Claiming #FedIsBest is divisive is like claiming feminism is divisive

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Pediatrician Daniel Flanders doesn’t like the phenomenally successful Fed Is Best campaign. He made his feelings clear in a series of tweets.

After declaring:

#Fedisbest is an entirely unhelpful statement of the obvious. Beating heart is best. Functional brain is best. Breathing is best.”

He went on to claim:

Enlight121

it has evolved in a less helpful and more divisive direction. Lots of anti- breastfeeding rhetoric, “us vs. them” narratives, fear mongering.

When you’re accustomed to privilege, leveling the playing field feels “divisive.”

At first I didn’t understand what he meant but then I realized what he was getting at. Fed Is Best is divisive in the exact same way that feminism is divisive. When you’re accustomed to privilege, leveling the playing field feels “divisive.”

For example, members of the misogynistic men’s rights movement are constantly whining that feminism discriminates against them.

Men’s rights activists have rejected feminist principles and focused on areas in which they believe men are disadvantaged, oppressed, or discriminated against. In the 1980s and 90s, men’s rights activists opposed societal changes sought by feminists and defended the traditional gender order in the family, schools and the workplace. Some men’s rights activists see men as an oppressed group.

I have no doubt that MRAs really believe that they are victims but that doesn’t make it so. Their self pity doesn’t erase eons of brutal discrimination against women and it doesn’t change the fact that women are still disadvantaged in most parts of the developing world and even in some spheres in the industrialized world. Pretending you are being discrimated against may be a satisfying rhetorical tactic, but it is has nothing to do with reality.

Similarly, lactivists like Dr. Flanders are now whining that Fed Is Best is “divisive” and — irony of ironies — is responsible for an “us vs. them” outlook and fear mongering about breastfeeding. Never mind that a central, deliberate tactic of lactivism has been to promote guilt and shame by claiming ever more fanciful “benefits” of breastfeeding and dividing women into “good” mothers who breastfeed and “bad” mothers who don’t

No doubt Dr. Flanders, like many other professional lactivists, is sincere. When you have been given free rein to bully new mothers into breastfeeding, being forced to stop feels divisive, but, as in the case of the MRAs, the claims are a way to mask anger over loss of privilege not a reflection of the facts.

Indeed, when I asked Dr. Flanders to explain how and to whom is Fed Is Best unhelpful, he responded with his Donald Trump impersonation:

Enlight13

tooooooter!!! Are you looking for more blog fodder” you don’t need me to push your agenda. Go on without me.

How articulate — NOT!

I guess he was hoping a childish insult would hide the fact that he couldn’t answer the question; it doesn’t.

Fed Is Best has been a game changer because it is both empirically true — fully fed with formula is undoubtedly better than underfed with breastmilk — and because it addresses the oppressive lactivist tactics that have been deployed over the past two decades. In an effort to bully women into breastfeeding, lactivists have grossly exaggerated its benefits, ignored its life threatening risks, taken agency over their own bodies away from women by banning formula supplementation and pacifiers in hospitals and closing well baby nurseries.

There could not possibly be anything more divisive than breast is best rhetoric, yet lactivists, rather than acknowledging their mistakes, and apologizing for their tactics insist that forcing them to stop practicing divisiveness is somehow divisive.

Lactivists have behaved badly; women and babies suffered as a result. It’s not divisive to point that out; it’s simply a matter of compassion and common sense.

  • Mac Sherbert

    So why do those who deliver with midwives always comment on the state of their umbilical cords and placentas? Oh my midwife said they looked so good. I mean really I had two very healthy babies with two different OBs and neither commented on such. I just assumed it was all good. The only person I know who had an OB mention such was a mom that a very usually thick cord. Sorry rant over. It’s just I don’t care people. TMI.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      There is that great episode of Cheers when Lilith is pregnant and going all birth crazy, and she and Carla come out of the back room and Carla says, “Eeeewww, I don’t know what they did with the birth goo!”

      Unfortunately, I can’t find a clip of it.

      That’s the same episode where Fraser goes off, “Damn it, woman, a spider gives birth a thousand times over, you don’t see her making an ass of herself in front of her husband’s friends!”

    • Empress of the Iguana People

      The only real life placenta/umbilical cord I’ve heard discussed beyond cord cutting was my sister and nephew’s. Because it had splotches of cancer to an inch of my nephew’s belly.

      • Roadstergal

        😮

      • Mac Sherbert

        Oh, wow. I hope they are both still ok and doing well.

        • Empress of the Iguana People

          Nephew is a perfectly normal 10 year old, and sister is remarkably hard to kill. It went into remission, then came back a few years ago, but she’s still working and everything. Mabel really wants to study my family, lol.

          • Empress of the Iguana People

            In the nicest way, of course.

    • maidmarian555

      The OB commented on the size of the placenta and how thick the cord was when my son was born. I think they were just pleasantly surprised everything was still in good shape (I was 15 days overdue and having an EMCS). Given that it took almost 5wks for the revolting stump to fall off, I’m guessing it *was* probably unusually thick. Idk anyone else who’s baby held on to that gross lump of yuck for that long after being born! This is also why I am always quietly horrified by the whole lotus birth thing. They always seem to suggest the umbilical cord will fall off fairly quickly. Can you imagine carrying around a bag of rotting tissue for over a month?! Just no. Blurgh.

      • MaineJen

        My daughter also had a thick cord (my husband had to snip twice to cut all the way through it), and also took about a month to lose her stump. It was gross! And she has an ‘outie’ belly button now.

      • Mac Sherbert

        In your case I see where it would have been of interest. My kids cords fell off quickly. My dd’s fell off so fast (like a couple of days) I worried it might be a problem, but it was fine.

    • Kq

      The only thing I know about my placenta is that, during my CS when the doctor asked if we wanted to see it, my husband and I said NO, emphatically and in unison.

  • Seeing Clearly

    The LGBTQ+ the feminist the disabled and proud the queer lunatics, They are all abominable and have to go away they are an abomination to the Lord.

    • Empress of the Iguana People

      You are missing some punctuation there, youngling.

    • Heidi_storage

      I didn’t realize you posted this over and over again. Dr. Tuteur doesn’t generally ban commenters, but clogging her feed with this garbage might do it. I certainly would consider it were I her.

    • Daleth

      Well then, He probably shouldn’t have created them, should he. I’ll talk with Him about that next time we speak.

  • itry2brational

    This article is oblivious irony after oblivious irony. “Pretending you are being discrimated (sp) against may be a satisfying rhetorical tactic, but it is has nothing to do with reality.”
    Feminists have been fed a satisfying rhetorical tactic of victimhood. It is not reality.
    Your claim of “eons of brutal discrimination” is typical feminist crap: women have been saved from brutality that men faced for eons and still do today.
    “When you’re accustomed to privilege, leveling the playing field feels “divisive.””
    An no one is more accustomed to privilege than a western feminist, the most privileged creatures on planet earth.
    Essentially you proved every one of your opponent’s tweets about you. lol

    • Azuran

      Well, obviously you should try harder to be rational.

    • Remember Alan? lol
      Sorry. Not funny.
      It seems that all sides are welcome to contribute here.

    • Who?

      Women may well not have experienced the same style of brutality as men have ‘faced over the eons’ but to suggest they were ‘saved’ from it rather makes the point that, in your eyes at least, the boys controlled the play. And chose the suffering they thought most appropriate for themselves. Or took it on as their cross to bear. Or something. One thing is certain-there is always plenty of suffering to go round.

      Anyway.

      If you really think that the people getting the best deal in the world today are ‘Western feminists’ I’d suggest that you note the lack of women at the top of global corporations, and global major governments, and think again. Angela Merkel, Janet Yellen, Christine LaGard: then you are into the second string-Teresa May, someone, someone. Include the appalling Ivanka Trump in the list if you like.

    • MaineJen

      Women could not vote until 1920, could not have credit cards in their own name until 1970, could not own their own property or business until recently. Tell me again how women have been “saved” from the brutality of being considered full citizens?

      So try. Much rational.

      • Larry Caldwell

        The part about women ownership of property is a myth. My great-great grandmother homesteaded 320 acres and her husband homesteaded 320 acres in 1847. She retained title to the land, and her daughters inherited. My grandmother inherited 40 acres of it, and despite my grandfather’s desire to sell it, he held the land until her death. She also operated a small mortgage business, had her own bank accounts, and retained control of the money despite her husband’s desire to squander it all. Women also had the ability to vote in the majority of states before 1920.

