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What if new moms had to sign a waiver? - Page 3

post #41 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLoud View Post
Here's an idea: what if every hospital maternity ward asked every new mother: "Do you want to breastfeed, or would you rather we feed your baby formula? The choice is up to you." Then if the mom said, "Feed my baby formula," the hospital would say, "Sure. Here are some free samples. You just have to sign this waiver first." The waiver would go something like this:

I am aware that by choosing to feed my baby formula instead of breastmilk, I am increasing his risk of dying of SIDS, lowering his IQ, increasing his risk of contracting diseases in infancy, increasing the severity of those diseases, increasing his risk of diseases in adulthood, increasing his risk of allergies...[We'll have to work on the exact wording here, since there are just so many risks to formula feeding, we have to pick and choose lest the waiver be too long.] I am also aware that by not breastfeeding, I am increasing my own risks of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, endometrial cancer, uterine cancer, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and obesity.

If my baby or I becomes sick or dies as a result of this hospital feeding my baby formula, I will not sue this hospital.

Signed: Date:

Psychology studies have shown that people will make the right choice when it's the default, and making the wrong choice requires checking a box. If people realize that breastfeeding is the normal thing, and formula is dangerous enough to require a waiver, they might be more likely to make the right choice.
"I like it. I wish some hospital would try it.I am surprised that there is so much concern for the Formula feeding by choice mother's feelings. What about how the formula fed baby feels?
post #42 of 225
My DD was born in hospital here in New Zealand. There is no nursery to send your baby to. Your baby stays with you, and nobody is going to feed your baby formula. If you insist on it, you need to bring your own formula, and make it up in the kitchenette. The midwives and nurses in the ward expect you to breastfeed (although I am sure if a mother is medically unable to breastfeed, someone would help her make a bottle, just like they helped me pick up DD and change her diaper when I was to weak. And just like someone would come and help me latch DD on at any time night and day.)

They have a lounge, with a TV, and they encourage you to watch a breastfeeding video or dvd there (I was too weak to get there), and you get a broshure (sp,?) which does outline the risks of bottles and formula, and encourages you to make sure you get breastfeeding established before anyone gets to give your baby a bottle.

And no, doctors here aren't particularly breastfeeding-friendly, in my opinion (but while they are in charge of the delivery suite, the midwives are in charge in the maternity ward). Nor do most mothers exclusively breastfeed for 6 months. And a lot of mums give up on breastfeeding early or supplement. I don't think anyone take the attitude in the maternity ward negatively. After all, breast is best. Just like giving birth vaginally ("normal birth" as is says in my records) is better than c-section. It is just that sometimes what is generally best is not possible or safe.
post #43 of 225
I think if we put more effort into helping the women who WANT to breastfeed do so successfully, there will be fewer who don't to badger with waivers. Focus, people. The biggest barrier to widespread acceptance of breastfeeding as the norm is the fact that so many women try and can't.
post #44 of 225
I don't think making people feel guilty about choices that they have made is useful at all. If anything must be handed out, I would support basic Breast is Best literature that showed the positives of bfing.
post #45 of 225
Quote:
Also, this simply is not true. While breastfeeding may/does lower these risks, NOT breastfeeding does not INCREASE these risks.
Well, since breastfeeding is the biological norm for our species, it doesn't lower the risk for anything, it normalizes it. Not breastfeeding therefore does increase the risk.
post #46 of 225
Ah, so in my particular situation.... I wouldn't have signed the waiver because I planned to exclusively breastfeed my DD.

Giving birth was traumatic and resulted in some pretty extreme tears. Immediately after giving birth, I was rushed to the operating room for emergency surgery under general anesthesia. DD didn't have a chance to nurse. I don't even know how long I was out; those couple of days are fuzzy. I do know DD had at least some formula from DH while I was in surgery.

Anyway, DD was handed off to DH, who had never in his life held an infant. He thought his wife was going to die on the operating table, based on the amount of blood he had seen in the delivery room.

Oh, and DD has a huge birthmark on her face--a giant congenital nevus--that at the time encompassed her entire right eye and large parts of her forehead, nose, and cheek. Nobody we know had ever seen something like this before. At moments after her birth, we didn't know if this was an indicator of some sort of major problem.

