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Do we honestly need to keep campaigning about breastfeeding - those who choose to will won't they?

(25 Posts)
Twiglett Thu 02-Aug-07 13:47:47

drops bomb

<leggsit and sniggers>

oliveoil Thu 02-Aug-07 13:48:51

oh please

I will be forced to have another MN break if I see 25637 threads dedicated to this

norty Twiglett

Twiglett Thu 02-Aug-07 14:14:57

<looks around - bomb was a dud obviously>

Tommy Thu 02-Aug-07 14:17:03

not sure and I want to join in a discussion!!

I really wanted to feed with DS1 but due to bad latching and very poor support from HV etc I didn't.

I wasn't until I discovered Mumsnet that I realised what had gone wrong and that helped me to feed DS2 for over a year.

So, I say, keep campaigning and some of it will go in!

NormaStanleyFletcher Thu 02-Aug-07 14:18:46

Bored oh Marmitey one?

wannaBe Thu 02-Aug-07 14:23:08

I think that those that want to breastfeed will try. Some will succeed, some won't.

I think that those that don't want to breastfeed, no amount of campaigning will make them change their mind, as people are already well aware that breast is best, so if someone has made the deliberate decision not to breastfeed it's unlikely you would be able to change their mind.

so no, I don't think there's any point.

<<<ducks for cover>>>

Aitch Thu 02-Aug-07 14:25:27

but there is a point in campaigning for better support, isn't there? that's what i tend to see the most passionate posts about, not trying to persuade people against their will but keeping women who want to bf doing it for longer than 6 weeks.

twinsetandpearls Thu 02-Aug-07 14:26:04

I think with young people if we can get the message across that breastfeeding isn't for wierd women with saggy tits and there are role models that they identify with who breastfeed then there is a point. Jordan whom we may not want to see as a role model is frequently named by the girls I teach as a role model which makes her recent article sad.

If I had posted on here when dd was a baby I may have breastfed for longer.

PrettyCandles Thu 02-Aug-07 14:27:08

Do we honestly need to keep campaigning about smoking? After all, everyone knows it's disgusting, expensive, and will kill you.

Same difference, IMO.

expatinscotland Thu 02-Aug-07 14:27:49

Not really, Pretty. Not being breastfed in the UK won't kill you. Smoking anywhere in the world just might.

Aitch Thu 02-Aug-07 14:29:12

that should be the campaign, though twinset. posh bfing, jordan bfing... beautiful photos like in that NZ campaign. i think that could make a diffference.

expatinscotland Thu 02-Aug-07 14:29:52

Yeah but you won't catch either one of those hoochies bfing, Aitch.

PrettyCandles Thu 02-Aug-07 14:30:52

OK, maybe I exaggerate a little. But still, teh benefits of bfing are so widely advertised that I think many people may believe that it's no longer necessary to educate about it. Similarly the disadvantages to smoking. Yet people continue to smoke therefore education and campaigning muyst continue. Similarly people continue to ff and be unfriendly towatds bfing, therefore education adn campaigning must continue.

Aitch Thu 02-Aug-07 14:31:29

which amply demonstrates the problem, doesn't it? there's the disconnect right there.
who else, though? i remember seeing Geri Halliwell kinda bfing and talking about her milk, but i was a bit as she said it was the most beautiful thing and no problem...

Aitch Thu 02-Aug-07 14:32:05

baby was about three days old at this point...

expatinscotland Thu 02-Aug-07 14:33:25

It wasn't a problem for me, either, after I got DD2's latch sorted out. Before that, though, I had 3 huge blisters on my left nipple and had to express off it a bit whilst it healed, although once they scabbed over she could still feed off it.

looseleaf Thu 02-Aug-07 14:34:15

I'm with Aitch on this - I think the campaigns are good just so people breastfeeding feel supported. I've breastfed my daughter for 6 months but get the impression from family I should stop now; my best friend stopped within a month or so as said she found it 'disgusting'!! So I love anything that helps stop me give in and give up

twinsetandpearls Thu 02-Aug-07 14:37:47

But young people do not really know the benefits, I know I teach them childcare!

wannaBe Thu 02-Aug-07 14:39:31

but it's exactly this kind of attitude that leads to increased guilt in women who have been unable to breastfeed for whatever reason.

Yes of course breast is best, but often breastfeeding doesn't work out for whatever reason and in those circumstances, formula is the only alternative. so to be told that campaigning for bf/against ff should be compared to campaigning against the dangers of smoking can only have two outcomes. for the women who have successfully breastfed their babies;

it reinforces the message that they have successfully done the best for their child.

for the women who were unsuccessful;

it reinforces the fact that they have failed to do the best for their child, even if they had originally intended to and were unsuccessful.

When I was unable to bf my ds I put him on formula without one ounce of guilt. I was doing the best for my baby. But since joining mn I have become acutely aware that, in the eyes of some, I did not do the best for my baby at the time, that there would have been people who would be sad to see me in a supermarket buying formula or in a cafe bottlefeeding my child. These were attitudes I was unaware of at the time.

I do think that campaigning for better support is necessary, but I think that the means of campaigning needs to be changed, because while the pro breastfeeding campaigners are getting their message across and those who are successful are happy, those who aren't are given the message that they, and their formula, should be villified.

Carmenere Thu 02-Aug-07 14:39:38

Actually I think we do and I hardly Ever give a fig about this argument but I wish I'd had the support that is available on mn when I was bf dd.

PrettyCandles Thu 02-Aug-07 14:41:20

But that's just it, looseleaf. Why should you be coming under pressure to stop bfing? It's not just the mums who need educating about bfing.

PrettyCandles Thu 02-Aug-07 14:45:11

Wannabe, I am one of the women who 'failed' to breastfeed my child. But good support and education enabled me to bf subsequent children.

I do not feel sad when a woman buys formula. I don't know her circumstances. I alos fully support a woman's right to choose how she feeds her child. But it must be an informed choice, not one made out of prejudice, squeamishness, ignorance or external pressures.

raspberryberet Thu 02-Aug-07 14:45:35

You only have to look at the amount of posters on MN who ask for advice on breast-feeding, who post because they are struggling to breastfeed, or who are being given crap advice by their healthcare professionals to see that there is still a need for campaigning, and there is still a need for support.

Just because we are past needing what breastfeeding campaigners and counsellors did for us doesn't mean that the issue goes away for other mothers.

Anna8888 Thu 02-Aug-07 14:46:45

Breastfeeding is like everything else - you always have to continue educating people, it's endless. After all, if education were hereditary, we wouldn't need schools anymore - children would be born knowing how to read and write

lemonaid Thu 02-Aug-07 14:54:55

wannabe -- if campaigning for bf consisted just of dancing around going "nyah nyah nyah, breast is best SO THERE" then I'd agree with you.

But it isn't (or shouldn't) be about that. It's about campaigning to make sure that every woman who wants to breastfeed has access to up-to-date help and effective support. It's about trying to educate those who aren't mothers so that fewer of them will sap a new mother's confidence by telling her that what she's doing is gross or disgusting.

In Japan, for example, there's huge support for anyone who wants to breastfeed, huge amounts of backup and support, to an extent that would be unimaginable here. And in parallel with that, there's no stigma about ff. I think that, actually, the two go hand in hand and it's not that more focus on "bf = good" necessarily means an equivalent focus on "ff = bad".

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