Is there a way to convince her? - Mothering Forums

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Old 10-10-2011, 08:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I recently had a rather disturbing exchange with my SIL (wife to hubs' brother). She makes joking comments about keeping my 5 mo old baby (they don't have any kids) and I joke back about her not being able to feed him or add in that there is a stash in the freezer if she goes to get it. Recently though, the joking (which is kinda a running joke) seemed to take a turn.

 

Let me preface this with saying I'm kinda anti-formula unless it's absolutely needed (and I'd rather someone get a script for BM than feed what I consider feeding McDonald's for every meal to your baby).

 

In any case, my SIL asked what if she wasn't able to make enough and I mentioned that it's not a huge problem and with an IBCLC for a MIL she should be able to work it out (trying to keep the joking tone). She continues to tell me that she had a friend with a supply problem and that a lot of people have supply issues, to which I disagreed and said most of it was a lack of determination or discipline. I then tell her about a friend mom of mine that had major supply issues but was able to get through them with donated BM and lactation aids (to which she was disgusted at using someone else's BM). She also went on to tell me that it's 2011 and there have to be formulas out there that are as good as breastmilk which I of course refused to acknowledge as a valid argument. BTW, my MIL was there and just kinda smirking at this conversation/argument. As an IBCLC she agrees with me but after doing her job for so many years, she has been forced to develop a non-judgmental approach and won't necessarily speak out against someone who is unwilling to give it all she's got, so to speak.

 

So, you can see where this is going. I have a lactivist mentality, I really do. In many cases, I keep my mouth shut, but it would really upset me if my SIL gave up on BFing when she gets around to having kids. It seems she has been subjected to so many of the "booby traps" that make women think it's normal to have serious/major BFing problems. Is there a way that I can educate her without turning super lactivist and turning her away from BFing? I have all kinds of websites and information about the superiority of breastfeeding and the comparisons of breastmilk to formula, but I feel like passing that info along might be too aggressive and that it may fall on deaf ears. Any suggestions?

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Old 10-10-2011, 09:05 PM
 
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Might i just gently suggest to you that for good reason your strong arguements  will fall on SILs'  deaf ears because she isnt even pregnant yet.

I know my feelings about breastfeeding changed drastically after it became clear that this was about to become a part of my life.  I think between you and your MIL your SIL will do JUST FINE.   Actions often speak louder than words and i think she will continue to see you and your rewarding b-feeding relationship, and she will continue to hear good stories (i hope!)  from the IBCLC MIL  and when the time comes, she will ask more questions, and you will be reassuring and positive and if she needs help - you will both be there to give it to her.  


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Old 10-10-2011, 09:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I do hope that's the case. I just am so strongly opinionated about it, I'm almost afraid I'll turn her away from BFing almost as a way to spite me. I suppose I could have handled the whole exchange better. You know how it is, hindsight is 20/20.

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Old 10-11-2011, 04:02 PM
 
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Just a century or two ago, women received the information and support they needed from family and friends who had breastfed their own children. However, this wisdom of generations has been lost due to the popularity of artifical feeding.

Now mothers often cannot even help their own daughters with breastfeeding their children. Supply issues are a very real concern in western culture where so much misinformation exists. I agree though, the resources are out there and available, and determination is key. Sadly it should not be this way, but it is the state of our culture today in terms of breastfeeding.

 

 

 

 

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Old 10-12-2011, 01:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuzyae View Post

Let me preface this with saying I'm kinda anti-formula unless it's absolutely needed (and I'd rather someone get a script for BM than feed what I consider feeding McDonald's for every meal to your baby).


Forgive me if I'm being too blunt here, but I'm not sure you are going to convince anyone of the benefits of breastfeeding by comparing ff to feeding your baby McDonald's. Anyone who has spent time around breastfeeding mothers knows someone in her community who has had to supplement--I personally have never had to, but I know moms who have busted their asses pumping for preemies and working with difficult latches and low supply and have supplemented to keep their babies healthy, and I take offense to this on their behalf.

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Old 10-13-2011, 05:16 PM
 
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I wasn't going to breastfeed my kids either, but then I had them and everything changed.  I wouldn't assume that any of her parenting plans are set in stone at this point.


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Old 10-13-2011, 05:47 PM
 
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I didn't realize being a lactivist meant passing around loads of judgement and snotty comments about formula being like feeding your kid McDonald's.

 

All this time I thought it was about supporting a mother's right to breastfeed whenever and wherever-not trashing those who either can't or don't.

 

ESPECIALLY those with hypothetical babies.

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Old 10-13-2011, 07:35 PM
 
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I think I would let your MIL handle these conversations with your SIL (in the future, like when she's pregnant or actually has a baby), since, as you say, she's developed a non-judgmental approach. 

 

I'm also pretty offended by some of what you said to SIL.  Supply issues are about a lack of determination and discipline?  Do you really find that to be true?  In my experience, supply issues are almost always about misinformation, moms not having access to good breastfeeding help, or physical issues.  My mom is an IBCLC who stayed with me for the first 3 weeks after DD was born because we were having such a hard time breastfeeding.  Even with a 24-hour, live in IBCLC on call for me, I still had to feed my baby "McDonalds" a few times.  Because we had legitimate supply issues.  And donor milk really isn't that easy to come by.  I ended up overcoming my supply issues and donating my extra milk for over a year.  Every single mother I met during that year, and donated milk to, was moving heaven and earth to find breastmilk for her baby, and often times still couldn't find enough.