        • Who?

          Well if we’re swapping anecdata…my mum’s best friend is from a wealthy family of graziers. The sons got all the land and money when their father died-mother and unmarried daughters had to bunk in with whichever son (or married daughter, see below) would have them, until mother died and all the girls married.

          The daughters, including mum’s friend, were under clear and explicit instructions to ‘marry well’, and to do it early. No education or anything of course-why waste it on the girls, they’ll only get married.

          This was a common pattern in that social class, at the time.

        • Yeah, no. Women could retain title to land if it was inherited, but often they didn’t. Women could not vote in federal elections until 1920. When my grandmother opened her bookstore, she had to get her husband’s permission to do so, and the credit was in his name because she couldn’t get it on her own. My mom remembers when she was allowed to wear pants to school, for crying out loud!

          The fact that some women succeeded through luck and the benevolence of those around them doesn’t mean the system wasn’t totally fucked. It also doesn’t mean the system now, while a bajillion times better, isn’t also still messed up and in need of further fixing.

          • Empress of the Iguana People

            The grade above me managed to get our skirts/dress pants only for junior high girls rule at our school. We attended a k-8. Girls k-6 and at the high school (and boys of all grades) could wear shorts and jeans, just not 7th and 8th grade girls. This was 1990!

          • Empliau

            Girls in public schools in Western Australia just got the right to wear shorts and pants to school recently. My jaw dropped.

        • Empliau

          The U.S. is not the whole world. Google couverture and the 1870 Married Women’s Property Act.

        • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

          A right isn’t inviolable until it’s in the Constitution. A few states allowing the womenfolk to vote is meaningless because it wasn’t a right that couldn’t be taken away on a whim until 1920. We had to fight like hell for that right and women died for it. How dare you diminish their sacrifice. Typical sexist.

          Men, who hold 95% of the wealthy power all over the world and always have are the real victims though, right?

      • Roadstergal

        “So try. Much rational.” It’s giving me all of the happy Monday giggles.

      • Seeing Clearly

        The LGBTQ+ the feminist the disabled and proud the queer lunatics, They are all abominable and have to go away they are an abomination to the Lord. IT IS DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIOR..

        • Russell Jones

          y u no poast rite

        • Empress of the Iguana People

          Actually, this is spam.

        • Who?

          Oh why do you get to say what is abominable?

          Destructive, we can work with. But if a state of being is destructive only because it offends/unsettles/antagonises the current rulers, well perhaps its time the current rulers got a bit used to being uncomfortable.

          The first lesson might be in imagining how it feels to be different from their ‘perfect’ (ahem) state, and hoping they don’t meet with an accident that renders them ‘disabled’.

          Now go and play, the grownups are speaking.

        • Yeesh, if your god is so hateful and awful, why do you still worship him?

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Because that person is also hateful and awful.

          • Well, yeah, that’s obvious. God is just a proxy for their hatreds and bigotry. But they claim their god is good, so sometimes shock treatment of “that is not an okay thing to think” can have an impact. And if not, well, I tried and I also made clear my utter distaste for that person, their god, and their ideas.

        • MaineJen

          People like you are *exactly* what drove me away from religion. Well, one of the factors, anyway. You’re not so much “seeing clearly” as “finding a publicly sanctioned outlet for your hatred and bigotry.”

          Thank you for confirming that I made the right decision.

        • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

          You’re either deranged or a monster.

    • Azuran

      Brutality that men put on other men. So really that has nothing to do with women or feminists.
      Women have been banned from military BY MEN. You can’t declare that women are too feeble and weak to go to war and then blame them for not suffering as much as men during wars.
      And it’s also important to note that women have been raped and killed en masse whenever a city fell during war. So spare us the hole ‘we saved you from brutality’ attitude.

      • LaMont

        THANK YOU! This idea that women can’t be *players* in war means that they’re protected from brutality is nuts. Women were *prizes* of war for fuck’s sake! The word “rape” literally used to mean “theft”! And even today, I’m about to be done with grad school and all my married female friends know that they’re going to be screwed in the job hunt because they’re all late-20s/early-30s and presumed maternity leave risks. (So spare me the whole “it’s all in the past” goalpost movement.)

    • Dr Kitty

      You again.
      You show up when someone posts one of your MRA trigger words, derail the conversation, shit on everything and have your ass handed to you by regular posters.
      And you keep coming back…
      Madness, idiocy or masochism?

    • momofone

      Bless your heart. You do keep trying, don’t you?

    • Empliau

      Lord Peter Wimsey defined chivalry as a desire to have all the fun.

    • Sue

      That’s HILARIOUS.

      Wealthy women do have a position in society much closer to equality with men than they used to – BECAUSE of feminism.

      The most privileged group on earth? Wealthy men.

      What’s your view of infant feeding?

      • Azuran

        What he’s not getting, is that in this situation ‘western’ basically means ‘white’.
        It’s absolutely true that the typical western women has a relatively very privileged life. But that’s almost exclusively white privilege, not women privilege. You are generally better off being a white woman than a black man.
        And the white man is still the most privileged.

    • Seeing Clearly

      The LGBTQ+ the feminist the disabled and proud the queer lunatics, They are all abominable and have to go away they are an abomination to the Lord. IT IS DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIOR.

      • Azuran

        Seriously kid. Get help.

        • Roadstergal

          Help posting, if nothing else.

      • Russell Jones

        If we’re gonna go down the “abomination to the Lord” road, then we need to repeal the Thirteenth Amendment. After all, the same sacred text that tells us homosexuality is an abomination tells us that slavery is A-OK if properly regulated.

        • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

          Don’t give them any ideas. Almost 20% of Trump voters think freeing the slaves was a mistake.

      • Empress of the Iguana People

        Bless your heart. How about you go do some volunteering in your neighborhood? It’ll look good on your resumes when you’re old enough to start working.

    • Russell Jones

      Stick to your guns, Cochise. Those damned feministas are all trying to steal your sperm so they can jump on the child support gravy train at your expense. Don’t let anyone tell you different.

      • attitude devant

        I know I am. He’s just the kind of real man I’ve searched everywhere for and never found until now!

        NOT

    • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

      The brutality men faced was from each other, not women. Women have been abused and oppressed by men for eons. So have children of both genders. In short, men are the problem and always have been. They abuse, murder, and rape women, children, and each other. Get it? Sure, not all men are violent monsters but the vast majority of violent monsters are men.

      • attitude devant

        Don’t waste your time on him. He’s an MRA guy who must have some kind of google alert set up for certain key words and then he just drops in and makes a bunch of irrelevant comments. I think he’s probably in mom’s basement, eagerly scanning the web for something he can weigh in on.

  • Tori

    I don’t really like “fed is best” either, but more because of my reluctance to refuse to engage with any sort of competition about how I feed my child. Honestly fed is fed and assuming I’m doing this safely (like commercial formula and clean water!) others can mind their own business.

  • Russell Jones

    lol Flanders.

    That’s exactly what the Internet needed: another know-it-all dudebro pontificating about what is and isn’t good for women and children.

  • MaineJen

    Are we in junior high? I mean, making fun of people’s names? Who *are* these people?

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      “We can handle this situation maturely, just like the responsible adults that we are. Isn’t that right, Mr. Poopy Pants?”

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1A3WEMPZJD8

    • momofone

      I guess when they can’t argue with the premise, all they have left is ridicule.

    • Merrie

      Na na na boo boo, stick your head in doo-doo.

  • Who?

    Hannah Dahlen weighing in on breastmilk for grownups.

    http://www.abc.net.au/triplej/programs/hack/drinking-breast-milk/8886746

    My words have run away.

    • kilda

      I love how she dismisses the risk of things like HIV and Hep C as “tiny tiny risks” but presents the fact that it’s a “magical fluid” as a serious reason to do it. And that whatever makes it beneficial for babies is probably good for adults too because, um, handwaving, similar physiology.

      You know, semen is a pretty magical fluid too. It can make people! But that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to pass yours out to strangers.
      Call me old fashioned but I still think sharing bodily fluids with random strangers is a medically risky behavior.

