Homebirth, lactivism and hypocrisy

Hypocrite

Homebirth advocates are hypocrites. They tout two diametrically opposed views of risk in an effort to justify their personal preferences.

Homebirth advocates are invariably lactivists. Lactivism is based on the belief, central to attachment parenting, that mothering is about doing whatever it takes to reduce risks to babies to the lowest possible level and doing whatever it takes to promote brain development (real or imagined). Homebirth is about ignoring risks to babies, either by pretending those risks do not exist, or by insisting that there is more to birth than whether a baby is healthy.

Consider:

Homebirth lactivism hypocrisy

There is not a single infant death in the first world that has ever been attributed to infant formula properly prepared (by both factory and parent), yet homebirth advocates insist that formula is “risky,” should be locked up in hospitals, and, if lactivists had their way, should be available by prescription only. There are dozens of preventable homebirth deaths each year, yet homebirth is constructed as “safe as houses” or “as safe as life gets.”

We live in a society obsessed with “intelligence.” According to homebirth advocates, mothers should breastfeed in order to obtain every last IQ point possible. What about the risk of brain damage at homebirth? It’s never even mentioned. Homebirth midwives don’t bother to keep any statistics on brain injuries that occur at homebirth.

Indeed the entire approach to risk is inverted 180 degrees when comparing breastfeeding and homebirth. In regard to breastfeeding there is literally no “risk” of bottlefeeding too small to be taken into account. Yet when it comes to homebirth, there appears to be no risk too large to be ignored. Breech? VBAC? Twins? Triplets? More risk leads to more kudos.

When it comes to breastfeeding, homebirth advocates consider mothers’ feelings to be irrelevant. There is simply no amount of maternal pain, difficulty or inconvenience that can justify bottle feeding in their minds. Yet the same people see no problem with a mother risking her baby’s death at homebirth because she’s afraid of the hospital, or doesn’t want the discomfort of a heplock.

If it could be shown that a baby died specifically because of bottlefeeding, homebirth advocates would be up in arms. When a baby dies at homebirth, advocates tell each other that the baby was “meant” to die. Formula manufacturers are evil; homebirth midwives who preside over preventable perinatal deaths, even multiple perinatal deaths, are “persecuted.”

There is one area that homebirth advocacy and lactivism share in common, though. Both are the personal preferences of privileged white women who have elevated their preferences to an ideal that should be emulated by everyone else.

That’s not surprising. Homebirth and lactivism aren’t about babies; they’re both about mothers and their own self image. Babies are just props in the display of their own imagined superiority.

  • Amazonmom

    After 10 years being a NICU RN in a region full of lactivist homebirth supporters I have come to the exact same conclusion. Kudos to you for saying what I have always thought.

  • Ducky

    There is an easy explanation for the inconsistency in risk aversion: home-birthers / lactivists put their faith (or want to put their faith) in “natural” processes to take care of things – on the whole they personify “nature” or reality as a compassionate mother while vilifying doctors/OBs/hospitals as an exploitative boss – profit-motivated and driven to efficiency. It’s the desire to have fundamental faith in that compassionate mother rather than the boss – human technology. Of course the problem is that nature/reality is amoral – cruelty and famine are just as much a part of nature as kindness and abundance. Nothing biological is perfect – we’re all evolution in progress- and “nature” bears no intention toward us whatsoever – neither benevolent or malicious. Nature just is, which is an extremely difficult concept for we humans (of so many intentions) to understand. No matter which end you approach it from, understandably it is very frightening to accept the idea that life and death is mostly luck, that we have very little control. I wonder if anyone’s done academic work on the topic of risk perception and birth practices – it’d be a fascinating subject.

    • My guess is that it is 100% normal to be irrational about risk. We exaggerate the ones we want to avoid, and minimise the ones we want to take. We don’t always build a whole crackpot ideology like NCB to justify the irrational. To me, the sheer silliness of “It’s natural” often boils down to “I am wonderful, desperate for validation and bad things can’t happen to me”. The absence or hiddenness of those bad things, their comparitive rareness, and fear can make this SEEM rational. A reasonable gamble, if you close your mind and cultivate ignorance. Optimistic confidence is a good and necessary approach to pregnancy which modern obstetrics does much to justify.. Take modern obstetrics out of that and it becomes a very pernicious form of hubris. I can’t see that a self-confidence and self-satisfaction based on such flimsy foundations serves any useful purpose at all. In my view, it isn’t attitudes to risk that should be studied but attitudes to women, attitudes of women – and childbirth.

