Feeling judged for using formula

Anna - posted on 01/07/2012 ( 177 moms have responded )

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I think we have all seen posts that go like this: "Why do breastfeeding moms judge moms that choose formula?"

I breastfeed my children for many reasons and I am very happy with my choice. It's not a thing I discuss much with strangers but I do breastfeed in public quite a bit and I try to do it proudly because, well otherwise I would probably get self-conscious.However, I would never want someone who uses formula to feel as though I thought she was an inferior mom.

So I was wondering, from moms who use formula, what is it specifically that people say that makes you feel inferior? Is there any way that moms on both sides can shoot the breeze so to speak about feeding their babies without either side feeling offended, or should this topic just be avoided? Or should it be reserved for close friends and relatives? And at what point does talking about my choices turn into judging you for yours?

Also, where do you feel the most judgement comes from? Is it from stuff that you read, from strangers, or from family and friends?

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Maree - posted on 01/12/2012

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I don't have the studies on my computer right now but if i get time to look them up i'll put up a link. I have no idea of their attitudes but what i was saying is that MAYBE they are showing their disapproving looks because they breast feed...MAYBE !!!!!



The FACT i am talking about is that it is more common for older women to breast feed than younger ones.

It is also more common for women with more money to breast feed which is strange because you would think it would be the opposite.

The studies compare educated women to women who have had rough lives and not finished school.....the educated ones breast feed much more often,i guess it comes down to education and maybe intelligence or attitude...not sure but it has been studied and thats what they came up with.



I believe the studies but you don't have to...doesn't really matter to me,all i was saying though is that it is possible that older women look down on rachael...or any other ff mum,because they know the benefits of bf and believe ff mums are doing the wrong thing...just an opinion.

Why do you think so many people state that it's OLD women that make rude comments ???? Old women breast fed most of the time. I know there was a time they were giving carnation milk or some other thing that you get fom woollies but in general people breast fed back in the day so the oldies juge the young ones...makes sense to me that that also would include 40 year old women....why else do you think older women in particular would judge her??? I'm interested if you have a different opinion on this.

Allison - posted on 01/12/2012

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i've done both with both kids. with my oldest he had alot of health problems and for the first two weeks of his life he ended up loosing a pound when i was breast feeding; needless to say depression came with the realization i couldnt give my baby what he needed. so my ob had me stop breastfeeding for my own sake as well as his. with my second i made it a month breastfeeding and never produced more than seven ounces in a day which i'm sure everyone here knows by the end of month one a mother should be producing 21 ounces or more. i think breastfeeding is great if you can do it, however some moms cant for whatever reason they cant. so they turn to formula. and you know what as long as i try to breastfeed at first then thats all i hope for but if it doesnt work out it doesnt work out. really its not worth getting in a tizzy about, as long as the formula used is approved by the fda and the pediatrician its all good

Mrs. - posted on 01/12/2012

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Yeesh, well, yeah, I've felt judged for using formula. Obviously on COM, in my first mom's group, by my husband grandmother, by a friend that is in LL and by people who are strangers watching me feed my baby. The funny thing is I did bf the first three months and only started supplementing with formula until the third month. So, sometimes the bottle would be full of breast milk and I would get questions like, "Are you feeding your baby formula!" I'd say it was pumped breast milk and these people would look relieved and give me a talk about how lazy mothers who ff are. I thought it was interesting behaviour.



So, when I did exclusively ff, I decided to just tell the judgemental people I know that it was pumped breast milk. What are they going to say, that I'm lying? Let them think what they want, my daughter is two and a half and has had like two colds. They can say what they want, I just think she has her father's immune system — he never gets sick either (and was a ff baby too).



I'm of the opinion that when other mothers get judgemental about your choice of feeding your infant, it reflects on their feelings of inadequacy as a mother and I should not internalize that. It is hard to gain confidence as a new mother, to feel you have value, to get feedback on how well you are doing when you are a new mom. Some women latch on (pun intended) to the judgmental bf'ing mother identity as a way of giving themselves an emotional stamp of approval, it is a way of saying, "I'm not valued as much any more now that I'm seen JUST as this baby's mom, but the more I separate myself from the "bad" moms, I can at least have proof I'm one of the top moms."



