Let’s talk about men and breastfeeding for a minute. Sometimes I think men “get it” better than a lot of women. The creator of the statue of Angelina Jolie breastfeeding actually seemed surprised at all the public reaction. Apparently there had been no great out cry over his last statue which portrayed Brittney Spears on her hands and knees giving birth on a bear skin rug. “I was kind of stumped because I didn’t realize people were so much against public breastfeeding. I thought, ‘How much more wholesome can you get than breastfeeding,” And then there’s the dad blogging about multiples who reports “Dads are the first line of support because they’re usually the ones present for the late night feedings after friends, families, and lactation consultants have gone home to sleep in their own beds.” Ain’t that the truth! (Be sure to vote in this week’s poll. The question this week is, “Do you think that more men are supportive of breastfeeding than women?” https://thecuriouslactivist.wordpress.com/todays-poll/ )
It’s nice to hear that some men are so supportive, but that’s nothing compared to the efforts of a young dad in Sweden. This 26 yr old student is using a breast pump every 3 hours in an attempt to induce lactation. “Anything that doesn’t do any harm is worth trying out. And if it works it could prove very important for men’s ability to get much closer to their children at an early stage.” Even more interesting is the chatter this is causing over here in America. In response to the ugly jokes going around on talk radio one male blogger wrote,” I am willing to stand as a second for anyone defending the manliness of being that physiologically devoted to your kids. And further, I argue that any male who wouldn’t be willing to lactate to feed their child, if the need arose, is NOT MAN ENOUGH to be a dad and should not have children. Period. Man up and grow a pair.” Well said!
Now let’s compare this to how women react to breastfeeding. A “Hoboken Moms” Yahoo group have been trying to decide if the kids playing ball in Church Square Park were too close to nursing moms, or as others believe the nursing moms shouldn’t be, well, nursing where kids are supposed to play ball. Apparently “one mom said she felt more threatened by a “friendly squirt.” Whether she was referring to a friendly squirt of breast milk or a young child I’m not sure.
Over in Chicago a mother was nursing her 7 month old when “a woman in her 40s–with two young children in tow–approached and asked Trost what she was doing. “And then she said, ‘Do you have a blanket?’” Trost recalled Friday. “I said, ‘It’s 90 degrees out — of course I don’t have a blanket.’ Her response was an immediate call to arms which resulted in a nurse-in with a photo-op on the front page of the Chicago Sun. Meanwhile back on the net they are still arguing at the Momlogic blog over the “Stop telling me to breastfeed” story. “All these articles do is cause the fanatical breastfeeders to come out of the woodwork and cause all the non-breastfeeders to feel like crap and for the non-breastfeeders to be endlessly trying to defend themselves. Both sides end up hurt or angry. STOP THESE ARTICLES!!!!” pleads one reader.
So what do the female experts have to say? Well let’s check in with Dr. Wendy Walsh who wants us to know that while it’s perfectly normal to have an orgasm while breastfeeding, but if you do it’s definitely a sign that need to stop sleeping so closely to your baby. “Then one night while I was sleeping, I had one of those fabulous dreams that, if a guy had had it, would have involved moisture. You’ve heard about them. I woke up from the dream to find that my tiny vampire had been doing some nocturnal suckling while I slept. Let me tell you, the experience totally freaked me out. And that was it. I had a co-sleeping bed beside me after that. I needed that bundle an arm’s length away.” Gee Doc, so you’re saying it’s normal; just don’t let it happen again? Hmmm.
But in case you think I’m focusing too much on gender perhaps it would interest you to know that according to a Supreme Court judges in Ohio (in the Totes/Isomer case I told you about last week) breastfeeding is not gender related. (“Breastfeeding discrimination does not constitute gender discrimination.”) Well, I guess that might be true in Sweden but are Ohio dads also lactating? No, it’s just that in Ohio pregnancy and lactation seem to be totally unrelated. “Pregnant [women] who give birth and choose not to breastfeed or pump their breasts do not continue to lactate for five months. Thus, Allen’s condition of lactating was not a condition relating to pregnancy but rather a condition related to breastfeeding.”