  • Momster

    Not to mention the years of research indicating the benefits of vaccination. But vaccinations are bad because Jenny McCarthy said so! Waaay too much logic.

  • Momster

    Also relates to the ‘intactivism’ so prevalent among NCB culture. There is a small but scientifically proven advantage to circumcision for preventing STI transmission and penile cancer. However, having a bris for my infant son makes me a horrible, genital-mutilating monster! So I guess a small, statistically not-too-significant benefit only counts when it comes to breastfeeding. Logic simply does not win with these people!

    • Eddie

      I thought that this advantage was primarily present in sub-Saharan Africa, and far, far less of an issue in industrialized nations. What gets me is the people who compare male circumcision with female genital mutilation, as if they are on the same scale.

      • Momster

        Absolutely with you on the circ/FGM thing…and oddly enough, the ‘dangers’ of formula seem most prevalent in regions with an insecure water supply. So I guess if I move to sub-Saharan Africa, the circumcision is cool but I’d better cut out the similac. 😉

  • ratiomom

    Homebirth, lactivism and the other `natural parenting` checkboxes have one thing in common: maternal pain and inconvenience. You can predict their stance on any child-rearing related subject by simply looking at the option that causes the most physical pain, inconvenience, personal and economical deprivation and senseless work for the mother.
    Natural birth, breastfeeding, cloth diapering, attachment parenting,… these women make martyrs of themselves. It wouldn`t bother me in the least if they didn`t try to pull everyone else into it as well with things like the BFHI.

    • EmbraceYourInnerCrone

      THIS. It wouldn’t bother me quite so much if they didn’t see their choice as the “One True Way” to give birth, feed and raise your kids. They also seem completely clueless about the fact that their circumstances are NOT the same as the life circumstances of everyone else. Try exclusive/extended breastfeeding and attachment parenting if you are poor, a single parent, a woman on active duty in the military, a person with disabilities that make aspects of natural childbirth, breastfeeding or AP impossible/dangerous/painful. Every family has different circumstances and different needs.

  • Sullivan ThePoop

    This is sort of off topic, but the breastfeeding subject made me think of it. I was just the other day thinking about ear infections and allergies.

    My twin nephews got croup last week. In case you do not know croup is caused by a strain of cold virus that can infect very immature respiratory tract tissue and immature tissue around the larynx. In babies it causes a horrible sounding cough with a runny nose and in older children it causes a runny nose and a noticeably funny sounding voice. Anyway, one of my nephews got an ear infection with it and the other did not. The one that did sleeps on his back and the one that didn’t sleeps on his stomach. They are both teething with copious amounts of drool and cold can cause inflammation to the escutcheon tubes which make ear infections more likely. The fact that none of my three children ever got an ear infection was always fascinating to their doctors and now I wonder if it was because they all teethed late and by that time slept on their stomachs so even if they got a cold they were not drooling formula laden saliva into their ears all night. Not that this is definitely the whole answer, but something to think about.

    As far as allergies go, I was talking to a friend of mine the other day who is writing an article about the recent changes in childhood food allergies. I am not sure if everyone is aware, but there was a great rise in food allergies among children starting in the late 1970s. As a measure to combat the rise in food allergies pediatricians started recommending a later start to solid food feeding and very late starts to common sensitivity foods like eggs and peanuts. Childhood food allergies not only continued to rise, the rise was even sharper than before. Gradually they scaled back the recommendations for milder foods, but not for high sensitivity foods. The new incidence of food allergies declined, but some allergies like peanut allergies which are often of the most dangerous kind continued their assent. Then came a much greater understanding of allergies and the immune system in general throughout the early 2000s (up until now really, it is a hot research topic) which eventually lead to the realization that foreign food proteins need to be introduced as early as the child can physically eat and digest them especially the high sensitivity ones. Not only do you run a lower risk of developing an allergy, but if you do it will be of a much weaker than an older child. Anyway, I was looking at some of his graphs and the evidence is very compelling. So I started thinking if this was the case then it could explain the differences in food allergies between breastfed babies and formula fed babies.

    • Sue

      Interesting observations. Late introduction of nuts has occurred due to the risk-avoidance of inhalation and airway obstruction. Sometimes we try to mitigate one risk and create another (often worse) one.

