Lactimonious: lactivists addicted to self-righteousness

Happy business woman hugging herself with natural emotional enjo

According to scientist and author David Brin:

[S]elf-righteousness can also be heady, seductive, and even … well … addictive. Any truly honest person will admit that the state feels good. The pleasure of knowing, with subjective certainty, that you are right and your opponents are deeply, despicably wrong. Or, that your method of helping others is so purely motivated and correct that all criticism can be dismissed with a shrug, along with any contradicting evidence.

Sanctimony, or a sense of righteous outrage, can feel so intense and delicious that many people actively seek to return to it, again and again.

Breastfeeding activists are outraged. They are lactimonious!

In a moment of national crisis, supporting women does NOT involve referring those who use formula as ignorant fuckers.

They are lactimonious about breastfeeding rates:

A Swansea University academic has said that breastfeeding levels in the UK are the lowest in the world. She is placing much of the blame on the social pressures and attitudes that many women face and is calling for greater support for new mothers to start and continue breastfeeding.

Dr Amy Brown of the Department of Public Health, Policy and Social Sciences discusses this in her forthcoming book, Breastfeeding Uncovered. She says that breastfeeding has a whole host of benefits, including protecting the health of mothers and babies. Increasing breastfeeding rates would therefore save the UK millions of pounds each year.

Yet there is NO correlation between breastfeeding rates and healthcare costs. Indeed the UK — where lactivists are indignant about the breastfeeding rate — has one of the lowest rates of infant mortality in the world.

They’re lactimonious about formula. Oops! I mean artificial baby milk.

They’re lactimonious when anyone dares suggest that breastfeeding has risks as well benefits.

But most of all, they’re lactimonious that anyone dares criticize their self-righteousness.

Consider this exquisite example of lactimony from the Facebook page Raw Reality with Sarah.

Like all who run lactimonious pages and blogs, Sarah starts with those delicious feelings of outrage:

If I see any of you “fed is best” mother fuckers encouraging a mother to use formula right now, we’re going to have a problem!

Sarah helpfully illustrates a sentinel feature of lactimoniousness: the delusion that anyone cares about what she thinks.

A second feature of lactimony is the irresistible urge to lie:

We are in the middle of a national emergency. We are facing quarantines and a shortage on food in general. There is a formula shortage!!!

Yes, we are in the middle of a national emergency, a pandemic of a disease that can be fatal and has already killed thousands in the US including some babies. But there is NO shortage of food in general and there is NO formula shortage. No matter, lactimoniousness depends on fabricating threats.

Sarah, like all every other lactimonious blogger, misrepresents the fed is best movement.

Do not, unless medically necessary, encourage a mother to get caught in the formula feeding, top-up effect trap. For fucks sake, especially if they have not used formula yet, or their baby was just born.

But the fed is best movement is not about encouraging women to use formula. It is about encouraging women to do what works best for them, especially important at a moment of national — and for many women, personal — crisis.

In the ultimate irony, Sarah the lactimonious, who makes money “advising” women on unassisted birth, declares:

The fucking ignorance.

Ask yourself, Sarah, if you are lactimonious.

Is it pleasureable to know with certainty, that you are right and your those lazy morons who formula feed are deeply, despicably wrong? Do you feel proud that that your method of helping others is so purely motivated that calling women “fuckers” is justified? Why? Because they dare to choose an excellent method of nourishing their babies, or – horror — they combine two equally excellent methods, formula and breastmilk?

Sarah, your lactimoniousness has nothing to do with breastfeeding and everything to do with your addiction to self-righteousness, that delightful hit of dopamine you get every time you refer to a formula feeder as a fucker.

The truth, however, is that the benefits of breastfeeding are trivial. Insufficient breastmilk is common and exclusive breastfeeding is the leading cause of newborn hospital readmission. There is no formula shortage, and the fed is best movement is about supporting women, not promoting formula.

And — pro-tip — in a moment of national crisis, supporting women NEVER involves referring to those who use formula ignorant fuckers.

  • mabelcruet

    They are perfectly entitled to call women who formula feed ‘ignorant fuckers’ because in their minds, a woman who formula feeds isn’t using her body in the proscribed way she should, so she’s neither a real woman or a real mother. And if you’re not a real woman or a real mother, you have no value. That’s the way they think, they aren’t insulting women, because their target isn’t a real woman anyway.

    • StephanieJR

      There’s a very simple solution, then; get the Blue Fairy to turn you into a real boy!

    • Cristina B

      That’s so gross. And you’re right. There are people out there who absolutely believe 100% that if you’re not going to breastfeed, you shouldn’t even have kids.

  • fiftyfifty1

    “the formula feeding, top-up effect trap”

    Offering a formula top-off is not a trap. It’s a good way of confirming if your baby is still hungry. If the baby has had enough at the breast, it won’t take a top up. But if you have reason to fear that you are not making enough milk, feed the baby on both breasts and then offer it a bottle top-off. If the baby eagerly sucks down the bottle, then your concerns were correct.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      But see, if you offer the baby a bottle, it might actually take something from that bottle, which would be an indication it isn’t getting enough from the breast. It’s better to not find that out.

      • rational thinker

        Yeah, that would be a BIG hit on their self esteem.

    • AnnaPDE

      The “trap” is that they pretend that a baby who didn’t get topped up will want to drink from the breast again in a shorter time than a full, happily sleeping one, and therefore trigger higher milk production. Whereas topping up doesn’t give this kind of breast stimulation and therefore production won’t know to ramp up.

      Except that a) there is probably a reason why there was too little milk in the first place, and it won’t magically resolve just by trying more often; b) very hungry young babies are rubbish at emptying a breast, and c) one can simply add stimulation by pumping to avoid this particular problem. But nooooo it’s only natural if the kid stays hungry.

  • Dear me. Does Sarah know any words not beginning with “f”? I realize that “fuck” and its derivatives can be used as a noun, verb, adjective, and adverb, but what a poverty of diction!

    • rational thinker

      I find it very hard to take someone like that seriously. Cursing while giving medical recommendations in the same sentence should raise red flags about the persons credibility.