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To think that this article could have done without the breastfeeding comment??

(131 Posts)
mosschops30 Sat 15-Aug-09 11:22:12


I am hoping to go to the new unit here, there are always issues surrounding this at the hospital, a good friend was asked by a MW there why she had 'poisoned' her baby when she said she had given formula at the end of her tether. Other people have seen women bullied into breastfeeding without any real support.
I had a bad post-birth experience, but was lucky enough to have a fabulously laid back healthcare assistant, I wouldnt have even managed the two weeks breastfeeding without her.

Am I being a bit touchy, or could this article have done without the 'she's breastfeeding and thats what we encourage' comment? Just to me it sounds a bit like, this mum is wonderful and if you dont manage it we wont be pleased hmm

debs40 Sat 15-Aug-09 11:31:56

Don't get me started on the breastfeeding fuhrers!

I'm afraid it's par for the course at most hospitals. This is more to do with targets on the issue than anything else. Plus, some, but not all, midwives have a very set idea of the way everything should be - pregnancy, birth, feeding etc etc - which doesn't factor in a woman's choice.

It's good that women are encouraged to breast feed and that we know about all the advantages as long as it is left encouragement and information. Too many times women are afraid to say what they really feel e.g. 'I actually don't want to breastfeed at all or any more'

I've worked in post natal support as a volunteer for a charity and there are lots of issues around feeding and the guilt that goes with it that can make women very stressed.

It's an issue which needs delicate handling but it rarely gets it

juuule Sat 15-Aug-09 11:32:05

The staff attitudes described in your first paragraph don't sound good but hopefully they've been addressed now. Although they are only second hand accounts so try not to be too influenced by them. It could have been interpretation or even just one member of staff.

I couldn't see anything wrong with the comment that the mother is bf-ing or that the hospital encourages bf-ing. You could also read that the mother is bf-ing as a result of having "had the most perfect labour and delivery that any mum could ask for" which from what you say isn't the experience that you had. I don't think that the article is saying this mum is wonderful, just that things have worked out well for her.
I think that you are being a bit touchy.
Hopefully, your experience at the new unit will be better than your last experience and you enjoy a labout and delivery suited to you.

StayFrostyBoobNazisCureCancer Sat 15-Aug-09 11:50:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

rubyslippers Sat 15-Aug-09 11:53:11

there is nothing to be offended by IMO - think you are being a wee bit touchy

however "fuhrer" hmm = totally vile and inappropriate phrase to use Debs

CharCharGabor Sat 15-Aug-09 11:56:59

Tbh I think it's just a statement of fact, woman is bfng which they encourage. Not that big a deal imo.

debs40 - 'It's an issue which needs delicate handling but it rarely gets it.' And comments about bfing fuhrers really help with that.

debs40 Sat 15-Aug-09 12:07:06

Apologies if you don't like the use of the word fuhrer! To read genocide into the expression is really a little silly. I'm sure you know what was meant.

I was applying the term to those who apply dogmatic, insensitive pressure to vulnerable women post birth and who do not indulge in 'delicate handling' themselves.

The fact is that the breast feeding lobby, like the natural birth lobby, is very powerful and there is an increasing dogma about the way pregnancy and birth and feeding should be undertaken. This is present at an instutional level but if you are views accord with those who hold these views, you perhaps wouldn't notice it so much

TAFKAtheUrbanDryad Sat 15-Aug-09 12:08:49

debs - i am invoking Godwin's Law. Anything you say is now invalid.


pooexplosionsforbreakfast Sat 15-Aug-09 12:08:49

lets get one thing straight..breastfeeders are a minority group. Not the majority, who use formula, a minority group, who get talked about as bullies and breastapo and all kinds of godawful names. I'm sick of it.

If you don't want to bf, bloody say so and don't be so feckin spineless. Bullied into it? Grow up and say what you want, you'll be joining the majority group. If it makes you feel bad, thats your own problem to deal with ,not the fault of those who do BF.

The entire universe knows that BF is the best way to feed a baby. If you can't or don't want to, just bloody say so and stop complaining about people who are doing their jobs properly and promoting the known best practice. Of course they hae targets, thats not a bad thing.

I am so sick of people banging on as if proper promotion of proven best practice is some sort of conspiracy against them. Do watever you want, but slagging off trained professionals for doing their job is unecessary and says much more about you than about them.

rubyslippers Sat 15-Aug-09 12:10:06

i don't know how you could read anything dogmatic into the phrase "Ellie is also breastfeeding, which is what we encourage"

I have not come across these attitudes in either of my PGs by the way - on the contrary it is usually the opposite

i think Fuhrer comments should be reserved for WW2 discussions

PuppyMonkey Sat 15-Aug-09 12:14:37

Oh, I like the Godwin's Law thing. grin

CharCharGabor Sat 15-Aug-09 12:17:02

Damn, forgot Godwin's Law. I could have saved my breath grin

frazzledgirl Sat 15-Aug-09 12:17:06

Dryad - thanks, been trying all morning to remember what that law's called!

