Wednesday, November 30, 2011
I'm Close Minded because I NIP (this is a long one!)
Yep, that's what one of my friends said to me on Monday. Let me explain.
Tris will be one in a few weeks. Over the weekend, my SO and I were discussing his continuing to BF and SO is staunchly on my side. This is surprising, given his family's opinion and I am so proud of him.
So my friend calls me Monday. Here is the basic gist of the conversation:
Her: Tris is about to be one. Are you going to wean him?
Me: Naw. Me and Romaine just finished talking about that and we are gonna keep going. The kid is teething anyways. Why make him more miserable.
Her: They say breastmilk doesn't have any nutritional value past a year or two.
Me: It's good for at least two years (2). Kids need it. That's why WIC gives 1 year olds full fat milk. They need it for their brain growth. But Tris is fine. He's happy, his mama is happy, his daddy is happy. We've decided that we won't be making any changes.
Her: Well, I just heard about that woman in Walmart (3). They are making laws about it because it really bothers some people.
Me: Actually, you have it backwards-the laws protect the babies and the moms from being harassed (4). They don't limit babies and mothers rights.
Her: I don't know why. Nobody wants to see that. People need to use blankets. They should be discreet.
Me: I don't use blankets but I am still discreet. Tris doesn't like. He'll pull it off. People rarely notice unless they are staring right at your breasts. And most people are intellegent enough to respect a child eating.
Her: I saw a woman use a blanket. Her baby was about 6 months old and didn't pull the blanket off.
Me: Well, my kids never liked blankets and all that fumbling around is aggravating.
Her: You have to teach them to use the blanket. Who is the parent and who is the child.
[at this point, i'm like wtf?]
Me: [speaking slowly] We are talking about small babies. All they know is that they are hungry
Her: That's why you should just use a bottle.
Me: Naw, I'm good. I will just feed my child when he's hungry. If people don't like it, they can eat in the bathrooom or put blankets over their heads.
Her: That's not fair to other people. Why should they be disturbed?
Me: They dont' have to look at my breasts. It's not like I stand on the table, do a strip tease and shake my boobs at peoples husbands and teenaged sons. We are not talking about sex. We are talking about babies eating. I will not put my child's needs aside for someone's comfort. A grown person should act accordingly.
This conversation went on for nearly an hour. i made several requests that she just drop it because we obviously felt different about this issue.
Her main contentions were that:
* Others might be offended. I don't care.
* Some one might say something to me. I don't care.
* People will talk about me. I don't care.
She could not understand why I wouldn't cater to a bunch of strangers that I'll never see again. She asked me if I would BF in front of my BFF Stacy (ssnelson26)'s hubby. I said that I had already, all four kids. She asked if I'd be offended if Stacy breastfed in front of my SO. She has. My SO and Stacy's hubby are not pedophiles so they are not aroused by babies eating.
She also said that she worked in restaurants and she knew how people talked. Ironically, I've worked in more restaurants than she had, and breastfed my kids in every single one.
She said what if someone came up to me and said "Excuse me, my hubby and I are on a date. Could you please cover up?" I told her that I don't breastfeed topless so I am not uncovered, but I would say "Sure, as soon as my child finishes eating." She seems to think that this will be the beginning of WWIII. Um, I guess so.
She asked what I'd do if an employee told me I couldn't breastfeed. I told her I'd ask for the manager and pray they said the same because I love litigation. That's when she called me close minded.
Her: So all you care about is your child? You don't care about how other people feel?
Her: You are being very close minded.
Me: It's close minded to raise my child according to what I feel is best for them, and respecting the rights of others to do the same?
Keep in mind, she breastfed her child. But she was ashamed, hiding in back rooms and what not. She only lasted a couple of months. Her family didn't support her and she stopped. The converastion finally reached a boiling point when I brought up a situation in which a stranger questioned her mothering in public. She was using foul and profane language and somebody told her she should have more respect for herself and her child than that. She was offended [I think, embarassed] that someone would say something to her. I told her that some people found cursing to be disgusting and that they don't want their children exposed to that.
I must have hit a nerve. People don't like having their parenting criticized or questioned.
She got all mad saying no one found bottles disgusting and breastfeeding mothers should use them. I finally gave up being nice and slipped into extreme lactavist and told her I found formula disgusting and it made me sick to my stomach that people would give their helpless babies the milk of another species that was pumped full of sugar and chemically modified in an attempt to be more like breastmilk instead of being unselfish.
I felt bad for saying but you have to fight fire with fire, ya know?
1. This was originally posted on CafeMom on 18 Feb 2009.
2. WHO webpage on Breastfeeding>>Nutrition http://www.who.int/nutrition/topics/exclusive_breastfeeding/en/
3. "Nursing Mother Bullied for Breastfeeding in SC Walmart" http://archive.blisstree.com/live/nursing-mother-bullied-for-breastfeeding-in-south-carolina-wal-mart/;
4. SC Law on Breastfeeding, passed in 2005 http://www.ncsl.org/default.aspx?tabid=14389