An Uncomplicated Life Blog: Why Breastfeeding Moms Are Annoying

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Why Breastfeeding Moms Are Annoying

Breast is best but breast feeding moms are sometimes way too much to take


I know what you're thinking. "Paige, that's a little "mommy war-ish of you..." I get it. But actually, what I have to say about annoying breast feeding moms is the opposite of mommy war. Hear me out! I promise to put my mom-war gun down. *waves a white flag*

Breast feeding moms, you need to chill the heck out for a minute, ok? And I feel like I can have this heart to heart with you because I am one of you. Yes, I EBF Otto. And no, I'm not one of those annoying moms. Here's why.

If you're a die-hard breastfeeding mom, you just might be one of "those" moms the rest of us find annoying!


At the six week mark of breastfeeding Otto, I almost called it quits. I was sick of being dairy and caffeine free and when I would try to pump, I'd get an ounce or two. If I couldn't pump enough for a bottle, I couldn't leave Otto for more than an hour, and that just wasn't going to work for me. So I joined a facebook group of La Leche League women to seek some help. They were indeed helpful, and I got both some helpful tips as well as encouragement that made me push through the "hump." But Lord have mercy... Those La Leche-ies are INTENSE. And frankly, most are "those" annoying breastfeeding moms.

First, they have a badge system to reward moms for how many months they've breast fed. Ok. Kinda strange. (What, you want a prize for feeding your kid?! Are there badges for formula moms? No? Are there badges for everyday you keep your kid alive? Do you want a cookie with that badge? Get serious.) Women are free to post their questions, which as I mentioned, was very helpful to me. But they're also free to post whatever they want and reply to those questions/statements with whatever they want... One day, I was crusin' Facebook and saw a thread pop up from my La Leche League group with a mom who was WORN OUT from breastfeeding and seeking help. I read the comments/replies she got, because I've been there myself.

All of the respondents, and I mean ALL of them, told her she needed to "stop feeling entitled to sleep." Excuse me, what? Entitled to sleep? Is that a joke? Sleeping is a basic human need! If you don't sleep enough, you're more likely to get sick, to age faster and to gain weight, not to mention suffer depression, be irritable and hate your life. But a breast feeding mom isn't entitled to it because she "should be up with her baby all night, meeting his nutrition needs"? Hell no. Nope. Not even a little bit, La Leche League. That is some backwards advice. But don't mention that to those League ladies; they'll bite your head off if you mention sleep training or formula supplementing - even when the mom is facing a mental breakdown.

Breastfeeding moms, if you're that close to the brink, it's ok to offer formula so daddy can take a feeding for you to sleep. Sleep training is good too, and if you don't like cry-it-out you can do a gentle night wean. You don't need to be so hardcore about your boobs or "breast is best." Back it up, La Leche sisters. Don't lose your sanity for breast milk. That makes you annoying.

The other thing about the La Leche-ies is that they looooooove to commiserate together. Misery loves company, right? All too often, a photo would pop up in my feed of a mom breastfeeding her toddler (which I'm totally cool with, btw - both the breastfeeding pic [see mine above] and breastfeeding the toddler) The pic features a dumb caption like, "My 34 month old just bit me and told me he wants to wean! What can I do to keep him latched and not biting?" Several things about this: A) stop it with the month count after your child has hit 2 years. You wouldn't say "my child is 134 weeks old!" and you shouldn't say "my 67 mo old..." NO. It's your two year old, your two and a half year old or your three year old, etc. B) Sounds like YOU'RE the one struggling to give up breastfeeding. Sounds like you're the one struggling to not be "needed" in that way anymore.

When you push your needs to breastfeed over that of your toddler (who's old enough to communicate he's no longer interested), you've become an annoying breastfeeding mom. Stop it. And the fact that you're publicly complaining about it, making it about your child as opposed to what it really is (an issue with yourself)? It makes you a mommy martyr, the most annoying mom of all.

Then I was on one of my blogging groups when the question was asked, "What are some topics you absolutely won't discuss on your blog?" I anticipated most people to say politics and religion. Standard. But I was shocked and disgusted when one of the first commenters said baby formula. She often discussed breastfeeding on her blog, and went out of her way to mention she's turned down paid work because she "would never discuss formula and discourage breastfeeding moms."

Hold on, lady! Since when does talking about formula mean that you're discouraging breastfeeding?! They aren't mutually exclusive. Talking about the benefits of one doesn't mean that you're dissing the other. In fact, that would make you more inclusive of all moms. The fact that she won't discuss it as an option is annoying. But hey! I've made a great income working with a few formula brands, so if she wants to continue to be an annoying breast feeding elitist, more opportunities for brand partnerships for me. I'll be over here supporting ALL moms.