I find it sad that there isn't more out there for new moms to feel valuable about besides knocking down other moms for how they feed their kids...but there isn't a lot this day and age where women are supposed to be able to do everything and be a top shelf mom. Women are competitive, they want to be valued and have a purpose...I wish the bf'ing thing didn't get co-opted into that whole mess, but IMO it has.

Jodi - posted on 01/12/2012

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You know what...I've been thinking about this. And I'm wondering what those *looks* are from women over 40 that are of disapproval. Who is to say it isn't gravity and the frown lines aren't showing :P

Jodi - posted on 01/12/2012

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Which studies, Kel? I am just interested from the perspective of a woman over 40.....

Maree - posted on 01/12/2012

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I was just suggesting to rachael that maybe she was looked down apon by women over 40 (her words not mine) because studies have suggested that older women breast feed more often than younger women,women who are doing well financially,educated women etc etc so it could be a reason why she never had an issue with young women commenting...yikes,it was just a thought !!!!

i don't exactly see why it was necessary to let me know your age as it has nothing to do with the comment i made to Rachael and the rest of it....well it's been talked about enough and i'm done with it so i don't have a reply.

Becky - posted on 01/11/2012

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My exclusively breastfed until 8 months and breastfed until 2 weeks shy of 2, never had a drop of formula, son, has an allergy to peanuts. I can't even blame genetics, because no one in either of our immediate families has any food allergies. I guess since breastmilk is supposed to guarantee perfect health, I'm just a shitty mom because it didn't work for him.

Mary - posted on 01/11/2012

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What the hell does age have to with it, Kel? I'm 41 (38 when my daughter was born). Although I did exclusively BF my child, I'm pretty much your polar opposite when it comes to attitudes and judgement about breast vs bottle. In fact, after reading your posts, I'm half tempted to say that I fed her coke out of a can within minutes of her birth just to avoid having something in common with you.



I think it is great to be "pro breastfeeding". However, that in no way necessitates nor justifies a hostility towards formula, or those who use it.



I also want to say that I just don't get this whole campaign you are on about bf babies being "healthier". Healthier than what, exactly? This is such a random assertion which can in no way ever be proved. Unless you have a time machine or magical powers, there is absolutely no way to really know, without question, that the exact same bf baby, in the exact same environment, would not have been equally "healthy" if formula fed. You may choose to believe that, since it does serve to boost your ego, but that doesn't make it fact.



And what if that exclusively bf baby does get sick, or have allergies, or whatever? Does that mean that you fucked up in some other way?



I think one of the big mistakes that we as mothers make is to both assume too much credit, or bear too much blame for a lot of things that are really beyond our control.



My daughter is now 3. She has no allergies, and has only been "sick" a handful of times (only twice needing antibiotics due to ear infections. Is it because I breastfed? Is it because I'm super-mom? (no - I know I'm not!) Who the hell knows. I personally give credit to my dogs - they've broadened and exercised her little immune system from day one, as well as forced us to be outside daily for at least an hour year round. Am I right? Again - who really knows for sure.

Maree - posted on 01/11/2012

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Rachael you were probably looked down apon by older rather than younger mums as these are the ones that most likely would have breast fed and felt strongly about it..most other people don't give a shit because they are usually not breast feeding either.

Maree - posted on 01/11/2012

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Debb...attitudes as far as breast feeding goes. I would like my daughter to believ it is best and to stick at it even if she has to suffer a little in the beginning. I wan't her to have the right "attitude" towards it and ask for help,look for help,do research,be selfless etc. That was what i meant by ATTITUDE.



I just don't like hearing "well so and so is healthy and was bottle fed"...I think it is a bad attitude to have and i understand that i am pretty much alone in thinking this way but that's fine,it doesn't really matter because i and everyone else will raise our kids how we see fit....

