Mothering and Life in General
I Am A Mean Girl?
Today I was graced with reading Breastfeeders Are Mean Girls, Posted by Annie Krasnow. If you have yet to read and wanted to, I would go ahead with caution. Especially if you are having a good day/morning, or, like me, have not fully woken up. I could not leave my below comment on the post because it was too long.
Even before I knew I was pregnant, I knew I was going to breastfeed my baby. I knew not only was it right but cheap and normal. I knew mothers choose different options and I was fine with everyone just feeding their own child – the way they want. I was at peace with everything then.
Then K2 arrived. I have not been more bullied, pushed around, and degraded more than I am now, being a breastfeeding mother. I could not understand. I was feeding my child, yet I would have people come to me and tell me that my milk is going to dry up, that she’s not getting enough, that I am starving my baby, for me to cover up or go to another room. And that is just the tip of what was said to me.
When they figured out I would not listen to the myths, believe them and conform to their belief of healthy and civil they moved on to my husband; who was against me breastfeeding in the first place. I cannot count how many times DH and I broke up or fought within the first year alone, because of the lack of knowledge about breastfeeding. Heaven forbid I, as a first-time-mother, know anything either. So please forgive me, if I take this whine without cheese a bit offensive.
Yes, when it comes to breastfeeding conversations this author may feel that she is bullied. Thankfully, I have not seen any breastfeeding advocate bringing up breastfeeding in the intent to bully or hurt, but rather to inform. I know if I hear about misinformation, I am correcting it and I can’t own how the other person takes what I say out of context or for their feelings. I try to be as tactful as possible and most often my heat goes towards the dumb medical professional that gave wrong misleading advise in the first place.
When you look at the big picture really, I hate to tell this author, it’s breastfeeding that takes more of the hit. You don’t see bottle-feeding mothers being asked to cover up or asked to go to another room. You don’t see pictures of bottles being deleted from Social Networks. You don’t see bottle-feeding mothers being told that they are not making enough formula or the kind of formula is not right for the baby. You will never see a news article of a bottle-feeding mother and child being asked to leave a public place. You also would never hear about a doctor telling a mother that formula is not enough that she should supplement with breastfeeding.
So where does the hate and bullying really lie? Is it Formula or Breast that starts the attacks? Who bullies more or more often? Well you can always refer back to the author’s post and read the comments for conformation. In my experience I had a bit of both, at first is was those who never breastfed, and now it’s those who breastfeed; but not as long as K2 and I do. The most hurtful and damaging of the two sides was from people who are considered family and who has never latched a baby to their breast. Reason being, it caused us to crumble our family’s foundation with resentment and mistrust in which we are still, three years later, trying to build up.
The only thing I can say is, before you say or write something, trade the feeding method with your own, if it would offend you, don’t ask for it to happen and don’t say or write it out loud. And for this author to look at the larger picture and how she is not helping matters.