Originally Posted by gingerbane
Giving a child/baby breast milk is about giving them the best most optimal nutrition that is available.
This is what I thought before I listened to Diane's talk - which is why I think this hypothetical dilemma is such a good thing to think about. It made me think about things differently (although not change my mind about what I
Breastmilk is optimal nutrition and immune support, but breastfeeding is more than breastmilk - something that I had brushed off as obvious but not so
important. To hear a well respected LC and die-hard lactivist explain that she personally considers the feeding at the breast part of breastfeeding to be so important that she would chose that over breastmilk really got me thinking.
I think many healthcare professionals are fast to say "oh well, the latch isn't working - just pump and bottle feed" when they could be saying "I will recommend an LC to work with you after we clip the tongue-tie to get your baby to the breast." (or whatever the situation) I know that not all babies who don't latch, and not all moms who EP, would fit into a situation where better support would have resulted in feeding-at-the-breast, but some would. And by supporting them and advocating for them we can make sure that babies and moms don't loose out on the feeding at the breast part of breastfeeding.
Diane's statement also helped me to communicate the importance of supplementing at the breast when possible. Just hearing the story about 'what Diane would chose' was so inspiring for a low supply friend of mine. She continues to feed at the breast and her baby is over a year old now. With test weights the LC told her that she was transfering about 15 mL/feed maximum, so most of baby's nutrition came from formula. But all feedings came from the breast, which tempered the anger and dismay she felt at her body for not making enough milk.
The question (or Diane's answer) is not a plug for formula at all! It just uses shock to highlight how breastfeeding is more than breastmilk.