Here's the thing, breastfeeding moms: I get that it's a ton of work. I get that it's tiresome. I get that it's the best nutrition on the planet for a baby. I get it because I do it myself. But what I don't get, and why breastfeeding makes you annoying AF, is your sense of superiority over those who either can't or don't want to breast feed. You shouldn't put yourself in a loony bin over feeding your baby. You ARE entitled to sleep! Formula is not the devil and you are not a better mom because you didn't give any to your baby. Knock it off, breastfeeding moms.

                                                                                                            Xoxo, another breastfeeding mom

35 comments:

  1. I completely agree with EVERYTHING you say here! I breastfed for 6 months and would have liked to go longer, but due to supply issues and lack of interest with my first, I ended up switching to formula... and I felt like I couldn't really talk about it! I hate the shame that is placed on moms that choose another solution. Your kid is fed, happy, and taken care of? Works for me. I steered clear of LLL for this reason alone - I've heard they're too intense!

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  2. Ohhh how many times can I like this?

    I understand that breastfeeding is tough. I'm not a mom, but have watched all 3 of my sisters (and so many friends) go through it. It's exciting that a body can nourish another body! It's good to be proud of it. There are SO many positives to breast feeding. But where I find an issue is when it becomes selfish. I know someone who is just downright selfish with it. She's admitted that she can't let go of breast feeding even though her daughter is fully nourished by "regular" food and I'm just not ok with that. Like you said, don't push that on your kid. If your kid is done, you should be, too.

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    1. There are actually studies that show there are many benefits to breastfeeding a toddler, even if they are eating solids. Pushing it on a child is one thing (but how does that even work? Has anyone here tried to nurse a baby who didnt want to? It just doesnt happen.), but continuing on to the worldwide average of 4.2 years is benificial and perfectly natural.

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  3. I loved this. I was breastfeeding myself and would do so in public. I love the bonding experience but also would have loved to bottle feed (either pump or formula) to give me a break every now and than ... but the little human wouldn't take it. I feel it is every mothers choice to decide how to feed her baby. Formula or Breastfeeding - whatever suits you. And I know there are so many mommy's out there that want but cannot breastfeed. High Five for supporting ALL moms. In the end we all love our babies no matter how we decide to raise them, let's just feel united about that and stop putting each other down for our choices. Great read!

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  4. Ughhhhh the day anyone tells me I'm being selfish for wanting sleep......I mean if you aren't rested you are not going to be producing milk well and then everyone suffers. There are definitely extremes to everything but I think being so close minded to real life situations is when it starts getting a little out of control.

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  5. Like like like like likeeeeeeeeee. Yes to all of this, Paige. You totally nailed it- I'm a breastfeeding mom, but I vow to never be an annoying. I have the worst annoying sister-in-law who has said all of these things and worse. But the worst part is that she's a LLL leader. When I got home from the hospital with Ginny and Ginny kept falling asleep and having a hard time latching, she ridiculed me and called my doctor an idiot for suggesting to give her an ounce of formula until we figured things out. I could go on and on, but I'm sure you get the picture. Moms are selfless - they have to be - but selfless doesn't mean completely sacrificing your health and sanity for the sake of breastfeeding. My sister tried with both kids and reallllly struggled through to the point where my nephew was very underweight because she didn't produce enough. All those moms in the BF groups told her it would work and to stick it out and not to poison him with formula. Thank goodness she listened to me instead and went to formula. Then, my sweet nephew started THRIVING with formula instead of being a poor little hungry baby.

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  6. Absolutely LOVE this! As a Mom I chose to not breastfeed at all any of my 6 kids. It just wasnt for me and i knew that I would be miserable doing it. But by no means am I aganist it nor have I ever put down a mom that does breastfeed. Many BFeeding moms are extremely judge mental. I have been told that i shouldnt of had kids becaise I formula feed them. Horrible just horrible to say that to anyone. Thank you for giving me hope that there are BFeeding mommas out there that are ready to bite my head off 😊

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  8. I breastfed for just over one month. I hated every second of it, and it definitely led to depression for me personally. It was the best thing I ever did putting my son on formula. A mum who is crying all the time isn't great for anyone. I did feel a huge amount of pressure though from mums who were breastfeeding. I would have loved to carry on but there is definitely NO SHAME in not.