    • Wren

      I think ear infections are something you are prone to or not. I had them seemingly constantly until I had tubes in my ears at 4 1/2 and have had some since, including as an adult. My mother’s other two children had none, despite a similar diet and growing up in the same household. My son gets one pretty much every time we fly back to the States (at least once a year) and got one with chicken pox. My daughter, who admittedly did nurse a lot longer but otherwise was treated similarly to her brother in terms of sleeping position as a baby and diet once began solids, has had none. He’s also prone to croup while she has only had it twice, and never when he did.

      The whole issue of allergies, particularly the more severe ones, has led to very conflicting advice even between my two kids, who are only 20 months apart. With one, I was told to avoid things like peanut butter in pregnancy and while breastfeeding while with the other I was told there was no point in doing that. Both were introduced to peanut butter before 12 months and neither has any major food allergies.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        I think ear infections are something you are prone to or not.

        The fact that chronic ear infections can be resolved by _physical_ modification of the ear (tubes) indicates that it is absolutely very anatomy dependent. If your anatomy is right, you will have better drainage and won’t be as likely to get ear infections. If your anatomy is wrong, you will be more prone.

        Since we don’t control the anatomy of our inner ears, and that dictates the outcome to a large extent, we really don’t have all that much control over ear infections.

        • moto_librarian

          My eldest has ear tubes, placed when he was 10 months old. He had continuous ear infections up to that point, and moderate hearing loss. When his younger brother got his first ear infection, I was afraid we were on the road to another set of tubes. His pediatrician said that any kid can get an ear infection as part of a bad head cold that involves the sinuses, particularly if there is so much phlegm that it oozes out of the eyes, but kids who get them constantly usually have an anatomy problem. So far, the baby has only had 2 ear infections, both related to sinus issues, and he (hopefully) doesn’t have the same anatomy problems as his older brother. I can see how this type of ear infection can possibly be prevented because of antibodies from breastfeeding, but breastmilk isn’t going to do anything to correct anatomy issues.

          • Amy M

            Yep..mine would get ear infections immediately following a cold that involved lots of phlegm, but they never needed tubes. Now that they are older, the infections occur less frequently (one just had an ear infection last week, first one in over a year)…as the child grows, the tubes grow and tend to drain more easily. We know enough people whose children DID need tubes to understand that some people are just born that way.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            And remember that there is not a clear line between tubes needed and tubes not. It will depend on a lot of things. A child who does not go to daycare and has little exposure to others probably won’t have that many ear infections, regardless of their ears. In contrast, someone who is constantly catching colds at daycare may have slightly better ears, but would benefit from tubes. In principle, breastfeeding can come into play there, because if BF does reduce the incidence of ear infections, then it can make tubes less necessary. However, on the whole, the decision to put tubes in or not is not going to depend on 1 fewer ear infection over 18 mos or whatever the BF benefit is, and is going to be far, far more influenced by those other factors. Our older son was on the edge of getting tubes, but because it was May and the cold season was pretty much over, he didn’t. Had it been October, yeah, but then again, if it had been October he would have had to have had ear infections all summer to be to that point.

          • Sue

            Interesting thoughts about risk of ear infections in relation to middle ear anatomy. I guess the location of the Eustachian tube opening in the throat , as well as the angle and calibre of the tube must make a difference, as well as swelling or fluid around its opening that could block it – because the middle ear normally discharges fluid into the throat.

            That’s why ear infections go together with throat infections – both fluid and organisms communicate between the two. Swelling of the mucous lining in the throat can block off the E tube opening.

            The tubes (“grommets”) don’t open up the Eustachian tube – they substitute for it by making an opening in the ear drum, to allow fluid in the middle ear to drain out the other way (into the ear canal).

        • WordSpinner

          I had chronic ear infections with tubes–they kept falling out and I had to get them put back in. The infections only stopped after I had surgery to remove my adenoids. (That also stopped me snoring like a chain saw.)

          I still spend 6 years in speech therapy learning to say my s’s and r’s due to the partial deafness.

      • Sullivan ThePoop

        Almost anything you get chronically is something you are inherently prone to. Although I had very bad chronic strep throat and they said it was because one infection I got early on was with a particularly virulent strain and caused a lot of damage to my tonsils, a lymph node and some of the lymph tissue in my mouth and throat and the damaged tissue became chronically infected and greatly reduced my resistance to strep throat. Once they removed all that I never got strep throat again.

        • Eddie

          Maybe that’s what happened to me. I caught strep throat repeatedly for much of a year in grade school. They took out my tonsils and adenoids and I’ve had it once, since. I never understood what the mechanism might be.