[deleted account]

I almost exclusively formula fed my son and have never regretted my decision to do so and also intend to do the same with any future children. I don't get offended too much by what other people say, as long as they don't say or imply that I am not a good mom or hurt my son by not breast feeding him. Most of the judgement I received came from my mom, my MIL, and another family member who had a child close in age to mine. I just told them that it was my choice and that I was sticking with it for my own reasons and that it was not their decisions. Only occasionally did I feel looked down upon by other mothers, and it was usually older moms (i would guess 40+).

[deleted account]

To add to Deb's comments: Kel states: "however i know i have done everything i possibly can to ensure she is in good health and has been given the best possible start in life."

Everything possible? Really? I doubt highly it. So it would be OK if you gave your child toys painted with lead paint because lead doesn't effect BF babies? There are a myriad of factors that effect the health of any child -- receiving BM really is one small component and certainly isn't a guarantee of health for any child. BM is a nice plus, but there are literally dozens upon dozens of things that impact on the "best health" a child. Of course, this would be what I mean by sweeping generalizations...

[deleted account]

Hmmm... Okay, I am starting to see where the question posed in this thread came from;

Kel, in your words:
"I don't think i am a better mother than someone else because i breast feed,however i know i have done everything i possibly can to ensure she is in good health and has been given the best possible start in life. I hope she will grow up believing that being a mother is a sacrifice,that the very first choice we make after the birth of our child can make such a massive difference to their future health as well as their future attitudes. ..i can't help but feel i would be disappointed if my children did not try to breast feed or were not supportive of their partner breast feeding."

I can quite honestly say that I have never heard an opinion put quite this way.

If you say, "I don't think that I am a better mother than someone else because I breast feed, however...." you are about to negate your statement. It's like saying I love you, but..., or I'm sorry, but... So, let's not pretend that you don't think that you're a better mother, you clearly do, otherwise, you would have ended your statement with a simple period.

The next part of this statement that grabbed my attention was, "I hope that she will grow up believing that being a mother is a sacrifice, that the very first choice we make after the birth of our child can make such a massive difference toward their future health as well as their future attitudes..."

Gosh, where to begin...

1) Um, so a bottle feeding mother isn't a caring mother capable of sacrifice, moreover, as you put it, a mother who bottle feeds DOESN'T sacrifice? That's very interesting and I would be interested to know what facts you base that opinion on...? I've read a number of posts on here that would lead me to believe that bottle feeding was not the mother's 1st choice, but the mother had to 'sacrifice' her first choice for the health of her baby. So, you don't believe that mother sacrificed? Fascinating.

2) Future attitude? Do tell...I'm not going to dispute the health benefits of BF, I agree with that point, but I am curious to know about the attitude part. I've not read conclusive research as to the benefit to a child's attitude? Attitude is a very broad term, synonymous with 'disposition' and 'manner'. So, what do you mean? Perhaps, bottle feeding will make children like cats and dislike dogs...? Will bottle feeding change a child's sense of humor?

[deleted account]

Great points Jodi. I also think it needs to be pointed out that Kel is not actually citing research, but is giving her opinion re: what research means. There isn't a single research study that says formula is a health risk to an infant. Pretty much everything across the board says that formula is a safe choice. That doesn't mean that BM isn't the best choice and that BM isn't optimal nuitrition, but that's a far cry from blanketly stating that formula is risking your child's health as Kel has repeatedly stated. That's just flat-out inaccurate.

