Why Women in the U.S. ‘Overreact'; Lack of Breastfeeding Support

by Mrs. BWF on July 6, 2012

I recently shared Pink’s picture she posted on Twitter. She was on a break while on set, nursing and bonding with her baby girl. The comments that followed were a huge mix of support, questioning if she was really nursing, and then nasty comments which I removed. All I see is awesomeness. I am baffled by the hate that can come of a breastfeeding picture such as this.

I then wrote this post about the ‘breastfeeding friendly’ bag given to moms after they birth their babies in the hospital. The cute bag filled with formula goodies is far from supportive.

After posting it, I received an email that made me step back and realize that not everyone around the world will understand why it’s so important to raise awareness about breastfeeding in the U.S. Many of our UK and other worldly readers may not understand why I post many breastfeeding pictures and posts.

Part of this email read:

Dear BWF,

I wanted to write to congratulate you on your blog and everything you stand for. Writing from the UK, I often read what you have to say with awe, inspired by your morals and the wonderful empowerment you are helping so many mothers and mothers to be to find.

However, very occasionally, I have felt like you must be over reacting, creating controversy for controversy’s sake if you will-surely no one can be that against breast feeding…can they?

Reading your recent blog about the bags given to mothers of newborns, a light bulb came on some where and I realised that actually, things are very very different where you are.

The point I am trying to make is that although yes, we do get dirty looks from old men while feeding in the park, the occasional snide remark from a teenager, on the whole everybody is very pro breast feeding.

As I’m sure you know, the government here have banned advertising and coupons on formula milk under 6 months and to be fair that has worked wonders.

I guess what I really want to do is apologise for thinking you were over reacting. I had no idea until reading your blogs how anti breastfeeding parts of your country are, and although I can’t understand why things are like they are, like all your fans, I support you in fighting them every step of the way. Keep putting up your banned photos, they are beautiful, just like your beliefs.

If a woman half way across the world, via the internet, can get it…why can’t women (and men) in our own country get it?

We are not over reacting.

We are simply reacting.

Reacting to harsh criticism. Reacting to unnecessary judgments. Reacting to the lack of support. Reacting to the acceptance of women’s bodies being used to sell sex and items, but being told to cover when feeding their children. Reacting to formula companies ‘and associates’ forcing their powder down our throats or better yet, the throats of our babies.

We are reacting to the fact that we even have to react. We just want support and acceptance to feed our babies the way we are meant to! So don’t worry, I will definitely keep on fighting, reacting and pushing for change.

~January

Here are some lovely BWF mother breastfeeding photos. “Understanding is the first step to acceptance, and only with acceptance can there be recovery.” ~J.K. Rowling

Sent in by Kristin F…

“This is one of my favs, a pic of me and my baby daughter (Aurora) 3 days old having a feed on the beach in Western Australia. I breastfeed anywhere and everywhere. I am feeding while typing. I think that all my friends are now used to it and accepting! Boobs out gals! Love your page and all you do!” ~Heather

 “These are of my precious daughter Ella; 13 days young. Born via cesarean on March 17th, 2011 at 11:55 p.m.” ~Monica W.

 Michelle and Zooey…

 “My 7 month and I. This afternoon nursing session is what gets me through my work day.” ~Whitney

 “My two fave breastfeeding pics. The first picture Facebook removed.” ~Ishil K.

“It’s been seven years since i breastfed that baby girl. Today she is an amazing child.” ~Amanda K.

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