    • LibrarianSarah

      Best of luck to your nephews the croup almost killed me. Mom was staying up with me with the shower running on hot hoping the steam would help clear it up when she noticed my lips turning blue. She ran around the corner to the hospital in her nightgown to the hospital burst into the ER screaming “My baby isn’t breathing.” Emergency resuscitation and a night in the hospital to me and a blanket and psychiatric referral for my mom (they worried about vulnerable child syndrome). The fact that we lived around the corner of the hospital and the quick work of the people there was the difference between a “funny” story my mom tells at holidays and a something a lot more tragic.

      • Sullivan ThePoop

        Wow, that is scary. They are both already over it after 7 days. The pediatrician told my sister-in-law that it usually sounds worse than it is. I know at least one of my kids and I want to say all got it when they were older and woke up with a funny sounding voice, but never the infant cough kind. Although maybe not my son he never gets sick. He did not have as much as a cold his first 12 months. He got mono as a teenager and acted like he was dying. At first I couldn’t understand why he was carrying on so much, but then I figured it was because he had never been anywhere near that sick before.

  • Lizz

    The title of this post at first had me thinking about those people who scream about respecting their choices. Then when the choice to have a c-section and formula feed are brought up it’s that your choices are irrelevant and must be based on fear and misinformation. You know despite that their choices are based on natural news, a few blog posts and a fear of “interventions”.

    • Sue

      Don’t you know? “Choices” are only valid if you make the “right” ones!

  • Dorkusbalorkus

    This makes complete sense to me. However, my friends with the strongest home birthing convictions seem to believe it’s the hospital that carries risk. No risk of the hospital (say, infection or pitocin) is too small to ignore. I don’t think they feel there are any risks they are willing to take with home birth. They think they are minimizing risk by staying home. I guess I’m thinking that worrying about the “risks” of hatting kind of goes along with the “detriment” of formula, but with even less scientific support.

    • Dorkusbalorkus

      And I think others hit the nail on the head. It’s really not about evidence or logic. It’s about doing what is “natural,” or as the NUCB religious cult says, “what God intended and designed.” Nature worship coupled with distrust of ANY major establishment (“the man”) perfectly explains this mentality.

      • Sue

        Great name, Dorkus!

  • ol

    I think that that exclusive breastfeeding and birth without interventions have one thing in common: it happens when everything is going good (or with considerable efforts), but the diffeence appears when something goes wrong – what should a woman do to correct the situation and how she can be influenced. Birth is a short event and at the moment it is discussed and thought of – it is ended. The woman can regret but can’t change or repeat the birth with the same child, but it can be healed by the next pregnancy and birth (or diving into ideology should be started before birth – during pregnancy).
    There’s another strategy with breastfeeding – it’s a long process and can be corrected (till the ideal) and there are a lot of time for influence. So combo-feeding can be and should be corrected, and so on.

  • Amy Tuteur, MD

    Johanna Stein just sent me the link to this video on her blog. It is awesome!

    http://www.mothereffed.com/2013/01/episode-5-spoilt-milk.html

    • Not My Normal Nym

      Thank you for posting this! It was hilarious but it’s also sad because my husband watched it with me and said, honey, this is your story.

    • GiddyUpGo123

      Love it! Word for word my story, except she left out the part about nipples that look like raw hamburger.

      • theNormalDistribution

        Gah!

    • Bystander

      I love her already! 😀

  • attitude devant

    “…advocates insist formula is ‘risky.’ ” Yes THIS! When our hospital had it’s first meeting on the way to Baby Friendly status, we were informed that this was NOT a breastfeeding initiative. No! It’s a SAFE feeding initiative.

    I am afraid I snorted so loudly that every head turned.

  • Not My Normal Nym

    It’s actually logically consistent when you think of it in terms of biological essentialism and the naturalistic fallacy.It’s really a philosophy where a woman’s moral worthiness is judged by her body’s ability to perfectly execute all aspects of reproduction and child-rearing without the use of technology. It has nothing to do with risk at all, except for the social risk of being seen as defective, broken, less virtuous, less worthy.

    • I’m working on the “Pure Woman Theory”.

      The entire point of the Pure Woman Theory is that women are meant to be and/or do X, Y and Z and that if they vary from those in any way, they are not worthy of the the title.

      Hormonal birth control is forbidden. (Restricting fertility is definitely frowned upon.)
      Interventions in pregnancy and birth are forbidden unless it’s an emergency.
      Formula is forbidden because women should feed their babes from their own body.