 

Honestly, if it matters so much to you, maybe you should breastfeed her kids.


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Old 10-14-2011, 05:56 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuzyae View Post

She continues to tell me that she had a friend with a supply problem and that a lot of people have supply issues, to which I disagreed and said most of it was a lack of determination or discipline.


 disappointed.gif I hope you're a troll, because otherwise my sense of rage and indignation might keep me up all night.

 

I can guarantee you that I put more determination and discipline into my breastfeeding relationship than you have, and still have had supply issues with both babies. People who have low supply have MORE discipline and determination than other women, not less. It's your kind of lactivism which makes me want to give up the fight entirely if I have a third baby and formula feed from birth.
 

 


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Old 10-14-2011, 07:12 AM
 
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I agree with the others: you're doing nothing for the cause if you're just demonizing formula and judging the mothers who use it.

You would go much farther addressing her concerns rather than dismissing them, and sharing other positive benefits of breastfeeding that she may not know about. I got more moms to sign on to nursing by talking about how quickly I lost the baby weight, or how it's a great excuse for getting my one-on-one baby snuggle time, or about how much easier it is to nurse than to go mix, warm, test, serve, and wash bottles all the darn time. But until you can change your mindset, you may be better off just not saying anything at all and seeing how things develop on their own.

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Old 10-14-2011, 09:01 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuzyae View Post

I do hope that's the case. I just am so strongly opinionated about it, I'm almost afraid I'll turn her away from BFing almost as a way to spite me. I suppose I could have handled the whole exchange better. You know how it is, hindsight is 20/20.



 

That's likely to happen; I would listen to your instincts on that one. Also, about low-supply issues = lack of determination & discipline? You simply have no idea what you're talking about.


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Old 10-14-2011, 10:42 AM
 
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Originally Posted by GoGoGirl View Post

I think I would let your MIL handle these conversations with your SIL (in the future, like when she's pregnant or actually has a baby), since, as you say, she's developed a non-judgmental approach. 

 

I'm also pretty offended by some of what you said to SIL.  Supply issues are about a lack of determination and discipline?  Do you really find that to be true?  In my experience, supply issues are almost always about misinformation, moms not having access to good breastfeeding help, or physical issues.  My mom is an IBCLC who stayed with me for the first 3 weeks after DD was born because we were having such a hard time breastfeeding.  Even with a 24-hour, live in IBCLC on call for me, I still had to feed my baby "McDonalds" a few times.  Because we had legitimate supply issues.  And donor milk really isn't that easy to come by.  I ended up overcoming my supply issues and donating my extra milk for over a year.  Every single mother I met during that year, and donated milk to, was moving heaven and earth to find breastmilk for her baby, and often times still couldn't find enough.

 

Honestly, if it matters so much to you, maybe you should breastfeed her kids.

 

 

I agree with everything you wrote.

 

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Old 10-14-2011, 11:33 AM
 
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If I hear the word "McDonald's" applied to formula again I may scream. No one says McDonalds is a nutritionally adequate substitute for a balanced diet. Mentioning McDonalds in reference to formula is the new Godwin's Law of breastfeeding discussions.


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Old 10-15-2011, 09:53 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asiago View Post

Just a century or two ago, women received the information and support they needed from family and friends who had breastfed their own children. However, this wisdom of generations has been lost due to the popularity of artifical feeding.

Now mothers often cannot even help their own daughters with breastfeeding their children. Supply issues are a very real concern in western culture where so much misinformation exists. I agree though, the resources are out there and available, and determination is key. Sadly it should not be this way, but it is the state of our culture today in terms of breastfeeding.

 

 

 

 


Supply issues are also a real problem for women who conceive using modern medicine.  100 years ago, even 30 years ago, I would have never conceived my son.  Now that my condition is better understood, and the medical community (well, parts of it) pay attention to it and treat it, women like me are able to get pregnant.  I still have other problems, one of which is low supply. 

 

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Old 10-15-2011, 11:14 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuzyae View Post

She continues to tell me that she had a friend with a supply problem and that a lot of people have supply issues, to which I disagreed and said most of it was a lack of determination or discipline....

 

....Any suggestions?



Really? I'm extraordinarily determined and disciplined, offering the breast and pumping for my child every two hours religiously and you know what? I still have to supplement with formula for 1-2 bottles a day because otherwise my son wouldn't get enough to eat. He started his life in the NICU and has had other issues. So am I supposed to decide not give my son what you call the "McDonalds" of every meal and let him starve instead?

 

Here's some advice for you - don't worry so much about how your SIL views things at this juncture in her life. She's not even pregnant! And please, if and when she does get pregnant - let her know all of the benefits of breastfeeding, but please don't stigmatize supplementing in case she needs to go down that path. Because believe me - the guilt and sadness over not being able to feed my son directly and exclusively from the breast that I deal with in my own head every day are enough, thank you. We don't need self-righteous mothers who have it perfectly easy making it any harder on us. 


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