Friday, July 28, 2006

Stupid, stupid, stupid!

Not only do I get sucked in to mainstream magazines (a la my recent obsession with all the back issues of Parenting and Parents) I also get sucked in to mainstream television shows, like Baby Story and Bringing Home Baby on TLC. Every once in a while I catch an episode that is amazing, like a few months ago Baby Story ran a weeks worth of homebirth episodes that were incredible. I even wrote TLC a letter thanking them for showing homebirth in such a positive light!

Okay, so today I watch Surviving Motherhood on TLC. I hardly ever catch this show, and I don't mean to sound like I know everything there is to know about motherhood, but let me tell ya, the women on this show are SO dense! Today's episode was about weaning. When I saw that was the topic I just thought, oh mama, am I a glutton for punishment. Of course I didn't think that they were all going to sit around and advocate child led weaning, but I still have my undies in a bundle. So, there's about six mamas sitting around talking. One of these mamas NEVER EVEN BREASTFED HER OWN CHILD. Okay, um, so why is she on the show? Why in the world would a mama take breastfeeding advice from a woman who never even did it once? And not only did she not breastfeed, but she just decided not to because, you know, she wasn't breastfed, so it was also the right choice for her child (yes, my eyes are rolling VERY far in to the back of my head!). My fuzzy pregnant mind is a bit unclear on this next bit, but I am pretty sure it was Miss I-Didn't-Need-to-Breastfeed who proclaimed that any mama who nurses her child long enough that the child is able to ask to nurse, then that mama is only doing it for herself. Well, it's good to know she's got THAT part figured out! Grrrr.

Honestly, the mamas on the show were all complete idiots. The one thing that I was happy about was that the expert who provided the "expert moment" did make a point of saying that, for those who choose to breastfeed, breastmilk is essential during a child's first year of life, but that it continues to provide nutrition for children who continue to breastfeed after that. She never once insinuated that breastfeeding past a year is something that mamas shouldn't be doing. Rather she said that it's a two person game, and if either person wants to be done playing, then it's time to stop. That makes sense to me. I appreciated that she provided much more balanced information than the typical garbage that is out there.

3 comments:

  1. OMG, I saw this episode today, too, and I have a headache from rolling my eyes so much throughout the whole thing! I rarely watch this show b/c the moms featured are so mainstream (except for a mom named Tanya with daughter Mila who is very AP, still bf-ing at over 2 years, co-sleeping, etc...she was in an episode a while back) and the advice they give is so misguided and so uneducated...just the regular mainstream crap about not letting the child control your life, and bla bla bla! But yeah, back to today's episode...what about the mom who weaned both her kids at 7 months and cited reasons for doing so so that she can wear sexy bras again and not have leaky boobs, among other superficial reasons that only benefitted her, and claimed that her boys had 2 really hard days of adjusting but they don't have any lasting physical or emotional impacts...um, according to who? She just quit cold turkey and let the baby deal with it...and that doesn't cause emotional trauma?? Can you tell I was also really pissed off by this episode? And the worst part, despite the "expert" citing the benefits of extended bf-ing, is that most mothers who watch this show will be swayed in their decisions by these totally uneducated moms, who are just giving their OPINIONS...not informed information that would be truly helpful. UGH!!!

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  2. Oh I totally forgot to mention that comment about how the children won't remember the things that happen to them, anyways. Pregnancy brain! I also love when people use that excuse for why it's okay to CIO.

    I was at least impressed that the one mama who wanted to wean had been, by far, BFing her child the longest. She gets huge kudos in my book for that, even if she was asking a bunch of uninformed bafoons for weaning suggestions ;)

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  3. Oh yeah, she gets huge kudos from me, too, for making it to 17 months, especially as a single most-likely working mom. But it did make me very sad for her daughter to see the scenes where she was asking to nurse and her mom was getting really frustrated and angry with her and denying her that comfort. Her daughter was so visibly upset by it. Maybe instead of seeking out a panel of women who are completely uninformed, not to mention completely unexperienced when it comes to extended bf-ing, she should have been directed to a La Leche meeting where she could have recieved the support and encouragement that she seems to really need.

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