This is just making my head spin. Let’s look at what else is happening around the world. Drawing inspiration from their own industry a commercial bank in the Phillipines has created a “milk bank” (lactation room) that enables nursing mothers to express breast milk during office breaks, deposit them in the facility’s refrigerator and withdraw them at the end of the working day. I like it! Maybe some day a creative insurance company will come up with “insurance rooms” to insure the good health of their working mothers or hospitals will provide “health rooms”, or schools will have “brain power rooms”, etc. (stop me before I try to figure out what to call lactation rooms in the entertainment industry.)
Australia was a bit of a disappointment this week. Seems the government has chosen not to support a bill protecting breastfeeding mothers from discrimination. But don’t give up all hope, the government in Uganda having recognized the need for mothers and babies to be together breastfeeding mothers in prison will now be allotted more than just on meal a day. The fact that some of these mothers are still in prison even though their sentence is finished is also being looked into.
So what are our lactivists been up to lately? Well in southern California the local breastfeeding coalition is sponsoring a debate on vaccines, which I think is a great way to get a little publicity. And in England a parenting group has posted a link to a free breastfeeding instructional video (if any of you have a chance to watch the video I would love to know what grade you would give it).
And lastly in odds & ends, Nebraska University is starting the school year with dozens of lactation rooms in place. Another hospital has gone Baby Friendly in California bringing the US total up to a whopping total of 83. And reality star Michelle Duggar who is pregnant with baby number 19 confesses that she uses the “lactational amenorrhea” method of birth control. (Michelle by the way delivered 13 of her babies by VBAC!)
Again be sure to vote in this week’s poll. The question this week is, “Do you think that more men are supportive of breastfeeding than women?” (https://thecuriouslactivist.wordpress.com/todays-poll/ )
Kathy Abbott, IBCLC
On Facebook: “Breastfeeding in the News”
My Blog: http://TheCuriousLactivist.wordpress.com/
Government won’t support breastfeeding Bill (Australia)
There has been an emotional debate in the WA Parliament over a Bill which aims to protect breastfeeding mothers from discrimination.
The Labor frontbencher Michelle Roberts introduced the private members bill earlier this year after a breastfeeding woman was asked to leave the lobby of a Perth hotel.
The Premier Colin Barnett this morning said he supported the principle of the Bill, but the Attorney-General Christian Porter has told parliament the government will not support it because the protection is already enshrined in law.
“If what we’re about is sending messages then so be it,” he said.
“But if what we’re about is actually protecting people’s rights not to be discriminated about, that protection exists.”
Swedish dad tries to breast-feed
Ragnar Bengtsson, a 26-year-old student at Stockholm University, is regularly breaking out a breast pump to induce lactation. Bengtsson is the father of a 2-year-old child, but he has no plans to nurse his toddler. Rather he wants to breast-feed future children and inspire other dads to offer their breasts as a way to bond with their children at earlier stages of development.
“Anything that doesn’t do any harm is worth trying out. And if it works it could prove very important for men’s ability to get much closer to their children at an early stage,” Bengtsson told The Local, an English newspaper in Sweden.
Bengtsson plans to pump his breasts (watch video below) at three-hour intervals every day until the beginning of December. He’s a full-time economics student, so he won’t always be able to pump in private.
“I’m going to have to pull out the pump during lectures,” he told The Local. “But really it doesn’t bother me if it makes people uncomfortable. If they have issues with it that’s their problem.”
“Women breastfeed after they’ve been bathing in estrogen during a nine month pregnancy, so obviously it takes some time,” Werner, a professor of endocrinology at Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, told The Local. “But if he works on it regularly he’ll likely notice a layer of tissue forming beneath the areola and it should be possible to produce enough of the hormone prolactin to cause lactation,” she said.
This story brings up some questions: What if men could easily produce breast-milk? Would men welcome the responsibility of breast-feeding? And would moms even want dads to step in to help with nursing?
