"The debate about breast-feeding takes place without any reference to its actual context in women’s lives. Breast-feeding exclusively is not like taking a prenatal vitamin. It is a serious time commitment that pretty much guarantees that you will not work in any meaningful way. Let’s say a baby feeds seven times a day and then a couple more times at night. That’s nine times for about a half hour each, which adds up to more than half of a working day, every day, for at least six months. This is why, when people say that breast-feeding is “free,” I want to hit them with a two-by-four. It’s only free if a woman’s time is worth nothing."
"This year alone I had two friends whose babies could not breast-feed for one reason or another, so they mostly had to pump. They were both first-time mothers who had written themselves dreamy birth plans involving hot baths followed by hours of intimate nursing. When that didn’t work out, they panicked about their babies’ missing out on the milky elixir. One of them sat on my couch the other day hooked up to tubes and suctions and a giant deconstructed bra, looking like some fetish ad, or a footnote from the Josef Mengele years." (anyone whose been to our house at "milking time" has witnessed this)
"In her critique of the awareness campaign, Joan Wolf, a women’s-studies professor at
"The problem is, breast-fed infants are typically brought up in very different families from those raised on the bottle. In the
I really feel that I am one of those anomalous women who can't successfully breastfeed. I am also a white, educated and upper-middle class, which means the pressure to breastfeed (both socially and self-imposed) is great. I think about this subject a lot (I have a lot of time to think while I am pumping) and really feel like we need to give each other the benefit of the doubt. I can't think of a single one of my friends who doesn't want the absolute best for her children. May we all be free to decide what "best" means without judgment...