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  9. Thank you so much. I formula fed from the beginning because I just couldn't figure out breastfeeding with my son. Then I pumped for 5 or 6 months before it started driving me crazy. I was in the same situation as you; I would pump 1 maybe 2 oz in an hour and it just. wasn't. worth. it. I loved that my husband could help out and take a feeding when I had nothing left to give. I did feel a little guilt about having to buy formula when I should have been able to provide food for my baby, but in the end I have a healthy kid who has no idea that he wasn't exclusive breastfed and he seems just fine with it.

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  10. Holy cow those ladies sound INSANE... what on earth. I can't even believe they offer badges for each month. That worries me actually. I will breastfeed but that's a whole new level of OBSESSION. When their kid is 10 and finds out how weird they were about breastfeeding they are gonna be like wtf mom. This article was eyeopening... I'll make sure to stay clear of those moms haha ... I like my sleep thank you.
    Danielle | AccordingtoD.com

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  11. Yes!!! Thank you. I struggled to nurse my son for three months before he completely refused. He was underweight and cranky, and I felt exhausted and defeated. I made the hard decision to exclusively pump and did that for the next five months, and at eight months, switched to organic formula. Both were hard decisions for me, and for the entire year, I felt like I was being shamed for giving up and not trying harder. Giving up? Not trying harder? Both blood and tears were shed for months! Neither me or my baby were thriving. Looking back, I sometimes feel proud of myself, and other times think, "What a crazy person I was! Why didn't I switch to pumping and formula sooner?" and I know part of the answer to that is because of overzealous outspoken breastfeeders.

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  12. I loved this!!! Breastfeeding is hard enough without random strangers on the internet making you feel like you're a horrible mother for not wanting to be a pacifier all night to your toddler. Breastfeeding was incredibly difficult for me, with both my children, I still did it until almost a year and just over a year with each one, but it wouldn't have made me any less of a mother if I didn't.

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  13. I am not even a mom, but girl preach! I love this. Sounds like the La Leche woman need to relax a bit and realize that mom-shaming is just as uncool as referring to your 5 year old as a 38457 day old. Let's be real.

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  14. Love this! I'm in a bunch of BFing groups on FB since I have a 1 month old and literally knew nothing about it. I got home and realized it just wasn't for me. So I exclusively pump. And that is obnoxious and annoying and honestly, if I didn't produce 60oz a day easily, I probably would quit. Some moms pump 8 times a day and make 15oz because they want their baby to have BM! Which hey, if that's what makes you happy, that's awesome. But I would not have the patience for that! Thankfully, the moms are super supportive when other moms want to quit pumping. However, on the nursing page, the moms are similar to those LLL moms. I saw a mom post about how she was seriously depressed over nursing and the very first comment was "Never give up! Breast is best!" basically, and I just think that is so insensitive! Like, let's wallow in misery and keep trying to do something that is 100% unnecessary!

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  15. Wow, I don't get that at all. I feel like however you want to feed your child is best for you, and people shouldn't be so judgemental!

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  16. Wahoooo! Right on! Like like like like like!

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  17. Wahoooo! Right on! Like like like like like!

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  18. I clicked on your post to read it because of the controversy lol. And I was not sure what to expect and whether I was going to like it or not. I loved it. Recently on my own blog, we wrote on the "Attack on Breastfeeding Mothers" and we were supportive of a woman's right to do so publicly. So, your post attracted me as I at first thought that was where you were going. It wasn't and I have to agree with you about the "extremists." In every area of life we have them and as you have shared - here they are as well. Have they not heard of balance? Thanks for an interesting read.

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  19. Love this! So when I saw the title of this post I thought oh no tons of judgement, not sure if I want to read this but I'm so glad I read this! I totally agree with you ever step of the way!!! Oh man YES stop counting the months after 2 OMG I was rolling!!! Please. People can be so mean and judgy behind a computer screen. Breast feed, bottle feed, formula feed who cares just feed your kid! Thank you for saying this!!! Totally LOVE IT!!!

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  20. Great post!! I don't have kids yet but I have many mommy friends who are dealing with this and they always feel bad. I am definitely going to share this post with them!

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  21. Yes yes and more yes, signed momma who supplemented and breasted for a year.

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  22. Yes yes and more yes, signed momma who supplemented and breasted for a year.

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  23. I used to EBF but felt exactly the same when reading "helpful" comments in forums and under certain articles. Couldn't agree more!

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  25. i don't understand how people can be so judgmental.... sooo, my friend who had cancer and was told that she'd never have a kid, when she got pregnant but was unable to breastfeed - she should have let her baby die? instead of give the kid formula? wow. that makes so much sense. honestly, unless you are starving or killing your kid, who the freaking hell cares? some people. rage. good for you for talking about it.