      • Roadstergal

        Breast milk _is_ a magical fluid! HIV can only live for a very short time on its own, but it is stabilized and cared for in breast milk!

        http://jcm.asm.org/content/41/6/2465.full

        “HIV RNA levels were remarkably stable in whole milk after three freeze-thaw cycles and for up to 30 h at room temperature. “

        • MaineJen

          Oh jesus. That is scary as hell.

      • Who?

        Totally with you on the sharing of bodily fluids. And I’m still having fits of horror over the photo with the story.

  • AnnaPDE

    If “Fed is Best” is stating the obvious and needn’t be said, how come “Breast is Best” is still being shouted from the rooftops, when it clearly contradicts the obvious thing?

  • attitude devant

    Oh Goddammitall! Why do people who disagree with you feel they MUST reply in a way that makes fun of your name????? It’s almost as if they feel that their actual arguments are weak. RIGHT????

  • CSN0116

    Lactivism is a religion and this is how people respond when you question their unfounded belief system for which their entire lives are predicated.

    Hilariously, many religious people understand their beliefs are dependent on *faith,* lactivists think their made up stories are actually true 😛

    • Kq

      Cult. Religion. Whatever…

  • Empress of the Iguana People

    We will continue to advocate fed is best without him. We don’t need the approval of fools. My poor kids are going to be affected far more by their parents’ depression than whatever we fed them.

  • Juana

    It’s divisive because it divides them from their privilege…

  • Squillo

    His response reminds me of some of the (white) responses to “Black Lives Matters.” If it’s so “unhelpful,” “divisive”, and “obvious,” why do so many people seem to have trouble acting as if it’s true?

  • Brenna Goode

    Fed is Best is definitely not divisive, but I do take issue with your wholesale dismissal of equal rights for all; the ONE place that the men’s rights has a good point, and was the start for much of their movement, was in parental custody. There is no debate that courts default to and favor the mother in custody, regardless of what is best for the child. We cannot claim that we are in favor of equal rights, except when it suits our purposes. Men should not be arbitrarily denied custody and visitation simply because they are not the mother. Nor should they have to go to the lengths that a woman would never have to go to to prove that they can take care of their own children. See your own recent post about a woman claiming that breastfeeding was a reason to deny custody to her husband.

    • E.C.

      When a man seeks joint or full custody, he usually receives whatever he’s seeking. If a man doesn’t have custody or visitation, it’s usually because he didn’t want it.

      Right now, there’s no social cost to a man being a weekend father, but a woman who sees her kids only two weekends a month is treated like she must be a monster. So women take on the grueling work of single parenting for most of the month, while men escape it.

      • mimbletonia

        I’d be interested in any data you have to back up the assertion that men ‘usually’ receive joint custody when they seek it.

        • Marianne

          First off, per Macoby and Mnookin, Dividing the Child, Harvard U Press, 95% of child custody situations are handled out of court. Ultimately only about 3% go to trial. So the majority of the time if women are getting the children it’s not the courts who are doing it.

        • Sarah

          Have you asked Brenna for data to back up hers? You don’t appear to have done, although disqus may have hidden it.

    • Sarah

      I don’t know which jurisdiction you’re referring to, but there’s emphatically a debate in the one I’m familiar with.

      • Roadstergal

        It’s very much a debate that I’m aware of. The negative side of that custodial ‘favoritism’ is that child care is expected to be the primary and default responsibility of the woman. “Second shift” wasn’t a new book when _I_ was in college, and I’m an Old.

    • Actually, while courts default to the mother in custody cases, they only do so when the father doesn’t fight back. If the father expresses interest in custody, especially of older children, it flips back to being father-favored. This is still an issue, of course, but it’s a lot more complicated than just “men are screwed here”.

      • Azuran

        It’s not really just the courts, this favouritism towards mother is seen everywhere in society.
        From what I’ve seen in many divorce cases in my family and friends, many fathers just let the mothers have custody because either that’s what society expect or they expect the court is going to be biased against them and it’s just going to be a waste of money, so they don’t even try.

        There is also this very huge tendency, regardless of how the divorce occurs, to let the mother keep the house. It’s mostly the father that moves out. Probably because it appears more ‘socially acceptable’ for the father to ‘move out’. If the woman moves out, it’s more likely to be seen by society as if she had been ‘thrown out’ by the father, which has an undertone of domestic abuse, and it sometime goes as far as being seen as ‘making your kids homeless’, because even society has a bias that children should stay with the mom.

        This in turn causes fathers to often be less financially stable, since they now have to get a new apartment, new furnitures, maybe a car etc. And in cases of bitter divorce, it can take months if not years for the courts to divide up the ex-couples possessions. And this new apartment might be further away from the kid’s school, which makes it hard for the father to have the kids during the week.

        It’s really a complicated problem for which there is no easy fix. It’s ingrained deep into society.

        • The Kids Aren’t AltRight

          This is the flipside of the patriarchal coin where women are expected to do most of the child-rearing and sacrifice their careers for their children and face derision for every parenting decision when men get applauded just for showing up. Patriarchal gender norms hurt everyone.

          • Azuran

            Indeed. It’s a fact of life that, on average, women are still doing more child-rearing than men. Therefore, even if all judge and society were totally impartial, custody cases still wouldn’t go 50/50.

          • Kerlyssa

            houses stay w the kids more, would be my guess, and since kids stay w the woman…

          • Azuran

            Could be either, or a little bit of both. But men often cant really fight it if the woman refuses to leave the house. It’s a lot more socially acceptable for a woman to ‘throw’ her husband out of the house than the other way around. A man ‘throwing’ his ex-wife out sounds much more abusive.

          • Kerlyssa

            this elides women leaving an abusive situation, which often involves leaving the house. it’s a complex issue, let’s elave it at that.

        • I agree with most of this except the financially stable part. While this might be true in the short term, in the long term men almost always wind up financially better off and women financially worse off in divorce. This is tied up with men’s higher salaries, especially if the woman left the workforce to care for the kids. Alimony and child support don’t come close to the amount of money it actually takes to live, plus the hassle of collecting it means a lot of people don’t get all the money to which they are entitled.

          • Azuran

            Yes, but in the short term, that makes the mother more ‘able’ to take care of the kids. And if the father leaves them with her for a couple of months until he gets his bearings, that can make a difference in the end.

            It also depends on where you live and your socioeconomic status. I’ve said that this was my own personal experiences with divorces in my family. Women in my family happen to be generally more financially stable than men.

          • Well, as was pointed out, whoever gets custody usually also gets the house to minimize disruption to the kids. So if a father gets custody, the mother moves out. It’s all interrelated. And at least where I am, the stigma isn’t on the dad kicking the mom out. It looks bad for whoever moves out, because they’re “abandoning” the family, especially if they initiated the divorce proceedings.

            I agree it does matter a lot on individual circumstances, and of course people’s lives don’t follow the statistics. This is something we looked at during my sociology days in university, which was about 10 years ago; overall, divorce is good for men financially and bad for women financially, but YMMV.

          • Roadstergal

            I agree – the reason why this asymmetric distribution has been the norm is because men typically have more stable long-term income streams. Women are disproportionately hit, career- and income-wise, by pregnancy and child-rearing. You have to fix all of that upstream shit first.

          • Heidi

            Totes! I don’t work because I literally made minimum wage and had to travel 45 minutes each way for that job. I am pretty sure if we had to use daycare (and we would since we have no family in our city), it would cost us money for me to work. And I had horrible 16 hour shifts (8AM-12AM) that daycare wouldn’t even cover. I did what is considered “women’s work” so I believe that is a huge reason the pay isn’t anywhere near a living wage. If we were to go through a divorce, it would make no sense for my husband to get primary custody! He’d have to pay for daycare, I’d get a paying job and part of my minimum wage would go to child support and how the fuck would I even survive (I’m guessing I’d lose healthcare coverage along the way too)? But I guess MRAs would get a “justice” boner because a man got custody once. This leaving the workforce decision was one we made together after all.

        • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

          That’s completely untrue. Within five years of a divorce involving children, the man is almost always more financially stable and successful than the woman, especially if the woman was a stay at home mother. The idea that women clean up and always get the kids in a divorce while the men get wiped out and have their kids ‘stolen’ is antiquated, sexist, and largely untrue. It’s far more common for the parents to get joint custody and for dad to become more financially stable and successful and is usually more likely to remarry and have more kids than the mother. There are very notable exceptions, usually involving the upper middle class or wealthy, that get bandied about in the press but they aren’t the norm.