OP, although I'm saddened that you were bullied, all I read into that particular midwife's comment is that they encourage bf. Which presumably is true. So no problem, right?

I bf my son, if only for seven months, and although I'm glad I did, I believe absolutely in every other mother's right not to. Do think pooexplosions has a point, though (if put more, er, robustly than I would have smile).

debs40 Sat 15-Aug-09 12:17:25

Let's not get into a slanging match.

Perhaps breast feeding ends up with a minority doing it because women don't want to do it? If that is so, what is wrong with that? That might be a reality.

Even though a minority, the bf lobby is actually pretty powerful and I understand why. It is has obvious advantages. But it is a matter of choice.

Unfortunately, my personal experience, working with the professional organisations of midwives and other bodies like the NCT, is that choice is often not considered a logical reason for failure to breastfeed is considered and there is a feeling that if we could push harder, persuade more vigourously, women might do it.

So some might not find it easy to locate the difference between saying 'have you thought about breastfeeding, here's some information' and 'we need everyone to breast feed as it's best, why aren't you doing it.

A failure to acknowledge that women are vulnerable, post birth, is a little disappointing.

frazzledgirl Sat 15-Aug-09 12:18:29

Sorry, got distracted by DS and didn't read OP properly - it's a shame if *other people* have been bullied.

fledtoscotland Sat 15-Aug-09 12:20:10

tbh i think you are being a bit unreasonable. it is just a statement. I dont really understand why the comment of "Fuhrer" has been used as breastfeeding is encouraged in all maternity units within the UK.

of course its unreasonable for a MW to suggest that giving formula is poisoning a baby but it is a medical fact that breastfeeding is beneficial for babies. Formula is an alternative but not a like-for-like substitute.

FWIW i FF DS1 and BF DS2 so i'm not on a soapbox saying the you should never FF. Each to their own but don't snub a new mat unit just because they are following WHO guidelines.

StayFrostyBoobNazisCureCancer Sat 15-Aug-09 12:20:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

debs40 Sat 15-Aug-09 12:26:06

Blimey, folks, fuhrer, it's a turn of phrase! It really wasn't meant to cause offence. Good job I didn't add 'we av ways of making you breastfeed'.....Please consider it withdrawn!

I think the OP's reaction to the article has more to do with her previous experience of birth and those of other's she knows than the words.

Are you pregnant again or thinking about it? It can be very difficult if you have had a previous bad experience and it can make you very sensitive.

slayerette Sat 15-Aug-09 12:27:23

Love Godwin's law! Particularly like this assertion:

"whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically "lost" whatever debate was in progress"

Will have to remember that for future reference.

With regard to the OP, I think you're being a touch hypersensitive, TBH. Why should they not say that they encourage breastfeeding? Too often, I have heard midwives and health visitors slated for not being supportive enough of those who choose to breastfeed; it seems they can't win, can they? Damned if they do and damned if they don't.

debs40 Sat 15-Aug-09 12:28:11

I'm trying to turn the conversation away from the silly obscuring debate about fuhrer by the way......

debs40 Sat 15-Aug-09 12:31:07

I think there might be more to this than meets the eye though.

Seriously, bf stuff to one side, if you have had a bad experience, it can make you very sensitive to these types of things in a way perhaps that others don't see.

I remember I was always ultra sensitive about issues concerning pain relief after the horror of my first birth experience.

I'm not sayimg that is the case here

BadgersArse Sat 15-Aug-09 12:31:26

rofl at godwins law

StayFrostyBoobNazisCureCancer Sat 15-Aug-09 12:31:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

pooexplosionsforbreakfast Sat 15-Aug-09 12:33:16

I would imagine that the reason the BF rates are so low is because people don't want to. Which is up to them, I couldn't care less, and everyone should do what they want. My problem is that almost no-one just says they don't want to, they make up silly reasons for why they couldn't, or blame those who try and help for being overbearing or bullying, they don't own their own decisions.

What really makes me sick though is that even though FF is the massie majority, is what is normalised everywhere throughout western society (babies on tv/movies are always FF, babydolls come with bottles, FF is the norm), the tiny minority of BF'ers are constantly made out to be crusaders and feminazis, bullying and forcing women into things they don't want.
My question is; if the breastapo are such vehement campaigning bulliers of vulunerable women, why aren't they doing a better job of it, and seeing BF rates climb accordingly? hmm Why does the UK have some of the lowest rates of BF?
And why do FF women, who don't get stared at or commented on when feeding, who have their choices backed by popular culture, and can feel comfortable in their overwhelming majority of numbers, purport to feel so attacked by a few midwifes and nurses who are just doing their jobs and following worldwide guidelines?

debs40 Sat 15-Aug-09 12:33:39

Where have I spat the dummy out. I've said sorry if it has offended people and I made no mention about 'poison' etc.

I'm trying to get back to the OP. It is a shame that people want to obscure that with this silliness.

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