Any intelligent person knows that the vast majority of moms who feed their babies formula instead of breast milk are well informed, caring mothers, doing the best they can with what they have. Sure, breast milk is the food your baby is designed to eat, and all other choices are in some way inferior to it, but we have to face the fact that breastfeeding isn’t possible or realistic for many women in our society (and, if we care about the best possible health for all women and children, work to change factors in society that make it impossible or unrealistic, rather than attacking moms for doing what they have to), and that, in reality, formula is the next best choice to human breast milk. It’s better than giving your baby straight cows milk, or other solid foods too soon. In fact, if you can’t give your baby human breast milk, formula is the only other thing you should give your baby for the first six months of life. Most moms who feed their kids formula know this, and are simply providing their baby with the best food they are able to. The reasons why they aren’t breastfeeding are none of my business and shouldn’t have to be justified by them. Suffice it to say that they live in this society, and they are giving their baby the best they can given the restraints of the society they live in.
But then there’s the women who, I can only assume out of an urge to look like they don’t care what anyone thinks, say things like “Yeah I give my baby formula? So what? It’s my kid! I’ll put Pepsi in his bottle if I want!”
That’s the direction you want to take this? Instead of saying, “Breastmilk wasn’t an option for us, so I’m giving my baby the next best thing.” you want to say “I don’t give a shit about my kids health. He’s property owned by me and I’ll trash it by whatever means pleases me at any given moment. I’m not in this to raise the healthiest possible child I can with what I have available to me, I’m in it to do things conveniently and entertainingly, and if it’s bad for my kid? Who cares? I don’t give a shit about all that nonsense of health!”
I know there’s this stereotype out there of the woman who formula feeds. That she is uneducated, lazy, selfish, and that she doesn’t care about her kids as much as the rest of us do. The vast majority of formula feeding moms do not fit this stereotype at all, and yet the stereotype persists. Why? Because of loud mouthed, obnoxious women like the one who compares formula feeding to her “right” to put soda in her kids bottle.
I get the impression that moms who say this kind of thing aren’t really ever going to put soda in their kids bottle, they know how horrendous that would be, they’re just saying it to upset lactivists. But if you’re going to say something horrendous to upset lactivists, why stop there? You know what else upsets me? Sexual abuse of children. Why not say “Yeah, I formula feed! So what?! It’s my kid, I’ll do what I want with him! I’ll molest him if I want! Because he’s my property and his health isn’t important, I’ll do what I want!!!!!” (I imagine all this dialogue in a Cartman voice)
Do they ever stop to think that by comparing formula feeding to the horrendous act of putting soda in a bottle, that they are making formula look like a worse substance than what it is? Instead of saying, “Hey, it’s the next best thing to breast milk” (which it is, please don’t feed your baby under six months something other than either breast milk or formula, and please continue to feed your baby either breast milk or formula for at least the first year of their life, even after introducing solids), you go with “it’s almost as bad as Pepsi and I don’t give a shit!” Which isn’t even true, but their comments not only imply it is, but give the impression that you wouldn’t care if it were true.
Really? You don’t care about the health value of what you put into your kid? Why not let your kid smoke? Why not shoot him up with heroin? It’s your kid, you’ll do what you want!!!!!!
If you ever wonder why formula feeding moms have a bad image, it’s because of moms who say crap like this.
Let me be clear for my lactivist friends when I say formula is the next best thing to breast milk: I know that formula is inferior to breast milk, it raises a kids risk for many illnesses and diseases, it decreases your kid’s IQ, most of it contains toxins like BPA, and most of it has almost as much sugar as a soda, but it also has protein and fats and nutrients and formula is leaps and bounds above soda. Is breast milk a million times better than formula? Yes. But if you can’t feed your child breast milk, for what ever reason, is there some other alternative to breast milk that is better than formula? No there is not. Formula is the healthiest thing you can feed your baby in the absence of breast milk. Period. If you are a formula feeding mom, please own that. Please own that you’re feeding your kid the next best thing to breast milk, because you care about your child’s health and you want to give it the best you are able to. Please do not compare formula feeding to soda, or any other “I’ll do what I want because I don’t give a shit about what’s healthiest” argument. Don’t pretend that formula feeding is a choice you made because you don’t care about your baby’s health just to bug lactivists or look bad ass or whatever you’re trying to do. You’re just giving formula feeding moms a bad name.