So, in our scenario, with me possibly dying in the operating room and DH holding an infant with a gigantic black mark on her face, you think the the most helpful thing would be for the distraught father to be presented with this waiver that informs him giving some formula will probably kill his newborn? What a sucky idea.
post #47 of 225
Quote:
I don't think making people feel guilty about choices that they have made is useful at all. If anything must be handed out, I would support basic Breast is Best literature that showed the positives of bfing.
The waiver used in the hospital I am thinking about wasn't about making mothers feel guilty. It was an informed consent form similar to the one people sign before getting a blood transfusion or an epidural. The idea is a good one.

It certainly did make some of the hospital staff think about what they were doing before casually offering a bottle to the baby.
post #48 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Devaskyla View Post
Well, since breastfeeding is the biological norm for our species, it doesn't lower the risk for anything, it normalizes it. Not breastfeeding therefore does increase the risk.
So, are you saying that women who don't choose to have biological children or women who are unable to have biological children are also increasing their risk of these cancers then - since they don't breastfeed? Should they also sign a waiver that, by not having biological children, they are "increasing their risk of cancer"? There are much beter ways of educating about the amazing benefits of breastfeeding for mom and baby.
post #49 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by lville71 View Post
So, are you saying that women who don't choose to have biological children or women who are unable to have biological children are also increasing their risk of these cancers then - since they don't breastfeed? Should they also sign a waiver that, by not having biological children, they are "increasing their risk of cancer"? There are much beter ways of educating about the amazing benefits of breastfeeding for mom and baby.
Lville, you may find it interesting to read the article "watch your language' by Diane Weissinger IBCLC (http://www.*********/a/wiessinger.html) She states a convincing arguement that there are no benefits to breastfeeding - it is the normal way to feed babies. All other ways need to be conmpared to breastfeeding to see if they increase or decrease risks of illness.

This line of thought has really changed how I think and talk about breastfeeding. The language of 'breast is best' has not increased brestfeeding rates. IMO, we need more support (real, good support) coupled with informed consent - so mothers can make an informed decision and weigh the risks and benefits of all feeding methods before birth (or even conception).

As for guilt, I feel that hiding the risks of not breastfeeding from mothers because it could make them feel guilty is paternalistic. Women are intellegent, strong people who are able to make decisions based on evidence no matter what the subject. Immunizations? Get informed! Infant feeding? Get informed! Alcohol use? Get informed! Doctors who hide information from us do not help us to make decisions that we can own.
post #50 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by PatioGardener View Post
I'm all for informed consent, and I think that all women should know the risks of formula feeding. IMO prenatal visits are the best time for health care providers to pass on this information.
:

Quote:
Originally Posted by llp34 View Post
However, what I would really like is for hospitals to be legally required to obtain consent from the parents before feeding formula, except in the case of a mother being medically unable to give consent and no father or other guardian available to do so.


I can't get behind the waiver presented in the OP, though. And that's not really the purpose of a waiver. Hospitals have people sign waivers so the hospital/dr. is protected if something goes wrong. How many women are suing hospitals because they chose to FF? It's just guilt and finger-wagging, not a waiver. Hospitals force enough garbage on women "for their own good, because we know what's best for you;" we don't need to add to it.
post #51 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by vbactivist View Post
"I like it. I wish some hospital would try it.I am surprised that there is so much concern for the Formula feeding by choice mother's feelings. What about how the formula fed baby feels?
Well, I'll give my bf creds: bf both my daughters, the one I gave birth to and the one my dp gave birth to. I grew up in a church where bf (in the 60's) was the norm. My mom bf all 6 of her children in the 50's and 60's.

The way I look at it, our job is to support the new mom so she can take care of her baby and make decisions for her family. Not take care of her baby or make the decisions.

There are lots and lots of things we can do to recognize bf'ing as the obvious and easy way without adding more more stupid "mandatory" thing for a new parent to deal with within hours of birth.

A new mom needs to sleep, be fed, massaged, comforted, bathed and spend quiet uninterrupted time with her newborn and other family members, feeling safe and cared for.

If we did that, I'm guessing bf'ing rates would go up. (I've got no study on that though.)
post #52 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by annettemarie View Post
It seems very manipulative to me to say "What's that? You want to give your baby formula? Sure! First sign this piece of paper saying that you understand it might KILL your baby" when the mama is in the hospital and has just given birth. Someone else compared it to that piece of emotional blackmail the AAP wants to force non-vaccinating parents to sign, and I have to agree.