      • Larry Caldwell

        Have things really changed that rapidly? Only a decade ago, if a father tried to get custody of children in court, he only had a 13% chance of prevailing.

        • I’d need to see stats on that- I can believe only 13% of fathers got custody, but that would be because many of them didn’t try.

        • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

          Only about 15% of fathers get full custody because most don’t want or fight for it. When men fight for custody, they win 70% of the time. They tend to be even more successful gaining custody if the mother works.

    • Azuran

      To be fair. A real feminist is about equality and would support shared custody and oppose this kind of favoritism.

    • Poogles

      “I do take issue with your wholesale dismissal of equal rights for all; the ONE place that the men’s rights has a good point, and was the start for much of their movement, was in parental custody.”

      Where does she dismiss equal rights for all? Feminism includes fighting the patriarchy in ways that hurt men too – such as in parenting and custody cases. Just as Fed is Best seeks to support breastfeeding *and* formula feeding, feminism seeks to help women *and* men overcome sexism and sexist notions/beliefs from society etc.

      • Feminism includes fighting the patriarchy in ways that hurt men too – such as in parenting and custody cases

        I knew someone would say this.
        One of those glib empty lines that everyone secretly knows is bullshit.

        • LaMont

          Really? You don’t see MRAs fighting for the rights of men to healthily express emotion – rather, they slander “pajama boys” and say that physical strength is key to being a real man (see the “woman carries baby, man carries and protects both, no matter what your gender studies prof says” meme going around post-Harvey). You see *feminists* arguing to let men into traditionally feminine spaces/behaviors if they want, including childrearing. Toxic masculinity *does* hurt men, and feminism doesn’t approve of it. If men do more childrearing, *women get to be out in public doing more things* as feminists want.

          • I’m not sure why you brought MRA’s up here – how does this have any bearing on what feminism is about?

            I’ll address what you’ve said anyway.
            Just to be clear, while I’m a very strong fathers’ right advocate, I’m not an MRA.

            You don’t see MRAs fighting for the rights of men to healthily express emotion
            Wrong. More than wrong.

            Encouraging men to express themselves and share their emotions is the focus of a lot of MRA advocacy. You’d know this if you’d actually looked it up for yourself.

            say that physical strength is key to being a real man
            Some do, most don’t.
            Have you seen the neckbeards in the MRA movement?

            meme going around post-Harvey
            Are you fucking serious? You’re using a meme – which doesn’t even reference MRA’s – to make your case?

            MRA is an umbrella term that encompasses a wide variety of beliefs.
            The vast majority of what they say is paranoid self-absorbed bullshit, but you’re still obliged not to misrepresent what’s been said.

            You see *feminists* arguing to let men into traditionally feminine spaces/behaviors

            Some do. Some don’t.
            Either way, men are actively excluded from the conversation.

            Feminism can be very parochial at times.
            For example, there are some – albeit a minority – of prominent feminists vociferously arguing against the inclusion of trans-women into female spaces.

            Toxic masculinity *does* hurt men

            Agreed, but define “toxic masculinity”.
            If it means being a self-entitled homophobic pig, then that is certainly toxic.
            If it means playing contact sports, walking their aunt to her car at night, or simply disagreeing with something a particular feminist has said, then that’s bullshit.
            And no, I’m not saying all boys should be made to play contact sport, just that there’s nothing inherently wrong with it.

            If men do more childrearing, *women get to be out in public doing more things* as feminists want.

            Then can you explain why the National Organisation for Women is viciously fighting the Shared Parenting Bill?

          • MaineJen

            For “not an MRA,” you certainly seem to know a lot about them.

          • Because most father’s rights advocacy is coming from them, and they are the first point of contact for a lot of men who are struggling.

            I agree with a lot of what they’re saying with regards to father’s rights, male suicide and the demonisation of boys.
            Where I part company is the unshakable belief by most MRA’s that white males are somehow oppressed (they aren’t), that feminism is no longer necessary (it is), and that men are the real victims in society (fuck off).

            In any event, you don’t get to misrepresent your opponent regardless of how noble you consider your cause.

            I’m curious – why do you think that snidely throwing that label at me somehow invalidates what I’m saying?

            Curious as to your reasons too Amy, since you liked her comment.

          • Heidi

            If MRAs are that concerned about father’s rights, they are going about it all wrong. They aren’t advocating for better pay for women and what’s been traditionally considered women’s work. In fact, I’ve seen them espouse deeply sexist beliefs about how women should stay at home, women are intellectually inferior and their only reason for existence is to reproduce and rear children, men should be able to demand “financial abortions” to some point *after* birth, but then they want to demand custody and child support if shit hits the fan?! If men want more rights as a father, they need to step up and take more responsibility when it comes to caring for children. For that to happen, more women need to be able to financially provide for their family. As it is now, women are much more likely to leave the workforce to care for children (many times because her job pays less) and it leaves them vulnerable. Just look around at a park or library – it’s overwhelmingly women with children. Go to the baby aisles at a department store – women.

            Custody battles and divorces can get nasty and vengeful regardless so I’m not dismissing the claim a man in your family got screwed over, but I’ve seen my fair share of women getting the raw end of the deal in custody battles in my family (as in men who commit spousal abuse get custody). So I’m going to call bullshit on only men crap.

            And in regards to bullying, um, what men’s rights advocate isn’t a bully? Who’s doing the bullying? They dox, they harass, they make death threats. Sure, they harass men, too, and that’s despicable. But I don’t see that it affects men moreso than women and I’ve not seen feminists advocating bullying or denying it.

          • If MRAs are that concerned about father’s rights, they are going about it all wrong…. intellectually inferior… financial abortions…

            So your point is that some members of a broad movement say stupid shit?
            Do feminist anti-rationalists speak for all feminists?
            Does it invalidate every position held by other members of the group?

            They aren’t advocating for better pay for women and what’s been traditionally considered women’s work.

            I have a limited understanding of the issues surrounding the wage gap, but isn’t this decided by market forces? If you want more pay, work in a more lucrative field.

            I’m not dismissing the claim a man in your family got screwed over
            Thank you, and I mean that sincerely. It’s a surreal experience to have your reality denied regardless of how much proof you provide.

            So I’m going to call bullshit on only men crap.

            I never said that. I never even implied that.
            We actually somewhat agree – this simplistic assumption that one side is always right benefits noone.

            what men’s rights advocate isn’t a bully?
            …They dox, they harass, they make death threats.

            Most of the nasty shit comes from regular trolls rather than the advocates themselves but I agree that there is a very creepy sinister element that identifies with the movement.

            But I don’t see that it affects men moreso than women
            Pew global data shows that men receive more abuse than women.
            Most harassment of women comes from other women.

            I’ve not seen feminists advocating bullying or denying it

            Now you’re just being lazy.
            Both sides of the political spectrum are guilty of stirring up outrage to feed their audience’s bloodlust. Both sides are explicitly catering to the worst instincts of their readership.

            I’ll give you a specific example – last year Clementine Ford whipped up a hate frenzy against an man on the basis of a Facebook post made by a random woman alleging sexual harassment on a tram.
            It later transpired that the man was autistic and the woman had grossly distorted her account of events for some cheap attention.

            Rather than formally retract her article and try to fix the damage, Clementine simply deleted it.

            Everyone makes mistakes, but to deliberately unleash a lynchmob on the basis of a stranger’s Facebook post is irresponsible bullying.
            Once she realized her mistake, her refusal to step in and rescue this man – one of the most vulnerable members of society – from the consequences of her actions make it clear that her ego and need for validation comes well before the issue itself.
            Just like most bullies, regardless of their political inclinations.

          • MaineJen

            So basically you’re saying “Not all MRAs?”

          • MaineJen

            And I have to add, your disingenuous denial of the gender pay gap speaks volumes. “Market forces,” indeed. “If you want more pay, work in a more lucrative field.” So it’s just that simple, huh?

            Are you the same person who’s going to scream “Bad parent!” at Mom when she goes to work extra hours to try and get that promotion?

          • Daleth

            I did work in a lucrative field. Still got paid less than men with the same education and job experience I had (literally the same school and same amount of time with the same employer). Hmm.

          • That would be blatantly illegal.
            May I ask which field this was?

          • Who?

