothering.

To the mom adopting - you can breastfeed without taking hormones. Breasts are so amazing, until menopause they are ready to make milk even if the woman has not been pregnant. Many women nursing their adopted baby make enough to exclusively breastfeed. Any breastmilk is better than none. Consider giving breastfeeding a chance. If you don't want to breastfeed, you could get human milk from a milk bank.

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