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this is more of a rant/ramble than anything<br><br>
i just found out today that my friend stopped bf her 2 month old, for no real reason. a couple weeks ago she told me he was on a nursing strike and i offered her a tonne of support and non-agressive advice. she knows how i feel about bf so i was careful about not being preachy ~ i know i did a good job helping her, but i still feel awful for that little boy.<br><br>
she stopped talking about the nursing strike the day after she asked me for "help" about it, and i just knew it was over, that she didn't care enough to surmount it. it was so frustrating...and finally today she started asking me about birth control and gaining weight, etc...she mused that maybe it wasn't the birth control but the fact that she stopped bf a week or two ago...<br><br>
i am so close to losing it with her. i feel like i can't even continue the friendship! it's so hard to respect someone when you know all the details about why she doesn't breastfeed, you know? i try not to judge, but i can't help it in this case. with a stranger, i would tell myself, "you don't know what happened...blah blah blah" but i do know what happened! garrrrrrr
 

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Oh, I soooo understand. I really do. I just don't understand why women give up on bf when there isn't a really, truly big problem. DH's friend's wife did this. I don't get why women choose to give an inferior product to their child when they know they can give their child the best. And before anyone jumps on my case I am not talking about women who truly cannot bf. I'm talking about women who were bf and just decided to stop for no apparent reason.<br><br>
I think that as we get older, differences in parenting choices come into play when making frienships. It makes it so much harder to make friends!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Caden's Mom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8240413"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
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I think that as we get older, differences in parenting choices come into play when making frienships. It makes it so much harder to make friends!</div>
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Yeah that! And to make those difficult decisions about how much of our energies to put into existing friendships where we have gone in obvious different directions in regard to parenting. I'm dealing with this with a formerly very close friend right now. Her parenting philosophy already bugs the crap out of me, and she's only expecting her first! I do as much as I can to gently guide, but you know. In light of her other friends' philosophies, I am quickly becoming "that AP weirdo"! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Since I bottlefed my first 2 children, I can honestly say that I have no idea why someone would NOT breastfeed. I was young and lived in an area where no one really did it, and it wasn't talked about, even amongst the medical proffessionals. SO glad that changed and I have nursed my last 2 babies.<br>
Apparently that is not what her siutation is, since you were being such a great friend and offering her so much support and help. It is hard as adults when you see opposite spectrums of childrearing, if she is a longtime friend who you otherwise appreciate, you may just have to look the other way.
 

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I nursed all three of my kids, through plugged ducts and mastitis and thrush so bad it felt like being stabbed with knives. I was committed, just like you are. And I also had a friend who quit nursing her dd1 at 3 months because she "wanted her body back". It seemed like a pathetic reason to me, but I liked her so much that I had to find a way to be ok with it. And I did. It is her life, her body, her child, her choice.<br><br>
Is breastfeeding to a year minimum best? Of course. But I don't think that switching to formula before that dooms the child to a life of disease and unhappiness either.<br><br>
Organic fruit for snacks would be best, but sometimes my kids have fishie crackers. That is ok.<br><br>
If you need everyone in your life to parent exactly the way you do, you will find yourself short on friends before long. People make different choices than the ones we make for ourselves.<br><br>
Be a good example. Be supportive of new moms as they go through the learning curve. NIP. Lead a LLL group. Write or illustrate a children's book showing babies nursing instead of bottle feeding.<br><br>
You say you don't want to judge your friend, but you are. And worse, you are using your friendship as a bargaining tool, that you will take away if she makes even one parenting choice different than you.<br><br>
I am a liberal, atheist Democrat who was a SAHM for a decade. Nursed my kids, used cloth diapers but disposables when out, bassinette in our room for first three months then cribs in their own rooms, teenage babysitters, organic baby food from Safeway, alternative public school, delayed vax. That was what worked for us. If I made sure every box was checked in order to be friends with someone, I'd have precious few friends.<br><br>
I'd hope you are able to make your parenting choices based on what works best for you, not what your friends pressure you into - and vice versa.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Kirsten</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8241521"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
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Organic fruit for snacks would be best, but sometimes my kids have fishie crackers. That is ok.<br><br>
If you need everyone in your life to parent exactly the way you do, you will find yourself short on friends before long. People make different choices than the ones we make for ourselves.<br></div>
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Yes, but if you gave your kids <i>only</i> fishie crackers and no fruit, that would be a bad choice.<br>
Breastfeeding shouldn't be just a parenting choice, jmo.<br>
Of course, I don't speak about moms who can't breastfeed.
 

