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people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation


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i am glad strangers want to tell me my choices are like, okay
children of dune - leto 1
seperis
Okay, I had this resolution not to post about things that piss me off--there are so many!--until I had waited twenty-four hours to see if I was still pissed.

But seriously. How the hell did we get to this?

In this post about breastfeeding and VVC and vidshows this thread kinda maybe got to me. Maybe a little.
There is something wrong with any policy that excludes the people who've chosen the healthiest, safest options for their families.


I need to ask; is it really really required that any mention anywhere of breastfeeding has to attach judgment to people who don't breastfeed? The later "clarification" is not really working for me either; I guess I'm glad elf is totally not judging non-breastfeeders? There's a helpful list of reasons it's okay to make that choice. It's here.
I don't think any woman should feel guilty for choosing formula. Not even if, years later, she looks back and says "I should've done it differently." We're all working from limited information and making decisions we may decide later were the wrong ones.


That's very magnanimous of you, thanks.

Posted at Dreamwidth: http://seperis.dreamwidth.org/32511.html. | You can reply here or there. | comment count unavailable comments

ah, jesus h. roosevelt christ.

you know, I breastfed all my kids. I was LUCKY. It worked for me, and I was the only one of my circle of friends (all having kids about the same time) that it worked for. There's a number of reasons why, but none of the reasons were that the other moms didn't love their kids as much as me and/or didnt' want the best for their kids.

(I was also lucky enough to be home for the first 3 months of my daughter's life and home full time when both my boys were born. and that was LUCK as well as a CHOICE. I had options when many, many women didn't)

I totally and completely support breastfeeding. But that support doesn't mean I don't support ALL mothers to do the very best for themselves, their families and their babies. (double negative there - I hope it's clear I mean to say I support ALL moms, irrespective of what feeding method they chose)

/rant

Edited at 2010-07-05 06:56 am (UTC)

Both my sisters breastfed; they were glad they did, though my youngest sister had to wean a little earlier than she wanted to.

You know, that just--hit me out of nowhere. I really didn't expect to see that in a fannish post.

Also? *hugs* When I posted, I suddenly had this horrible feeling that the first comment I'd get woudl be like "Well, obviously you regret your 'choice' if you're this oversensitive" and I might have just cried. Thanks so much for commenting.

Edited at 2010-07-05 07:03 am (UTC)

My older sister tried breastfeeding with both her kids and it didn't work, neither of them would take to it and her mother in law ragged on her for not trying harder, she made my sister feel like she was hurting her children.

Me and my siblings were never breastfeed, I think we turned out fine. If I ever had kids I would never breastfeed (mostly cause I have an ewww reaction to the whole thing lol). I think its up to the mom to decide what she wants to do and as long as she isn't spun out on drugs and abusing her kids people should respect the fact that its none of their business.

Edited at 2010-07-05 07:03 am (UTC)

My older sister tried breastfeeding with both her kids and it didn't work, neither of them would take to it and her mother in law ragged on her for not trying harder, she made my sister feel like she was hurting her children.

Oh my God. *shudders* My family was supportive, for the most part, but--well. Apparently to some people this is like, teh make or break of parenting.

I think its up to the mom to decide what she wants to do and as long as she isn't spun out on drugs and abusing her kids people should respect the fact that its none of their business.

It always shocks me how much peopel who do not actually have any vested interest in my body are amazingly persistent in explaining what I should do with it. Gah.

Thanks for commenting. Reading that in fannish space hit my paranoia button like whoa.

I breastfed and did it for two years. It wasn't always easy, but that was my choice not some sort of sanctimonious decision I made to be better than anyone else. There are a hundred different reasons to make a hundred different choices. Not better or worse, just different. My friends' children were bottle-fed and I don't even care why that and not the other because it doesn't matter why. It was her choice and what she decided to do.

It's this stupid thing some women put each other through from work vs. stay at home to other decisions. Why can't we support each other instead?

It's this stupid thing some women put each other through from work vs. stay at home to other decisions. Why can't we support each other instead?

This beyond words this. I kind of want to give stars now.

Thanks very much for commenting.

Seriously. Why breastfeeding is a red flag that comes up every now and then, even in fandom? You breastfeed or you don't. (If you don't have a baby at the moment, you probably don't.) Why everyone has an opinion about it? Why it is an issue people feel that they should have an opinion?

Maybe the general public wants to have an opinion on breastfeeding because it's one way for the society to use power over a woman's body. How much a woman should weight, should she breastfeed and how long, should she be allowed a cecarean section for non-medical reasons, should she use freaking environmentally friendly diapers for her baby... for the society trying to decide what is the best, over women's own will, that's just a scheme for taking power away from women. And this is even mostly done by other women.

Seriously. Why breastfeeding is a red flag that comes up every now and then, even in fandom?

I can't even figure out how a discussion about breastfeeding during vidshows suddenly took a left turn like that. I mean, I didn't even read that thread at first and then skimmed it and stopped short ,thinking I'd misread it or something.

