I’m a bit tired of the pro-breastfeeding, anti-breastfeeding back and forth. But here we are, once again, in the war of words. In the July issue of the British magazine, Mother & Baby, the deputy editor Kathryn Blundell wrote an article titled, “I Formula Fed. So What?” And here’s a quote from the piece:
I wanted my body back. (And some wine)… I also wanted to give my boobs at least a chance to stay on my chest rather than dangling around my stomach… They’re part of my sexuality, too – not just breasts, but fun bags. And when you have that attitude (and I admit I made no attempt to change it), seeing your teeny, tiny, innocent baby latching on where only a lover has been before feels, well, a little creepy.
On the magazine’s website askamum.co.uk, there is now a post giving Blundell’s explanation of why she wrote the article. Of course, the British press has been all over this. The BBC reported on the resulting internet brouhaha. And today, the New York Times blog Motherlode, jumped into the fray, as did Babble. And there’s even a Facbeook page called “Mother and Baby Magazine- Please Support Breastfeeding.”
There’s no need here to go into the arguments that pit breastfeeding against formula feeding. We’ve heard it all before. The issue, I think, is one of the magazine’s editorial judgment. I don’t fault the magazine for publishing the piece, but perhaps someone on the magazine’s masthead is not the right person to write the story. It sends the message that the magazine has an agenda. If the same piece had been written by a contributing writer or a freelancer, it might seem less didactic. Even juxtaposing it with another piece, a pro-breastfeeding piece, might have been a better editorial choice. Maybe the standards are different in the British press. I don’t know.
I’ve been poking around on line, trying to find a link to Blundell’s original article. No luck at the moment. But I did find a blog that says it has transcribed the piece. And if you happen to find the actual link, please let me know. And as always, please weigh in, and tell me what you think about the story.