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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all-

There is almost a war going on the ABC message boards about the special last night on 20/20. Of course, all of us here know they did a FANTASTIC job exposing the formula companies but now they are getting some backlash from those moms who 'tried but my baby was allergic and now I am ticked the ads are making me feel guilty' ploy. The told the TRUTH, yeah to them!!

Here is the link, please support what 20/20 did and if you can, write them a quick e-mail on their great investigative reporting and not falling under 'corporate pressure', but for doing the right thing for American babies!!!

http://boards.abcnews.go.com/cgi/abc...m=abcnews_2020
 

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If you want to thank 20/20 directly,here is a link where you can email them...http://www.abcnews.go.com/sections/2...mail_form.html

I have read on the boards,but I didn't see that I was doing the situation any service by getting involved in the formula feeding/breastfeeding debate they have going on over there. Very few people are discussing the REAL issue at hand. Most are hashing out why they didn't breastfeed and are talking about how nobody has the right to tell them how to feed OR they are standing on the side of the "breastfeeders" and wasting their time debating what these people are saying. The people on that board don't want to hear the truth. And are making most of the posters that are posting in favor of breastfeeding look like zealots.

If you go over there,PLEASE don't get involved in that,but instead talk about the issue of the formula companies BUYING a watered down campaign. Talk about how formula companies fund nurseries in hospitals. Talk about the "free" samples. Talk about the statistics and give links proving that they're true. Or,as lactationmom mentioned,post in praise of the program and thanking them for not falling under corporate pressure. Do all this with love,and respect. Some of these mamas ARE hurting. And some DO feel guilty. I don't think that formula bashing will help us at this point in time. The debate on that board has turned into a line drawn in the sand. Sad,really. The issue at hand(the National campaign and why it has been watered down)is being completely missed!!
 

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I just posted this to Lactnet, but I think its appropriate to this thread, too.
Janice

Frankly, I'm not surprised by reaction of many of the people on the ABC
Forum.

In my opinion, the ads take too big of a jump from where we are, to where we
want to be. To me, these ads (both the original, and revised) place the
entire burden of breastfeeding on the shoulders of the mom. But we all know
how many obstacles she will face, both in the health system through poor
information and technical support, and societal opposition to NIP, balancing
work and breastfeeding, etc.

For the most part, a mass media campaign should inform the general public
and changes attitudes of all society - mom, her family, her employer, health
professionals & administrators. But these ads place all the burden on the
mom.

As a breastfeeding mom, with no ties to the past or existing health care
system, I wish the ads could have spread that responsibility around. Here
in Canada, where we have initiation rates as high as 90% in many places,
moms KNOW they should breastfeed. I'm tired of people telling us to do it,
without the support systems in place to help us achieve it. I actively
confronted my local health region when they proposed a pamphlet that
recommended breastfeeding for 2 years or longer, whether they would actively
support this with REAL services. I know there is a contact number and
website at the end of the ads, but the message is not clearly communicated
that there is support in place to help the moms. Although initiation rates
are lower in the US, I still choose to believe that the majority of moms
want to and would breastfeed, if they felt that the obstacles before them
were achievable.

I have no problem with the statistics or the degree of risk that is
communicated in the ads, only that is only targeted to the moms themselves.

The vast majority of moms who stopped breastfeeding, have NO idea how they
were sabatogued by the health system, their relatives, their employer, the
formula co's, general society, etc. I think it is completely understandable
that they feel very insulted and attacked by this campaign.

I think perhaps just a subtle change, such as showing a number of bystanders
cheering on the moms that are taking the risks (doctors, employers,
grandmothers, husbands, etc) would have illustrated that we ALL have a role
in preventing moms from taking these risks.

The formula co's marketing strategy is effective because it empathizes with
the circumstances of the moms. This campaign does not. I think a
campaign, with visuals aimed at a more general target, would have won over
the moms better - after all they are the final decision maker. An ad
showing a doctor and nurse and grandma mother all tossing a baby back and
forth could have been an equally vivid analogy of the risks that faces a
baby when not breastfeed, and who is responsible for those risks. How about
a mom in the middle of a circle of people (ala the game "monkey in the
middle"). She has her blouse half open and she is trying to breastfeeding
the baby, but others are repeatedly taking the baby away from her? That's
how I feel the situation is for a mom trying to breastfeed, these days.

