November 11, 2010

A Bunch of Bunk

Attention: all you moms who have breastfed!

Read this ridiculous "study", and be prepared for simultaneous brain and eyeball explosions.   Apparently, moms who breastfeed "get as much sleep as those who bottle feed."  And I must give tribute to iVillage for the initial article that pointed out this ridiculous study and had the same reaction as I did. 

Breastfeeding is the most tedious, painstaking and stupidly slow exercise in all of womankind. Even if a breastfeeding mother pumps, she's looking at 20 minutes to fill bottles (plus the awful click-click-click-I'm-a-cow-getting-milked-sound), plus, actual feeding and burping time.  I'm sorry - does it take 20 minutes to shake some formula in a bottle?  So right from the get-go, bottle-feeding mothers are ahead 20 minutes (multiplied by 8 feedings a day = approximately 2.5 hours). 

I repeat: that's 2.5 hours a day that bottle-feeding mothers retain.   Okay, so say a mother doesn't pump, but actually breastfeeds?  Well, then you are in crazy land.  Kids suck down bottles like candy.  They nap and lay around like sloths for hours on a boob.

This is my favorite quote: "Maybe breast-feeding moms wake only to latch their babies on, then return to dreamland. I can certainly vouch for that happening. Or maybe formula-feeding moms catapult themselves into a more alert state as they pad downstairs, flip on the light to prepare a bottle and move around more than a breast-feeding mom."

I think I may have thrown up in my mouth.  I am quite certain while I had a baby mouth grinding on me, I was not anywhere near so-called dreamland.  You have to be kidding me. 

I am no scientist (but the Expert is).  This study fails in one huge aspect.  The simple fact that bottle-fed babies have a bigger knot in their bellies, and as such tend to sleep longer (and hence, so does Momma).  Have you looked at breastmilk (looks like watered down skim milk) and formula (a milkshake)?   Which one do you think holds the belly longer?

Now, there are studies out there to say this is not the case.  Perhaps, because it is in our best interests as a society to encourage breastfeeding.  We don't want to scare off the new mothers; we need to encourage their attempts to breastfeed. So we create faux studies to say breastfeeding mothers are well-rested, etc. etc.  And I support that.

While these people are a bunch of bloody liars, I think that mothers who choose to breastfeed also choose to lose a whole lotta sleep for the benefit of the baby.  Check out the studies on the lowered risk of ear infections, allergies, SIDS and overall increased baby health.  Read those.  And ignore the idiots who say you'll sleep.  Because here's the truth:  as a breastfeeding mother, you will not sleep.  But as a mother of a three year old who has never had an ear infection, you will sleep when other bottle-feeding mothers are now having tubes installed in their kids' ears.

And yes, I will say it.  You did not even attempt to breastfeed? Not once?  You didn't give it the good college try? That's just not okay. Not in 2010.  In 1970, sure. The research wasn't out there to support it.  Now?  Nope, you've got no case and certainly, no excuse.   Not in the world of Medela, Gerber, and Pump in Style.  I am as big of a feminist as exists and I believe in a right to choose what to do with your kids, to work, and all of that.  But to choose not to try to give your kid something that you can actually whip up yourself, in your sleep, and squirt out while watching Jerry Springer? In 2010?  I am revoking your motherhood card. 

I have a friend with triplets.  Yes, that's three babies.  And she gave her babies breastmilk until month NINE.  Oh, I'm sorry.... your one child was too hard to breastfeed?  Your milk just "never came in"?  Pumping hurt?  Or, you just didn't try?

Please turn in your motherhood card. 

My favorite?  The 2010 stay-at-home mom who doesn't breastfeed.  Nice!  I'm sorry.  You are "too busy?"  Try lugging a 15 pound breastpump to work.  You are not busy.  You are a selfish jackass.  Your motherhood card is officially revoked.

Perhaps I am so emotionally charged about this topic because I didn't sleep as well for two straight years.  I pumped behind doors at work.  I had a freezer full of the stuff.  For a total of sixteen months, I was breastfeeding/pumping, awake, attached to a child or machine (and often in my office), thus providing insurance to my future plastic surgeon that he/she will scoop up $6k for a "medically necessary" boob job in the year 2015. 

And trust me, I appreciate the fact that some of you will hate me for this.   Well, whatever.  Ask me if I care.  I'm a lawyer, I'm used to the hatred.  In fact, I think I went to law school for it!



nannyjai said...

Love your blog and now love you more!

Mere said...

Love you too - and your Segway! Love it! :)

Kelly Koenig said...

Just need to fact check some critical information to this triplet friend fed her babies breastmilk until month 9! And this includes shuttling it to and from the NICU and pumping and storing milk for a week while on a business trip to Michigan and strong arming TSA with my cooler full of breastmilk. I seriously told the guy he would have to pry the cooler from my cold dead hands.

Mere said...

I was wrong! Incorrect reporting! The horror! Month nine... we salute you, we salute you!!! You are my hero.

chiquita_bob said...

As a mother that has recently relinquished the bond with my breast pump, I salute you. My insides are burning and my hair on the back of my neck is on ends thinking about all the rest I got. I am so well-rested in fact, I think I might get up right now, find the author of this study and shove my foot up their bottle-fed behind. I made it to month 15 with my first child and month 11 with my second while pumping at work, behind closed doors. I had to finally call it quit when my freezer was full and I couldn't squeeze my ice cream next to my Lean Cuisine meals anymore. All the lies, all the filthy lies!!!....holy cow....3 babies?!?!? You get a super duper gold star on your motherhood card. Heck, you earn three!!

Mere said...

I love it... "shove my foot up their bottle-fed behind". Thank you! I can't claim credit for the three babies -that's my friend. I can only claim two. But kudos to you! It's a battle, breastfeeding. And all those mo-fos who says it's not... I've got a behind they can kiss! Thanks for reading. XOXO

proudmom said...

I did it for 12 months . My child stopped breastfeeding at 3 months but I kept pumping , I had to pump for 40 minutes every time , my milk would come out very slow ... I would wake up to pump 2 times every night , and bottle feed my child for about 25 minutes after that ( very slow eater ). I would sleep about 4-5 hours per night , work 8 hours a day with 9 children with autism ( kids that were between 3and 5 years old ) ,I had a 3 hour comute daily, cook ( we don't believe in frozen food ), clean the house , etc ...The sad part is that my child has ear infections all the time , food allergies and asthma . But I don't regret for a second all the sleep that I didn't get in order to give him breast milk.I agree with you Meme , the mothers that don't try to breastfeed their babies are just selfish .

Atlanta's Frugal Mom said...

Breastfeeding triiplets for nine months certainly deserves a medal. Or three. (Although I would imagine after all that, she may not wish to have much of anything near the boobs for quite some time.)

In any case, kudos to her. And kudos to you, Mere, for your honesty -- it's a helluva job, pumping or sucking. But having a child nurse for 12 1/2 months, who NEVER got sick until she was over 15 months. And, I might add, who is freaskishly strong -- well, I must give credit to the boob.

As the 90s album title suggests: Hooray for Boobies! :o)