Breastfeeding dads and what to do when you’re not
I would like to go on record at this point to say that I am willing to stand as a second for anyone defending the manliness of being that physiologically devoted to your kids. And further, I argue that any male who wouldn’t be willing to lactate to feed their child, if the need arose, is NOT MAN ENOUGH to be a dad and should not have children. Period.
Man up and grow a pair.
I would also like to point out that this is not a new idea — dads who feed their kids — and that Darwin talked about it. And that it is medically documented where fathers, often after the death of a child’s mother, due to stress and increased prolactin, were able to breastfeed their kids.
I am reminded of the saddest thing I ever saw a dad do, in person. When the Goddess was in the NICU another little baby, a boy, met his dad. Young kid. 20 if he was lucky. And with his son in the baby intensive care ward, where they put your baby if your baby needs INTENSIVE CARE, this kid wouldn’t kiss his son (in,did I mention, the NICU) because it was “gay”.
Really? Kissing your kids is “gay” and feeding them with your own body is a sign of weakness?
Good to know.
PacifiCord Partners with Local Retailer in a Debate on Childhood Vaccines
Dedicated to serving the private cord blood banking needs of Southern California, PacifiCord (www.pacificord.com) announced they are partnering with Milkalicious, an Aliso Viejo-based breastfeeding boutique and education center, in sponsoring “The Great Vaccine Debate.” This debate, presented by the Orange County Breastfeeding Coalition, a non-profit organization whose members are actively engaged in making breastfeeding the cultural norm, will provide information to parents and medical professionals about the pros and cons of pediatric vaccines.
Experts speaking at “The Great Vaccine Debate” include Dr. Jeremy Kaslow, MD, FACP, and a FACAAI specialist in immunology and pediatric allergies, who will be discussing the immunology of breast milk. Dr. Bob Sears, MD, pediatrician and author of The Vaccine Book, will speak on his “Alternative Vaccine Schedule,” and Dr. Harry Pellman, MD, who will discuss the danger of not following the AAP guidelines for vaccines, and the controversy of the vaccine-autism link.
Ogoola calls for special law on breast feeding inmates
THE Principal Judge, Justice James Ogoola, has called for a new law to ensure that women imprisoned with breastfeeding children get special nutritional care.
Ogoola said this would address the welfare of children, who commit no crime but are confined to prison wards because of the current legal system.
“It is a fundamental question that requires Parliament to review. We need a law on how these blameless children fit in crime,” he said, adding that he would start a discussion over the matter.
He noted that the current laws only prohibit the execution of convicted pregnant women, adding that similar treatment, in terms of feeding, should also be extended to women with breastfeeding children.
Ogoola made the remarks while addressing inmates at Arua prison on Friday. One of the mothers said she was finding it difficult to produce enough milk because of the poor and insufficient meals.
The prison in-charge, Patrick Masiga, said there were 597 inmates in custody with six children, who have one meal a day, due to limited resources.
Breastfeeding from a dad’s point of view
For every mother out there who makes the decision to breast feed, there’s a dad thinking “Woo hoo, no late night feedings for me!”. That’s probably mostly true for fathers of singleton children, but if you’re going to be the father of multiples you’d better think again.
Breastfeeding multiples is not a solo operation, at least not at the newborn or young infant stages. It’s not something you can truly appreciate until you try to pick up two floppy newborn babies with no ability to hold up their own heads and no control over their flailing extremities. If mom wants to feed each baby individually, that means dad’s most likely going to be providing entertainment and soothing for the unruly audience. It takes a certain amount of resourcefulness to convince a newborn that he really doesn’t need to eat until his sister is done.
Dads are the first line of support because they’re usually the ones present for the late night feedings after friends, families, and lactation consultants have gone home to sleep in their own beds.