Maybe the general public wants to have an opinion on breastfeeding because it's one way for the society to use power over a woman's body. How much a woman should weight, should she breastfeed and how long, should she be allowed a cecarean section for non-medical reasons, should she use freaking environmentally friendly diapers for her baby... for the society trying to decide what is the best, over women's own will, that's just a scheme for taking power away from women. And this is even mostly done by other women.

In a nutshell.

And it's nice to have that bit of unspoken superiority, too. God knows, no conversation would be complete without it.

I'm the first to admit I'm a total boob nazi, so I'll refrain from commenting about anything regarding breastfeeding itself :P

I will say however, that I think she should have simply stated that nursing in public is protected in most states and that legally baby has the right to be anywhere that mom is while being fed. Short, sweet and to the point would be better than trying to defend/explain her own thoughts on breastfeeding and offending others.

I'm the first to admit I'm a total boob nazi, so I'll refrain from commenting about anything regarding breastfeeding itself :P

So is my sister. *grins* She's learned the art of choosing her battles and how she frames it, which helped with my younger sister a lot.

I will say however, that I think she should have simply stated that nursing in public is protected in most states and that legally baby has the right to be anywhere that mom is while being fed. Short, sweet and to the point would be better than trying to defend/explain her own thoughts on breastfeeding and offending others.

I think that's what really makes me angry; the post wasn't even tangentially related to the advisability of breastfeeding or I wouldn't read it; not like I'm going to wander over to read that if I can help it. But just tossed in there unexpectedly, and not directly related to the legal aspects was just--no.

Oh, bite me, commenter. As with the overwhelming majority of all child development issues, there are no right answers. What works best for the child and parent(s) is the best thing in that particular circumstance. You can't make wide generalizations and you sure as fuck have no possible reason to commentate on any situation you are not intimately involved in. For some babies, breast is best. For some, breast means half-starving, stomach problems, or emotional difficulties as a parent struggles not to blame the baby for the problems breastfeeding is causing. Shut up.

But if you don't comment on it, then people might get the idea there was some kind of choice involved with reasons. That you'll regret. Of course.

That sentence has no irony. I want irony back, dammit.

Okay, I had to back out of reading that post and comments, but for somewhat different reasons.(edit: no, reading this over I realize they are the same reasons as yours, basically, yes)

I'm basically LOLing at the assertions (some by people who I respect tons) that breastfed babies don't cry. Um. Could we go back in time and tell that to my children? *eyes my children* They seem not to have gotten the Memo.

Which is kind of off point, but kind of not. Basically, there are a million variations to parenting and a million variations to kids. As someone whose kids are older now, I look back on so many things people put so much mental and emotional energy into and think, you know, those are mainly details. The big stuff is the love you put into it, and that you do your best as much as you can. That's the stuff to sweat./gets cane and hobbles off into sunset

I have additional curmudgeonly opinions, but will shut up now. :)

Edited at 2010-07-05 08:10 am (UTC)

I'm basically LOLing at the assertions (some by people who I respect tons) that breastfed babies don't cry. Um. Could we go back in time and tell that to my children? *eyes my children* They seem not to have gotten the Memo.

I have a niece and nephew just at two. I vividly remember there was quite a bit of crying and yet, they were breastfed.

The big stuff is the love you put into it, and that you do your best as much as you can. That's the stuff to sweat./gets cane and hobbles off into sunset

*pulls you back desperately* We need more sane opinions. NO SUNSETS ALLOWED OKAY?

Ugh. Just ugh. Way to be supportive, ladies.

And you know? Not everyone has a choice. One of my BFFs had a baby at 30 weeks who was in the hospital for quite a while afterwards. My BFF was in a different hospital in a different state recovering from the freak high blood pressure that nearly killed them both. She tried to pump, but her body wouldn't produce milk, and even if it had she couldn't have gotten the milk to her daughter while they were apart. Isn't it nice that she shouldn't feel guilty for choosing formula?

In my case, I adopted, and my child was fed formula for the first nine months while in Korea without us. Isn't it nice that I shouldn't feel guilty for choosing formula?

My sister was adopted, too, and fed with ... well, cow's milk, actually, since there wasn't much in the way of formula in Pakistan. While I won't say she turned out ok (because that would break our sibling code of ragging on each other at every possible opportunity) she's not, I dunno, some hollow-eyed, unloved thing that shrinks into the shadows.

Come to think of it, my little brother (also adopted - you'll note it's a reoccurring theme in my life) was probably bottle-fed exclusively, too.

This is why I feel the word 'breast' should be dropped from feeding a baby:

1. To reduce the stigma on feeding a child that way. Maybe people would be more tolerant if boobies weren't actually mentioned.
2. So that feeding by formula doesn't come with a guilt-trip attached.

I totally support feeding a baby the way that nature intended and wish that it was embraced more, but shaming women who can't feed or choose not to feed their baby that way is just wrong. My [step]sister couldn't get my nephew to take to the breast - he's doing okay. I just wish that more support was put in place for feeding via the breast - maybe more women would do it then and there wouldn't be need stupid comments like the ones quoted in your OP since the more women seen doing it, the less it'd be about acceptance and the more it would be seen as just feeding a child.

