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Medela further violating WHO code - Page 4

post #61 of 215
I guess that the question, to me, is whether lactivism is about preserving the absolute purity of breastfeeding done the theoretically-most-ideal way, or whether it's about trying to get as much breastmilk as possible into as many babies as possible.

I went back to work (part-time) when my baby was 12 weeks old. By American standards, I was lucky to get to stay home that long. He is currently 11.5 months old and has never had a drop of formula THANKS TO MY MEDELA PUMP. He gets bottles from his father or his nanny when I can't feed him directly.

Everywhere but lactivism blogs and MDC, I am considered an awesome breastfeeding mother who is doing a fantastic job of feeding her baby. In the lactivism world, what do I hear? That I can't say my son was "exclusively BF until six months," because bottles of breastmilk don't count. That pumped milk is inadequate because it doesn't fit the baby's needs-of-the-moment. That I messed up by allowing bottles at all, and that even at six months he should've been finger-fed or syringe-fed. That the company which has enabled my breastfeeding relationship to thrive shouldn't have been allowed to contact me directly, because their services are suspect.

I don't see how lactivists can complain about how bad it is that women see breastfeeding as "too hard," and simultaneously set their standards so high that only SAHM who never leave their babies are doing it right. The vast majority of mothers are going to need or want to use bottles at some point. If you try to say that that's incompatible with breastfeeding, you will only serve to keep breastfeeding a niche option for the privileged few.
post #62 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeanine123 View Post
How are the bottle specifically for breastmilk? What happens to them if you put formula in them?
They explode, of course.

My Medela bottles have pro-breastfeeding messages molded right into the plastic. The two I happen to have with me today in my pump bag say "Breastfeeding: nature's perfect food" and "Breastfeeding best feeding." I know that one of the ones I have at home says "Mother's milk is #1." I forget what the other one says.

Yes, nothing would technically stop me from putting pepsi into them and feeding it to my baby. (Um, except for the fact that I don't have any nipples to fit them. He drinks from Avent bottles when I'm not with him.) But seriously, any company that prints lactivist propaganda right on its bottles is not secretly shilling for the formula companies.
post #63 of 215
I pumped at work until my dd was a year old, and I appreciated the simplicity of being able to pump into a bottle, put a cap on it, take it home, and prepare it for someone else to feed my dd simply by swapping the cap out for a nipple. Sterilizing a different bottle and pouring milk into it doesn't *sound* like a huge ordeal, but it was.

If Medela wants to let moms know that their breast milk collection receptacles can also be used as feeders, that's fine with me. I'm glad they're putting that out there. I think this points to flaws with the WHO code, more than flaws with Medela.

There is no earthly way I could have found a day care provider would would have been willing to handle syringe feeding my baby, or cup feeding (my precious and limited supply of) breast milk to a child too young to reliably hold a cup. And I sincerely doubt my dd would have tolerated that. Until we have paid maternity leave in the US (and realistically, well beyond that point) bottles are a necessity for many families. Attempting to deny this does no service to any lactivist project.
post #64 of 215
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivka5 View Post


My Medela bottles have pro-breastfeeding messages molded right into the plastic. The two I happen to have with me today in my pump bag say "Breastfeeding: nature's perfect food" and "Breastfeeding best feeding." I know that one of the ones I have at home says "Mother's milk is #1." I forget what the other one says.
Do those slogans really help promote BFing or do they contribute to the perception that BFing is an unattainable goal for many?