      In general, a woman should devote herself to her biological imperative as a wife and mother. She may be permitted to use her free time as she sees fit, but she cannot neglect her domestic duties or allow anyone else to do them.

      This meshes well with a variety of ideologies from the natural earth mother, survivalist/prepper, traditional family values (look that one up in wikipedia for a laugh) and so on.

      • In the event you think this is far fetched, in the comments to the HuffPo article on formula supplementation aiding in establishing breastfeeding one commenter asked in all seriousness why the researchers didn’t test “home remedies”.

        Apparently women and babies don’t need corporate products, just some good old home remedies.

      • auntbea

        Do Pure Women use pregnancy tests? Or do they just wait until quickening?

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          My wife never needed a pregnancy test. She knew she was pregnant when she all of a sudden became prone to carsickness. Days before her positive test, I knew she was pregnant because of that.

          • auntbea

            So she *did* use a pregnancy test, then? Well, I guess she didn’t trust her Womanhood.

          • Sue

            Me too, but it’s good to check that the nausea’s not from a urinary tract infection or something. Nausea plus sore breasts must be fairly reliable, though.

          • Dr Kitty

            I got urinary symptoms and took antibiotics for what I thought was an infection. Then the nausea and sore breasts hit, the urinary symptoms eased off and I realised that a pregnancy test was probably a good idea.

            I’m super careful with young women who have “UTIs” to make sure I ask if there is any chance they could be pregnant… because if I can make that mistake…

        • Why would you need a pregnancy test? If you are a Pure Woman, child bearing is your destiny! All you need is to be in tune with your body and embrace your innate wisdom.

          Of course if you are a Pure Woman you would be eating a healthy diet and not ab/using any substances that could be harmful to your baby.

    • fiftyfifty1

      But I think it goes beyond just the naturalist fallacy. The naturalist fallacy is simplistic and it is wrong (i.e. not bourne out by the facts), but it seams pretty neutral to me overall. It simply says “Nature’s way works better”.

      NCB and Lactivism, on the other hand, seem to me to be more than a benign over-reliance on Nature. They contain big doses of misogyny and magical thinking. I say misogyny because women who need or want non-natural interventions are actively held in distain. Magical thinking because NCB philosophy and Lactivism believe that we can influence physical processes through our thoughts. NCB and Lactivism don’t just think that natural birth and breastfeeding are best, they label women who don’t birth naturally or who fail at breastfeeding as hysterical failures who brought it on themselves.

      • Not My Normal Nym

        Right. But that’s part of the naturalist fallacy. Not just Nature’s Way Works Better but natural = moral. Moving away from nature = fall from grace. If you’re religious this connection is explicit (Eve’s curse). But the crunchies make the connection too–a woman’s body was designed to give birth, breastmilk is the perfect food for babies. And it’s framed as a moral imperative. If you deviate from it, you are a sinner.

  • GiddyUpGo123

    It’s nature worship though, isn’t it? The two ideologies (lacitvism and homebirth) are indeed very hypocritical when compared to each other, but their proponents don’t seem to notice (or care) because to them it’s not really about life vs death or IQ vs brain injury–those are just convenient arguments for them to use or ignore as they see fit. It seems to me that the real overarching philosophy is that you should always do what is natural, because natural is best. How anyone can believe this while simultaneously embracing their smartphone and doing all their “research” at Google University is completely beyond me, but I don’t think you’ll ever be able to successfully convince anyone who adheres to these ideologies that you can’t tell a new mother that she should risk her baby’s life at homebirth and in the same breath tell her she’s a terrible mother if her baby slips an IQ point or two because she didn’t breastfeed. Logic doesn’t even enter in to it. That’s just not where these people are coming from. It’s like trying to convince a religious person that there’s no God. You can make the argument, and the only answer is going to be “but it’s natural, and natural is best because nature knows best.”

    • Eddie

      You’ve captured the one place where these philosophies are consistent, and the overriding belief system that allows them to be so blindly inconsistent on everything else.

  • Allie P

    Yeah, except the “risk” of hospital birth is one homebirth advocates talk about quite regularly, trumpeting insignificant (or far less likely) risks to procedures like c-sections and epidural, etc. as if they were the most dangerous things in the world.

    There’s just so much scientific illiteracy going on here. When I talk to my friends who go on and on about the dangers of c-section or the rate of “unnecessary c-sections”, they refuse to accept the idea that “unnecessary” is a) a subjective term (lots of people WANT a c-section), b) a retrospective analysis — yes, there are cases where a stalled labor eventually perks up and the baby is born without trauma, but you can’t know that in advance, and c) a flawed concept, because the risks of c-section are far less than the “should be used only in a life threatening situation” crowd would like to have you believe.