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  26. I just have so many agreeing comments and so many angry ones, but I won't write a rant on your comment page.

    Can I have a "held my tongue" badge (and a cookie!)?

    This whole post had me squirming, laughing and nodding my head. ESPECIALLY about the sleep thing. In fact I'm pretty sure anyone in the medical profession would tell you the MOST important thing you can do for your little one is rest.

    At least breast feeding is now part of the conversation. That is the one bright side...

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  27. Love this! I am obviously a huge breastfeeding fan but I am not a fan of the Mom Martyr. There is so much confusion over what is "sleeping" and what is "eating" for nursing babies and it is so hard! Sleep is required for moms and babies! There is no way it is in everyone's best interest to not sleep for months on end!

    xo
    Annie

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  28. The passive attitude that this breastfeeding mom is explaining is not instinct. It is human nature to suffer and defend your offspring with your own life and sanity. There are many babies that have an allergic reaction to formula and it costs them their life. I believe 2,000 infants die each year from formula toxicity alone. Yes having a child is really hard work. Yes mothers are suppose to lose sleep and sanity. This is just mother nature's way of ensuring that women don't reproduce too much and clog up the planet with diapers. I have met many mothers that decide to stop breastfeeding simply because it is not convenient for them. There are a few that have supply issues and those mothers could reach out to other mothers that might have milk to share or they could use formula.
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    By the way, hitting a baby with formula is much harder on the infant than hitting yourself with a bowel of cooked potatoes after you have been raw for 3 months. It is more like going a month on cheeseburger and fries and soda. Human milk for human babies.... Yes formula keeps some babies alive, but should only be used as a last resort.

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  29. Excellent blog post! I've been annoyed with the overbearing judgmental women all over social media. Bravo for taking a stand!!

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  30. When I read this I felt extremely sad and hurt. The only reason why people are pushing breastfeeding is because that's what humans are meant to do, but people now a days are lazy and have no clue how bad these formulas are for these tiny baby. The formulas alter your cells and brain in a bad way.if you are having a issue were you truly can't breastfeed then you can do a natural goats milk formula or if you are comfortable with the idea mothers that over produce milk donate. I struggled in the beginning and so does other mothers, but it's worth the struggle when you know own it's the right thing to do for your kid. Plus it's a bond that is important. Think what you want but facts are fact and your hurting your baby giving them formula.

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  31. Very well said! I often feel the same way about those annoying breastfeeding moms. I even felt very annoyed by a friend of mine who had her baby a few months before me and was giving me advice. I really appreciated that. As a first time mom I even needed it. But it all got annoying once I experienced difficulties breastfeeding my baby whenever she was hungry and was FORCED to feed her baby formula as well. My friend was very judgmental and pointed out several times that she never gave her boy formulas. It is not only annoying but it is also unfair to try to make someone feel guilty about that. Stop it! I am doing my best to provide my baby with the best nutrition I can. I didn't give up breastfeeding, I just need to use formulas as well to make sure that my baby is well fed. And trust me, I've read hundreds of articles on MyOrganicFormula and I am sure I chose a formula which, unlike many others, does not contain antibiotics and hormones, so stop it already!

    Sorry for being maybe too emotional but it is what it is!

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  32. Paige, A very touching piece and compelling truth between Bottle feeding and Breast feeding moms. Our babies tummy's are full, they are emotionally, physically, and mentally nurtured as well as healthily growing psychologically. As a Professional in the Child Development Field, In terms of the "Mom Wars-between Breastfeeding and Bottle Feeding," There are 40,000 infants abandoned at birth every year just in the U.S. What kind of Milk are we feeding our infants? Whether our infants are digesting breast milk, formula, goat milk and/or any other, Our infants are healthily fed and happily full. Moms are choosing feeding options for their infants that are the healthiest they can be to fit their own personal and realistic situations within their realm. Mamas, give yourself a pat on the back, you showed up and are doing your absolute best to be the best mom you can be. It's time to give yourself a break and be proud! Paige says it powerfully, you don't need external validation from groups (The Leche Badge) to high five you and tell you your doing a good job in Mom Hood, YOU ARE MOM HOOD, Own it, Love your authentic mom-baby relationship and the powerful yet beautiful decisions you've made for yourself and your baby as a whole. More support for ALL moms as a whole, We are ALL in it together! BottlesUpMamas!

    -BottlesUpMamas
    www.BottlesUpMamas.com

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