"The author's beef is not with science, or breastfeeding or other mothers. It's with a society that doesn't recognize or support mothers as full participants in the public sphere."
I totally agree with this! Although I think she also has a few other beefs - like another beef with God for the differences between men and women and the undue burden that places on her as the Mother. And I'd also like to add that.... although, like many of you, I have major problems with her article, tone, research, etc...
...I can relate to her points. Kind of. After getting past her tone, I do see her point. BF'ing is 'more difficult' in some ways. I WANT to breastfeed my children - and I WANT to spend lots of time with them. I also have many other goals, but in my mind, I have made a choice: I will sacrifice some measure of success in the public sphere in order to be a good mother (and wife). I also believe my husband has made a similar choice as a father - he has already and will continue to make sacrifices to be a good father (and husband). We have made some peace with this reality. I will not be working 60 hour work weeks anymore. Can't do it and be present to my family. At the end of the day, I'd rather look back and see that I was there for my husband and children than see that I worked some quantity of hours at whatever job, no matter how great the job. That's not to say I don't really enjoy working and value my education/career.. I do, very much indeed.
BUT, if that's what she wants - to have the same measure of success in the public sphere as if she didn't have any children or a husband, then I can empathize. That must be very difficult to HAVE to make the sacrifice grudgingly. I'm not so sure breastfeeding is her main issue, at the end of the day - it seems like BF'ing was made to be the whipping boy in this article. She's saying it's tough to be a mother (no denials there - I totally agree) and if the fatigue she's feeling as a mom of 3 is also compounded by her frustration at not being able to achieve her goals in the way she'd like (sans children) - then I kind of get it.
But in my mind, she been sold a pack of lies. By the feminists who'd like us to believe we should be able to have it all - and if we "Choose" to have children, then we should STILL be able to have it all and do it all well. And if we fail, the blame is on us. For breastfeeding, for not working enough, for not managing our time well, whatever... And crushed by that pressure, she's lashing out at the nearest enemy (well said, previous poster) - those who would daresay breast is best. Well, it is best. That's really all there is to it.
All that said, I still feel her pain. We've got a long way to go before our workplaces make room for the fact that women are also the mothers, and that is a unique role. I will say I have had to make more direct and immediate sacrifices than my husband thus far - I have no regrets, but that's reality. He got to go to Tibet in January - I stayed home with Leo. He went on tour last summer with an orchestra - I stayed home with Leo. There are moments when I also wish I had the freedom to do those things as well. But I remind myself that time will come, and I only have this time with Leo as a little guy. I believe my true freedom at this point is living out my motherhood to its fullest.
I DID laugh at the part about the moms all in their fashion clothes comparing organic snacks and ratios of wooden toys. I'm in China, so I don't really experience this part of mothering, but it struck a chord because I've lived on the East Coast and I can relate to that craziness.
I hope she found this experience cathartic and I also hope many MDC mommas write in and blast her faulty article to pieces! Be kind though - I do think she has some valid concerns underneath it all.