Tuesday, 21 June 2011

My Fight against the Formula Mafia - National Breastfeeding Awareness Week 2011

One thing upfront: I don't judge mums formula feeding their babies. In most cases, they have thoroughly thought about their options and decided for the one best for them and their baby.

I know that lots of formula feeding mums have to put up with negative comments for not 'giving their child the best start', but in my eyes, many of them give us breastfeeding mums as much grieve as they get. Whenever, I tell formula feeding mums that I am breastfeeding my baby, the comments start: “I'm sure she's crying because you are not producing enough millk? (No, she's crying because she is tired) I think you should switch to formula! (No, I don't think so!) Who do you want to prove anything to!?” (No one) 

To be honest, it is driving me mad. I am not proving anything to anyone! I have never felt any pressure to breastfeed. It is what I chose to do because it's just feels right. My breasts aren't just there to be put in a pretty bra – at least that's what I like to think. I come from a family with a breastfeeding background. My mum breastfed both my sister and me and she never made it sound like it was a chore. Maybe it it was her positive attitude that made it so natural for me. When I found out that I was pregnant with Amy, I had no doubt about the way I was going to feed my baby.
So why do formula feeding mums look at me like I am some sort of freak just because I am breastfeeding my baby and dare to do it for longer than a week? As soon as people find out that I am not formula feeding they start questioning how long I will survive breastfeeding. Why? I enjoy feeding my baby. I enjoy giving her the best possible start I can and I enjoy being close to her. The formula feeding mums I have come across see breastfeeding as a burden. I don't, I am proud to be breastfeeding my baby and I couldn't care less about your negative attitude!

PS: I am not addressing all formula feeding mums here. This post refers to the ones that tried making me feel like an alien for breastfeeding my baby!

If you have ever made feel bad about your choice to breastfeed, I would love to hear about your experiences. What did people say? How did you react? Did their criticism make you even more determined to breastfeed?


  1. Gorgeous feeding photo :) and a positive piece about breast feeding.
    I don't think I have ever faced any negative comments from non breast feeding mums. As far as I see it, everyone is entitled to make their own choice when it comes to how they decide to feed their baby, and no one should be made to feel bad. Support is so important.

  2. Lovely post and wonderful photo! I love reading about breastfeeding. I did not breastfeed my 1st child 15 years ago as (well, only a dozen of times, maybe) as I thought the quality and the volume of my milk was bad (and there was no one to tell me otherwise). Now I have my 8 weeks old baby girl and oh, God, how I struggled for the first 5 weeks- with cracked and bleeding nipples. But I am so proud of myself that I persevered and succeded! I love to think I am giving the best I can to my absolutely gorgeous little daughter.

  3. I agree that we all need to mind our own business and do what we think is best. I breast fed my first son for 6 weeks and then went over to formula feeding and I breast fed my second son for 2 weeks and then went over to formula, because that is what I wanted to do and I thought it was best for my sons, but I would never judge anyone who breast fed entirely or anyone thatfed with formula from birth, as I said before it is an individual choice!

  4. Fantastic post. I've been on both sides of the fence I formula fed my first born and I now breastfeed my son and people have got no end of things to say about me breastfeeding. I'm running a linky this week in support of National Breastfeeding Week it would be brilliant if you linked up. xxx

  5. Very nice post as I think people are often judgemental on both sides of fence and I think people need to live and let live

  6. Beautiful post! Oh,well I have been bfing for the past 4.5 years and learnt to deal with these. Just don't listen to them and enjoy your baby :)

  7. I've been very lucky in that we live in an area with a good breastfeeding uptake. It's quite rare to see anyone formula feeding young babies at our baby clinic, though most have switched over by the time their little ones are six months old.

    I am in an increasing minority as I continue to nurse my son - he will be one year old on Friday and I guess I officially enter the category of extended nursing then lol.

  8. I agree totally with your post! I have had so many negitive comments about me breastfeeding my 3 month old daughter. I do not give out any negitive comments to those who choose to bottle feed as I feel it is down to what each person thinks is best for themselves and their child, so why do people feel they can judge what I feel is best. x



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