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.