It's hormonal. For some of us who breastfeed, we just get shake-panicky when we encounter non-BFing; it's the only thing in life that does this to me (maybe like small spaces do to you?). I've decided it's really *my* problem (which I could go on about at length; but, yk, not a good idea here, because I'd probably offend just about everyone).

Edited at 2010-07-05 12:21 pm (UTC)

I am breaking my policy of trying to stay out of the tangential thread-of-a-thread-of-a-thread about VVC, but aw, christ. The only justification a woman should need for nursing is that it's her body, no matter where she is, and no one else gets to make medical decisions for it. Ditto the obverse.

I get that people who are nursing educators get irritable after a while because people who have never had babies or discussed breastfeeding often seriously don't get it that you can't just not nurse for four days and then pick up where you left off. (And pumps are expensive, and a lot of people have trouble using them, and babies might not accept bottles, blah blah). But man, when we act like women have to justify their reproductive choices to the general public in order to be able to make them, don't we just make the situation worse?

(I... just took a class about breastfeeding and am still alarmed by this dynamic. I don't really see how BREASTS BELONG TO BABIES! SHIRT OFF! is that much more empowering then BREASTS ARE FOR MENS, PUT IT AWAY when "breasts are parts of ladies who make choices that should be respected" is right there as an option. This also means that I am commenting on my Views on Lactation Yaoi The Whole Thing, Really, not the original thread, which, again, was no worse then the average conversation I have about that.)

p.s. I am not, again, commenting on VVC policy. As usual in these threads-of-threads, this issue was raised to the concom who made accommodations that the person who raised the issue found adequate.

Clearly, I am both a terrible fan and a terrible parent, as it NEVER FUCKING OCURRED TO ME that I should bring my nursing baby to a con. Because to me, cons are a place for ADULTS TO DO ADULT THINGS.
Does it vex me that I haven't attended a con since 2006? A little - I'd have liked to go. But I've been either pregnant or nursing for nearly four years, and that's the choice I made. Is it up to the con to make me welcome? Not in my view - if it were a parenting com, maybe, but a vidding con or slash con or general fan con is not obligated to provide for the possibility that I've reproduced. To me, it's an adult event, an adult space.
And here's my thoughts on lactation: I'm one of those "extended breastfeeders" who did it longer than the 12 months that most doctors tell you to shoot for. I'm currently nursing a 24lb 10 month old. I'm a very strong breastfeeding advocate, but if you can't or if you don't or if you mix breastmilk in formula or whatever it is, you're not feeding your kid rat poison, here. It's the "second best," fine, whatever, the fact that my dinner last night contained absolutely no leafy greens and my lack of an afternoon jog are other choices that aren't considered the best. There's a biiiiiiig difference, to my mind, between "not the best" and "active harm that should be outlawed."
POssibly I spend too much time with friends who are child welfare social workers to take part in breastfeeding discussions.

Yea- I'm still boggling at it NEVER FUCKING OCURRED TO ME that I should bring my nursing baby to a con. - my bogglement no doubt spurred on by the memory of last Thursday when I walked into the dog park w/my hyper, 55 lb, 7 month old golden retriever to find nobody there but a family with their INFANT in there. At which point- I turned around and walked out- cause I am not stupid enough to think THAT was any kind of a good idea for either my dog or the infant. (The sign on the gate prohibiting kids under 8 being in there suggests I'm not the only one who thinks that's ALL KINDS OF A BAD IDEA.)

Dude- seriously. Time and place for everything.

As to the whole nursing issue? As long as the kids getting fed, so not my business, so don't care.

Just another way for society to get this idea that women are too naive for their own good to know what to do with their bodies and babies.

How else you can explain the sneering when it comes a mother deciding whether or not she breastfeeds her kid, or if that mother prefers to give birth the natural way at home instead of a hospital, and so on.

Hell, the UK wants to mandate tests on pregnant women to make sure they are not smoking. Another sign that shows society thinks that pregnant women (and women who already have their kids) can't be trusted to tell the truth about their health and habits to their doctors, much less make their own choices.

I'm not a mother but god knows I've been thinking a long time about this craziness and frustration people are to think they have any right to dictate a woman's choice.

/Rant done/

I don't have kids, and my views on breastfeeding vs formula can be boiled down to: "...the kid's being fed, right?"

And yet the breathtaking arrogance of this woman. I just--wow. Isn't it nice that she's appointed herself high arbiter of what's healthy and acceptable for women and babies? I know I feel all warm and fuzzy. [eyeroll]

I took a feminism and motherhood class in uni a couple of years ago and basically came to the conclusion that the only breasts I am allowed to have an opinion about are my own.

Some people are sanctimonious assholes who seem to think they wrote the bible on motherhood. And for women to do this to each other is fucking beyond words ridiculous.