Tina - posted on 01/11/2012

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Circumstances lead me to bottle feed. I would have liked to breast feed. Most of the critism comes from other mums on sites like this. But I have been critised by my own mum who also bottle fed me. I tried to feed my first child. He never took interest in it. He was losing weight and was jaundice. When I decided to bottle feed he'd put on the weight and come good but a couple of mid wives and my mum kept pushing the breast feeding and everytime time I'd attemp it and listen to them he'll fall back again in the end I did what I thought was right. I put him on the bottle and stuck to my decision my mother wasn't happy with me and a few other members of my family have commented that I should be breast feeding because it's better. When you're already having an emotional struggle with your decisions and struggling with the baby blues. The last thing you need is people making you feel like a failure as a mum because you can't breast feed. My second took interest but when she began losing weight and started going yellow I decided I wasn't going down that track again I put her on the bottle. Regardless what people say I was doing what was right for my situation. After I'd made the decision to switch to bottle one of the mid wives said she was relieved so only pushed the breast feeding because that was part of her job. Both my kids are healthy and smart. One of the ladies at my partners work said that formula fed babies are dumb. This is also a woman who doesn't wrong with sleeping a new born on their stomach.

Jodi - posted on 01/11/2012

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Kel, you have just ASSumed that was directed at YOU and you alone. I am not responsible if that's the way you chose to take it. I am also not responsible if you take the bait of others.

Responding to attacks with further personal attacks, not facts, indicates you took something personally......otherwise you wouldn't feel the NEED to respond in kind for the sake of being nasty.

Maree - posted on 01/11/2012

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ok so no point trying to explain how the personal attack was made at ME first (obsession with breasts)...my "attack" was after that in case you didn't read it or as usual chose to ignore it.
You are right about one thing,I'm over this...as i am about many of the shit thats on here....it's old and boring so i'm off now to go obsess over someones breasts

Jodi - posted on 01/11/2012

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A person will always resort to personal attacks in a debate when they have nothing further intelligent to say on the topic. I see, once again, that has proven to be the case.

However, I guess the point of the OP has also been made. Apparently some people feel it is okay to be judgemental about breastfeeding on the internet, to the point of laughing at people about it. Which is actually quite sad, because there is a very real opportunity to show empathy and help younger and less experience mothers to work through their fears and concerns that is being missed.

In a debate situation, sure, opinions can be discussed, and will be agreed with or disagreed with. But surely it can be debated without one side starting to sling insults or making others feel inferior because they disagree. Evidently, however, there are some who are simply not capable of doing that because they are too busy being right because that's what research says, rather than considering the various individual situations that research does not take into consideration.

Maree - posted on 01/10/2012

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alotta fagina...clearly you have an obsession with something below the breasts judging by the name...anyway a wise woman once said "there are better things to do than argue with people or computers"...oh hang on that was me...

Goodbye SIMS

Janice - posted on 01/10/2012

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Okay! and with that, I think its obvious to see why people feel judged! Lol

Jodi - posted on 01/10/2012

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It's still no excuse for being a bitch to someone who doesn't breastfeed. But anyhoo...carry on.

Erin - posted on 01/10/2012

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Wow! For all of us making chat rooms our life there are sure a lot of posts on here from one person!

[deleted account]

Exactly. She gives the impression that BF moms are coo-coo crazy with her sweeping over-generalizations. I would just tune her right out and walk quickly the other way.

Sherri - posted on 01/10/2012

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Trust me if I had been waffling on breastfeeding or bottle feeding and I ran into Kel. I can assure you just because of the way she comes across I instantly would have chosen bottle feeding in a heartbeat because that is how much she turns people away from breastfeeding.

[deleted account]

Agreed, agreed, agreed, Krista. She's so shrill about everything you can't take anything she says seriously.

Rosie - posted on 01/10/2012

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must be the way you keep going at it..or you actually get off on it. i vote the latter. that's probably why you have such an obsession with breasts...

Krista - posted on 01/10/2012

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Kel, give it a damn rest. We get it, you think that breastfeeding is the best thing since sliced bread.

Perhaps if you weren't so abrasive and insulting about it, you might actually persuade some people (there are plenty of women on this site who are not yet done having children). But because you're so judgmental and strident with your views, even the pro-breastfeeding types on this site are distancing themselves from you.

Ever hear that old phrase, "You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar"? You may want to consider it.