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Kirsten,<br><br>
I agree that not *every* box needs to be marked, but some things are more important to some people. BF isn't the most important thing, but I tend to not have much in common with women who choose for "frivilous" reasons to not bf or quit bf early. The choice in and of itself isn't everything but IMHO it does seem to be indicative of a different philosophy. But to each their own <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I can understand totally where you are coming from, my BFF chose not to nurse her kids and though it hurt (a lot), I started to see that maybe I was being way to hard on her and that she had her own Demons to deal with and that BF just wasn't as important to her as it was to me. I just had to tell myself to get over it because she is still a good Mom, and I think I have. Its so hard though because I'm the only one I know who parents like I do and I know they think I'm weird. I live in a very strange town where no one seems to really like their kids and goes back to work 2 weeks after their kids are born, everyone thinks that I'm a terrible Mom for not sending my Kid to Daycare. Good luck to you and I suggest that you try to see past this but if you can't I can understand why.
 

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I've actually been feeling this way about a lot of different things having to do with parenting style. I think its totally normal to want at least 1 good friend with whom you share your passions and beliefs. I have some that come close, but its really hard when you feel like they just don't "get it." Lately my biggest issues in this area are trying to find friends who embrace natural parenting but are also christian...it seems around here its just one or the other. A lonely place to be, to be sure.
 

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I struggle with this too (re: AP in general, not just breastfeeding) -- my life is busy enough as it is, without adding in extra time and effort invested in a friendship with someone(s) who are unsupportive of (or judgmental towards) our parenting choices.<br><br>
[And I also agree that I don't really like to frame breastfeeding as a parenting choice, commensurate with whether we give jarred baby foods or make our own]<br><br>
So, yes, we do have some friends who ff or who haven't bf as long as we have - I don't want to cut people out that we've been friends with for a long time (and honestly I've got three friends who've bf beyond a year in part because I did so with Ina; they'd weaned at 9, 10, and 12 months before that) .... So I think there can be some value in friendships with people who have different experiences/expectations as long as there is respect and support for those differences, KWIM?<br><br>
You may find that your friend is more invested in bf with a second child, as she sees more of how it works for you, and how ffing works for this baby. You never know.<br><br>
But, all that said - I'd rather that our friends were making similar choices, and had similar stances, to those we are making just in terms of consistent role modeling and so on with kids. We had some college friends of dh's here the other night, and they are very AP (she's a former LLL Leader) - still parent to sleep etc. and it was just nice (for both families) to have that consistent valuation of approaches which we had together with our dds. We've got lots of friends who are APish parents elsewhere - not any here in our own town though. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
I don't know if I could be friends with someone who was mean or judgmental about breastfeeding, or who refused to acknowledge the facts about breastfeeding ... someone who chose to ff instead of bf, but supported me in bf, I could maintain a friendship with (i.e., my friend who ff's due to a medical condition, is great about me NIPing and bought bf supportive items for us with both babes).
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>stacey2061</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8240337"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">with a stranger, i would tell myself, "you don't know what happened...blah blah blah" but i do know what happened! garrrrrrr</div>
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I hear your frustration; it's clear that you invested time and energy of your own in helping your friend to breastfeed, and when she quit for apparently no real reason and clearly demonstrated that she didn't value her own breastfeeding relationship, you felt exasperated, frustrated, and disappointed in your friend.<br><br>
However, I will gently remind you that you know "what happened" only from your own perspective, based on what she chose to share with you. You don't walk in her shoes or see the world through her eyes. You also don't know everything there is to know about this friend's life and past experiences. Women bring all kinds of factors and baggage into their motherhood journey. All of this can affect the mother-baby relationship and the breastfeeding relationship. No one person can know EVERYTHING that was going on in this situation -- except the mother herself -- and even she may not be able to fully recognize or articulate why she feels and chooses as she does.<br><br>
Being a breastfeeding advocate has to be grounded on a fundamental implicit trust in women to be the experts on their own lives. This means that a lot of the women we try to help are going to end up making different decisions than we made. Now would be a good time to work on accepting that and figuring out how you can move forward with it.<br><br>
This is a tough reality to embrace, and of course it's harder with friends and family, because you know them. But it's also most important with friends and family, because ... you know ... they are your friends and family!! It is simply not cool to require that your friends be just like you -- not even about something as important as breastfeeding -- to be worthy of your respect.
 