            It’s every field. And have you ever tried to make the ‘its illegal’ point to your professional employer? You’re out on your shiny bottom so fast you don’t know what happened. Then complaining gets you a bad name in the professonal community, and you’re out for good.

            Wake up.

          • And have you ever tried to make the ‘its illegal’ point to your professional employer?

            Yes, then I left and found another job.

          • Who?

            That’s just what the women do too.

          • Daleth

            Ironically enough, law.

          • Who?

            I know, right? Only an idiot would take on a law firm over this kind of thing. Complaining would be a certainty to trash what’s left of your career in one swoop.

            It’s no wonder women leave the profession in droves.

          • Daleth

            Exactly. On all points.

          • So you were paid differently despite holding the same position within the company as your male colleagues?

          • Azuran

            You seem surprised. This is actually very common.

          • Who?

            But aren’t the prisons all empty because nothing ‘blatantly illegal’ (what a moronic turn of phrase) ever happens, anywhere.

            Eyeroll.

          • Daleth

            Same position, same job title, same responsibilities, even the exact same start date (law firms tend to bring on new cohorts simultaneously). Oh, and we all started at the same salary, because that’s how big law firms work (the salary is the same for all first-years within a given office).

            The firm went to a “merit based pay” approach to set salaries for subsequent years, and by an amazing coincidence, the men somehow turned out to be more meritorious than the women.

          • maidmarian555

            I had a super fun time with a previous employer after they brought in a male manager who was supposed to be managing me. Long story short, he was useless, lazy and used to go and get drunk at lunchtime. I ended up not only doing my job but also most of his too. When they eventually got rid of him, I was promised that if I carried on doing the bits of his job I WAS ALREADY DOING, they would officially promote me and I’d be put on the same salary they’d been paying him for being shitfaced and not working. I had to then fight for over 6 months for that pay rise. I officially complained (via HR) as I had written confirmation that I was supposed to be getting the promotion. In the end, they wouldn’t change my job title and raised my pay to £1k less than they’d been paying him (presumably in some sort of act of spite because I had been such a massive pain about it all). When I left, the job title was changed and the pay raised back and, surprise, surprise they took on a guy (who was also later fired for being rubbish). I absolutely fought my corner and was bloody good at my job. Still valued less than men who were way less competent. Fighting to be treated fairly is also pretty exhausting when you have a demanding job, it’s not a fun or easy thing to have to do when you wouldn’t have to if you had a penis. Drives me insane when people who’ve never had to go through that kind of hassle to get equal treatment make out like it’s the fault of women who are utterly fed up with this bullshit because it happens everywhere all the time.

          • Daleth

            Grrrrrrrr! I growl on your behalf.

          • maidmarian555

            I guess the point is, it goes on everywhere, in pretty much every field. ‘Just work in a more lucrative field’ is singularly the biggest pile of bullshit advice I have ever heard. “Oh yeah, sure I’ll go and start somewhere else at the bottom and spend another 10 years working up to the level I am now.” There is no such thing as a career path where this kind of nonsense doesn’t go on.

          • Who?

            Like the Australian treasurer who said people who aren’t doing well should just go and ‘get a good job, that pays well’, which will solve all their problems.

            And that’s the calibre of person to whom we pay the big bucks.

          • maidmarian555

            I think many on the political right think like that though. Most of our politicians/bankers etc etc come from extremely privileged backgrounds and yet will claim very loudly that they got where they are based on ‘hard work’ alone. Whilst totally ignoring the fact that even if you gave them a pass on their private education and stint at Oxbridge, their parents were able to support them financially for several years whilst they did unpaid internships in London! Utterly detached from the reality that most of us exist in and yet people keep voting these morons in…..

          • Who?

            This guy’s history is pretty much the Australian version of that.

            He also said, famously, that the age of entitlement is over.

            Then, having left parliament in his forties, he draws a mid-six figure parliamentary pension while being a senior bureaucrat for the Australian government in Washington, earning a high six figure salary plus all kinds of benefits.

            We call them morons, but they are richer than we will ever be, and they run things.

          • your disingenuous denial of the gender pay gap speaks volumes

            Nowhere did I state or imply this.

            I was specifically responding to the assertion that traditionally female
            occupations are paid less because of women are devalued.
            (I’m going to edit this part to make it clearer.)
            I’m not sold on the idea.
            There’s a reason doctors get paid more than nurses.
            The same reason lawyers get paid more than teachers.

            If you’re doing it for the love of the profession, knock yourself out, but don’t complain about how you’re paid less.

            In any event, that was completely tangential to the main topic as you well know.

            Are you the same person who’s going to scream “Bad parent!” at Mom when
            she goes to work extra hours to try and get that promotion?

            What the hell are you talking about? How is that even remotely connected to what we’re discussing?

          • Who?

            And you seriously think the reason-back in the day-that more men than women became doctors and lawyers was because men were smarter and harder working than women? Seriously? That’s the only reason? Not because universities didn’t accept women? Or because social pressure was on women to not waste their time studying because they will ‘only get married’?

            Here in Australia more women become lawyers than men now, and they leave the profession in droves in their thirties. In part, because they look up and see a bunch of cranky fat old guys, who they don’t want to keep working for. And in part, because they see a bunch of cranky fat old guys sitting on piles of money, promoting grumpy mildly overweight slightly younger guys. And there are reasons that happens.

            My personal experience is in law. It’s a small community, and lots of the boys like to play away from home. Their upstanding social lives however revolve around women who do most of the ‘kid stuff’-school etc. Having women as their peers makes this social side ie kids school, a bit too close to their work related extra-curricular activities: when your colleague at work knows both your ‘bit on the side’ and your wife, life gets very complicated. The wives also don’t love women coming up and spending too many long hours with their husbands.

            ‘Market forces’ aren’t always about profit and loss.

          • back in the day
            What does this have to do with the choices currently available to women?

            they leave the profession in droves in their thirties
            Can you think of another more salient reason why women might be leaving the workforce in their 30’s?

          • Who?

            They leave because they can see the future, and don’t like it. The businesses need bodies-they are the Viking Death Ships of the modern professional world. Use ’em up, chuck ’em over the side.

            Oh yes, it’s always babies, isn’t it, to your way of thinking? Silly me for thinking women might have some agency and views beyond their reproductive organs.

            And the ‘back in the day’ women are now senior professionals, like me. Urging their younger colleagues-when asked for advice-to follow their gut, recognise that the warning signs are real, and to not compromise their future health and sanity on the off chance they don’t get chucked over the side.

            Most of the men get chucked over the side too, by the way. All their years of servitude turned to ashes. Their’s nothing so washed up as a 45 year old lawyer who has never moved jobs, thinking that loyalty and hard work are the keys to success. And that does seem to happen to way more men, than women. As mentioned above, most of the women are long gone by that stage.

          • But why are home health aides paid less than garbage collectors?

          • Because that’s the amount of money required to attract suitable candidates for the job.

            It makes economic sense to pay a nurse more than a streetsweeper but there’s no moral dimension to it.

          • People need jobs. The actual answer is that garbage collectors have a union (and are usually male), while home health aides are specifically excluded from pro-labor laws (because they are usually female and minority). Plus, of course, male-dominated jobs always get paid more than female-dominated jobs; as women move into any job, the job automatically plummets in status and pay. Secretary used to be “position to groom young men to be future executives”. Teacher used to be highly respected and paid as a professional doing an important job. Biologist used to be hard science doing exciting work unraveling nature’s mysteries. Literary analyst/critic used to be the epitome of gentlemen’s intellectual acuity. But women moved into those fields, and then the descriptions and respect accorded to them magically changed.

          • Roadstergal

            It’s funny how job categories de-lucrative themselves when women become major parts of them, isn’t it? It’s very funny. Borderline hilarious, to Milo Y… I mean, Miko T.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            It’s funny how job categories de-lucrative themselves when women become major parts of them, isn’t it?

            The best example I know of is veterinarians.

            Back in the old days, we used to think of being a vet as a lucrative job. I think of the vets growing up, and they were among the wealthier folks in town. Then again, they were doctors, so why shouldn’t they be?

            But now? It’s not a wealthy profession at all. Median salaries are not all that much higher than average overall. Considering the effort and cost it takes to become a vet (more selective than med school), they get paid pittance.

            What changed from then to now? One thing is the make up of the profession. Used to be 90% men. Now it’s about 80% women (based on the pictures on the wall of the graduating classes in the vet school).