I also agree with the mamas who have said education needs to be better prenatally, and the mama who said that hospitals should not be allowed to give formula without express permission.
: I have not had a hospital birth since #1, and I can at least BF to begin with, but knowing that my children will only survive (at least the youngest 2 it seems) on an elemental formula, that type of notice would bother me. I don't think being anti-formula is helpful to being pro-BFing. I must be the latter, since I'm up 6-10 times a night trying to get as much milk into this baby as possible before I'm forced to wean him due to medical issues, but I am definitely not the former since it has its place and that place is in my daily life as the lifesaving substance that allows me to have DD here with me going strong, and likely will do the same for DS.
post #53 of 225
I haven't read the entire thread, but I'm with those who find it inappropriate. There is a place & need for rhetoric which positions BF as the norm & formula as risk, but that is in schools & targeting potential moms--those in a position to choose.

There are so many more fronts in the battle to normalize breastfeeding in America--I just don't see how this would be energy well spent. And let's just get the formula samples out of hospitals period.
post #54 of 225
Perhaps rather than asking hospitals to increase their administrative burden with additional paperwork, it seems to me that it would be more productive to have them remember their Mission Statements, often reflecting a commitment to the community's health. American hospitals typically do not make a dime off of their maternity wards, yet some commit great resources to them nonetheless ("I had a great experience there when baby was born, so I'll return to that hospital for my X surgery. . ."). I was lucky to deliver in a hospital that didn't have the 'prettiest' rooms, but instead focused their attention on education and support. There was an engaging evening b-feeding seminar for expectant parents for $35. When DS was born, all nursing staff was qualified to assist with b-feeding and several lactation consultants were on the floor all day (but not at night). Each day there is a q+a session for b-feeding mothers and their new babies on the floor. After returning home, a warm line was available for questions--my nervous questions were answered within a couple of hours of my call. A store at the hospital (not the gift shop!) sells all the Medela stuff, nursing wear, moby wraps, etc, and you can go in on any day and weigh your babe before and after a feeding if you wish. In addition, the hospital hosts a weekly b-feeding support group moderated by an LC. To me, this is a model that should be encouraged for hospitals above another piece of paper to go in the (circular?) file.
post #55 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by vbactivist View Post
"I like it. I wish some hospital would try it.I am surprised that there is so much concern for the Formula feeding by choice mother's feelings. What about how the formula fed baby feels?
The baby would content to have a full belly- filled with formula or otherwise.
I may not like or approve of FF by choice, but the bottom line is that it is not my choice to make.
post #56 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by griffin2004 View Post
Surely you're joking.
I agree.

I hope that no hospital would ever ask a new mom to sign such an offensive document.
post #57 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Draupadi View Post
The baby would content to have a full belly- filled with formula or otherwise.
I may not like or approve of FF by choice, but the bottom line is that it is not my choice to make.

NOt necesarily - I know lots of babies who have uncomfortable gas pains from formula.
post #58 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Draupadi View Post
The baby would content to have a full belly- filled with formula or otherwise.
Much depends on the babies experience. The day (9-day-old) DS was able to drink a bottle of pumped milk, after my two days of pump & dump, he did NOT want to let that bottle go. You could say he milked it for all it's worth

DS would take formula when he was hungry (a blessing for the SAHD who had used up all the pumped milk), but he definitely preferred Mom.
post #59 of 225
there are so many things women are shamed and made to feel guilty about, no need to add breastfeeding to the list. Those who don't care would sign the waiver without even reading it; those who gave it a try but didn't succeed (even for the wrong reason, like an unsupportive husband) would feel guilty.
I think education is the answer here.

**mom to ds, who weaned himself at 4 y/o**
post #60 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by vbactivist View Post
NOt necesarily - I know lots of babies who have uncomfortable gas pains from formula.
Some- not all. For the most part, baby will be happy to have been fed.

I'm all for providing information about the benefits of breastfeeding to new moms, but having them sign something that essentially says that they will be poisoning their children if they give them formula? Not so much.
How is that lactivism?
We all know breast is best. We all know formula is not the ideal, right?
Well, it's not poison, either.
Many of us struggled through our breastfeeding relationships and had to use formula. We weren't feeding our children poison. 2 years later and still breastfeeding my son, I have no regrets in supplementing because my son needed to eat and I could not provide food for him.
I was not giving him poison.
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