Economics of breastfeeding
Powdered formula costs an average of $25 for roughly a 25 oz can. That’s around $0.13 for every fluid ounce (fl. oz.). It might not seem a lot. But a newborn usually consumes at least 1 fl. oz. every 2 hours or $11 a week. According to Babycenter.com, the average 6-month-old can consume around 21 fl. oz. a day, which translates to over $75 in a month. Surebaby.com even recommends budgeting $40 a week for formula, amounting to over $2,000 a year! Moreover, organic, soy-based, lactose-free and hypoallergenic formula are usually a couple of dollars more than milk-based ones.
It is worthy to note that a stay-at-home mother who breastfeeds 100% of the time, hardly has any cost except for nursing pads: around $5 for a reusable pair or at least $6 a month for disposables. Additional costs specific to breast-feeding mothers might include $35 for a nursing pillow, $12 for a manual breast pump (as low as $30 for an electric one: Ameda brand), $5 for a 10-liner storage kit, and $19 for a nursing shawl.
Although breastfeeding mothers might spend a little over $70 in incidental expenses, most of these are one-time purchases. Compared to around $2,000 for formula, the price differential alone warrants at least an attempt at breastfeeding.
Bounty Parenting Club Launches View on Demand ‘How to Breastfeed’ Video
LONDON, September 7 /PRNewswire/ — Bounty, the UK’s favourite parenting club, today launches a 4 minute ‘How to Breastfeed’ online video clip to help expectant and new mums take a real life, close up peek at how a baby ‘latches on’ to the breast when feeding.
To view the Multimedia News Release, please click:
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas has taken on a new role aside from its traditional central banking activities – “milk banking” or the banking of milk of lactating mothers in the workplace.
BSP Deputy Governor Armando Suratos, who heads the Resource Management Sector, recently approved the construction and maintenance of a “milk bank” for BSP working mothers. The “milk bank” (lactation room) enables nursing mothers to express breast milk during office breaks, deposit them in the facility’s refrigerator and withdraw them at the end of the working day.
Of course, the deposits do not earn any interest. But certainly, they yield high returns in terms of the improved health and general well-being of the mothers, their babies as well as improved employee morale.
The milk bank project, according to Suratos, is a special tribute to the unsung heroes of the workplace: Women who choose to work to help ensure the future of their families and continue to care for their young ones at the same time.
The recent BSP two-day “Breastfeeding Awareness Festival” has helped increase the appreciation of breastfeeding as a way of promoting a healthy life. The event also demonstrated that it is possible for mothers to provide the best nourishment to their children even after their maternity leaves end.
Stop Telling Me to Breastfeed!
Last week, momlogic brought you the story of one mom-to-be who was sick and tired of people telling her to breastfeed. Whether you agreed or disagreed, everyone seemed to have some more advice to give our blogger.
Please STOP the breastfeeding articles! Enough is enough! There has been article after article and all it ends up doing is causing catfights. Please, move on from this issue. All these articles do is cause the fanatical breastfeeders to come out of the woodwork and cause all the non-breastfeeders to feel like crap and for the non-breastfeeders to be endlessly trying to defend themselves. Both sides end up hurt or angry. STOP THESE ARTICLES!!!! New moms have enough to worry about. Reading the judgmental remarks from commenters is the kind of stuff that kept me up at night in tears of stress when I was pregnant. Enough already Mom Logic!!! — Enough!
Great article! That’s exactly what I have been saying … nobody should ASSUME anything about the way a mom chooses to feed her baby. Breastmilk or formula … who cares!? And seriously, formula doesn’t kill your child!!! – RachelAZ
There is nothing wrong with a doctor pointing out the health benefits of breastfeeding … and there are many. After all, that is his/her job! I know for some mothers, it is difficult or not at all possible. But, I have heard of many moms that couldn’t with the first and had no problems with the second. So, being educated and knowing all the benefits, why not try? What do you have to lose? I work full-time and managed to BF & pump for my child’s first 7 months. It was difficult, annoying, uncomfortable … but on the advice of my trusted medical professional, it was the best thing to do … so I did it for my child. —
Angelina Now a Fertility Goddess; Bronzed Breastfeeding Twins (VIDEO)
Connecticut sculptor Daniel Edwards, who is known for his unusual celebrity creations molded the piece and has been showing off the unfinished clay and bronze statue.
