Mother dies from breastfeeding

Tombstone Mother

Sugh a tragic, senseless waste of life!

From The Sun:

Rhianne Statom-Barnett, 30, was worried the prescription-only medication might affect her three-month-old son George through the transfer of baby milk.

Her mother explains what happened when Rhianne developed a severe ear infection:

[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Cause of death: the culture of maternal self-neglect that is at the heart of breastfeeding promotion.[/pullquote]

Her mother Beverly, 55, told the hearing her daughter booked a GP appointment where she compared the pain to giving birth.

Beverly, a nurse, said: “We looked at her ear and it had blood and fluid coming out of it.

“She said she had a severe headache and her ear was hurting a lot. She said it was worse than labour pains.”

Three days later she found her daughter unconscious in her bed after George started at crying at 5am.

Beverly said: “She had vomited and when I called out her name she didn’t respond we called an ambulance.

“At hospital the senior doctor came out and told us that Rhianne was effectively brain dead. It was heartbreaking.”

Breastfeeding — and the culture that surrounds it — killed this mother as surely as if a lactivist had taken a gun and shot her through the head.

Here’s what I’d like to know:

Where did this young mother get the idea that antibiotics would be harmful to a breastfeeding child?

Why wasn’t her doctor able to reassure her that most antibiotics are safe during breastfeeding and prescribe an antibiotic that was known to be safe?

How did Rhianne come to believe that suffering in agony (describing the pain as worse than labor) was necessary to protect her baby?

Who encouraged Rhianne to risk her hearing, health and life as less important than breastfeeding her baby? Did she reach out to a Facebook group that supported her decision to refuse antibiotics? Did she consult a lactation professional who told her that she must avoid medication of any kind regardless of the risk to her?

Of course determining the answers to these questions doesn’t change the bottom line: a young mother is dead because of breastfeeding.

No doubt, the lactivists will be parachuting in to tell me that I mustn’t blame breastfeeding. They will insist that it wasn’t breastfeeding that killed this mother, it was the bacteria in her ear.

Yes, the bacteria were the proximate cause, spreading from her ear to the bones of her skull and then to her brain, but the real cause was the veneration of maternal self-neglect that is at the heart of breastfeeding promotion and, indeed, all natural mothering.

The three ideologies that sail under the natural parenting flag — natural childbirth, breastfeeding and attachment parenting — are promoted as both recapitulating mothering in nature and better for babies. Neither is true. All were created explicitly as anti-feminist projects designed to force women back into the home.

For example, La Leche League, the prime mover within the breastfeeding industry, was founded by a group of devout Catholic women who were deeply concerned that women with small children were working outside the home. They reasoned that Mary, mother of Jesus, would never have worked and that promoting breastfeeding would lead women to emulate Mary and to give up their jobs.

All three philosophies share another thing in common: the belief that the women’s needs are irrelevant, rendered invisible by the purported needs of babies. The breastfeeding industry treats women like cows: milk dispensers and nothing more.

A mother’s pain is irrelevant. For lactivists, just because a mother has cracked and bleeding nipples is no excuse for her to avoid breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding difficulties are irrelevant. Regardless of the difficulty (poor latch, flat nipples, poor suck, insufficient breastmilk) and regardless of the severity of the difficulty the lactivist prescription is always the same: “Breastfeed harder.”

A mother’s need for sleep is irrelevant. She is supposed to dispense breastmilk 24/7/365.

A mother’s need to control her own body is irrelevant. If breastfeeding makes her psychologically uncomfortable, she’s supposed to get over it.

A mother’s mental health is irrelevant. Lactivists are much more concerned with whether treatments for postpartum depression are compatible with breastfeeding than with whether they are the best possible treatment for the mother’s psychological condition. The mother must continue dispensing breastmilk even if she is inexorably approaching psychological collapse.

Maternal self-neglect is the order of the day. It’s hardly surprising then that a breastfeeding mother risked her own life, refusing antibiotics and enduring excruciating pain, in order to ensure that her breastmilk was pristine.

There is something very, very wrong when breastfeeding is promoted so aggressively (despite trivial benefits) that women are encouraged to neglect themselves to the extent that they end up dead.

A mother’s health and sanity is infinitely more important to her child than any amount of breastmilk.