http://www.bobrow.net/kimberly/birth/BFLanguage.html

Quote:
When we (and the artificial milk manufacturers) say that breastfeeding is the best possible way to feed babies because it provides their ideal food, perfectly balanced for optimal infant nutrition, the logical response is, "So what?" Our own experience tells us that optimal is not necessary. Normal is fine, and implied in this language is the absolute normalcy--and thus safety and adequacy--of artificial feeding. The truth is, breastfeeding is nothing more than normal. Artificial feeding, which is neither the same nor superior, is therefore deficient, incomplete, and inferior. Those are difficult words, but they have an appropriate place in our vocabulary.
post #65 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeanine123 View Post
Do those slogans really help promote BFing or do they contribute to the perception that BFing is an unattainable goal for many?
I'd have to say that a strong anti-bottle, anti-artificial-nipple stance goes a lot further towards "contributing to the perception that BFing is an unattainable goal for many." I have a hard time seeing how printing "breastfeeding best feeding" on a bottle insidiously pushes a mother to use formula, but telling her that if she needs to go back to work she'd better find a daycare provider willing to syringe-feed her baby does not.
post #66 of 215
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivka5 View Post
I'd have to say that a strong anti-bottle, anti-artificial-nipple stance goes a lot further towards "contributing to the perception that BFing is an unattainable goal for many." I have a hard time seeing how printing "breastfeeding best feeding" on a bottle insidiously pushes a mother to use formula, but telling her that if she needs to go back to work she'd better find a daycare provider willing to syringe-feed her baby does not.
I never said that any mother who had to go back to work or pump for any reason whatsoever needed to find a DCP that would feed her baby with a syringe. I merely stated that there are alternatives to bottles and nipples since I have no clue who all is reading this thread and would hate for them to remain under the impression that bottles are the be all, end all, especially if they have a baby who refuses to take one. I know I've asked this before but apparently I need to say it again, please don't attribute words, thoughts or sweeping statements to me that are inflammatory or flat out false.

Are we going to continue heading down this bottle rabbit hole or will we be able to discuss the real intent behind this thread as I tried to clarify late last night?

Quote:
Which is what I've been trying to do but so many people have become focused on the bottles that the discussion about purposefully targeting discussion, be it online or in real life, that involve new or expectant parents and how that is in violation of the WHO Code section that I posted in the first page of this discussion has been lost, which is rather frustrating at times. So many seem so ready to give Medela a pass because of all of the good they've done in the past. How far do they need to go before it's too far? Is this another step in that direction or not? And if not, why not? Is it acceptable for them to essentially hire people by giving them pricey freebies/discounts to promote their products, including bottles and nipples which is in violation of the WHO Code as I understand it, to new parents? I know the WHO Code means bupkis here in the US since we never signed on to it but so many still hold it up as the thing to strive for and work towards. I wonder how effective it can really be if we start cherry picking what parts of it we agree with and what parts we'll wink, wink, nudge, nudge, let you slide by with because you make great pumps and hey, most of your ads still show a nursing baby and mom.
post #67 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by annettemarie View Post

Look, I'm not saying you shouldn't take this on if it's important to you. I'm saying I personally find it all to be petty hairsplitting and I can see it doing a lot more damage than good. Bottles and artificial nipples exist. If the only people allowed to talk about them are the formula companies, we're all in big trouble.
post #68 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeanine123 View Post
How are the bottle specifically for breastmilk? What happens to them if you put formula in them? Are there any bottles out there being marketed specifically for formula? I looked through IBFAN's site a bit last night and there were quite a few ads listed there as being in violation that advertised just bottles and quite a few of them were promoting themselves as being almost as good as a breast, the next best thing to a breast, etc. How is Medela's advertising different?
To me, the simple fact that they state that their bottles are for breastmilk matters. I have some small Medela breastmilk bottles that have pro-breastfeeding things printed on them. One says "Breastfeeding is baby's best start" and one says "Breastmilk: from Mother with love." To me, it makes a difference that the company so strongly states that the bottles are for breastmilk, and they even use the space on the bottle to promote breastfeeding... I feel like they are trying very hard to promote breastfeeding, even when some breastmilk must be given by bottle. But, YMMV!
post #69 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeanine123 View Post
since I have no clue who all is reading this thread and would hate for them to remain under the impression that bottles are the be all, end all,
I promise you that pretty much anyone who happens to be reading this thread who isn’t already fully conversant with every little aspect of contemporary Mommy Wars will run screaming from the idea of even considering breastfeeding. This is so much more damaging that medela could ever be.
post #70 of 215
Thread Starter 
How is this more damaging than other threads that are on this forum? How exactly is this particular thread damaging? We're not supposed to discuss or mention the fact that there are other ways to feed baby when mom isn't there than a bottle? How exactly does that help the mom whose baby flat out refuses to take a bottle? How is discussing actions taken by a company that crosses the line set for by the WHO Code that so very many here refer to all the time (by their own admission no less) of advertising for some of their products and the methods in which they do so damaging to BFing? What good does it do to sweep these discussions under the rug and turn a blind eye and pretend that everything is all rainbows and roses?
post #71 of 215
"Mommy Wars"? The WHO Code has nothing on the subject of Mommy Wars. The Code has nothing on the subject of whether bottles and teats can be produced and sold and used. The Code specifically acknowledges the appropriate use of formula, bottles, and teats in its preamble. The WHO Code also has nothing to say on information provision on bottle feeding by healthcare workers and community supporters, so long as that provision is unbiased, factual, and not provided as part of an advertisement or promotion.