            Now, the question is, did the pay fall out because they are women? Or is it women because the pay got so low that men wouldn’t do it? I don’t know, and I don’t think it matters much.

          • Yes.
            I sure you think you’re clever ambushing me like this, but it’s objectively true – some MRA’s are shitbags, some are not.
            I guess this is the part where you say that if someone needs to say “not all X” then X is irredeemably broken.
            I’m waiting, don’t disappoint me.

          • MaineJen

            No, by all means. You’re making my point far better than I could.

          • You’re not making any points at all, you’re just playing to the audience.
            You’ve avoided or misrepresented what I’ve said on several occasions.

            Here are my main points:
            – not everything coming out of the MRA community is bad
            – the family law system is imperfect when it comes to the treatment of fathers.
            Fairly uncontroversial. The main issue here is your uncritical reflexive response to the MRA label rather than any specific point.

          • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

            All MRAs are shitbags. ALL. Every single one. They hate women and want to destroy us so that we have no rights or opportunities in life and are thus forced to be slaves to men in order to survive, just like it was in “the good old days” before we uppity bitches started getting educated, employed, and making their own choices.

          • All MRAs are shitbags. ALL. Every single one

            So I take it you’ve undertaken extensive research to state this so definitively. Which sites did you go to? Who did you read?

            Or are you just uncritically parroting the party line like everyone else here?

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            The party line? You mean the fact that women and men are equal?

          • moto_librarian

            No, they are ALL shitbags.

          • Roadstergal

            Hey, there are good people on both sides. :p

          • Heidi

            Excuse me, just no on the women pay fields. People who teach you, who are your nurse, who wipe your ass when you are in the hospital are needed fucking jobs so don’t fucking tell me that women just need to find better jobs. Those jobs need to pay better. You’ve lost me. I’m not even going to read the rest of your drivel.

          • don’t fucking tell me that women just need to find better jobs. Those jobs need to pay better.

            You need to find a better job if you want to get paid more.
            If you want to be altruistic and sacrifice your earning potential for the greater good then that’s admirable.
            But it’s an adult choice you consciously made, and you have to live with the consequences.

            I’m not even going to read the rest of your drivel.

            See ya!

          • Heidi
          • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

            Women get paid less in the exact same job as men! It happens every day, even when the women are better educated and qualified and do the job better. It’s a fact.

          • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

            No, all MRAs say evil, horrible things about women. They hate us. That’s all it is about. It has nothing to do with father’s rights, domestic abuse or rape against men or any of the other things they pretend to care about but ultimately do nothing to help with. They’re too busy raging against “whores” on the internet and trying to steal human and civil rights away from us so they can be the only ones with any legal rights.

          • Thanks for your thoughtful considered post.
            You’re right, every member of every group is exactly the same.

          • attitude devant

            Well, YOU’RE the one who just said feminists don’t like men. How is that not saying every member of the group is the same?

          • Nick Sanders

            So your point is that some members of a broad movement say stupid shit?

            The MRM is not, and has never been “broad”, in scope or in membership.

            If you want more pay, work in a more lucrative field.

            Women are paid less than men in the same field, in pretty much every field.

          • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

            Bull, feminists fight for equality. MRAs just hate women and want to punish us for existing and having any civil or human rights.

          • Who?

            To be fair, they hate women even when women have no rights. The rights just make them ragier.

          • There you go again liking comments, Dr Amy.
            Are you going to drop into this thread anytime?

          • Azuran

            She has the right to like any comment she wants and has no obligation of speaking with you.

          • Of course, she has no obligation to do anything.
            But since she’s egging people on – and her likes carry significantly more weight than regular commenters – I’m curious as to her rationale.
            I find it bizarre that intelligent people are supporting these blanket statements despite never having looked at it for themselves.
            I’d be surprised if her actual views weren’t more nuanced.

          • attitude devant

            ‘egging people on’ HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH….
            (pauses for breath)
            HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!

          • Kerlyssa

            what is this nonsense on a god damn obstetrics blog. you want to get into the court fuckery of heterosexual divorce, maaaybe more appropriate places exist . really doesn’t speak well for you that you’re trying to force the blogger into a confrontation over your pet issue.

            as for the rest of that crap, when most of the support for this ‘equal time’ bill comes laden with support and verbiage indicative of abusive individuals, it taints the issue. if the foremost proponents for vegetarianism overwhelmingly were border patrol vigilante groups, and all the language in their laws seemed designed to make their shitty goals easier to accomplish, i wouldn’t give a damn about how laudable vegetarianism seemed in and of itself, it’s obviously not a good faith law.

          • Who?

            You’re pretty easily taken in though-you think that things that are ‘blatantly illegal’ never happen.

          • MaineJen

            You are unusually laser focused on which comments Dr. Amy likes. It’s her blog, dude.

          • feminists fight for equality

            What do you make of NOW opposing the bill for default joint custody?

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            Is there default joint parenting? Do fathers provide as much care as mothers?

          • Roadstergal

            Default joint custody in the absence of addressing all of the systemic inequalities that cause power and monetary imbalances in parenting is not promoting equality.

            The fact that you are confused about this speaks volumes about what you choose to ignore.

          • Daleth

            Here’s a basic point that I’m not sure you, MikoT, understand:

            Child custody is not about what is fair to the parents. It’s about what’s good for the
            children. Literally, that’s the legal test: “The best interests of the child.” That’s what the courts are required to weigh in making all custody and custody-related decisions.

            Child custody should therefore NEVER be about making sure the parents get equal time. It needs to be about giving the kids a stable home life that meets their physical, emotional and educational needs. Period.

            The only way in which custody decisions are or ever should be about the parents is this: you need to make sure that to the extent reasonable and possible, each parent gets to continue having a relationship with the kids and supporting them. That’s it. And that in no way suggests that 50/50 physical custody should be a goal.

            What do you make of NOW opposing the bill for default joint custody?

            Point me to a news article, NOW press release or something along those lines that talks about their opposition to [insert state here]’s shared parenting bill, and I’ll tell you what I make of it.

            Failing that, what I make of it is that you’ve been spending lots of time on men’s rights forums and you’re repeating things you’ve heard there without ever having checked the sources yourself.

          • Heidi

            I can. How is a child supposed to spend time equally with parents who don’t live together and who weren’t cared for equally by each parent? Can you imagine the hassle of having to be with one parent exactly 50% of the time as the other? If one or both parents work how does that even work out? As a kid, my parents sometimes worked night shifts. You have a parent who works 3p-11p; the other works days shifts. The kid is in school from 8a to 3p, needs to go to bed by 9p. How is the parent working 3 to 11 supposed to be a 50% parent? Would it not make more sense for them to see the child on some weekends instead?

          • How is a child supposed to spend time equally with parents

            Not chasing joint custody, just something more than one supervised 4 hour visitation per fortnight.

          • Heidi

            If someone is only allowed *supervised* visitation twice a month, there’s a reason. I had a female cousin who got similar visitation and there was a reason.

          • Roadstergal

            Hey, Milo said the guy wasn’t _physically_ abusive. What more do you want?

          • Heidi

            I’m curious what the children felt about it, too. I would have not wanted to stay with my dad much at all. My parents threatened divorce a lot growing up (and still do) so I had plenty of opportunity to think about it. Let’s just say some things happened that I’ll probably take to the grave with me – I’ve not told my sister, best friends or husband and I doubt I would tell the courts either.

          • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

            You have no clue what feminism is. You’re fighting a strawman built by raging sexists.

          • You have no clue what feminism is. You’re fighting a strawman

            Speaking of strawmen, the only opinion I’ve offered on feminism is they don’t really care too much about men.
            That’s it.
            Maybe stick to the facts instead of pounding the table.

          • attitude devant

            I’m a feminist and I’m VERY fond of men.

          • Heidi

            Crazy, huh? I’m a feminist and the two people I personally care about and love the most are male humans – my son and my husband.

          • Roadstergal

            I’m a feminist who cares very much about the well-being of men. More so than the MRAs who think there are a subset of very rigid ways in which a man is allowed to act. I support straight men, gay men, bisexual men, asexual men. I support men who want to wear jeans and men who want to wear pink. I support the freedom for men to cry when something sad happens. I support the freedom for men to be stay-at-home dads. I support the freedom for men to be nurses as well as lawyers. These things are all possible when stereotypical ‘women’s work’ and ‘womanly emotions’ are valued just as much as what is ‘manly.’