    My stupid, inane, and highly misleading Lamaze class showed us the “risk of epidurals” in — I kid you not — red horror movie font. My husband, a very intelligent guy, was like “um, are you sure you want one of those?” And trying to find ACTUAL risk stats of this incredibly common and relatively safe procedure was well nigh impossible.

    My epidural proceeded without incident.

    • Bombshellrisa

      Remember Alpha Parent (blogger) the woman who believed the C-section that delivered her son was “unnecessary” because he ended up with an apgar of 9? They told her fetal distress, she agreed to the section, baby was born without incident and precisely BECAUSE everything turned out ok she believes it was unnecessary.

      • AmyM

        What does she think would have happened then? Does she think the diagnosis of fetal distress was made up, just to section her? Or that the distress wasn’t so great that she needed a section? Or that they made a mistake? And what if her child came out hypoxic…would the section only be considered necessary if he actually had brain damage? And if so, would she and the dad be up in arms blaming the doctors for waiting too long? Or do they imagine the brain damage would have been unavoidable (some babies are meant to be brain-damaged?) but that was preferable to a dead baby, so a Csection would be justified in that case? How can these people see into the future, or the past that never happened and KNOW that x and such Csection wasn’t necessary? How do they do at picking lotto numbers?

        • Bombshellrisa

          I think that she is one of those people who think that a baby has to be born blue and floppy to prove that a section had to be done! We need a bumper sticker with Bofa’s point about interventions for the people who insist on “evidence based medicine” and don’t understand what that is.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        I’ve said it before, and say it again: the point of interventions is to PREVENT problems, not resolve them. If there are problems, then you waited too long to intervene.

        • Kerlyssa

          Same people showed up to comment on, of all things, Jolie’s mastectomy. Saying she should have exercised more, eaten natural foods, and waited to see if she got cancer before getting any treatment, instead of ‘letting’ the doctors cut her. Guess even celebrities have to compete with that damn golf game…

          • Eddie

            That’s incredibly ignorant! Nothing is more natural than inheriting a predisposition toward developing certain cancers. You’d think those people would see that, but nope.

          • Sue

            Agreed. I honestly don’t understand the reaction to Jolie’s announcement. ‘Cos everything’s within our control with good diet and exercise, until, of course, it isn’t.

          • LynnetteHafkenIBCLC

            Yeah, she could have done that, but she didn’t want to. Why can’t some people just live the way they want to, and let others live the way they want to?

          • theNormalDistribution

            But if only she had educated herself and learned to trust breasts, she could have avoided the double unnecestectomy.

          • Dr Kitty

            She could indeed have done that…she just didn’t want to.

            Because she has six children and the idea of less mutilating, planned surgery now and not having to worry was more appealing to her than three monthly breast checks every year for the rest of her life, years of anxiety and having more mutilating, less plannable surgery and a potentially fatal diagnosis in the future.

            It isn’t what everyone would do, but it is what she chose, knowing all her options and the risks involved.
            I’m not sure how anyone could judge her for making a choice she feels gives her children the best chance of having her around for as long as possible.

  • auntbea

    There is most certainly a common thread: Doctors say formula feeding is okay, and that home birth is not. And we cannot be independent thinkers if we do what doctors tell us.

  • GuestB

    “When it comes to breastfeeding, homebirth advocates consider mothers’ feelings to be irrelevant. There is simply no amount of maternal pain, difficulty or inconvenience that can justify bottle feeding in their minds. Yet the same people see no problem with a mother risking her baby’s death at homebirth because she’s afraid of the hospital, or doesn’t want the discomfort of a heplock.”
    This this this this. And once again, THIS.

  • Aunti Po Dean

    If it could be shown that a baby died specifically because of bottle feeding I wonder how it would be received if we all shrugged and said ” breastfeed baby’s die too you know”

    • Amazed

      And (non) breastfed babies die too, you know. When they are, in fact, non-breastfed.

      Here, I said it.

      • Cascaritas

        Exactly. Breastfed baby, not breast-starved baby.

        • Amazed

          At least they had a really lovely breastfeeding bond!

          Amen, sista.

        • Bombshellrisa

          Oh wow, I think we have a new term here “breast starved baby” Beats my “motherbabyplacenta” term