nursing protest postmortem
We just got back from the nurse-in, which was inspiring, hot, sweaty, and of course, milky. It was amazing to see so many moms and babies representing...not to mention the sling fashion show. We're curious to hear whether there will be any response from The View...and we'd love to hear anyone else's impressions of the event.
I thought it was great, but I was a little annoyed by some of the chants. It seems like the only way to support breastfeeding is to say that formula is evil. I can understand why it's important to say how great breastfeeding is but I do feel bad for those moms who don't succeed with it or have extenuating circumstances.
comment by Anonymous at June 6, 2005 3:46 PM
i didn't hear any of the chants so i can't comment on those, but i don't agree with judging mamas who formula feed. there are so many factors that go into baby-feeding such as time, marital or partnerned status, type of job, income level and awareness. it's wonderful to breastfeed if that is what works for you and your baby ( i bf-ed my daughter for 3 1/2 years!) but mamas who don't have the wherewithall to breastfeed should not be judged. it is important to realize that all women are not in an economic situation where they are able to 'attachment parent', even if they would prefer to do so. 20% of families in the US are living in poverty--it is extrememly difficult to single parent as a poor mother and try to do hardcore AP. women need more choices, information and resources and the ability and support to be able to make whatever decision is right for them!!! it is important that we talk about what attachment parenting means outside of a middle class context.
love to all the beautiful mamas and babies that came today!!!
comment by Anonymous at June 6, 2005 5:35 PM
Yes, agree with both of you guys. The chant (or any utterance of) "breast is best" really oversimplifies a very complex situation. In fact, the word "best" in general isn't so helpful to new moms. "Lactophobia's got to go, hey, ho" was awesome though!
comment by Ceridwen Morris at June 6, 2005 6:23 PM
I think it's awesome that you guys stood up for public breastfeeding. The View's attitude's were offensively close-minded. However I do agree that the anti-formula chants are not the way to go. I struggled for months to get my baby to breastfeed and ended up pumping all his meals for 4 months until b/c of my work-schedule and his becoming more active and not allowing me time to pump, my supply diminished. I now feed him organic Nature's One formula, which is so much better than the corn-syrup-filled conventional stuff out there. And I'm grateful for breastpumps allowing me to at least give him his first 4 months of breastmilk, exhausting as it was, pumping, cleaning + feeding.
comment by Kuroneko at June 7, 2005 8:47 AM
Just Read the article in the NYT. I was back in NYC last November and a woman across the aisle on the Stamford local began breast feeding her baby. As a male currently living in North Carolina, I was at first a little taken back, but after a moment my reaction was totally positive and supportive. I still do not see this I live now, but I hope the mothers here benefit from your lead.
comment by Owen at June 7, 2005 10:28 AM
I missed Barbara Walter's comments, but it just shows 1) that she's old and 2)that she probably wasn't a mom. Breastfeeding is the number one best thing you can do for your baby. I breastfed both of my kids for more than 2 years (not exclusively of course) and they have never been sick (have taken antibiotics about twice in their lives), they are smarter than average (my daughter was just inducted into the National Honor Society), and they are close to me. Even though they're teenagers and going through normal healthy rebellion, they still respect me and want to be close to me (just not in public). I breastfed everywhere (on transatlantic flights, at Disneyworld, at the coffee shop) and I never was hassled. My children never screamed and carried on and maybe people who don't like breastfeeding should realize that that is the alternative. You can be discreet, but at the same time you should be proud. Proud that you are doing what's best for your child, and yes, doing what nature intended breasts to do. As an old hand, I'd be happy to counsel anybody who's having problems and tell anybody who's interested don't give up! The bond you create with your child can never be broken.
comment by alex at June 7, 2005 10:37 AM
Funny you should mention Disneyworld...of every place I breastfed (including while clearing customs and running through the airport, etc) that felt the weirdest to me. Babies, babies everywhere, but not a single other nursing mother. I could not find a secluded spot anywhere, except for the smoking corralls. My son was 10 months old at the time and we had one very uncomfortable feeding sitting on a railing amidst glares. Luckily, his Pavlovian response to darkness proved useful: he nursed through the entire Pirates of the Caribbean ride and the Enchanted Tiki Room show!
comment by rebecca at June 7, 2005 11:21 AM
yeah, I'm sure there were glares, but I found Disneyworld so annoyingly expensive and tacky, with so many oversized people, I didn't care. I just came back on the site cause the NY Times is featuring your demonstration on their web front page--well done! Baba Wawa has opened a can of worms.
comment by alex at June 7, 2005 3:17 PM
As the Irish say: "Good on ya." Serves Barbara right, dinosaur that she is.
Since my mother fled the room in anger when my wife fed our first born in her presence I've been adamant on the absolute right of moms to breastfeed anywhere they want to or need to. The rest of the dinosaurs will just have to live with it (or retire to dinosaur heaven).
Would you mind if I used one of your photos for my own blog post (to read it click on accompanying hyperlink) about this (of course I'll link to your post & credit the image to you)?
Sounds like those chants came from the La Leche League folks. It's a religion for them & they can get pretty intolerant about it.
comment by Richard Silverstein at June 8, 2005 4:45 AM