Edwards says the statue, called “Landmark for breastfeeding,” is nearly life-sized and shows a nude Jolie holding two of her children like footballs. (Somehow, it doesn’t seem to be done this way.)
“It was a highly charged issue, and I was kind of stumped because I didn’t realize people were so much against public breastfeeding. I thought, ‘How much more wholesome can you get than breastfeeding,” Edwards said.
His other celebrity statues haven’t be quite as straight forward. Celebutard Paris Hilton is sculpted dead, naked with her legs wide open and her intestines exposed. Pop star Britney Spears on hands and knees giving birth on a bear skin rug.
Kaiser South, Birth Center designated as “Baby Friendly”
Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento Medical Center and The Birth Center in Fair Oaks have earned a designation likely to increase their credibility with expectant mothers.
Kaiser is the first hospital in Sacramento County and one of only 83 facilities in the nation to receive the designation. The Birth Center bills itself as “the only freestanding, midwifery-operated birth center” in the Sacramento area. Sutter Health’s hospital in Davis was already on the list.
Breastfeeding moms rally to support hassled woman
You knew the demonstration was under way Friday because, all of a sudden, it got very quiet.
A dozen or so babies suckled in silent, unwitting support of a Rogers Park mother hassled last month for breastfeeding in public.
» Click to enlarge image
Dozens of mothers came out to Lincoln Square Plaza Friday in support of a breast-feeding mom who was harassed earlier this week for nursing in public.
Mothers and infants, and a few dads, gathered in Lincoln Square’s Giddings Plaza–the same spot where mom Lauren Trost says she was accused of being indecent and breaking the law for feeding her seven-month-old son Hank in public.
“Breasts are men’s toys, don’t you know,” said a sarcastic Colette Bernhard, protester and mother of three. “They’re not supposed to be for your baby.”
Last month, Trost, 33, was in Lincoln Square helping her sister open a jewelry store. At some point, Trost sat down in Giddings Plaza and began feeding her baby. That’s when a woman in her 40s–with two young children in tow–approached and asked Trost what she was doing.
“And then she said, ‘Do you have a blanket?’” Trost recalled Friday. “I said, ‘It’s 90 degrees out — of course I don’t have a blanket.’
Trost and her supporters were mostly preaching to the choir Friday. The patio lunch crowd at nearby Cafe Selmarie rarely looked up from their hot panini and home-made quiche.
“In the 1930s, they would unbutton their (dresses) and pull the whole thing aside to nurse their babies, according to my 96-year-old great-aunt,” said Bernhard. “And that was the 1930s. I thought we were more enlightened in the 21st Century.
one passerby–who missed the demonstration–said he disapproves of a women breastfeeding openly.
“I just don’t think it’s proper for women to show their breasts out in public unless they’re on the beach,” said Jeff Hooker, 47, recently unemployed and living in Lincoln Square.
Meanwhile, Trost says she hasn’t seen the woman who heckled her and doesn’t know her name. What would Trost do if she saw her again?
“I think I’d smile at her and breastfeed my baby,” Trost said. “Maybe I’d give her a little knowing wink.”
Hoboken football mom takes on breastfeeding moms over park space…
In the latest minor tiff, some folks complained in the popular “Hoboken Moms” Yahoo group that kids were playing ball in Church Square Park too close to nursing moms, but others believe that the nursing moms shouldn’t be, well, nursing where kids are supposed to play ball.
And one mom said she felt more threatened by a “friendly squirt.”
Women Who Orgasm During Breastfeeding
You don’t have to feel ashamed — it’s perfectly natural. An expert tells us.