Mind you, all that advice above only applies if you actually WANT to try to convince people that breastfeeding is the best option. If your goal instead is just to berate bottle-feeding mothers, then please...carry on.

Maree - posted on 01/10/2012

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Don't get help for your obvious problems...you do not need therapy for making chat rooms your life.



Breast fed babies cannot bond with their fathers or any other relative for that matter.



If you care about your child you should bottle feed because it is much healthier,they will be smarter,more independent well adjusted adults if they are bottle fed.



There are no immunity benefits at all through breast feeding.



The WHO and all studies ever done on breast feeding are wrong so really you should just go on CoM if you want the right info on the topic because everyone on here is very educated on it and they know best.(probably because they were bottle fed)



Everyone on here is exactly who they say they are,there are no fake names or identities used and each of these very truthful people have feelings and everyone...even on a debating forum should make sure that they agree with everyone...ALWAYS...



Your body will not be capable of breast feeding anyway so don't bother trying. It was not made to feed babies...women are just not wired that way.



It is your body and your choice so make sure when making the first choice for your child,think about yourself FIRST...your happiness,your freedom,your job,your life,your husband,your sanity,your pain and your frustrations...after all,they are much more important than your child...happy mum happy baby !!!!!



Feeding your child the last option recommended by WHO is not selfish,especially if you want to have the baby bond with its dad...there is NO other way for babies to bond with dads so it's pretty selfish actually to breast feed cause it means you are only thinking of yourself and must have issues with letting go of your baby....anyone who says that breast feeding provides immunity benefits for baby must be totally nuts !!! where did they get that info from anyway??? probably from "crappily controlled studies" (thats an interesting piece of info i got on CoM)



As long as my next door neighbours kid "turned out fine"...that's enough for me....actually someone i heard of has a bottle fed kid that has never been sick,is gifted and everyone is amazed at how brilliant he is.......



Now if you will excuse me,I'm off to buy some formula....might not be back for a while cause there are several shelves of the "good stuff" to sift through...and might need to stop in at the chemist on the way back to pick up something for the eczema.Oh whoops sorry,the next door neighbour doesn't have eczema so my kid will be fine too.



That opposite enough for you ????????????

Proud - posted on 01/10/2012

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Did I want to breastfeed? Yes
Could I breastfeed? No

I love my child and when I saw that she was dropping weight even when I breastfed around the clock I had to do something.

Maree - posted on 01/10/2012

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Sherri,i get that bottle feeding CAN help father and child to bond....it may help the bonding process or it may not. It really depends on each particular family and whether or not the father makes the effort to do it for more than a week !!! I am like some of the others on here... my daughter and her dad are very close,he was the first one to hold her as i had a c-section,i didn't even lay eyes on her for 2 hours after birth,he used to get up to settle her every night after i breast fed her,he plays with her every day...the only time he fed her was once in hospital because i expressed due to having massive amounts of milk.

My point in mentioning that was simply that i do not believe that it's a good reason to "choose" to bottle feed.
I think that the childs long term health is more important than the importance of the father possibly feeding the child on occasion as opposed to burping them or settling them after a feed etc. I see this as an excuse...to take the responsibilty off the mother.

If the mother does not believe in all the studies and believes that it is more important that the child is bottle fed by their father then i guess my opinion...or facts,are irrellevant to those people and it won't be until down the track that the effects will be blatantly obvious if that child has health issues....then again,i suppose the mother would never ever admit that bottle feeding had anything to do with it.

When people say " you can't tell the difference between a bottle fed baby and a breast fed baby" ... I'll add to that by saying " pick out the baby that was bottle fed by it's father as opposed to the one who was fed by it's mother....i guarantee that there would be no way to tell. If it came down to the way the baby loves it's daddy...then everyone would think my daughter was fed by her dad because she is so happy,comfortable and settled with him,just as she is with me.

Oh and Jodi....sorry for the waffling !!! lol.