      • Seeing Clearly

        The LGBTQ+ the feminist the disabled and proud the queer lunatics, They are all abominable and have to go away they are an abomination to the Lord. IT IS DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIOR.

        • Poogles

          Fuck off.

    • Nikalix

      And that ONE issue you think is valid is actually only the result of the judge actually doing what is best for the kid.

      Simply put, you will find that the percentage of women getting custody of the kids is very similar to the percentage of women doing most of the child rearing.

      A judge will not want to change the whole routine of children going thru the traumatizing experience of their parents splitting up. So the judge will leave the kid in the custody of the person who has demonstrated the will and ability of raising said kid, and that is usually the mother.

      And I don’t believe for a single second that a father is denied visitation “because he is not the mother”. If someone told you that they were hiding something bid.

      The MRA is nothing more that the whining of those who fear the loss of their privileges.

      • And I don’t believe for a single second that a father is denied visitation “because he is not the mother”.

        Then you’re speaking out of your ass.
        Have you ever had a male family member go through a divorce?
        Do you have any idea how stacked the odds are against them?
        Or how readily the courts will exclude them from their kids’ lives based on provably false assertions from a woman with diagnosed NPD and multiple stints in drug rehab?

        The MRA is nothing more that the whining of those who fear the loss of their privileges.

        Or it could just be a lazy crowd pleasing slur used to dismiss all male concerns out of hand.

        It infuriates me when people deny that men can suffer, or that it counts less because they’re male.

        Like feminism, MRA is a broad term that encompasses many different ideologies.
        I probably share your opinion about the vast majority, but there are very important issues like fathers’ rights, bullying and male suicide that get brushed aside by ignorant people like you.

        This year there’ll be an empty seat at my neighbour’s Christmas table that wasn’t empty last year.
        But hey… still privileged right?

        • Azuran

          Have you red the convo? Everyone basically agree that everything is stacked against men, mainly due to widespread gender biases in society.
          The point was only that judges don’t go around telling men they can’t see their kids at all because ‘they are not the mother’ (And if one did, it would easily be challenged)
          And yes, I’ve seen multiple cases of divorces, even bitter divorces where the courts and police had to get involved multiple time. And no, no father I know of has ever been completely denied visitation because ‘they are not the mother’
          Even in cases where there had been fake accusation of death threat (and let’s be fair, how is the police and judge supposed to know those are fake in a ‘he sais/she said’ situation? Considering that ex-partners are the no 1 murderers of women, they have a responsibility to take ANY reported threat seriously) the father was still allowed visitations.

          • And no, no father I know of has ever been completely denied visitation because ‘they are not the mother’

            A father I know very well was allowed only infrequent supervised visitations based upon provably false allegations made by the mother.

            And I do mean *provably*. On one of the alleged occasions, he was at an awards night and there is footage of him on Youtube.

            I suppose that’s not exactly the same as occurring because “he was not the mother”, but only the mother has the option of using those kinds of allegations as a weapon.

          • Azuran

            It means to investigate any threats, and in the meantime, make sure the person who receives the threats (it can absolutely be the father) and children are safe.
            Every single time there is a family drama that ends in death, there is ALWAYS a lot of talk about how the victim has expressed worries for her/his life and/or for the life of the children. But they weren’t taken seriously.
            It absolutely sucks to have limited visitation. But it’s much better to take 100 false threat seriously than ending up with 5 dead bodies in the house.

          • It absolutely sucks to have limited visitation. But it’s much better to
            take 100 false threat seriously than ending up with 5 dead bodies in the
            house.

            I agree with this.
            But what about 10 false threats from the same person? At some point you have to give some benefit of the doubt to the father.

          • Azuran

            And it’s probably a much more nuanced situation than you are making it. You first said there was proof that 1 of the threat was false. So there are still 9 left. You can’t dismiss them all of the ground that one was fake.
            And there was probably many other things at play than just those supposed threats. So the father probably did have the benefit of the doubts.
            Where you present at all of the court hearing, or did you just hear everything from the father or the father’s family repeating to you what the father told them?
            Because I’ve also seen my share of divorce and custody hearing, and weirdly enough, it’s always 100% the fault of the person who married ‘in’ my family. And even in cases where I’m still in touch with both parties, both parties claim it’s the other’s fault and that the other is a deadbeat parent.
            The truth is usually somewhere in between.

          • /And it’s probably a much more nuanced situation than you are making it. You first said there was proof that 1 of the threat was false. So there are still 9 left. You can’t dismiss them all of the ground that one was fake./

            Obviously I don’t know the situation he’s referring to, but I strongly object to his MikoT’s suggestion that if one is proven fake they all are. Abuse can be subtle and hard to pin-point. It can mess with a person’s mind till they jump at shadows, and still have other people say “oh, he’s a great guy…. ” Dates can be mistaken. Details can be confused. There are still so many women who end up having to let their children visit with abusive men because they cannot convince the court to see what is happening, despite trying again and again. Sometimes they are out-lawyered, or the abuse isn’t taken seriously because the man is seen as a respected member of the community loved by others and no one can believe he can be abusive.

          • MikoT’s suggestion that if one is proven fake they all are

            That’s overstating it. If you regularly catch them out with lies, it should cause less weight to be placed upon their words.

            There are still so many women who end up having to let their children
            visit with abusive men because they cannot convince the court to see
            what is happening,

            This is not great but there has to be some standard of proof required.

          • moto_librarian

            “That is not great.” No, it’s fucking horrible that children are put in danger like this. I find it interesting that you state there was no physical abuse, but you don’t mention emotional abuse nor manipulation. And unless you were in the room and heard the phone call, you cannot definitely say anything about what his tone was actually like.

          • Poogles

            “And unless you were in the room and heard the phone call, you cannot definitely say anything about what his tone was actually like.”
            Not to mention someone can say all kinds of horrible things in a completely neutral (or even kind) tone – doesn’t change what was said.

          • Roadstergal

            It’s the school of ‘telling Comey he hoped the investigation could go away wasn’t a threat.’ History and power balances matter beyond absolutes of wording and tone.

            Even more so when we’re talking about vulnerable family members and not 7 foot tall adult lawyers.
            I’ve heard domestic abuse threats delivered in a very calm tone. “I really don’t want to hear that you used my credit card again, sweetheart.” Etc.

          • You first said there was proof that 1 of the threat was false. So there are still 9 left.

            I was giving an example. You’re right though, not all of them could be corroborated, at least not directly.
            Another claim she made was that he was abusive to her on the phone even though others who were in his vicinity when the call was made stated that his tone was neutral.

            And there was probably many other things at play

            To some extent.
            Their relationship was extremely dysfunctional when they were together and he was not a great husband. There was never any physical violence though.

            Where you present at all of the court hearing, or did you just hear everything from the father or the father’s family

            Yes I was present, and I’m an immediate family member. I’m trying to preserve some small degree of anonymity.

            100% the fault of the person who married ‘in’ my family.

            Fair point. They were both equally responsible for the disintegration for the marriage.

          • “Another claim she made was that he was abusive to her on the phone even though others who were in his vicinity when the call was made stated that his tone was neutral.”

            Again, that could be a sign she’s lying, or it could be a sign that others don’t understand the threats he poses to her. There are plenty of ways to hint threats or reference to threats without raising one’s voice. You could be right, your relative could be an innocent victim here, but nothing you’re saying eliminates the possibility he’s not. Abuse can be very hard to prove.

          • Azuran

            So, you admit that it wasn’t ‘because he’s the father’: he was a bad husband, and that they had a very dysfunctional relationship.
            Putting aside the fact that abuse isn’t limited to ‘physical’, He obviously wasn’t screwed over for absolutely no reason like you implied at first.

          • it wasn’t ‘because he’s the father’: he was a bad husband, and that they had a very dysfunctional relationship.

            What I’m saying is that due to what happened while they were married, there’s a very strong basis for their mutual hatred .
            However, now that they’ve broken up, she’s unable to set aside her enmity towards him for sake of their kids. She’s using the family court as a weapon and is actively trying to destroy his relationship with his children.

          • Who?

            Oh right. They’ve both behaved badly, but it’s up to her to ‘set aside her enmity(sic) towards him…’. Not for the two of them to behave like adults for five minutes for the sake of the kids.