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It sounds like you are really frustrated and upset, and that's certainly understandable. But you know what? It was her choice. I have plenty of loved ones whom I disagree with on issues, from politics to parenting to religion. Or perhaps a better example - I have a loved one who smokes. I - as a former smoker myself - have offered support and steered him towards resources, but he still continues to smoke. It kills me, but I'm not going to walk away from him even when I think he's a @#$% idiot, because I love him and he matters to me.<br><br>
There's a little prose-poem on support that is kinda relevant here:<br><br><i>What is Support?<br><br>
Support is unconditional<br><br>
It is listening…..not judging, not telling your own story.<br><br>
Support is not offering advice..it is offering a handkerchief, a touch, a hug…caring.<br><br>
We are here to help women discover what they are feeling….not to make the feelings go away.<br><br>
We are here to help a woman identify her options…not to tell her which options to choose.<br><br>
We are here to discuss steps with a woman …not to take the steps for her.<br><br>
We are here to help a woman discover her own strength…not to rescue her and leave her still vulnerable.<br><br>
We are here to help a women discover she can help herself….not to take that responsibility for her.<br><br>
We are here to help a woman learn to choose….not to make it unnecessary for her to make difficult choices.</i><br><br>
-Anonymous<br><br>
Anyway... I know it is hard and you are upset. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2">
 

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<a href="http://www.girl-mom.com/node/46" target="_blank">From "And So I Choose", by Allison Krews:</a><br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Being pro-woman, being pro-choice means being supportive of any reproductive choice a women makes for herself. Women, of any age, in any social situation have the right to bear children. We have the right to choose when, where, with whom and how we bear children. We have the right to abort a pregnancy, for whatever reason we may have. If we have no money, if we have no support, if we wish to continue our education or career uninterrupted, if we are being abused, if we were raped, it is our right to not bear a child. If we become pregnant, through any circumstance, we have the right to birth the way we want to. We have the right to elect to have our child removed by cesarean section on a convenient date. We have the right to choose to deliver alone in our homes, catching our babies with our own hands. We have the right to be respected as mothers, to be seen as the responsible, hardworking parents that we are. We have the right to remain child-free forever, to find fulfillment through our careers and personal adventures. We have the right to bear as many children as our body will allow, and to be fulfilled through the nurturing of our children. <i>We have the right to nourish and nurture our children at our breasts, for as many years as they may need to and we allow. We have the right to keep our body to ourselves once we give birth, if we cannot handle the physical or emotional aspects of breastfeeding, and feed our children artificial breast milk</i>. We have the right to chose to become parents and the right to delay parenting. We have the right to share a bed with our children, and we have the right to put them to sleep in beds of their own. <i>We have the right to mother the way we want to, to ignore other's advice and criticisms</i>. We have the right to an education, no matter how old we are and what grade we are in when we give birth. We have the right to a career, to daycare, to financial aid. We have the right to stay home and postpone a career until our children are grown. Our bodies are our own, our futures are ours to mold. No one should be allowed to interfere with them. Whatever our reproductive choices may be, nobody ever can deny us our right to them. And this is what being pro-choice means to me.</td>
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(I added the italics)
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">and feed our children artificial breast milk.</td>
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That wording really got under my skin. Ick. I understand she is trying to be "supportive" and "gentle" but that's just one too many coats of sugar.
 
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