Maree - posted on 01/10/2012

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I think if a person takes a site like this so seriously that it causes them to bottle feed,smack,circumcise,abort...or do anything they themselves do not agree with or want to do...then i think they need a Psychiatrist !!!!!

Getting others opinions is fine,i'm interested in opinions....so i can debate them,I have the opinions i have for a reason and if i become unsure of them i will go to a professional who i believe knows what they are talking about...not to a person on here. For all i know,you are an 80 year old man called Bob !!! lol. I don't know that you are a mother with feelings and anyone who actually believes that all these people are who and what they say they are...well i think they are ignorant and maybe should have been taught about the dangers of the internet !!!

Someone who has nothing better to do than get on here and take personally everything that is written, probably like i said...needs a good doctor to help them work through their issues,or maybe just a hobbie that does not cause the damage that mine or others comments apparently cause.

As it was mentioned before...we are in fact on a debating forum,not a love and acceptance forum. I don't love and accept everyones ideas or points of view,their decisions or their parenting...therefore i will not say "oh it's ok,don't feel bad".Isn't the point to DEBATE??? To get your point of view across???

Ok,maybe not to deliberately hurt someone or call them a shithouse mother or a bitch...but saying that i think you are wrong and that studies have proven that you are wrong is not calling someone a bad mother...if they feel that,then that is something they need to take accountability for.....and as mentioned above,maybe see a pshycologist to help them work through why they feel it necessary to be so hurt by the feelings of a stranger online,if in fact they themselves believe they have done all they can to be a great parent...

Does anyone see where i am going with this??

Does anyone think that it is up to the individual to be responsible for their own happiness and it is not another persons fault if they give their opinion on here and it happens to hurt someones feelings?

Does everything need to be worded perfectly and said perfectly? and who gets to decide what is considered "worded perfectly" anyway.

I was under the impression that EVERYONE has different thoughts and feelings so what upsets one person does not upset another...

[deleted account]

I like to speak with other mothers as i work in the childcare profession anyway.Its lovely to speak openly and honestly with no judgment on either side.Not many mothers can do that these days.To me its a competition for to many mothers now a days.

Its looks and slight judgment in real life but on here it goes to another level.I have to ask myself what are some of you ladies thinking, when i read some of the comments and its on both sides, not just on the formula feeding side.

Becky - posted on 01/10/2012

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I think there is so much more to bonding than how you feed your child or who feeds him or her. I did breastfeed both of mine past a year, but I don't think that has anything to do with my boys being more bonded to me. I think it's about personalities and parenting style in our case. I am more nurturing, more patient, and more understanding. The boys enjoy being with their dad and playing with him, but when they are upset, hurt, or sick, they want me. Not because I breastfed them, but because they know I will respond in a more comforting manner than their dad will.

Krista - posted on 01/10/2012

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Yeah. I only BF'd Sam for a short while, then switched to formula, and he is ALL about Mommy. I think staying home on mat leave with him for 8 months had a bigger effect on our bonding than the method of feeding did.

[deleted account]

I BF gabby until 23 months and shes a daddies girl through and through. Sherri, maybe your son just picked you as a favorite parent. Kids do that sometimes.

Sherri - posted on 01/10/2012

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@Janice that is great I was just debating with Kel that not everything she says is always the case just because it was for her. Because that even though that is the case for MOST kids it isn't the case for all kids and my son was case in point.

Trust me I never LET it as you say!!

Janice - posted on 01/10/2012

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Sherri, I breastfed my daughter till 17 months and she has always had a wonderful connection with her dad. He didnt even really feed her baby food until she was eating finger foods. He did/does come home from work and give her cuddles and wrestles and lets her climb on him. In fact I used to joke that she liked daddy best and only used me for my boobs! She is 26 months and is going thru a phase where some nights she will only eat dinner sitting in daddy's lap.

So I dont think that breastfeeding interferes with bonding with dad or others unless you let it.