The ONLY thing the WHO Code restricts is advertising and promotions by companies who sell these items, and by their agents. That's it.

No one is trying to ban bottles. The fear and defensiveness in this thread is misplaced.
post #72 of 215
Sorry, my bad. Most of the forum is pretty damaging, but I didn't bother to get into that. I assumed I'd want to be a lactivist. But I assumed it had mostly to do with making sure that making sure that the right to NIP and pump at work was protected, breastfeeding encouraged, that kind of thing. Then I discovered it was all about making other women feel bad for not living up to some mythical ideal of never, ever, never being away from the baby at all.
post #73 of 215
QUOTE]I promise you that pretty much anyone who happens to be reading this thread who isn’t already fully conversant with every little aspect of contemporary Mommy Wars will run screaming from the idea of even considering breastfeeding. This is so much more damaging that medela could ever be./QUOTE]


I guess it's good to be really passionate about something.

For me it was devastating when DD had to have formula (due to thyroid issues bombing my supply). I would have done ANYTHING to have had enough breastmilk to give her that in her bottle. Heck, i would have given her breastmilk spit from my own mouth, never mind from a bottle, just to know she was getting it. I have to admit if i'd encountered this thread during that terrible raw time i would have been so much madder! It would be really super wonderful if every woman's experience of breastfeeding was that it all worked fine, pumps and bottles were never needed and life was a happy simple joy. But it wasn't for me. I was a newly single mom with NOTHING and i had to make do with a manual pump which had a leaky diaphragm and i stopped getting letdown for after a few months. I could pump with it for 45 minutes and have only half an oz. I sure wish i'd known a Maven who could have helped me get a cheap medela swing in those days!

For me and women like me Medela did good things in the past AND CONTINUE to do them. I needed a pump. I needed bottles. Eventually i needed formula. That totally bites, but it's not Medela's fault i have a hereditary autoimmune disorder. Without my pump DD would have been fully FF by 3 months. With my pump (which i had used to build an early EBM frozen stock and persevered with despite how demoralising it was only getting half an ounce from almost an hour of pumping - and no, hand-expression got me zero) we made it to 7 months.

It will be really wonderful if (fingers, ankles, eyes and nipples crossed) we manage to get through, over or around thyroid issues this time around and i'm able to nurse for the full 2 years i'd dreamed of, but you know what...? I have already bought myself a swing to get my EBM stock started as soon as my milk comes in JIC i need that help again, and yes, if i need to feed with a bottle i would buy the medela bottles too - i personally could have done with the boost seeing one of those slogans would have given me when every drop of breastmilk was so hard to get. For those of us who have supply issues, or NEED to be able to pump and feed EBM in order to keep nursing at all, Medela are doing nothing wrong whatsoever.

