Sunday, September 26, 2010

Double Standards?

In a recent discussion about the Similac recall, several moms said they were glad they breastfed their babies.  The formula feeding moms got upset and chastized the BFing moms for "making them feel worse" and told that they were essentially saying "told you so".  Yet in the same discussion, moms who used Enfamil were saying they were glad they didn't use similac, or glad they used an off-brand and weren't affected by the recall, but those comments were perfectly fine. The only comments that the formula feeding moms took exception to, were the ones that were made by breastfeeding moms, when the only difference in the comment was "I'm glad I breastfeed" vs "I'm glad I use Target Brand".  It was pretty interesting to read actually.  I'm not going to deny that there are parents out there who are on the extreme side of Lactivism and try to make moms who formula feed feel bad, but there was none of that in this discussion, and still the formula feeding moms were on the defensive.
The Luscious Lactivist posted a blog the other day about needing to have open discussions and focus on doing what is best for our children. I whole-heartedly agree.  Its time to put aside any assumptions we have about other mothers, put down the defenses and just have a conversation.


well I BF and eventually did formula, but I used Good Start. But a FM shouldn't get mad cause someone says "Thank God I wasn't affected by the recall." If she gets mad and says it makes her feel bad then its her own fault. She did what she thought was best for her and her child. There's no law saying she has to BF her child. so if she feels bad either she feels SHE didn't do enough for her child or thinks she should have BF and didn't and now feels bad cause she thinks she didn't do the right thing in the first place. LADIES: If you BF or IF you DON'T it's ok. Don't let another mom make you feel bad cause you did what you thought was right. Parenting doesn't come w an instruction manual. you have to experiment and wing it sometimes. But only you can decide what is best and you need to stand by that decision. Because standing up for what you believe will only make you a better stronger mother for you child(ren)......
I usually find that it's not the moms who MADE the CHOICE to ff that are offended. Rather, it's the moms who were not able to bf, and thus, HAD to ff. As a mom in that group, I can tell you that the constant reminders of failure are tough to accept. Imagine preparing to bf for 9 months, having read all the literature and fully knowing how much better is it for the mom and the baby, doing everything possible to make it happen, and it just didn't work. It's painful, so when someone else shows up out of nowhere (or on the internet) and says 'glad this doesn't affect me because I bf', the ff-ing mom hears 'glad this doesn't affect me because I was able to bf and, as a result, was better able to protect my child from the atrocities of formula'. It's not fair, and it probably is a double standard, but hurt feelings are hurt feelings, and as humans we often don't have the best way of dealing with them.
People who bf are usually proud of their accomplishments, as they should be. Bf'ing isn't easy, and it takes a lot from a woman to do so. However, being able to bf doesn't make one mom better than another who isn't, and I think that more acceptance needs to be practiced. Saying things like 'I'm glad this doesn't affect me' are fine, but saying things like 'breastfeeding is the best feeding' or 'I'm supermom because I breastfeed' really aren't helpful and, actually, are kind of self-indulgent.
momto2boys said everything I was thinking and said it better than I ever could.
Shai... I guess Todd is signed in on my computer. Sorry. That was Minna.
Thanks for the shout out!

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