One of the biggest things which seems to divide opinion in the pregnancy/motherhood world is the whole battle between the breastfeeders and the bottle feeders. It really is the ‘issue du jour’ and seems to get people going more than most other subjects. I do find it bizarre when people have such a strong opinion they act so aghast at the other side’s reasoning – it seems like they’re forgetting these mothers are still going to feed, wash and look after their children. In some circles, saying ‘I’m not going to breastfeed’ does really produce the same reaction as if you said ‘I’m keeping the baby in a cupboard, putting it up the chimneys or down the mines when it’s seven and I’ll wash it only for birthdays and Christmases.
I completely understand how much research there is out there suggesting ‘breast is best’, detailing all of the wonderful things which will happen to your child if you choose to give it your own milk rather than Cow and Gate’s (other brands also available). We all know your baby will take its A-Levels aged 18 months, graduate at the age of four and probably be the world’s best piano player/runner/author before its tenth birthday if you breastfeed. But seriously, is there a need to be so anal about the whole thing? It’s not a war, both sides can win. I can’t imagine going to parents’ evening and the teacher saying ‘little Timmy is terribly behind with his times tables, it must be because you didn’t breastfeed.’
I also think the view is completely unfair on those who wanted to breastfeed but for whatever reason weren’t able to – if it’s out of their control then all you’re doing is being hugely spiteful rubbing it in their face how perfect you are because you managed to express liquid from your nipples. Well done.
When bump comes along I would like to give it a go – it might work, it might not. Myself and/or baby will come to some sort of agreement along the way I dare say – whether that’s a bottle, a boob (probably one of mine, not a random one) or a mix of the two. If it works, great! I’ll be happy, baby will be happy and maybe, just maybe, if someone asks for any helpful tips or advice I’ll impart what I’ve learned along the way. I definitely won’t judge, lecture or gloat. If it doesn’t work, then I’ll move on with my life and that’ll be that.
What’s your opinion? Did you/do you plan to breastfeed? Have you experienced bitchiness because you bottle fed?
Harriet and bump x