As ever YMMV.
post #74 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeanine123 View Post
I never said that any mother who had to go back to work or pump for any reason whatsoever needed to find a DCP that would feed her baby with a syringe. I merely stated that there are alternatives to bottles and nipples since I have no clue who all is reading this thread and would hate for them to remain under the impression that bottles are the be all, end all, especially if they have a baby who refuses to take one. I know I've asked this before but apparently I need to say it again, please don't attribute words, thoughts or sweeping statements to me that are inflammatory or flat out false.

Are we going to continue heading down this bottle rabbit hole or will we be able to discuss the real intent behind this thread as I tried to clarify late last night?
YOu're the one who took it down the bottle rabbit hole with your ideological insistence that bottles are evil.

I guarantee that if the opinion that I know some lactivists hold -- that breastmilk in a bottle is "not breastfeeding, its bottlefeeding" -- gets promulgated more widely, the only effect it will have is to convince more women that breastfeeding is not worth the effort, especially if they have to go back to work.

Now, I also realize that many ardent lactivists also share the belief that mothers of infants have no business going back to work. Apparently that belief now extends to the idea that the babies of mothers who need (or want) to return to work in ways that do not allow them to continue to exclusively nurse do not deserve breastmilk?

Good luck finding a DCP who will syringe-feed an infant, by the way. At a lot of big centers you're lucky if they're willing to take breastmilk at all because they try to label it a "biohazard bodily fluid," so asking them to draw up syringes or spoon it out of a container is not going to happen. Nevermind that their schedules often won't permit it.
post #75 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeanine123 View Post
How is this more damaging than other threads that are on this forum? How exactly is this particular thread damaging? We're not supposed to discuss or mention the fact that there are other ways to feed baby when mom isn't there than a bottle? How exactly does that help the mom whose baby flat out refuses to take a bottle? How is discussing actions taken by a company that crosses the line set for by the WHO Code that so very many here refer to all the time (by their own admission no less) of advertising for some of their products and the methods in which they do so damaging to BFing? What good does it do to sweep these discussions under the rug and turn a blind eye and pretend that everything is all rainbows and roses?

I personally don't give a flip if Medela violates the WHO code because the code is outdated and needs to be more inclusive of women who have to use bottles. Acting like bottles for pumping mothers need to be hidden and not advertised (and there is no way I would buy a bottle with no picture on the box, I want to see what I am getting) damages breastfeeding because it makes women feel like pumping is something to be ashamed of. Lets face it, the majority of the women in the USA are going to go back to work in their baby's first year. If we want women to not use formula, then companies that make pumps and the corresponding parts (and that includes bottles) need to be advertising a lot more then the formula companies. I hope they advertise more so that more women will be aware that their are other options then just going to formula when returning to work.
post #76 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by annettemarie View Post
You mean where they're all CLEARLY labeled "Breastmilk Bottles" and "Breastmilk Collection Bottles"?



In my book ANYTHING that helps a mom avoid formula is awesome. Period. I have never been able to pump, but there's many a mom who has busted tail to make sure their baby gets breastmilk instead of just pouring in some formula.

Kudos to them
post #77 of 215
So is the WHO Code scripture now? Seriously, though, I agree with the previous posters that this points out a flaw in the code, not with Medela. Since most women are not able to be 100% available to their babies 24/7/365, it's entirely necessary to promote the idea that you can breastfeed, and insure your baby breastmilk even when you're away. I think that the supply issues caused by formula feeding during the day are far worse for a breastfeeding relationship than the small chance of nipple confusion if someone gives your baby breastmilk bottles after breastfeeding is well established.
post #78 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivka5 View Post
I guess that the question, to me, is whether lactivism is about preserving the absolute purity of breastfeeding done the theoretically-most-ideal way, or whether it's about trying to get as much breastmilk as possible into as many babies as possible.
... serve to keep breastfeeding a niche option for the privileged few.
sorry i edited out some, but wanted to say something to these two points.

