Sally - posted on 03/25/2009 ( 69 moms have responded )
I am pregnant with my first baby (due any day now) and I am disturbed by the peer group pressure which exists about breastfeeding.
For personal reasons I have decided that I will not be breastfeeding my baby, and the response I have received about this decision has been astounding to me. People who have felt warranted to pass judgement on my decision have included the nurses at my doctor's office, other mothers and even strangers, and their comments have varied from "It is irresponsible" to "You do not deserve to have children." (I have received similar feedback about my decision to have an epidural during birth but that is another story.)
I personally would not dream of questioning another mother's decisions about her child - apart from the fact that it is none of my business, I believe that the vast majority of mothers are good people who want the best for their babies, and will do whatever works for their family. I have a great respect for mothers, especially in this day and age where they have more and more to do! Rather than beating each other down for doing things differently, I think we should support each other in whatever decisions we make about child rearing (even if it is not a choice we would of made for ourselves).
If you are a breastfeeder - I take my hat off to you! If you are not - same applies. The most important thing is that your baby has one (or two or more!) parents that love him / her. If this is the case, I do not think any amount of breastfeeding or otherwise will make a scrap of difference into what kind of person your baby becomes.
My husband and I are delighted about the impending birth of our little guy, and are ready to make all the sacrifices in the world for him, and I reject the notion that my decision not to breastfeed makes me "not deserve to have children."