Wow! I had a feeling all of you were out there1 I'm so glad I decided to find out for sure!
I too find it frustrating that every time a ff mom pipes up with a complaint about being judged, someone tells her that of course they don't mean her, she's the exception, why would she dream of being hurt by it--and of course, what should she expect being on these boards? I wish people could understand that behind that nameless bottle of formula is a real mom with real challenges and real feelings. Sometimes I feel like some would think we are a lesser part of this community whose opinions don't quite matter as much because we must bottlefeed.
I am curious how you all cope with this in a productive way, as 1) I recognize that this is reality that isn't going away, and 2) I respect that every mom has the right to her opinion and feelings, even if they are different than mine. I DO expect it being part of a community like this, and I would really hate things to become too watered down, because I'm sure all of DO support and advocate for breastfeeding. I guess what I've had to do is sit down and remind myself that why should I let the opinions of some stranger on the internet who I'll never meet hurt me. Who really cares what so-and-so thinks? I'm never going to meet them IRL, and they're never going to meet me. I also tell myself over and over that people only put the part of themselves here that they want people to see. Maybe that mom can breastfeed, but she has something somewhere that she can't give that I can.
Someone also mentioned something else I wanted to bring up: using donated milk. It sounds like some of you have been able to do this long term, but I'm curious for how many it's really been a feasible option. I hate hearing, "I would never, never, never give my child formula--I'd get donated milk, use a wetnurse, ANYTHING but give formula." I say, "Never say never." I think this is a statement that's easy to make if you have never actually been in the situation. When people say "never", it makes me wonder things like--would breastfeeding/milk truly be worth ANY price you or your child might have to pay to do it? Not just a high price (I think we would all agree it's worth a high price), but ANY price? My feeling was that I would do just about anything regardless of how painful or inconvenient it was for me, but once my ds started becoming negatively affected (which he did after a number of months), how could I continue to push it? If you used donated milk, how did it come about? If you didn't, why not?
ITA with gurumama on the chimpanzee comment! Don't they realize how demeaning and vindictive that is?
Oh, and to all you who can breastfeed and want to give support, of course you are welcome and loved! I think there is nothing most of us appreciate more than an understanding and nonjudgmental friend and advocate. Please don't be offended by the venting.