I’ve watched with interest today’s story about bottle feeding mums are feeling the pressure or #bressure to breast feed. It has been trending on and off all day and has provoked some some reactions, as well as some great PR opportunities it seems, which is disappointing in itself.
I don’t yet know how I am going to feed my baby when it arrives. I will probably try breast feeding, but I can tell you there is also some formula and bottles ready to pack in my hospital bag this weekend.
Because do you know what, as a mum, I believe you need to do what is right for you and what is right for your baby. We are in the 21st century people. So if you decide to bottle feed, your child is highly unlikely to be adversely affected by it, and it’s likely to grow up just fine. Just as millions of others have done and will do for years to come.
If you decide you want to breast feed, guess what? The above is also likely to apply.
What has struck me since becoming pregnant in fact, is that so far – and I realise I may have been lucky – I’ve felt no pressure to do anything I don’t or do want to do.
What I have also noticed though when watching other parents more closely than I would have before, is that society seems to become incredibly judgemental about you once you become pregnant and once you have a child. We all seem to think we know best about what all children need and want.
I’ve got news. We are all different. And that goes for children too. So why don’t we let parents get on and do what is best for their babies?
If you see a child being abused, report it.
If you see a child you think is starved or malnourished, report it.
If you see a child being neglected or bullied, report it.
But if you see a child being looked after differently to how perhaps you look after yours, what about embracing differences, being kind, not applying any bressure, moving on, and focussing on looking after yourself and your own family?
Channel Mum’s brilliant video showed just how different everyone’s experience of feeding their baby is and is well worth a watch: