Mother and Baby Article July 10- “I formula fed So What?”

Article title: I formula-fed. SO WHAT?

Sub heading: You can keep your soggy breast pads, says Kathryn Blundell. Giving your baby formula milk is nothing to be ashamed of.

‘It’s right up there with a drug-free birth as the rite of passage that proves you’re all woman and a good mother. Breastfeeding: the most natural thing in the world. But what if, like me, you really don’t fancy it?

For some formula feeders, ‘not really fancying it’ translates into ‘concealing the fact that I’m using a bottle’. So visits from health visitors are pre-empted by the scrabble to hide the sterliser under the sink. ‘What, oh that bottle. I’ve been expressing so Dave can give feeds.’ Hmm.

But why the shame? Sure, breastmilk has the edge over infant formula – it’s free, it doesn’t need heating up and you can whip up a feed in the middle of the night without having to get out of bed.

Then there are studies that show it reduces the risk of breast cancer for you, and stomach upsets and allergies for your baby. But even the convenience and supposed health benefits of breastmilk couldn’t induce me to stick my nipple into a bawling baby’s mouth.

HANDS OFF

After nine months of denial, lardiness and bad shoes, as soon as the birth was out of the way I want my body back. (And some wine). Not that I had anything particularly useful to do with my body, except – paradoxically – care for my baby. I also wanted to give my boobs at least a chance to stay on my chest rather than dangling around on my stomach, which, after two pregnancies, still has ‘tonal’ issues of its own.

They’re part of my sexuality, too – not just breasts, but fun bags.

And when you have that attitude (and I admit I made no attempt to change it), seeing your teeny, tiny, innocent baby latching on where only a lover has been before feels, well, a little creepy.

FORMULA WON

I don’t think I’m the only one, either – only 52% of mums still breastfeed after six weeks. Ask most of the quitters why they stopped and you’ll hear tales of agonising three-hour feeding sessions and – the drama! – bloody nipples. But I often wonder whether many of these women, like me, just couldn’t be fagged or felt like getting tipsy once in awhile. My reasons for not breastfeeding might not be in the league of ‘my boobs are falling off’, but they make sense to me and I hope some women can be reassured by my honesty.

I wasn’t always so confident about being an out-and-proud formula fan.

I recall one sunny afternoon when, happily feeding my baby in the park, ducks quacking in the distance, a passing stranger – also a mum – asked me whether I was breastfeeding. Reeling from the impertinence of such a personal question (and anyway, wasn’t the bottle in my hand a give away/) I hesitated to answer. Say ‘yes’ and I’d be a liar. Say ‘no’ and, from the pursing of her lips and arch of her brow, it was clear I’d be marked as a weak, selfish mum, straight from the Vicky Pollard school of parenting. The clock was ticking. Liar? Bad mum? I plumped for bad mum. ‘You do know your baby will get sick if you give him that poison,’ she said, flouncing off. Thanks, sister. Great advice.

THE WHITE STUFF

So, time for a reality check. Formula milk is not toxic, lacking in nutrients or in any way bad for a baby’s health when prepared properly – and we can all read the back of a packet for instructions. No, it’s not A-grade, but neither is it powdered scum that will turn my baby into an anaemic ball of flab with a life expectancy of three. Nor is the fact my baby suckles on silicone rather than skin going to give him a mental illness or mean we don’t bond. That’s just ridiculous.

The Milk Mafia can keep their guilt trips. Bullying other mums about something as special and nurturing as feeding their babies (and yes, bottle feeding can be lovely and intimate) is a depth that even Vicky Pollard wouldn’t sink to. So, let’s hear it, ladies, for modern nutritional science, but most of all for our freedom of choice.

Thank you to Enola for typing it all out. A campaign page to ask Mother and Baby to support breastfeeding is at http://www.facebook.com/enola.stevenson#!/pages/Mother-and-Baby-Magazine-please-support-breastfeeding/126495294055317?ref=ts

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Comments

  1. says

    you can complain to the Press Complaints Commission online here http://www.pcc.org.uk/complaints/form.html
    This is what I put:
    Please explain how you believe the Code of Practice has been breached
    Accuracy
    “supposed health benefits [of breastmilk]”
    Breastmilk has proven health benefits not supposed. “Over the past decades, evidence for the health advantages of breastfeeding and recommendations for practice have continued to increase. WHO can now say with full confidence that breastfeeding reduces child mortality and has health benefits that extend into adulthood” http://www.who.int/child_adolescent_health/topics/prevention_care/child/nutrition/breastfeeding/en/

    “I also wanted to give my boobs at least a chance to stay on my chest rather than dangling around on my stomach”
    Breastfeeding does not make breasts sag. “There was no difference in the extent of ptosis – the clinical term for breast sagginess – between those women who had breastfed and those who had not. ” http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/7082473.stm

    “felt like getting tipsy once in awhile” It is possible to drink occasionally and breastfeed “research shows that occasional drinking, such as one or two units once or twice a week, is not harmful to your baby while you are breastfeeding.” http://www.nhs.uk/chq/Pages/958.aspx?CategoryID=54&SubCategoryID=135

    Which specific clause(s) of the Code are you complaining under?
    1
    Accuracy
    i) The Press must take care not to publish inaccurate, misleading or distorted information, including pictures.

  2. says

    I have to agree with Paula… Formula, like all processed foods, contain toxins. Anything nowadays that has a self life of more than 2-3 days has toxins in it.

    Scientifically developed & added “nutrients” are also toxic, just like pharmaceuticals. Scientific = chemicals.

    Something this author didn’t address was the colostrum -the first 3 days or so -of milk all mammals produce. This milk has baby specific ingredients for the immune health, brain development, & all other functions for a healthy baby.

    I don’t argue the point that every mom has the right to choose. But I don’t care how scientifically advanced we are NOTHING can replace that colostrum or mother’s milk.

    I do understand both sides of this argument… I breast fed as long as I could, but I dried up before I got a chance to wean.

    I fully believe that babies nursed on the breast are healthy in the long run. My brother & I, plus my b/f & his 3 brothers are all proof that breast fed babies are healthier… we all hardly ever have a cold/flu that goes around.

    Something to contemplate…
    Bless~ed Be! & Hugs,
    Elizabeth Jo

  3. says

    I have to agree with Paula… Formula, like all processed foods, contain toxins. Anything nowadays that has a self life of more than 2-3 days has toxins in it.

    Scientifically developed & added “nutrients” are also toxic, just like pharmaceuticals. Scientific = chemicals.

    Something this author didn’t address was the colostrum -the first 3 days or so -of milk all mammals produce. This milk has baby specific ingredients for the immune health, brain development, & all other functions for a healthy baby.

    I don’t argue the point that every mom has the right to choose. But I don’t care how scientifically advanced we are NOTHING can replace that colostrum or mother’s milk.

    I do understand both sides of this argument… I breast fed as long as I could, but I dried up before I got a chance to wean.

    I fully believe that babies nursed on the breast are healthy in the long run. My brother & I, plus my b/f & his 3 brothers are all proof that breast fed babies are healthier… we all hardly ever have a cold/flu that goes around.

    Something to contemplate…
    Bless~ed Be! & Hugs,
    Elizabeth Jo

  4. SJJ says

    Well if its simpathy your looking for in this article, you wont get it from me. It sounds like your begging for people to agree with a bunch of breastfeeding myths. If you didnt make the cut and decided to formula feed thats your choice but, don’t make up random conclusions for the rest of mothers for reasons not brestfeeding. Motherhood is what you want for your family. worrying about others opinions will only keep you from being a good mother to your children. Breastfeeding will always be a different experience for every mother as well as motherhood. So keep your head held high, no matter what kind of mother you choose to be!

  5. SJJ says

    Well if its simpathy your looking for in this article, you wont get it from me. It sounds like your begging for people to agree with a bunch of breastfeeding myths. If you didnt make the cut and decided to formula feed thats your choice but, don’t make up random conclusions for the rest of mothers for reasons not brestfeeding. Motherhood is what you want for your family. worrying about others opinions will only keep you from being a good mother to your children. Breastfeeding will always be a different experience for every mother as well as motherhood. So keep your head held high, no matter what kind of mother you choose to be!

  6. Tara says

    How is this woman fit to be a parent–every reason for her not choosing breastmilk is completely selfish. The child has no say in the matter, and will likely suffer the consequences later.

  7. Tara says

    How is this woman fit to be a parent–every reason for her not choosing breastmilk is completely selfish. The child has no say in the matter, and will likely suffer the consequences later.

  8. Mandy says

    Nice article! I’m glad you published this. I am tried of the Breastfeeding-Nazis going crazy because I bottle-feed. Leave me and my son alone. I don’t make a big deal when you start breastfeeding.

    I hate that these women are so quick to judge other moms. To me that’s truly shelfish. If another women makes a decision they don’t agree with suddenly they are wrong or shelfish. I say leave me boobs alone and I’ll leave yours alone!

    If you choose to bottle-feed good for you, don’t let people bully you into thinking you’ll have fat dumb kids. My mom bottle-feed three very thin children’s with Master’s degree (granted a lot of that is genes).

  9. Mandy says

    Nice article! I’m glad you published this. I am tried of the Breastfeeding-Nazis going crazy because I bottle-feed. Leave me and my son alone. I don’t make a big deal when you start breastfeeding.

    I hate that these women are so quick to judge other moms. To me that’s truly shelfish. If another women makes a decision they don’t agree with suddenly they are wrong or shelfish. I say leave me boobs alone and I’ll leave yours alone!

    If you choose to bottle-feed good for you, don’t let people bully you into thinking you’ll have fat dumb kids. My mom bottle-feed three very thin children’s with Master’s degree (granted a lot of that is genes).

  10. Marni says

    In the US, the first ingredient in non-organic formulas is CORN SYRUP- to a 1 hour old baby??!!! If that isn’t some kind of poison, I don’t know what is. I agree that every mother has to choose for themselves, but I also believe that every woman needs to make educated, informed decisions. So, if your choice is to feed your new one hour old infant corn syrup and man-made chemicals, that is fine, but be honest about it and then feel no shame. Admit you are doing it for all the reasons you are but don’t try to convince people that it’s almost as good as breast milk, cause it just isn’t- period.

  11. Marni says

    In the US, the first ingredient in non-organic formulas is CORN SYRUP- to a 1 hour old baby??!!! If that isn’t some kind of poison, I don’t know what is. I agree that every mother has to choose for themselves, but I also believe that every woman needs to make educated, informed decisions. So, if your choice is to feed your new one hour old infant corn syrup and man-made chemicals, that is fine, but be honest about it and then feel no shame. Admit you are doing it for all the reasons you are but don’t try to convince people that it’s almost as good as breast milk, cause it just isn’t- period.

  12. Lucy says

    If a multinational company developed a product that was a nutritionally balanced and delicious food, a wonder drug that both prevented and treated disease, cost almost nothing to produce and could be delivered in quantities controlled by the consumers’ needs, the very announcement of their find would send their shares rocketing to the top of the stock market. The scientists who developed the product would win prizes and the wealth and influence of everyone involved would increase dramatically. Women have been producing such a miraculous substance, breastmilk, since the beginning of human existence. ~Gabrielle Palmer

    While breastfeeding may not seem the right choice for every parent, it is the best choice for every baby. ~Amy Spangler

  13. Lucy says

    If a multinational company developed a product that was a nutritionally balanced and delicious food, a wonder drug that both prevented and treated disease, cost almost nothing to produce and could be delivered in quantities controlled by the consumers’ needs, the very announcement of their find would send their shares rocketing to the top of the stock market. The scientists who developed the product would win prizes and the wealth and influence of everyone involved would increase dramatically. Women have been producing such a miraculous substance, breastmilk, since the beginning of human existence. ~Gabrielle Palmer

    While breastfeeding may not seem the right choice for every parent, it is the best choice for every baby. ~Amy Spangler

  14. Jennifer says

    While I find that your experiences are what motivated you to write this awful letter ….I find it hard to believe that any woman who has been through all the bullying that you have been through ….to turn around and make other woman who choose the right thing for themselves and there babies ,feel horrible about there decision…not only have you done this but you have made every pregnant mom terrified by your accusations …..I breastfed two children and never any of the problems you claimed to be your reasoning for not breastfeeding. I am not one to judge…and if you choose not to breastfeed that is your decision it is your body …… Stand up for yourself……But don’t make other women feel bad about there decision .

  15. Jennifer says

    While I find that your experiences are what motivated you to write this awful letter ….I find it hard to believe that any woman who has been through all the bullying that you have been through ….to turn around and make other woman who choose the right thing for themselves and there babies ,feel horrible about there decision…not only have you done this but you have made every pregnant mom terrified by your accusations …..I breastfed two children and never any of the problems you claimed to be your reasoning for not breastfeeding. I am not one to judge…and if you choose not to breastfeed that is your decision it is your body …… Stand up for yourself……But don’t make other women feel bad about there decision .

  16. Nati says

    Can we please show some respect for the author, even if we do not or cannot agree with her premises? I can see she feels strongly bullied by breast milk supporters by that horrible incident in the park.

    I would love to see those of us who support breastfeeding 100% show respect for those who don’t. We cannot judge someone’s journey with so little information. Pressure, I feel, will only lead to more women being stubborn about not giving breatfeeling a chance. it is support and empathy they need, not judgement.

    Just my own personal opinion.

  17. Nati says

    Can we please show some respect for the author, even if we do not or cannot agree with her premises? I can see she feels strongly bullied by breast milk supporters by that horrible incident in the park.

    I would love to see those of us who support breastfeeding 100% show respect for those who don’t. We cannot judge someone’s journey with so little information. Pressure, I feel, will only lead to more women being stubborn about not giving breatfeeling a chance. it is support and empathy they need, not judgement.

    Just my own personal opinion.

  18. Emma says

    I breast-fed for approx 24 hours before my nipples became so sore and cracked that they bled. Every time my baby latched on, it felt like someone was rubbing glass over my nipples. A nipple shield did nothing to help, so, reluctantly, in the early hours of the morning, I gave up and gave my daughter her first bottle. For me, the pain of the stitches and my back pain, which I later discovered was a dislocated coccyx from the birth, was enough for me to cope with, without adding breast pain to the equation. Yes, breast-feeding is the natural choice, but what a shame mother nature decided to make it so bloody difficult for some of us, when we are already suffering from such an enormous physical effort as childbirth. I later discovered from a health visitor (who, incidentally, did not try to push breast feeding or make me feel guilty at all) that my daughter had probably been detaching herself from the nipple mid-feed, thus causing the cracking. The hospital I gave birth in were so busy (we’re talking full capacity here) that no-one took the time to watch me breastfeed for longer than a couple of minutes, so this was not picked up on. I was so desperate to go home I didn’t mention the pain to any of the midwives. However, I honestly believe I am able to be a better mother for bottle feeding. My husband can do some of the feeds, enabling me to get more sleep than I would if breast feeding, meaning I have more energy for my baby during the day. Throughout the entire time I was producing milk, I was weepy and not far from depression.
    I have no idea how my daughter’s health will be in the future, but for now, she is putting on weight and growing normally and she is a happy, relaxed baby, who is doing everything a baby should be doing at her age.
    At a recent post-natal group, I was given some “looks” from some of the breast feeding mums when I whipped out a bottle to feed my baby. This is what annoys me about some breast feeding mothers. With no knowledge of my situation, they judge me. Not that I should have to justify myself, anyway. I took vitamins throughout my pregnancy, stopped drinking completely and even avoided pethadine during the birth as I had heard it can affect the baby. Breast feeding was just a step too far for me – it was excruciatingly painful and I felt I could not cope with any more pain.
    I just think it’s a shame that bottle feeding mothers still have to endure being looked down on by some breast feeding mothers. I even know of someone who pushes breast feeding, despite the fact she smoked throughout her pregnancies! What right does she have to lecture anyone on their child’s health and what is best for them when she pumped her babies full of noxious chemicals for 9 months?

    It’s a shame we can’t all just live and let live.

  19. Emma says

    I breast-fed for approx 24 hours before my nipples became so sore and cracked that they bled. Every time my baby latched on, it felt like someone was rubbing glass over my nipples. A nipple shield did nothing to help, so, reluctantly, in the early hours of the morning, I gave up and gave my daughter her first bottle. For me, the pain of the stitches and my back pain, which I later discovered was a dislocated coccyx from the birth, was enough for me to cope with, without adding breast pain to the equation. Yes, breast-feeding is the natural choice, but what a shame mother nature decided to make it so bloody difficult for some of us, when we are already suffering from such an enormous physical effort as childbirth. I later discovered from a health visitor (who, incidentally, did not try to push breast feeding or make me feel guilty at all) that my daughter had probably been detaching herself from the nipple mid-feed, thus causing the cracking. The hospital I gave birth in were so busy (we’re talking full capacity here) that no-one took the time to watch me breastfeed for longer than a couple of minutes, so this was not picked up on. I was so desperate to go home I didn’t mention the pain to any of the midwives. However, I honestly believe I am able to be a better mother for bottle feeding. My husband can do some of the feeds, enabling me to get more sleep than I would if breast feeding, meaning I have more energy for my baby during the day. Throughout the entire time I was producing milk, I was weepy and not far from depression.
    I have no idea how my daughter’s health will be in the future, but for now, she is putting on weight and growing normally and she is a happy, relaxed baby, who is doing everything a baby should be doing at her age.
    At a recent post-natal group, I was given some “looks” from some of the breast feeding mums when I whipped out a bottle to feed my baby. This is what annoys me about some breast feeding mothers. With no knowledge of my situation, they judge me. Not that I should have to justify myself, anyway. I took vitamins throughout my pregnancy, stopped drinking completely and even avoided pethadine during the birth as I had heard it can affect the baby. Breast feeding was just a step too far for me – it was excruciatingly painful and I felt I could not cope with any more pain.
    I just think it’s a shame that bottle feeding mothers still have to endure being looked down on by some breast feeding mothers. I even know of someone who pushes breast feeding, despite the fact she smoked throughout her pregnancies! What right does she have to lecture anyone on their child’s health and what is best for them when she pumped her babies full of noxious chemicals for 9 months?

    It’s a shame we can’t all just live and let live.

  20. Kirsten says

    I often wonder why so many formula feeders seem to think they’re the only parents who get flak for their choices. I’ve gotten plenty of crap for making the choice to nurse my son past a year, and I have to deal with being painted as a breast “nazi” every time someone finds out I nurse.
    Everyone deals with criticism; effing deal with it, and stop being so immature. I don’t care if you formula feed. Just don’t push it on me, and don’t tell me to stop nursing my 19 month old (which many hypocritical formula-feeding moms, who after finishing up their little rants about “tit-nazis”, have told me).

  21. Kirsten says

    I often wonder why so many formula feeders seem to think they’re the only parents who get flak for their choices. I’ve gotten plenty of crap for making the choice to nurse my son past a year, and I have to deal with being painted as a breast “nazi” every time someone finds out I nurse.
    Everyone deals with criticism; effing deal with it, and stop being so immature. I don’t care if you formula feed. Just don’t push it on me, and don’t tell me to stop nursing my 19 month old (which many hypocritical formula-feeding moms, who after finishing up their little rants about “tit-nazis”, have told me).

  22. Joolz Saville-Hippely says

    How on earth could you be so irresponsible as to print this article? I am baffled beyond belief and will advise every woman I know considering buying a ‘baby’ magazine to boycott yours.

  23. Joolz Saville-Hippely says

    How on earth could you be so irresponsible as to print this article? I am baffled beyond belief and will advise every woman I know considering buying a ‘baby’ magazine to boycott yours.

  24. John M says

    Thanks for reprinting this article. Keep spreading the data, ladies! We men want kids to grow up healthy and smart too. :D

  25. John M says

    Thanks for reprinting this article. Keep spreading the data, ladies! We men want kids to grow up healthy and smart too. :D

  26. Grace says

    It sounds like what is important to her is more important than the benefit of the child.
    Being a mom means you always put your children first…not sagging breasts, wanting to get drunk or because you feel creepy.

    More evidence of the “me” generation..

  27. Grace says

    It sounds like what is important to her is more important than the benefit of the child.
    Being a mom means you always put your children first…not sagging breasts, wanting to get drunk or because you feel creepy.

    More evidence of the “me” generation..

  28. says

    Sheesh people, enough with the crucifying already! This momma was very honest, that takes courage. I long for the day when mothers support each other and each momma feels stronger because of the legion of other momma’s that have her back. Wouldn’t that feel so much nicer than lurking like vultures waiting for fresh meat to attack? Because honestly it seems like that’s what happening when we can’t offer basic respect and courtesy to someone who’s opinions are different than our own.

  29. says

    Sheesh people, enough with the crucifying already! This momma was very honest, that takes courage. I long for the day when mothers support each other and each momma feels stronger because of the legion of other momma’s that have her back. Wouldn’t that feel so much nicer than lurking like vultures waiting for fresh meat to attack? Because honestly it seems like that’s what happening when we can’t offer basic respect and courtesy to someone who’s opinions are different than our own.

  30. FormulaLover says

    I couldn’t agree with you more! It is our body, our decision, and nobody else’s business. I personally hated breast feeding and would never do it again.

  31. FormulaLover says

    I couldn’t agree with you more! It is our body, our decision, and nobody else’s business. I personally hated breast feeding and would never do it again.

  32. danielle says

    I agree with this writer. I am sorry I don’t wanna stick my boob in my childs mouth it’s kind of like some guy stickin his private parts in yours. It is a choice to breat feed or bottle feed and no one accuses you of beeing a bad mom because you breastfeed so shut up. I’ve been harrased by many of people who breastfeed and my kid has not been to the hospital half as many times as thiers has and I was bottle fed I turned out fine. I don’t want my kid to grow up knowing she sucked on her moms boob but that’s my opinion and my kid is healthy an eats only formula so shove it.

  33. danielle says

    I agree with this writer. I am sorry I don’t wanna stick my boob in my childs mouth it’s kind of like some guy stickin his private parts in yours. It is a choice to breat feed or bottle feed and no one accuses you of beeing a bad mom because you breastfeed so shut up. I’ve been harrased by many of people who breastfeed and my kid has not been to the hospital half as many times as thiers has and I was bottle fed I turned out fine. I don’t want my kid to grow up knowing she sucked on her moms boob but that’s my opinion and my kid is healthy an eats only formula so shove it.

  34. danielle says

    and what about women who can’t breast feed are they bad moms? They would not seel fornula if it was not safe. When you walk into a wic office and they tell you you can’t bottle feed it’s a breast feeding only building ummmmm yadoubt it it’s a womens choice

  35. danielle says

    and what about women who can’t breast feed are they bad moms? They would not seel fornula if it was not safe. When you walk into a wic office and they tell you you can’t bottle feed it’s a breast feeding only building ummmmm yadoubt it it’s a womens choice

  36. Rebecca says

    Thanks to everyone who published citations regarding the tremendous disadvantages of formula compared to breastfeeding.

    All that aside, this mother seems to think her choices should be based upon her own preferences, rather than her baby’s needs. When you have a baby, it’s not about you anymore. When we have children, we must suck it up and make some sacrifices, and while our babies are small, the required sacrifices are huge. But it’s just for a short time. This writer’s selfishness is nauseating.

  37. Rebecca says

    Thanks to everyone who published citations regarding the tremendous disadvantages of formula compared to breastfeeding.

    All that aside, this mother seems to think her choices should be based upon her own preferences, rather than her baby’s needs. When you have a baby, it’s not about you anymore. When we have children, we must suck it up and make some sacrifices, and while our babies are small, the required sacrifices are huge. But it’s just for a short time. This writer’s selfishness is nauseating.

  38. Cindy says

    I commented on the “junk food” artcicle and I will say the same here.
    How about we all just start supporting each other? Being a mother is the most challenging, difficult job anyone could EVER ask for. We are all striving to bring our children up to be successful and honorable adults. There HAS to be more than one way to do that.
    So stop judging other people, just worry about yourself, and your own kids.

  39. Cindy says

    I commented on the “junk food” artcicle and I will say the same here.
    How about we all just start supporting each other? Being a mother is the most challenging, difficult job anyone could EVER ask for. We are all striving to bring our children up to be successful and honorable adults. There HAS to be more than one way to do that.
    So stop judging other people, just worry about yourself, and your own kids.

  40. Danielle says

    babies have lived and been healthy babies for many of years. babies DO NOT need breast milk to be healthy

  41. Danielle says

    babies have lived and been healthy babies for many of years. babies DO NOT need breast milk to be healthy

  42. carly says

    As long as they are presented with the facts and and come to informed decision, people should not have to justify their choices and certainly should not be made to feel guilty about them.
    No wonder there is so much depression if people are getting slated for expressing themselves, you can see why they hold it all in.
    As new mums we should be supporting and listening to each other, giving advice when asked without forcing opinions.

  43. carly says

    As long as they are presented with the facts and and come to informed decision, people should not have to justify their choices and certainly should not be made to feel guilty about them.
    No wonder there is so much depression if people are getting slated for expressing themselves, you can see why they hold it all in.
    As new mums we should be supporting and listening to each other, giving advice when asked without forcing opinions.

  44. Hols says

    nice article, yes breast milk has amazing benefits and the longer you can do it the better. But I only breastfed my twins till my milk ran out at five months for the health benefits for them, I didn’t particularly enjoy it and found other ways to bond better, my breasts (as small as they are) are a part of my sexual identity also and having a baby hanging off them does feel a little odd. Breast-feeding nazi’s and overly criticle mothers need to get a life…. probably need something else too which once their babies get off their boobs they might be able too :-)

  45. Hols says

    nice article, yes breast milk has amazing benefits and the longer you can do it the better. But I only breastfed my twins till my milk ran out at five months for the health benefits for them, I didn’t particularly enjoy it and found other ways to bond better, my breasts (as small as they are) are a part of my sexual identity also and having a baby hanging off them does feel a little odd. Breast-feeding nazi’s and overly criticle mothers need to get a life…. probably need something else too which once their babies get off their boobs they might be able too :-)

  46. says

    I disagree with the author about using formula but some of you knuckleheads are taking this way too seriously and don’t recognize humor when you see it. Heaven forbid any some of you should be exposed to Swift or Voltaire. Probably think A Modest Proposal is a cookbook.

  47. says

    I disagree with the author about using formula but some of you knuckleheads are taking this way too seriously and don’t recognize humor when you see it. Heaven forbid any some of you should be exposed to Swift or Voltaire. Probably think A Modest Proposal is a cookbook.

  48. Natasha says

    Though I, too, had crazy days where I felt like a cow, AND think those lactation women were like Nazis, it was the most rewarding thing I ever did and I still lament its end. But all that is beside the point. This lady works for a parenting magazine as an editor. The WHO’s stance is breastfeeding until 6 months and better if it is 2 years. Science… See More… See More says it is best. Though we and she (and the mag) can support another view, it should NOT come in such an extreme form FROM the magazine, regardless if it is her personal opinion. Her rant sounded very juvenile, backward, and exactly what women the world over are trying to crush…that women’s breasts are “fun-bags”. Breasts are glands to feed babies. They also happen to be sexual. Even if it a chicken or the egg argument, her argument is a symptom of a society that allows porn, strippers, red-light districts, etc., but scoffs at and poo-poos public breastfeeding. I would have fired her solely because of the magazine she represents, not because of her dissenting ideas.

  49. Natasha says

    Though I, too, had crazy days where I felt like a cow, AND think those lactation women were like Nazis, it was the most rewarding thing I ever did and I still lament its end. But all that is beside the point. This lady works for a parenting magazine as an editor. The WHO’s stance is breastfeeding until 6 months and better if it is 2 years. Science… See More… See More says it is best. Though we and she (and the mag) can support another view, it should NOT come in such an extreme form FROM the magazine, regardless if it is her personal opinion. Her rant sounded very juvenile, backward, and exactly what women the world over are trying to crush…that women’s breasts are “fun-bags”. Breasts are glands to feed babies. They also happen to be sexual. Even if it a chicken or the egg argument, her argument is a symptom of a society that allows porn, strippers, red-light districts, etc., but scoffs at and poo-poos public breastfeeding. I would have fired her solely because of the magazine she represents, not because of her dissenting ideas.

  50. Anna says

    i agree with what natasha says, i would like to add tho that not only do formular fead mums get bashed for their choice breastfeeding mums do too, i have breastfead my 2 youngest children and i got slated for it loads, infact only the other week a mum verbaly attacked me (seriosly i thought she was going to hit me she was so agressive) for breastfeeding in public!! i also had someone follow me about the shops when my daughter was a baby becasue i was breastfeeding her and this woman wanted to tell me how discusting it is!! oh yes and i had a bus driver stop his bus so he could sit there and stare at me while feeding my youngest!! but these situations didn’t put me off HOWEVER it could a new mum, aricles like this put mothers off breastfeeding infact sociaty but mothers off breastfeeding, if we all were given the facts, pro’s and con’s about bottle feeding and breastfeeding while we are pregnant then we could come to our own choices and not be slated for it, if sociaty stoped seeing breastfeeding as sick and bottle feeding as bad and we all banded together to support eachother we’d have better sociaty but untill that happens and articles like this stop then sociaty isn’t going to change and this bottle feeding and breastfeeding ‘mafia’ will continue.

  51. Anna says

    i agree with what natasha says, i would like to add tho that not only do formular fead mums get bashed for their choice breastfeeding mums do too, i have breastfead my 2 youngest children and i got slated for it loads, infact only the other week a mum verbaly attacked me (seriosly i thought she was going to hit me she was so agressive) for breastfeeding in public!! i also had someone follow me about the shops when my daughter was a baby becasue i was breastfeeding her and this woman wanted to tell me how discusting it is!! oh yes and i had a bus driver stop his bus so he could sit there and stare at me while feeding my youngest!! but these situations didn’t put me off HOWEVER it could a new mum, aricles like this put mothers off breastfeeding infact sociaty but mothers off breastfeeding, if we all were given the facts, pro’s and con’s about bottle feeding and breastfeeding while we are pregnant then we could come to our own choices and not be slated for it, if sociaty stoped seeing breastfeeding as sick and bottle feeding as bad and we all banded together to support eachother we’d have better sociaty but untill that happens and articles like this stop then sociaty isn’t going to change and this bottle feeding and breastfeeding ‘mafia’ will continue.

  52. Joanna Williams says

    I could write an elaborate in here, but let me do some bullet points instead:

    1. Everyone is talking about advantages of breastfeeding none so far did say a word about disadvantages. Bravo to the author!

    2. Yes, some of us have and would like to continue having fun time in life. Kids should be a natural step in your life not a life-ending event, otherwise it harms both sides- what is a use of miserable mother who is depressed because she feels that she is letting her baby down by not being able to breastfeed-whatever the reason-mental or physical? Will she make her baby happy?

    3. Yes, there is huge propaganda for breastfeeding done mainly by successful breastfeeding Mums (congrats and respect) who could not comprehend that some women can not take it and formula is the solution. I personally hated all the “good advices” I have been constantly given and all the inquisition…I also had an impression that there is some male lobby working in the business (probably WHO), making sure that poor guys do not have to move a finger with feeding….well they have no boobs!

    4. I feed my baby for 3 months with my breast milk.
    I hate breastfeeding. My baby hates being breastfeed.
    I hate the feeling of let down. My baby hates the fact that milk just do not come out, she wants quick fix.
    I could not take the pain. My baby could not take the waiting.
    45 mins sessions every 2h, was not an option for any of us.
    I would like to know how much baby eaten- with breast- no facility like that.
    I have big breast(now huge- H cup) and once trying to breastfeed I always had impression that baby will suffocate…that really was not helping any of us.

    5. I also find question do I breastfeed a bit inappropriate. I do not go and ask people: “How was your toilet experience this morning? Solid or not?”
    Other annoying thing is, when you are trying to explain why you do not do it anymore and people with no experience are telling me that I am wrong!

    I went for a compromise. It’s 21 century- there are really good breast pumps- got the double one. I expressed milk for 3 months and bottle-fed my baby with it. Any surplus was frozen and if I wanted to go out- milk was there. Then we moved to formula and my baby and I are very happy…just about to wean…

    Ladies in doubt- if you do not enjoy it- do not do breastfeed, use a substitute…but by all means…try breastfeeding first!

    Successful breastfeeding mums- please understand that not everyone can take it. Instead of attacking, please try to understand and respect situation you are not in.

  53. Joanna Williams says

    I could write an elaborate in here, but let me do some bullet points instead:

    1. Everyone is talking about advantages of breastfeeding none so far did say a word about disadvantages. Bravo to the author!

    2. Yes, some of us have and would like to continue having fun time in life. Kids should be a natural step in your life not a life-ending event, otherwise it harms both sides- what is a use of miserable mother who is depressed because she feels that she is letting her baby down by not being able to breastfeed-whatever the reason-mental or physical? Will she make her baby happy?

    3. Yes, there is huge propaganda for breastfeeding done mainly by successful breastfeeding Mums (congrats and respect) who could not comprehend that some women can not take it and formula is the solution. I personally hated all the “good advices” I have been constantly given and all the inquisition…I also had an impression that there is some male lobby working in the business (probably WHO), making sure that poor guys do not have to move a finger with feeding….well they have no boobs!

    4. I feed my baby for 3 months with my breast milk.
    I hate breastfeeding. My baby hates being breastfeed.
    I hate the feeling of let down. My baby hates the fact that milk just do not come out, she wants quick fix.
    I could not take the pain. My baby could not take the waiting.
    45 mins sessions every 2h, was not an option for any of us.
    I would like to know how much baby eaten- with breast- no facility like that.
    I have big breast(now huge- H cup) and once trying to breastfeed I always had impression that baby will suffocate…that really was not helping any of us.

    5. I also find question do I breastfeed a bit inappropriate. I do not go and ask people: “How was your toilet experience this morning? Solid or not?”
    Other annoying thing is, when you are trying to explain why you do not do it anymore and people with no experience are telling me that I am wrong!

    I went for a compromise. It’s 21 century- there are really good breast pumps- got the double one. I expressed milk for 3 months and bottle-fed my baby with it. Any surplus was frozen and if I wanted to go out- milk was there. Then we moved to formula and my baby and I are very happy…just about to wean…

    Ladies in doubt- if you do not enjoy it- do not do breastfeed, use a substitute…but by all means…try breastfeeding first!

    Successful breastfeeding mums- please understand that not everyone can take it. Instead of attacking, please try to understand and respect situation you are not in.

  54. FL WIC Nutritionist says

    Danielle: There is not a WIC office that discriminates and says you cannot Bottle-feed your baby in our office! Yes you can breastfeed but some babies on oxygen (who are often still breastfeeding in our office) need to be bottlefed or are preemies just discharged and not nursing so thats an incorrect statement you made.

    While I could definitely been seen as a BF Nazi (poor choice of words I know) in my circles I certainly am at a point where I respect a moms decision to nurse or not nurse.

    But this article I hope is a JOKE someone is playing on us….This is very selfish (even in my office many moms don’t think its gross, they think its hard and are put off from it)….The writer of this article seems very immature, but maybe she is voicing the opinion of many….but if you think BF is gross, you are a victim of this backwards society who compares breastfeeding to some form of oral sex which is absolutely SICK….and therein lies the problem….many adults today are upset that they were not breastfed for the wrong reasons, and if my mom told me she didn’t do it because her boobs are funbags for her man rather than food for her child then I’d be upset with my parents too! What some silly people don’t realize is that there is a time and a place and when you have a child its Child 1st, then you, then your man….If you have a man who doesn’t understand that then I can’t call him a MAN!

  55. FL WIC Nutritionist says

    Danielle: There is not a WIC office that discriminates and says you cannot Bottle-feed your baby in our office! Yes you can breastfeed but some babies on oxygen (who are often still breastfeeding in our office) need to be bottlefed or are preemies just discharged and not nursing so thats an incorrect statement you made.

    While I could definitely been seen as a BF Nazi (poor choice of words I know) in my circles I certainly am at a point where I respect a moms decision to nurse or not nurse.

    But this article I hope is a JOKE someone is playing on us….This is very selfish (even in my office many moms don’t think its gross, they think its hard and are put off from it)….The writer of this article seems very immature, but maybe she is voicing the opinion of many….but if you think BF is gross, you are a victim of this backwards society who compares breastfeeding to some form of oral sex which is absolutely SICK….and therein lies the problem….many adults today are upset that they were not breastfed for the wrong reasons, and if my mom told me she didn’t do it because her boobs are funbags for her man rather than food for her child then I’d be upset with my parents too! What some silly people don’t realize is that there is a time and a place and when you have a child its Child 1st, then you, then your man….If you have a man who doesn’t understand that then I can’t call him a MAN!

  56. Marvelous.Intelligent.Lactating.Feminist says

    It’s true that breastfeeding mommies get just as much backlash as formula feeding mommies. I had to listen to friends and family going on about how it will hurt and it is indecent and there is no way of knowing if my milk has nutrients and my baby wil starve to death and so on and so forth. The only times I got a pat on the back for breastfeeding was in the WIC office and at my synagogue. Nobody is immune to getting a full commentary on their parenting decisions.

    The difference is that science, the WHO, the AAP all say that breastfeeding is the best choice. And this writer refused to even give breastfeeding a chance because she wanted to remain a sexual object that can go out and have some drinks now and again. I wasn’t prepared when I read the BFP on the pee stick, but I knew it was time to step it up and make changes. The first few weeks of breastfeeding were tough, we still hit rough spots now and again. But, that little girl is my world and I would give her the oxygen from my lungs if it would help her.

    Danielle, your response absolutely disgusts me. The writer here was selfish and unquestionably wrong in many of her statements. But, you? Your statement is just perverse. I can’t imagine what type of childhood would lead someone to compare oral sex and breastfeeding. If you passed basic human biology in school, you would know that there is no comparison. There have been babies living off of formula for quite some time. There have also been many babies that have died because of formula (look into Nestle’s history). And have you ever thought about what babies ate bedore the invention of formula? They didn’t just die from starvation. Babies have been breastfed since the beginning of time for a reason and hopefully women like you and this writer can be kept in the minority.

  57. Marvelous.Intelligent.Lactating.Feminist says

    It’s true that breastfeeding mommies get just as much backlash as formula feeding mommies. I had to listen to friends and family going on about how it will hurt and it is indecent and there is no way of knowing if my milk has nutrients and my baby wil starve to death and so on and so forth. The only times I got a pat on the back for breastfeeding was in the WIC office and at my synagogue. Nobody is immune to getting a full commentary on their parenting decisions.

    The difference is that science, the WHO, the AAP all say that breastfeeding is the best choice. And this writer refused to even give breastfeeding a chance because she wanted to remain a sexual object that can go out and have some drinks now and again. I wasn’t prepared when I read the BFP on the pee stick, but I knew it was time to step it up and make changes. The first few weeks of breastfeeding were tough, we still hit rough spots now and again. But, that little girl is my world and I would give her the oxygen from my lungs if it would help her.

    Danielle, your response absolutely disgusts me. The writer here was selfish and unquestionably wrong in many of her statements. But, you? Your statement is just perverse. I can’t imagine what type of childhood would lead someone to compare oral sex and breastfeeding. If you passed basic human biology in school, you would know that there is no comparison. There have been babies living off of formula for quite some time. There have also been many babies that have died because of formula (look into Nestle’s history). And have you ever thought about what babies ate bedore the invention of formula? They didn’t just die from starvation. Babies have been breastfed since the beginning of time for a reason and hopefully women like you and this writer can be kept in the minority.

  58. Sharon says

    I came across this article and its responses looking for information for my 27-year-old daughter. My daughter is taking life-saving medication that will prevent her from breastfeeding because the drugs cross the milk. All those years ago when she was born, I nursed my baby and she did not entirely wean until she was nearly out of her toddler years. I made my own baby food, we had a family bed, etc. Despite that, she was not always a robust, healthy child. I don’t care what you do, nothing will guarantee that every birthing experience or parenting experience will turn out just the way it is “supposed” to. While my daughter may not be able to breastfeed, I would like to know that she can still have a positive nursing experience and that she can expect the support of other mothers who are also faced with making their own journey through nuturing a little one. Intimacy with your baby is not solely obtained through breastfeeding; nor should breastfeeding be equated with loving that child more than a mother who does not breastfeed. No child will ever be more loved or wanted than the one whom my daughter will give birth to and mother. I can promise you that this child will lack for nothing. It saddens me to think that after all these years women are not more supportive of each other. It is so important that we share our strengths,remember that nuturing little ones into adulthood can be difficult in the best of circumstances and know that we must be able to lean upon each other for support and advice. I don’t want anyone to make my daughter or any woman feel inadequate at a time when she is most vulnerable, especially when she is making the right choice for her situation. To breastfeed or not to breastfeed as a matter of convenience as suggested by the author is ridiculous, I’ll grant you, but to suggest that all women who bottlefeed do not put their children’s best interest at heart is just as ludicrous.

  59. Sharon says

    I came across this article and its responses looking for information for my 27-year-old daughter. My daughter is taking life-saving medication that will prevent her from breastfeeding because the drugs cross the milk. All those years ago when she was born, I nursed my baby and she did not entirely wean until she was nearly out of her toddler years. I made my own baby food, we had a family bed, etc. Despite that, she was not always a robust, healthy child. I don’t care what you do, nothing will guarantee that every birthing experience or parenting experience will turn out just the way it is “supposed” to. While my daughter may not be able to breastfeed, I would like to know that she can still have a positive nursing experience and that she can expect the support of other mothers who are also faced with making their own journey through nuturing a little one. Intimacy with your baby is not solely obtained through breastfeeding; nor should breastfeeding be equated with loving that child more than a mother who does not breastfeed. No child will ever be more loved or wanted than the one whom my daughter will give birth to and mother. I can promise you that this child will lack for nothing. It saddens me to think that after all these years women are not more supportive of each other. It is so important that we share our strengths,remember that nuturing little ones into adulthood can be difficult in the best of circumstances and know that we must be able to lean upon each other for support and advice. I don’t want anyone to make my daughter or any woman feel inadequate at a time when she is most vulnerable, especially when she is making the right choice for her situation. To breastfeed or not to breastfeed as a matter of convenience as suggested by the author is ridiculous, I’ll grant you, but to suggest that all women who bottlefeed do not put their children’s best interest at heart is just as ludicrous.

  60. natasha says

    This is really a disgusting portrait of the type of mothers our society has produced. She is more concerned with how her breasts look than with the nutrition her children receive. She would rather use her breasts for pleasure than for their natural intent.

  61. natasha says

    This is really a disgusting portrait of the type of mothers our society has produced. She is more concerned with how her breasts look than with the nutrition her children receive. She would rather use her breasts for pleasure than for their natural intent.

  62. Sara says

    For those who apparently care SO MUCH about what my child eats- would you also like to come through my house and make sure I am doing everything else “correctly?”
    I mean, why stop at what I’m putting in her mouth? Since you know what all is best, it’s your duty to “save” my smiley, giggly, happy, HEALTHY 10 month old from her horrible mother who formula feeds her. I mean, heaven forbid I do anything else that is life threatening to her.

    This is ridiculous. The holier-than-thou attitude needs to cease. BOTH sides get crap for their choice- breastfeeding in public, formula feeding in public. Is it not the common goal of ALL mothers/fathers to have thriving, happy and healthy children? Because last time I checked, I HAVE a happy thriving child, and *gasp* she’s formula fed.

    Before anyone chooses to spout off that I’m selfish or naive, I breastfed every 2 hours, 24 hours a day, for 6 weeks until I dried up. I took the special supplements, I ate the special diet, I did EVERYTHING one should do to have a supply. I initially felt guilt ridden because of people like you (some of you BF-nazi’s that responded). But now? I feel ZERO guilt because honestly, my daughter is happy! She’s healthy! She’s thriving!

    Get a life, worry about your OWN kids before you start worrying about mine. I doubt Entirely that you’re doing everything perfectly yourself- take a look in the mirror before you judge others.

  63. Sara says

    For those who apparently care SO MUCH about what my child eats- would you also like to come through my house and make sure I am doing everything else “correctly?”
    I mean, why stop at what I’m putting in her mouth? Since you know what all is best, it’s your duty to “save” my smiley, giggly, happy, HEALTHY 10 month old from her horrible mother who formula feeds her. I mean, heaven forbid I do anything else that is life threatening to her.

    This is ridiculous. The holier-than-thou attitude needs to cease. BOTH sides get crap for their choice- breastfeeding in public, formula feeding in public. Is it not the common goal of ALL mothers/fathers to have thriving, happy and healthy children? Because last time I checked, I HAVE a happy thriving child, and *gasp* she’s formula fed.

    Before anyone chooses to spout off that I’m selfish or naive, I breastfed every 2 hours, 24 hours a day, for 6 weeks until I dried up. I took the special supplements, I ate the special diet, I did EVERYTHING one should do to have a supply. I initially felt guilt ridden because of people like you (some of you BF-nazi’s that responded). But now? I feel ZERO guilt because honestly, my daughter is happy! She’s healthy! She’s thriving!

    Get a life, worry about your OWN kids before you start worrying about mine. I doubt Entirely that you’re doing everything perfectly yourself- take a look in the mirror before you judge others.

  64. Shelly says

    I take it all of you ladies will be disowning your children should they or their partners decide to bottle feed in the future?

    I’m a wonderfully healthy woman who was bottle fed, and my husband is also very fit, healthy and massively intelligent…

    You lot better hope that none of your kids have any sort of physical or mental health problems in their lives because your “wonder milk” has alot to live up to!

    Take care!!!! :D

  65. Shelly says

    I take it all of you ladies will be disowning your children should they or their partners decide to bottle feed in the future?

    I’m a wonderfully healthy woman who was bottle fed, and my husband is also very fit, healthy and massively intelligent…

    You lot better hope that none of your kids have any sort of physical or mental health problems in their lives because your “wonder milk” has alot to live up to!

    Take care!!!! :D

  66. Jessica says

    I don’t understand the my baby is better than yours and I’m a better mother attitude, just becuase you breast fed!! Wake up ladies, some people can’t breast feed and have to use formula because they go to scary places of the world to serve and protect you and your bigamist attitudes, all the while being separated from our own children after they turn 4 months old. I’m all for breast feeding and I’m all for bottle feeding, whatever works for the family. My children are beautiful, healthy, happy, and at the top of their classes…and I’ve never heard their school teachers say “Wow, they are so smart, they must have been breast fed!”

  67. Jessica says

    I don’t understand the my baby is better than yours and I’m a better mother attitude, just becuase you breast fed!! Wake up ladies, some people can’t breast feed and have to use formula because they go to scary places of the world to serve and protect you and your bigamist attitudes, all the while being separated from our own children after they turn 4 months old. I’m all for breast feeding and I’m all for bottle feeding, whatever works for the family. My children are beautiful, healthy, happy, and at the top of their classes…and I’ve never heard their school teachers say “Wow, they are so smart, they must have been breast fed!”

  68. Melissa says

    As a new mom and an abuse survivor I found the article liberating. The majority if the comments I found disheartening. The choices we make are our own and I don’t imagine anyone can understand unless they have been there. For me it was all I could do to even handle being pregnant. I did have an elective cesarean as I knew it would be beyond traumatic pushing out a baby and I also choose to formula feed. I am a labor and delivery nurse so I fully understood and made educated decisions. I don’t care what others think or say, I did what I had to do to be the best mommy I could.

  69. Melissa says

    As a new mom and an abuse survivor I found the article liberating. The majority if the comments I found disheartening. The choices we make are our own and I don’t imagine anyone can understand unless they have been there. For me it was all I could do to even handle being pregnant. I did have an elective cesarean as I knew it would be beyond traumatic pushing out a baby and I also choose to formula feed. I am a labor and delivery nurse so I fully understood and made educated decisions. I don’t care what others think or say, I did what I had to do to be the best mommy I could.

  70. emily says

    Well i totaly agree i didnt breastfeed my child i do not love her any less,it takes two to make a baby why should i be the only one getting up in the middle of the night to feed, its my child i feed her how i like i dont need midwifes breathing down my neck to breastfeed my child, i love my child more than anything and because i bottle fed her i dont feel like a bad mother

  71. emily says

    Well i totaly agree i didnt breastfeed my child i do not love her any less,it takes two to make a baby why should i be the only one getting up in the middle of the night to feed, its my child i feed her how i like i dont need midwifes breathing down my neck to breastfeed my child, i love my child more than anything and because i bottle fed her i dont feel like a bad mother

  72. Amy says

    ‘When we have children, we must suck it up and make some sacrifices, and while our babies are small, the required sacrifices are huge. But it’s just for a short time. This writer’s selfishness is nauseating.’

    I won’t say I am self for choosing to formula feed. The fact that post delivery, I was very unwell which meant my daughter lost over 13% of her body weight initially as I was struggling to feed her. Due to my health and then the effects it was having on my daughter, I decided not to breast feed. The person advantages of formula feed can be seen as selfish (i.e. wearing underwired bras, drinking alcohol, having a night out with your partner as grandparents look after the little one). However there are personal selfish reasons for breast feeding i.e. losing the baby weight quicker, financially saving on not forking out on bottles and feed). The advantages of formula feed for the baby is closer bonding with father, having a little less sleep deprived mother and parents who have had couple time since birth and are not unhappy or stressed. I agree with the author, it is a life style choice and one I am happy about.

  73. Amy says

    ‘When we have children, we must suck it up and make some sacrifices, and while our babies are small, the required sacrifices are huge. But it’s just for a short time. This writer’s selfishness is nauseating.’

    I won’t say I am self for choosing to formula feed. The fact that post delivery, I was very unwell which meant my daughter lost over 13% of her body weight initially as I was struggling to feed her. Due to my health and then the effects it was having on my daughter, I decided not to breast feed. The person advantages of formula feed can be seen as selfish (i.e. wearing underwired bras, drinking alcohol, having a night out with your partner as grandparents look after the little one). However there are personal selfish reasons for breast feeding i.e. losing the baby weight quicker, financially saving on not forking out on bottles and feed). The advantages of formula feed for the baby is closer bonding with father, having a little less sleep deprived mother and parents who have had couple time since birth and are not unhappy or stressed. I agree with the author, it is a life style choice and one I am happy about.

  74. K says

    I am a Student Midwife and I am appalled at this article. I am all for the womans choice as it is her baby after all but the way she talked about women who CHOOSE to breastfeed their child is just wrong. I appreciate that she chose to formula feed and admire her for not feeling guilty about this choice but she wants us to accept her choice when she doesn’t accept the choice that other have made (a prime example is the fact she referred to breastfeeding as ‘creepy’) That quite hypocritical.

  75. K says

    I am a Student Midwife and I am appalled at this article. I am all for the womans choice as it is her baby after all but the way she talked about women who CHOOSE to breastfeed their child is just wrong. I appreciate that she chose to formula feed and admire her for not feeling guilty about this choice but she wants us to accept her choice when she doesn’t accept the choice that other have made (a prime example is the fact she referred to breastfeeding as ‘creepy’) That quite hypocritical.

  76. Clare says

    What a brilliant article. I was subjected to the constant bullying of how breast is best from being 10 weeks pregnant with my first child. At all the classes I attended (NCT and NHS) my husband and I asked the question how do you bottle feed? Only to be told I must not as it would cause no end of problems for me and my baby. More sick, reflux, stomach bugs, the list was endless. So after a traumatic 22 hour labour and assisted delivery I tried to breast feed. The midwives in hospital told me my boobs were too big (size DD – E). After coming home I had several visits from midwives and breast feeding helpers to be told it was all fine. Fine?!? I had blood pouring from my nipples and wanted to die every time my baby needed a feed! At my 5 day check up at the hospital the paediatrician had to be called in over a bank holiday weekend to see my baby as she had lost a dangerous amount of weight. I was feeding around about every 2 hours for half and hour on each breast. This apparently was not enough and the solution was to feed for longer. So already exhausted this added to the pressure. Still thinking I would be the worst mother in the world if I dared to give my baby any formular. When my baby was 7 days old and after being told off by yet another midwife for daring to eat strawberries and grapes and drinking a glass of Ribena (apparently makes the milk taste funny) a very kind midwife came to visit and weigh my vey skinny baby. When the baby screamed for a feed I broke down, I couldn’t do it and finally some realistic help. She opened a carton of formular and gave it to my baby with a cup as not to interfere with the breast feeding. I carried on struggling, crying and wanting it all to be over for a further 2 weeks until my daughter was 3 weeks old, still using a cup. At exactly 3 weeks old ( I had been told I mustn’t do it before) I gave my baby a bottle. What a wonderful experience it was. She guzzled it down as if she had never eaten in her life and then had the best 3 hours sleep in her life and I finally rested. After a further 2 weeks of still trying with breast feeding and giving up after an hour to feed her a bottle I decided enough was enough and stopped altogether. I look back on the day when my daughter was 3 weeks old and had her first bottle as the day that saved me. Had I continued to go on the way I was I would have ended up taking a lot of pills and never waking up. For the first 3 weeks of her life I wished I had never had a baby. She is now 3 years old and a happy healthy confident toddler. Of the NHS and NCT antenatal classes, around 15 babies all in all she is by far the healthiest with only 2 ear infections and 2 stomach bugs plus the odd runny nose in her list of illnesses. We have done swimming classes every week since she was 12 weeks old, toddler groups 2-3 times a week, soft play and she also did a year in nursery while I went back to work. Despite being in the germ breeding grounds she remains healthy. She slept through the night at 6 weeks old and I felt human. I was able to actually do things with my daughter and spend time playing with her rather than just sitting with my boob in her mouth as most of my friends did for the first year. We have an amazing bond and most of all she is happy and well. Most of my friends now have 2nd children and I have watched them go through the struggle of bleeding nipples, mastitis and feeding every 2 hours for the 2nd time. I am now 28 weeks pregnant again and this time round I have no intention of giving in to the breast feeding bullies. All the women that say ‘ try again, 2nd time will be different’ I just say No, I don’t want to. If you can do it and it doesn’t hurt great but if you can’t or don’t want to then that’s great. There are many benefits to bottle feeding as there are negatives to breast feeding it’s just that no one will talk about them. For some women bottle feeding is best.

  77. Clare says

    What a brilliant article. I was subjected to the constant bullying of how breast is best from being 10 weeks pregnant with my first child. At all the classes I attended (NCT and NHS) my husband and I asked the question how do you bottle feed? Only to be told I must not as it would cause no end of problems for me and my baby. More sick, reflux, stomach bugs, the list was endless. So after a traumatic 22 hour labour and assisted delivery I tried to breast feed. The midwives in hospital told me my boobs were too big (size DD – E). After coming home I had several visits from midwives and breast feeding helpers to be told it was all fine. Fine?!? I had blood pouring from my nipples and wanted to die every time my baby needed a feed! At my 5 day check up at the hospital the paediatrician had to be called in over a bank holiday weekend to see my baby as she had lost a dangerous amount of weight. I was feeding around about every 2 hours for half and hour on each breast. This apparently was not enough and the solution was to feed for longer. So already exhausted this added to the pressure. Still thinking I would be the worst mother in the world if I dared to give my baby any formular. When my baby was 7 days old and after being told off by yet another midwife for daring to eat strawberries and grapes and drinking a glass of Ribena (apparently makes the milk taste funny) a very kind midwife came to visit and weigh my vey skinny baby. When the baby screamed for a feed I broke down, I couldn’t do it and finally some realistic help. She opened a carton of formular and gave it to my baby with a cup as not to interfere with the breast feeding. I carried on struggling, crying and wanting it all to be over for a further 2 weeks until my daughter was 3 weeks old, still using a cup. At exactly 3 weeks old ( I had been told I mustn’t do it before) I gave my baby a bottle. What a wonderful experience it was. She guzzled it down as if she had never eaten in her life and then had the best 3 hours sleep in her life and I finally rested. After a further 2 weeks of still trying with breast feeding and giving up after an hour to feed her a bottle I decided enough was enough and stopped altogether. I look back on the day when my daughter was 3 weeks old and had her first bottle as the day that saved me. Had I continued to go on the way I was I would have ended up taking a lot of pills and never waking up. For the first 3 weeks of her life I wished I had never had a baby. She is now 3 years old and a happy healthy confident toddler. Of the NHS and NCT antenatal classes, around 15 babies all in all she is by far the healthiest with only 2 ear infections and 2 stomach bugs plus the odd runny nose in her list of illnesses. We have done swimming classes every week since she was 12 weeks old, toddler groups 2-3 times a week, soft play and she also did a year in nursery while I went back to work. Despite being in the germ breeding grounds she remains healthy. She slept through the night at 6 weeks old and I felt human. I was able to actually do things with my daughter and spend time playing with her rather than just sitting with my boob in her mouth as most of my friends did for the first year. We have an amazing bond and most of all she is happy and well. Most of my friends now have 2nd children and I have watched them go through the struggle of bleeding nipples, mastitis and feeding every 2 hours for the 2nd time. I am now 28 weeks pregnant again and this time round I have no intention of giving in to the breast feeding bullies. All the women that say ‘ try again, 2nd time will be different’ I just say No, I don’t want to. If you can do it and it doesn’t hurt great but if you can’t or don’t want to then that’s great. There are many benefits to bottle feeding as there are negatives to breast feeding it’s just that no one will talk about them. For some women bottle feeding is best.

  78. Tia says

    What Kathryn put in her article is her choice and her opinion. I had a young midwife who was amazing and appreciated my decision. the older one however, make women who choose to bottle feed feel guilty. I bottle fed my son, he is a healthly boy and brighter than your average baby -this has been verified. What people should be more concerned about is pregnant women smoking and drinking throughout pregnancy – now that is selfish! Deciding to bottle fed my child was my decision. if anything i was being less selfish by letting my partner have a special bond with my son aswell as me. just because i didnt endure the potential pain of breast feeding doesnt mean i love my son any less.
    I would never look down on any woman who breast feeds in public – so i expect the same in return.

  79. Tia says

    What Kathryn put in her article is her choice and her opinion. I had a young midwife who was amazing and appreciated my decision. the older one however, make women who choose to bottle feed feel guilty. I bottle fed my son, he is a healthly boy and brighter than your average baby -this has been verified. What people should be more concerned about is pregnant women smoking and drinking throughout pregnancy – now that is selfish! Deciding to bottle fed my child was my decision. if anything i was being less selfish by letting my partner have a special bond with my son aswell as me. just because i didnt endure the potential pain of breast feeding doesnt mean i love my son any less.
    I would never look down on any woman who breast feeds in public – so i expect the same in return.

  80. Emma says

    I completely agree with both Clare and Tia.I have a 8 year old daugther and I too felt bullied and constantly asked are you going to breastfeed?(and why do you need to know?so you can judge me!!!)its nobodys business and down to personal preference.I wanted my little girl to bond with her daddy as well as me and to be perfectly honest i didnt want to be left with saggy breasts in my early 20s.that may sound selfish however i proudly show off my “mummy tummy” which is covered in stretch marks.I have an amazing bond with my little girl she is my world!however my friend who did breastfeed now hates her breasts after breastfeeding,doesnt regret doing it however is now considering a boob job as she gets so down about it.im happy i kept my boobs just for me and i dont think that it is selfish,i had heard horror stories of bleeding nipples,cracked,agonising pain,i just wanted to enjoy my baby.my daugther is not any worse off from being formula fed.she is healthly and everybody says one of the happiest,content little girls they have ever seen and smiles constantly, and as for all the tests that prove breastfeed children are smarter than formula feed babies,i think this statement is unfair!i cant speak for everone but my daughter is top of her class with writing,reading and maths were as another child i know who was breastfeed is struggling,so id like to see the results for these tests and who it was that carried them out.i dont have a problem with anybody who decides breatfeeding is for them thats great.i just dont think that mums who decide its not for them should be made to feel guilty for that decision.doesnt mean we love our babies any less.so hats off to this article,and having the courage to come out and say it.i’ll join you I’m a formula fan and proud of it!!

  81. Emma says

    I completely agree with both Clare and Tia.I have a 8 year old daugther and I too felt bullied and constantly asked are you going to breastfeed?(and why do you need to know?so you can judge me!!!)its nobodys business and down to personal preference.I wanted my little girl to bond with her daddy as well as me and to be perfectly honest i didnt want to be left with saggy breasts in my early 20s.that may sound selfish however i proudly show off my “mummy tummy” which is covered in stretch marks.I have an amazing bond with my little girl she is my world!however my friend who did breastfeed now hates her breasts after breastfeeding,doesnt regret doing it however is now considering a boob job as she gets so down about it.im happy i kept my boobs just for me and i dont think that it is selfish,i had heard horror stories of bleeding nipples,cracked,agonising pain,i just wanted to enjoy my baby.my daugther is not any worse off from being formula fed.she is healthly and everybody says one of the happiest,content little girls they have ever seen and smiles constantly, and as for all the tests that prove breastfeed children are smarter than formula feed babies,i think this statement is unfair!i cant speak for everone but my daughter is top of her class with writing,reading and maths were as another child i know who was breastfeed is struggling,so id like to see the results for these tests and who it was that carried them out.i dont have a problem with anybody who decides breatfeeding is for them thats great.i just dont think that mums who decide its not for them should be made to feel guilty for that decision.doesnt mean we love our babies any less.so hats off to this article,and having the courage to come out and say it.i’ll join you I’m a formula fan and proud of it!!

  82. Dawn says

    I agree with “K” in that her decision to bottle feed and be confident and proud of her decision is completely her choice and her attitude is admirable. However, her irresponsible way of referring to and discussing breastfeeding and breastfeeding mothers is appalling and while her candidness is to be applauded, it is an alienating report towards breastfeeding mothers. My husband does not feel like he missed out on any bonding during the six and a half months I breastfed my daughter as he gave her bottles of expressed milk at night to allow me to sleep and cuddled and played with his daughter between feeds, allowing them to bond and me to get dressed, tidy up or simply sit down and have a cup of tea. Breastfeeding does not automatically mean that the fathers are unable to bond with their babies and journalists should really be careful in the way they word their own feelings so as not to portray an inaccurate view of things. Very irresponsible.

  83. Helena says

    Whatever her reasons for not breastfeeding, the article was still written in a manner that could potentially deter mothers from even attempting to breastfeed. Bearing in mind her position within a prominent baby magazine, it was massively irresponsible, especially the mis-truths she published about breastfeeding.

    I was one of the mothers who deeply considered my child when making parenting choices. I researched feeding methods, and I hate to break it to the formula feeders, but formula is in no way comparable to breastmilk. Scientific research backs it up. I struggled for 6 months to give my baby the best food. I dealt with cracked bleeding nipples, a bad latch, tongue tie, lip tie, thrush, plugged ducts, and I don’t even like the way it feels, but at 8 months I’m still feeding him. Can anyone understand why I would be offended by someone deciding not to breastfeed for such selfish reasons?

  84. Corinne says

    What a fantastic article! Why shouldn’t she be free to express her opinions as she wishes. Although the article was biased towards bottle feeding, isn’t all journalism biased towards the editors view nowadays? I also think the creepy remark has been taken out of context, she did not generalise breast feeding as creepy, she simply said that seeing HER ‘fun bags’ being latched onto was not her cup of tea! Good on you.

  85. Valerie says

    I have my first son who is almost 3 weeks old. He was born at almost 10 pounds and was starving since the second he left the womb. I attempted to breastfeed, but he was never satisfied. I felt like a terrible, selfish person giving him his first bottle, but once I saw him satisfied and full, I have not turned back. I never was able to produce enough milk on my own to feed him and never made more than an ounce from each breast when pumping…this is just not enough for my big guy. I still pump what I do produce so that he gets the benifits that I can provide, but I refuse to spend the first year of my son’s life with him attached to my chest and starving just so I don’t feel guilty about a bottle. I cried over this at first and had negative feelings toward my mother (who is one of my favorite people on the planet) because she continually brought up how the bottles were filled with formula instead of breastmilk. I don’t want to feel this way and I was amazed at how few articles there are supporting the logical decision to suppliment with formula for some women. I feel like breast feeding was all I thought about when I was trying to do this exclusively, and I missed out on the first few days of my son’s life, and could have headed down the postpartum depression path if I had continued to beat myself up for my inability to produce enough milk for my baby. If you can breastfeed, enjoy it and bank the money you save on formula, but please be supportive of formula feeding mothers as well because odds are they have beat themselves up enough about the move to formula without your input.

  86. Valerie says

    I have my first son who is almost 3 weeks old. He was born at almost 10 pounds and was starving since the second he left the womb. I attempted to breastfeed, but he was never satisfied. I felt like a terrible, selfish person giving him his first bottle, but once I saw him satisfied and full, I have not turned back. I never was able to produce enough milk on my own to feed him and never made more than an ounce from each breast when pumping…this is just not enough for my big guy. I still pump what I do produce so that he gets the benifits that I can provide, but I refuse to spend the first year of my son’s life with him attached to my chest and starving just so I don’t feel guilty about a bottle. I cried over this at first and had negative feelings toward my mother (who is one of my favorite people on the planet) because she continually brought up how the bottles were filled with formula instead of breastmilk. I don’t want to feel this way and I was amazed at how few articles there are supporting the logical decision to suppliment with formula for some women. I feel like breast feeding was all I thought about when I was trying to do this exclusively, and I missed out on the first few days of my son’s life, and could have headed down the postpartum depression path if I had continued to beat myself up for my inability to produce enough milk for my baby. If you can breastfeed, enjoy it and bank the money you save on formula, but please be supportive of formula feeding mothers as well because odds are they have beat themselves up enough about the move to formula without your input.

  87. Paula says

    People can say what they want about her attitude toward breastfeeding. Guess what? Her remarks towards breastfeeding are NOTHING compared to what breastfeeding mothers have said about formula feeders, so for anyone upset about her attitude, please get over it. If the breastfeeding community can dish it out, they should be able to take it. As for me, I tried. I gave it my best shot, not that it’s anyone else’s business, which certain people don’t understand. They ask if I’m breastfeeding, and when I say “no,” they ask “WHY?” Like the use of MY BREASTS are ANY business of theirs? The whole reason behind my use of formula, btw, is highly traumatic and personal, and I resent the way I have been grilled for information. Unless you’re my doctor or husband, it’s NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS. Certain people in my family went even more holier than thou when they found out I wasn’t breastfeeding, and I was shamed for it. Articles like this make me feel better.

  88. Nursing mom says

    I agree with whoever said you are selfish. the only reason you have breasts is to breastfeed your child! if you decided to have kids you had to know that it comes with compromising your comfort (and wine). i dont understand how can a women have any feelings to her baby if she never nursed him. in my opinion baby formula should be prescribed by doctors to women who cannot nurse their children for health reasons. and women like you who don’t want to nurse because they are selfish shouldn’t have kids at all! just fui – i was nursed for 2 years and my sister for 3 years! my baby is 6 mo old and im pregnant and nursing and have no plans to stop! nursing my baby is the best thing i ever experienced. and i pity you because there’s an aspect of motherhood you will never experience. but i don’t blame you its the society that we live in that brain washes women to be who they are not intended to be (a beautiful picture in a magazine and nothing but that) no wonder you feel guilty. you should!!

  89. Nursing mom says

    I agree with whoever said you are selfish. the only reason you have breasts is to breastfeed your child! if you decided to have kids you had to know that it comes with compromising your comfort (and wine). i dont understand how can a women have any feelings to her baby if she never nursed him. in my opinion baby formula should be prescribed by doctors to women who cannot nurse their children for health reasons. and women like you who don’t want to nurse because they are selfish shouldn’t have kids at all! just fui – i was nursed for 2 years and my sister for 3 years! my baby is 6 mo old and im pregnant and nursing and have no plans to stop! nursing my baby is the best thing i ever experienced. and i pity you because there’s an aspect of motherhood you will never experience. but i don’t blame you its the society that we live in that brain washes women to be who they are not intended to be (a beautiful picture in a magazine and nothing but that) no wonder you feel guilty. you should!!

  90. Karen B says

    I firmly believe that sometimes you just have to protect your sanity so you can be the best parent you can be. There are times when you are just so stressed that it makes sense to just give a bottle. I imagine Clare loved life after realizing that you can give a bottle. So for the comment where the mom chooses not to breastfeed because it makes your boobs saggy… ummm… pregnancy starts the process and there’s such a thing called gravity!! It happens!! You never know someone’s personal story and I never ask if someone is breastfeeding if I don’t know them. What they do is their business.

    That being said, I exclusively breastfed my baby for 2.5 years and I would not trade it for the the world. I was one of those pregnant moms who thought, oh i’ll just breastfeed for a bit then switch to formula. We got off to a rough start, then everything just clicked for us one day and I was reluctant to stop. But let me just say that I never felt like I was tied down or had 3 hour feeding sessions. Keep in mind that I don’t think that formula is evil, I think it’s there for moms who tried but couldn’t for one reason or another. There are moms who also have had double masectomies and just pysically CANNOT do it. Why should she have to defend herself then?

  91. Lexi says

    I’m 26 weeks pregnant. If I can breastfeed I will. If I can’t I won’t.

    My Mum had a horrible time with breastfeeding, she basically was told to stop or she wouldn’t have any nipples left. My Gran tried with her first but her milk wasn’t nutritious enough and her baby started losing weight. For her next two pregnancies they were straight on the bottle the moment they were out and she has never regretted it. Her babies were healthy and that’s all she cared about.

    My Mum gave me this little gem: “You are the mum, you chose what you are going to do and don’t let others stop you.”

    I don’t think anyone has any right to look down their noses at people who breastfeed or don’t breastfeed. You don’t know their situation, so don’t butt in.

    “Opinions are like arseholes, everyone’s got one.”

  92. sarah says

    Thanks so much for writing this! This is the only topic I have fetl so guilty about during my pregnancy. I do not have a desire to breast feed and it is refreshing to know I am not the only one. It seems like for the past 2 years, there has been this big wave of pro breast milk and everyone feels they need to put the pressure and guilt on anyone that is not along for the ride. I am not any worse of a mother if I breast feed and I still have my babies best interest at heart. I am a grown woman and it is my choice, my body. I wish there were more sites out there like this one.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Kathryn Blundell can say what she likes about breastfeeding; studies have shown that whether or not a mum chooses to breastfeed her baby makes no difference to the perkiness of her breasts.  In fact, it’s pregnancy that takes its toll on our ‘fun bags’, as she likes to call them – fluctuations in size and hormone levels cause changes that can reduce the elasticity of the skin and make our once pert puppies lose some of their, well…bite. [...]

  2. [...] Kathryn Blundell can say what she likes about breastfeeding; studies have shown that whether or not a mum chooses to breastfeed her baby makes no difference to the perkiness of her breasts.  In fact, it’s pregnancy that takes its toll on our ‘fun bags’, as she likes to call them – fluctuations in size and hormone levels cause changes that can reduce the elasticity of the skin and make our once pert puppies lose some of their, well…bite. [...]

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