            It’s the abuser’s lament: I know I did wrong, but you should rise above it so I can now have what I want.

            If he was serious about his kids, he would be abject in doing whatever needs to happen. Sounds like he has yet to learn that whatever tactics of his contributed to the breakdown are not going to serve him out in the real world. Also sounds like a dangerous time for her and the kids -people die when abusers lose their hold.

          • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

            Giving any parent the benefit of the doubt without investigation leads to abused and dead children.

          • without investigation

            Here’s the problem – there is little to investigate. It’s a he said/she said situation.|
            At some point the court needs to put an end to it.

          • Nikalix

            Still here ?

            Waiting for you to provide a case where the father was denied visitation because “he was not the mother”.

          • Who?

            Maybe the kids should be removed altogether from both in that situation?

            You know, like the Solomon thing, without threatening to cut the baby in half though?

          • Maybe the kids should be removed altogether from both in that situation

            Congratulations, you’ve just made the stupidest comment in this entire debacle.

          • MassiveQuantitiesofPie

            I don’t agree the deck is stacked against men. It’s a longstanding cultural myth but the facts say otherwise. The facts say that when men want custody, they usually get it. The facts say that men are far more likely to recover financially and socially from divorce than the women and far more quickly. Men are not at a any disadvantage in the US, especially now. Women are the ones with less opportunity, less respect, and are now FAR less likely to even hang on to their basic civil rights much less have an advantage over men.

          • Azuran

            Possibly. I’m not in the US though, so it’s ‘generally’ better over here.
            But I agree that most of the ‘unfairness’ is actually more from society than the courts. Men are actively discouraged from trying to get custody.

        • Nikalix

          I’m not speaking out of my ass. If I had you would have been able to counter any argument I made.

          “Have you ever had a male family member go through a divorce?”
          – yes.
          “Do you have any idea how stacked the odds are against them?”
          – debatable.
          “Or how readily the courts will exclude them from their kids’ lives based
          on provably false assertions from a woman with diagnosed NPD and
          multiple stints in drug rehab?”
          – I call bullshit.
          “It infuriates me when people deny that men can suffer, or that it counts less because they’re male.”
          – No one said that.

          If you want to argue that father indeed lose visitation rights because they are not the mother then go right ahead and do so. Rhetorical questions and bad assumptions are not arguments.

          • Rhetorical questions and bad assumptions are not arguments.

            A rhetorical question can be an argument.
            An assumption is not an argument.

            You need to learn the basics before you start throwing down on the interwebs.

          • Nikalix

            You have yet to make a point.

          • Roadstergal

            “I call bullshit.”

            Yup, his story went from ‘excluded from his kids’ lives based on false accusations from a crazy druggie’ to ‘supervised visitations because only one out of ten threats of violence was disproven’ after just a few questions.

            He’s not doing very well to contradict the assertion that the Men’s Rights Movement is based on a foundation of bullshit.

        • MaineJen

          I’ve actually seen a man gain full custody of his children because of just the issues you described. And he is a wonderful father. What’s your point?

          • What’s your point?

            I was referring to Nikalix’s earlier statement:
            I don’t believe for a single second that a father is denied visitation “because he is not the mother”.

            I’m taking issue with her blanket assertion because there are definitely instances of this.
            Are the majority of custody cases like this?
            Obviously not, but it still needs to be addressed.

          • Nikalix

            Not a her.

            And you have yet to provide any such case.

            And I did not make any blanket statement, I was actually taking issue with Brenna Goode statement :

            “Men should not be arbitrarily denied custody and visitation simply because they are not the mother.

            You and Brenna seems good at making claims, but very bad at backing those up.

        • Seeing Clearly

          The LGBTQ+ the feminist the disabled and proud the queer lunatics, They are all abominable and have to go away they are an abomination to the Lord. IT IS DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIOR.111

          • Heidi_storage

            Oh, kiddo. Such a comment drips with hate and is helpful to no one. And, er, could you point me to the Bible verses that talk about disabled people being abominations? I thought I knew my Bible pretty well, but must have skipped those bits.

          • Empress of the Iguana People

            I think there were bits about how the less than physically perfect couldn’t approach the Arkenstone or something.

          • Heidi_storage

            Crushed testicles meant you couldn’t enter the assembly of the Lord in the old covenant, but such separations were done away with in the new.

          • Empress of the Iguana People

            Lots of stuff qualify that way, but that doesn’t stop the fundies from cherrypicking Leviticus.

          • Azuran

            Soooooo……Dwarfs are the physically perfect ones and we are all abominations?

          • Roadstergal

            Yes! Tall people are an abomination!

            -Shortie

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            If it is the case that “the bible” calls disabled people “abominations” and in any way suggests that they should be treated poorly,or that poor treatment results from that characterization, then the answer is that the bible can kiss my hairy ass.

            Seriously, if the bible is your source of morality and that is what it teaches, then you need to reconsider your entire perspective.

          • Heidi_storage

            Short answer: It doesn’t, and Seeing Clearly is wayyyy off.

          • swbarnes2

            And they have removed themselves from the record in record time.

    • FormerPhysicist

      Bringing it back, I’d love to see a post about this mom being ordered to allow the dad to formula feed during visitation: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/maryland-mom-ordered-to-give-breast-fed-infant-formula-at-fathers-request/2017/08/30/600b0566-8d85-11e7-8111-e841db675815_story.html?utm_term=.3ab219bc7d70

      ETA some context without clicking.

      • Chant de la Mer

        one of the defenses for mom keeping the baby is that the courts are supposed to put the welfare of the child first, implying that breast milk is better than time with the father. I am utterly astounded at how blatant they are now about the whole biology is destiny baloney they spew. I shouldn’t be but I am. No, breastmilk is not more amazing than getting time with dad!

    • Daleth

      Men should not be arbitrarily denied custody and visitation simply because they are not the mother.

      No, but they should be denied primary physical custody in cases where they’re not the ones who are actually raising the kids.

      Do you really think it’s weird that the parent who gets primary physical custody is generally the parent who changes all the diapers, prepares all the meals, takes the children to all their doctors’ appointments, keeps track of their countless likes and dislikes and quirks (these are her favorite pants, he hates ankle socks, he will only eat broccoli if there’s cheese on it, if she doesn’t get to bed by 8:30 she throws a tantrum and is exhausted the next day, etc.), hosts or takes them to all their playdates, handles all the communications with their teachers and classmates and doctors, and so forth?

    • Banrion

      Actually, men get more favorable custody decisions than women do, when they actually want them. The statistics for court orders are easily skewed by the number of fathers who never request custody and never show up to court.

  • Sheven

    A slogan is either obviously true or cruel and divisive, not both.

  • Amazed

    OK, am I the only one who is disappointed with Flannel Flanders’ flannel flack of flimagination? I mean, is this all his masculine brain allowed for?

    So much zeal, to such a poor result. I could do better.

    Must be because he has no leg to stand on. It must be terrible for him and his clients to not have their ego fed.

    • MaineJen

      “Flannel Flanders” *dying*

  • Roadstergal

    It’s just crazy. Because#Fedisbest is fully inclusive of Fed With Breastmilk, as well! It just doesn’t allow for “My fed is better than your fed.”

    Divisive. Yeah.

    • Emilie Bishop

      Blows my mind that people feel that way. It was co-founded by a lactation consultant and a doctor whose son suffered brain damage from being underfed with breastmilk and who went on to feed her children both breastmilk and formula at different times. That would be INCLUSIVE in my book!

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        No, it is _divisive_ because it destroys the unity of the Breastfeeding Uber Alles message.

        Not everyone agrees that breastfeeding is always best = division within the ranks

        We just can’t have anarchists questioning whether breastfeeding is always best.

  • Dr. “Toot-the-Truth” Tuteur, I think you are way too smart for most people.

  • namaste863

    Say it with me: “Stupid Flanders!”

    • The Bofa on the Sofa
      • Roadstergal

        We’re fairly into bicycling in our household, and whenever they mention the Tour of Flanders, it is an instinctive response for me to say “Stupid Flanders.”

        • MaineJen

          How are we not friends IRL…

          • Roadstergal

            Are you anywhere near San Fransisky?

          • MaineJen

            LOL. No. I’m on the literal other side of the country!

          • Roadstergal

            Oh snap!