Dr. Wendy Walsh:
Then one night while I was sleeping, I had one of those fabulous dreams that, if a guy had had it, would have involved moisture. You’ve heard about them. I woke up from the dream to find that my tiny vampire had been doing some nocturnal suckling while I slept. Let me tell you, the experience totally freaked me out. And that was it. I had a co-sleeping bed beside me after that. I needed that bundle an arm’s length away.
Public Scolding Infuriates Breastfeeding Mother
Lauren Trost Is Planning A Public Lincoln Square Nurse-In
Trost says she always nurses her 7-month-old son discreetly in Lincoln Square. That’s why she says she was stunned when a woman recently threatened her by saying:
“‘I’m going to call the police, and then I said, ‘please call the police,'” Trost said. “She said, ‘what you’re doing is indecent, there are children here.’ And I said, ‘I’m just feeding my baby.'”
Nursing a child in public is not against the law in Illinois. Trost says she’s telling her story to reinforce that fact. She also plans to hold a public nurse-in with other mothers to get her point across.
Working moms need a break from lactation regulations
If you think breast-feeding is a gender-specific ability, then you are so out of step with Ohio’s Supreme Court.
Last week, in a 5-1 ruling, the highest court here ruled that an Ohio law that bans discrimination against pregnant women does not protect them from punishment for taking unauthorized breaks to use a breast pump after they birth those babies.
In 2005, LaNisa Allen was the lactating mother of a 5-month-old son. She was also employed at the Totes/Isotoner Corp. in suburban Cincinnati – the same manufacturer that pitches those handy little umbrellas, gloves and slippers to women.
Allen was fired after her supervisor caught her pumping breast milk during an unscheduled break. Had Allen gotten permission, the court said, she could have asked the justices to decide whether Ohio’s pregnancy law protected lactation. But no, she had to go pump when nature called. She blew it, even though there was no evidence that employees had to check with a boss before taking an unscheduled visit to the bathroom.
As Salon.com’s Kate Harding pointed out, the justices affirmed a lower-court decision that included this little gem:
“Pregnant [women] who give birth and choose not to breastfeed or pump their breasts do not continue to lactate for five months. Thus, Allen’s condition of lactating was not a condition relating to pregnancy but rather a condition related to breastfeeding. Breastfeeding discrimination does not constitute gender discrimination.”
Whoa. Wait a minute. If breast- feeding discrimination has nothing to do with gender, does that mean we’ve got men lactating in Ohio and nobody told me?
Or are we saying it’s a mother’s fault if she gives in to all that pressure from children’s advocates and public health officials who insist that nursing is the No. 1 way to improve infant health?
Michelle Duggar pregnant with baby #19
Michelle Duggar recently found out that she is pregnant with her 19th child. The Duggar family does not use traditional birth control methods–they space their children naturally through lactational amenorrhea.
She began to suspect pregnancy when she could not loose weight (she and husband Jim Bob Duggar are on weight watchers) and her baby was fussy while breastfeeding. From her past experience with 18 kids, Michelle Duggar knows that a fussy baby trying to nurse means that you might be breastfeeding while pregnant.
Michelle has successfully delivered 13 of her children by VBAC’s.
Breastfeeding on UNL Campus
Lactating spaces billed as Family Friendly
Beginning Sept. 10, dozens of lactation spaces will be available to nursing mothers campuswide.
“The University of Nebraska-Lincoln recognizes the importance of supporting new mothers who want to continue to breastfeed while they work or attend school,” said Chancellor Harvey Perlman.
Two types of lactation rooms are located around campus, so that a person wanting to use a room is always within a 5- to 10-minute walk from a designated room. Several spaces on campus are semi-private lactation rooms. These are located in areas that through the use of screens and other devices, are semi-private but do not require a key or any form of permission for entry. Each space is equipped with a comfortable chair, a table, and an electrical outlet.
Ultimately, there will be 14 semi-private and 38 private rooms available on campus. Lactation room locations and a list of contact individuals for the private rooms will be available online soon. As new buildings are constructed, UNL will identify rooms that can be scheduled for lactation rooms as part of the planning process.