I hesitated to voice my opinion earlier, because I don't want to "look a
gift horse in the mouth" (the campaign commitement itself), and perhaps,
since I am Canadian, I have a different expectation of the role of society
in supporting individual action. I know that the US is built on a strong
belief of "you can do anything you want if you try hard enough", thus
placing all responsibility for breastfeeding on the shoulders of the mom.
Personally, I think this is an unfair expectation.

Janice
(former sales and marketing professional)
Saskatchewan, Canada
 

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That's an excellent point Janice. The doctors and rest of healthcare need to get their collective heads out their collective keisters and out of the industry's pockets.

Until they start practicing that oath they used to make such a big deal of, they will continue to cause harm by spreading falsehoods and failing to support moms trying to do their best for their babies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
So glad to *see* you again on these boards, Janice, not just on Lactnet!!

I agree totally with you, BUT.... (there's the but, haha)

I still think it's a great thing that we have something, anything, that discusses breastfeeding in the media. We are completely inundated with formula ads, they are EVERYWHERE here in America, and they get by with murder ('just like breastmilk', 'as close to breastmilk as it gets').

Soooo many newly pregnant moms who wouldn't otherwise even think of nursing their baby because they *see* formula ads everywhere touting the 'sameness' as breastmilk will now see that there are differences and that there are risks. The ads might encourage them to do their own homework, as I had to do when my HCP failed me with my first born (whom I only nursed 3 months and then switched to formula because my MD told me too, what a fool I was!). Had I seen ads like these, I know I would have thought "hey, there is much more to this situation" and I would have done tons more research on my own. As it was, I did do my research, between child 1 and child 2 and therefore child 2 was nursed for 2 1/2 years-so go figure!
Baby 3 is now here and he will nurse for that long also, I predict.

Anyway, point being, Americans get formula company crap pushed down our throats-magazines, stores, hospitals, doctors offices' (not all, my hubby is a MD and he is very pro-bf and against all the freebie crap) all the time so this tiny little step is still a step in the right direction-towards getting the 'word' out.

I am not getting caught up in the message boards either though, ick, but I sent an e-mail congratulating ABC for helping get the good word out to the millions of families that might otherwise know nothing about the hazards of formula. Hopefully, the consumer (all of us) will put a LOT of pressure on the doctors and hospitals that still accept kickbacks from the formula reps, as I am thinking may happen in the next 5 years!!!!
 

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I probably shouldn't read those boards. The things that are posted there,just boggle my mind. *shakes head*
But,that being said,I have seen some very good,supportive posts,and that is the reason I go back and keep reading despite the fact I know there will be posts that get my gander up.:LOL
I understand your point,Janice. And it is true,but I also see lactationmoms point. *Sigh* Somewhere,there has to be a middle ground. I guess it's up to us "lactivists" to find it!
 

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I so agree with you Janice! I think that a good step would be to make IBCLC's covered by insurance. As a bf'ing mom, postpartum doula and student IBCLC, I know that it would help to have the help covered. Just imagine if WIC paid for lactation help. After all food stamps cover formula, they don't cover lactation. To get through my bf problems we spend about $1400. Money we didn't have, money we saved, begged, borrow and pulled out of our a$$es (LOL). If I had been less committed, it wouldn't have happened.
 

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Yes, HOW do we do that??? go to the state reps or what. (not very political, i admit)

And to Janice, Thanks for your input. you make a whole lot of sense and since it's worked in Canada, why cant we do the same here??? Thats just what the problem Really is. It's not thAt women dont try hard enough, it's that they arent supported nearly enough by society and families and drs. It's a SIN. I like your ideas. I've always encouraged women to get all the info they can on breastfeeding and to get all the help they can, but what do they do when they think LLL is full of zealots and their dr wants to supplement at the first sign of difficulty???

Laura
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by MarineWife
Now, how do we let our government know that what they have done by bowing to pressure from the formula companies is not acceptable?
How about voting them the f*** out of office?
 

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I didn't see it either!
I haven't watched one of those "news" shows in quite a while, since what they generally show is sensationalist crap, or an advertisement for another of the network's shows


Anyway, does anyone know if it going to be rerun?
 
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