Although I am a bit jealous that your hubby wanted to feed your babies. Although hubby is very involved he sees me breastfeeding and him not bottle-feeding as a perk.

Sherri - posted on 01/10/2012

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Just an FYI Kel I breastfed my second the longest and it is somewhat true about bonding with dad. He had zero relationship with his father till he was four. The only person he ever wanted was me and me only. Trust me I tried endlessly to get him to let me leave him with his dad and nope he would scream his head off like he was being murdered.



Now my 1st who was not breastfed never had a problem and my 3rd who I ended up pumping from 4wks on and feeding by bottle also never had a problem either.



And my husband wanted more than anything to help feed my kids. The only way him to do that was with a bottle. Whether it be formula or breastmilk bottle.

Krista - posted on 01/10/2012

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Exactly. Jodi's right -- everybody behind that computer is still a person with feelings.

We once had someone here in DM who was going on about seeing a mother nursing in a food court, and how awful it was that the woman wasn't even trying to be discreet, because she was sitting sideways in her chair (facing the aisle), and wasn't covered, and you could see her whole breast. She was going on about how the woman was OBVIOUSLY just putting on a show, and how everybody must have just been disgusted.

And that hurt the hell out of me.

I'm large-breasted, and the only hold that worked for me and my child was the clutch hold. I never nursed him in public. I just didn't feel comfortable. But I WANTED to be brave enough to do it. However, if I tried to nurse him in public, that's exactly what I would have looked like -- sitting sideways doing the clutch hold, most likely with more of my breast exposed than not. And to hear this person talk about how everybody was disgusted at the obvious show that this person was putting on? It just really discouraged me from EVER trying to nurse in public.

So no, I wasn't important to that person. And she wasn't important to me. But her words still had an effect.

Something you might want to think about.

Jodi - posted on 01/10/2012

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I understand that, but it still doesn't excuse saying things you think might make people hate you forever because they are not important to you.

Janice - posted on 01/10/2012

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Jodi, I think it really depends where the comments are placed. If a mom goes onto the breastfeeding moms forum and writes that she has had x,y,z problems and wants to quit then some bitch telling her formula is poison and she is terrible mother if she doesnt continue is completely wrong.

But here in Debating Mums strong and sometimes hurtful opinions are going to fly and that is just the nature of this particular forum.

Jodi - posted on 01/10/2012

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"well they may hate you forever but it doesn't matter because they are not important to you."

Except that those people have feelings too. How do you know, that by judging someone online because you feel you can do that without feeling guilty (which seems is what you do), that poor person isn't on the other end of the computer struggling with her breastfeeding with little or no support and you are suddenly making accusations that anyone who doesn't breastfeed is not doing the best by their baby?

The fact is, you don't know. And quite frankly, it seems you don't care either. Because they are not important to you.

Nice.

Aleks - posted on 01/10/2012

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Oh and btw, the way that media portrays breastfeeding mums passed the 6-12mths marks is way more than insulting - making most of them look/sound like weird, backward and stupid hippies from backwater country! Frequently setting the rest of our community/society to these views. So how is this for judgment. It cuts both ways.

Aleks - posted on 01/10/2012

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I totally agree with you ladies above (Kel, Joy and Janice). Much easier to voice ones opinions (including the very skewed ones) here online where no one knows you than it would be face to face. And yes, some women would like to "help" but just, sometimes, going about it in the wrong way (most of the time without realising it).
I also get the sensation of feeling like one has to explain ones decision to breastfeed - or why I still have to. Last time I told a lady about me still breastfeeding my near 3 yo and she was genuinely SHOCKED, and blurted out something to the effect of "I didn't realise that you could still do that" or "I didn't know that it would still work"!!! And this coming from a seemingly educated woman ( she is a pharmacist!) who herself breastfed her baby (till probably 12mths or so cause that is the time frame most think is to be done till).
I think some women do get genuinely annoyed at constantly hearing about how nursing just didn't work out for other mothers, especially since looking at statistics most babies are bottle fed formula than are breastfed passed the 4-6month mark. So then what is it about our currently highly standing and educated society that cannot seem to get something like breastfeeding right - an aspect of our specieces that if it functioned few hundreds to a few thousands of years ago like it currently does for us in our society, our species would have probably died out. So that is probably one of the aspects of the issues where "judgement" may come into place.

