Loved is Better Than Crunchy

Less Than You Have

I came to the conclusion that a healthy, happy mom and a formula-fed baby with a full belly was better than an exhausted, desperate mom and a breast-fed baby with a full belly.

(Im)perfect Parenting: I suck at being crunchy by Natalie Green

I love this. As a happily mostly-crunchy parent, I cannot stress the importance of doing what’s right for you and your family.

I was reminded recently of how similar we all are as parents. We all want the best for our children and for ourselves. This isn’t selfishness; this is human survival.

Last week, there was a furor on Twitter over @DeltaAssist wrongly telling a mother that she would need to cover up to nurse her ten-month-old baby. There has been so much written about this, and Delta has offered an apology, but the best reply came from @TheBabyGuyNYC:

That really showcases the larger problem of breastfeeding education and support in this country. A woman should never feel like she cannot feed her child. Ever.

Jamie Grayson (@TheBabyGuyNYC), Delta’s breastfeeding “policy” on Twitter creates uproar

Yes, this is about breastfeeding, but this is also about bottle-feeding. Or formula-feeding. Or post-partum depression. No mother wants to feel helpless that she cannot meet her child’s needs. No parent should be shamed for their choices. Parenting is a long, hard, thankless road. Why are we brutalizing each other along the way?

We are told repeatedly that breast is best. As a mother that exclusively breastfed, I’d consider myself a breastfeeding advocate. But I’ve seen firsthand, mothers that were ashamed to bottle-feed their babies on playdates, the feelings of guilt apparent as they sat in a park surrounded by breastfeeding moms. It was heartbreaking, and stupidly needless. It’s an unintended, yet undeniable side effect to the widespread message about the importance of breastfeeding.

At the risk of sounding preachy, I’m going to say it anyway:  Be crunchy, but be kind. Reserve judgement when you see a mother breastfeed or bottle-feed. Press pause on your opinions when you see a frazzled parent stick an iPad in front of their child. Offer support in anyway you can, even if it’s just a smile.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

Steve Jobs

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