without the medela pumps AND THEIR BOTTLES, i would not have been able to BREASTfeed my 4 month old preemie. she was bottle fed my breastmilk for several weeks until we could transition to breast (both suck weakness AND stupid NICU rules). without the pumps and the bottles that i used for collection, i would not have established a supply. i do not respond to hand pumping OR cheap manual pumps. the medela pumps and attachments were given to me in the hospital to use to pump milk for my baby. my insurance paid for them because formula is more expensive. sure, i might have been able to use another brand, but my insurance covered what the hospital gave me 100% and so i was able to give breastmilk to my baby and maintain and establish a BREASTfeeding relationship.

400,000 babies born premature every year. that segment of the population NEEDS the pumps and bottles. i'm glad that i'm not ashamed to be in one of the two 'brackets' of socioeconomic breastfeeding: wealthy and highly educated or poor and unable to afford the luxury of formula!!!
post #79 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by felix23 View Post
I personally don't give a flip if Medela violates the WHO code because the code is outdated and needs to be more inclusive of women who have to use bottles.
The Code was last revised and update in 2008.

http://www.ibfan.org/issue-internati...full-6120.html

It is not "inclusive of women who have to use bottles" because it has nothing to say about women using bottles. It is about companies and their advertising.

Quote:
Acting like bottles for pumping mothers need to be hidden and not advertised (and there is no way I would buy a bottle with no picture on the box, I want to see what I am getting)
Bottles are not required to be hidden under a counter; they can be shelved like any other product, so long as they are not in special in-store promotions. Nor are boxes required to be in plain brown wrapping. Straight contents photos (or clear panels) on boxes containing bottles are permitted under the Code. Some countries' interpretations place fairly reasonable limitations on the size of the image. Evenflo has just recently gone Code compliant (I have no connection to the company in any way and do not endorse them): this is what their packs look like:

http://www.evenflo.com/bottle_feeding_landing.aspx
post #80 of 215
I think most of us realize that bottles are pretty necessary to many families in order to give their baby the best possible nutrition. The point isn't that they are selling bottles, they aren't going to stop doing that, the problem is that they are advertising bottles.

I had a baby in the NICU and then had weight issues so I pumped for some time. I have medela bottles and NONE of them say "breastmilk" on them, not even the small 2 oz bottles.

The point isn't the bottles but the marketing.


Quote:
5.1 There should be no advertising or other form of promotion to the general public
of products within the scope of this Code.

5.2 Manufacturers and distributors should not provide, directly or indirectly, to
pregnant women, mothers or members of their families, samples of products within
the scope of this Code.

5.3 In conformity with paragraphs 1 and 2 of this Article, there should be no pointof-
sale advertising, giving of samples, or any other promotion device to induce sales
directly to the consumer at the retail level, such as special displays, discount coupons,
premiums, special sales, loss-leaders and tie-in sales, for products within the scope of
this Code. This provision should not restrict the establishment of pricing policies and
practices intended to provide products at lower prices on a long-term basis.

5.4 Manufacturers and distributors should not distribute to pregnant women or
mothers or infants and young children any gifts of articles or utensils which may
promote the use of breast-milk substitutes or bottle-feeding.

5.5 Marketing personnel, in their business capacity, should not seek direct or
indirect contact of any kind with pregnant women or with mothers of infants and
young children.
I have used a few different kinds of Medela pumps and they are nice pumps but I have a problem with how they are marketing this.

Marketing pumps wouldn't be a violation but marketing bottles, is. So why don't they just market the pumps?

Why do bottles HAVE to be the focus of an advertisement? Medela is clearly pushing the code but why? Why is that necessary? Many here would recommend a Medela pump without any incentives. Why do they have to make it an issue by marketing the bottles around and sending them out as "gifts" (a WHO Code violation)

I for one would like to see Medela put out some cups, which would be less likely to interfere with latch. Avent sells cups, why doesn't Medela?
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