Jodi - posted on 01/10/2010 ( 10 moms have responded )
My answer is no! But, I am getting very irritated with some of them messaging me calling me judgemental, quick to comment and quick to assume. Here's your chance to vent it out ladies!
Just for the record, this is how I feel about it:
Women who formula feed their children are just as good mom's as women who breastfeed or supplement their children! I do feel however that there are MANY mothers who are seriously misinformed, under-educated and unsupported about breastfeeding. I do feel that many mothers who use formula do so because they were incorrectly told or assumed that they weren't making enough milk or that their child wasn't healthy enough or gaining enough weight, either by a professional or a friend/family member. I also feel that many mothers give up breastfeeding because they feel it was too hard and that formula was more convenient. AGAIN, there is nothing WRONG with this, they are good mothers, but that is how I see it.
I understand that there are mothers who, for medical reasons, do not produce milk at all or not enough, but they are so few and far between there can't possibly be as many out there as some claim to be! I do feel that many mothers who are either told or just assume that they don't make enough milk do not explore all their options, such as herbs, medicines or proper support, OR they choose to supplement early on further decreasing their supply and making it harder.
Furthermore, in my personal experience, I was told by my pediatrician to supplement my daughter (and eventually was advised to switch completely to formula), but thanks to a great midwife and wonderful support system, I stuck with breastfeeding. My daughter lost 2 lbs total from her original birthweight before my supply was established, it took nearly 6 weeks for her to start gaining any weight back. We had a horrible time with latch, I suffered cracked, blistered and bleeding nipples, I cried every feed for weeks, I nearly switched to formula. It wasn't easy, does it make me a better mom for NOT choosing formula? Absolutely not, I was just bound and determined to breastfeed. Should mothers who use formula feel guilty...NO!
In summary, please stop assuming I had a breeze of a time with breastfeeding...it was hell for WEEKS and I was worried about my daughter's health at times. It was my choice to breastfeed, but the choice to formula feed is an option. Unfortunately, this country turns to formula first and breastfeeding is nearly unheard of. Formula is used for it's convenience despite studies proving breastmilk is the best milk for infants and babies. Many mothers claim that women like myself, who breastfeed and feel that formula feeding is an epidemic in the United States, are judgemental about mothers who formula feed...not so. I state my observations and opinions about the state of breastfeeding vs formula feeding in the United States, and why it is the way it is. So ladies, here's your chance...vent about the guilt you feel, about the judgements and comments...please get it out once and for all and stop assuming everyone is out to call you an unfit parent! Oh yeah, and stop private messaging ME and calling ME a bad person!