However, once one actually listens to the *individual* stories of the women and their struggles to breastfeed and then finally tossing it in and releaving their stress and pressure by formula feeding, one cannot help (many a time) but just wanting to pat that woman on her back and say "Its ok. Things just didn't work out for you this time. I understand how hard this must be for you, but it really is O K."
So there are these things underlying these bb v ff feelings.

Maree - posted on 01/09/2012

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I think in "real life" people are just as judgmental as on here but this is a place you can judge without peiople knowing who you are and hating you forever....well they may hate you forever but it doesn't matter because they are not important to you. If i gave my opinions to family or friends...well i wouldn't have any family and friends so coming on here allows me to get my frustrations out as i'm sure it does for thousands of others.

What Janice says is correct...in that breast feeding is only one way to bond with your child...bottle feeding is another,cuddling,nappy changing etc etc...which is why i hate when people say they are glad they bottle fed cause then dad and gran can bond with the baby.
I find this a terrible excuse...yes i did say "excuse"....because the people who say that come across as if breast fed babies have no relationship with their dads or anyone else.

I think to "choose" to bottle feed so that dad can bond is pretty selfish....if people who know the risks of formula feeding still do it for the sake of dads potential "bonding"....I feel sorry for the child who is clearly not being put first,it is a matter of a few months really and if dad can't get over it and do something else to bond,then maybe dad needs to look at his own priorities.

Personally i think it's doubtful that the dads are that concerned about whether or not they get to feed their child,i would say if they are educated they would be more concerned with their newborns health !!!!! Therefore i believe it comes down to either an excuse for the woman or she feels guilty for making a bad choice...maybe she has had some judgmental comments so she is trying to make herself feel better by saying she was doing it for the dads sake...who knows !!!!

Women who have valid reasons to bottle feed shouldn't feel any guilt and it's sad that because there are so few women breast feeding,bottle feeders are all looked down apon by some people whether or not it's fair.

[deleted account]

Well, without having read any of the other posts, I can honestly say that the most judgement (in my experience) came from....me. I won't go into a long, drawn out breast feeding horror story but, suffice it to say that I gave it my best effort and couldn't go past 6 weeks. No one was harder on me than me. I had a friend who had been pregnant with me and had her daughter two weeks after I had my son. She was adamant about formula feeding. She ended up breast feeding for over a year. I had been adamant about breast feeding and barely made it 6 weeks. Never once did she, or anyone else in my personal life, ever make me feel "less than" or judged for my choice. But whenever I would see her feed her daughter, this heavy hammer of guilt would slam me in the heart. Everyone in my life was supportive of my decisions (all of them, not just the BF/FF thing).

Then I found CoM. I think here, on this forum, there simply ARE many judgemental people and it took me awhile to grow a thicker skin. For the first time ever, from an outside source, I felt judged for FF my son. Yeah, I argued like a banshee, "yelled" till I was blue in the face in defense of my choice. Like I said, it took me awhile to grow a thicker skin. I think sometimes on forums like this, people come here thinking they will "help" some poor woman do what's "right". And they somehow forget (or just don't know) that the key to being a good parent and a good friend to a good parent is to recognize that what's good for me and my kid isn't maybe good for you and yours. Sometimes the best of intentions comes off as judgement. Sometimes there are just plain out and out judgemental bitches here and there. But for the most part, I honestly think that most women on this forum, on this topic, want only to help. But they see everything short of a boob being ripped off a woman's body as an excuse to not BF. And that's fine. Thicker skin means that I can look at someone's post and realize that one day, hopefully, she'll have her "aha" moment and remember how harsh she was. If not? Not my burden to bear.

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