Formula Recall Brings Out the Mean in Breastfeeders


baby bottleThe Similac recall has justifiably riled the emotions of mothers around the country who are furious that a company would allow the nourishment they provide their babies to be tainted in such a disturbing, harmful way.

But what's also disturbing and harmful is how some breastfeeding advocates are taking this moment to give a big "I TOLD YOU SO" to mothers who for one reason or another feed their babies formula.

Some of the comments that came after we published the first article about the recall yesterday were sanctimonious ... at best.

Comments like:

"This is why breast is best." 


"Luckily my breast milk isn't going to be recalled any time soon so I'll keep using that!"


"I love breastfeeding my son. It's so healthy and safe and oh yeah, my boobs won't get recalled. Hahahahahahahahaha"

Sadly, there are plenty more.

Is that really necessary when women are terrified about a product they may have given their baby that's making them sick? Do women really have nothing better to do than mock the choices of other mothers?

If you want to advocate and educate women about the many virtues of breast milk over formula, that's a noble goal ... IF you go about it in the right manner.

But rubbing in your choice in the midst of a crisis just gives more credence to all the stereotypes about the wacky, militant breastfeeding mafia. Therefore, you're really setting breastfeeding back rather than helping to promote it.

No one should have to justify why she chooses to formula feed her child to anyone except herself.

Any shame when it comes to formula feeding should be placed on those who take opportunities like this to flaunt their smug superiority and make light of a very serious situation.

Are you offended by women using this as an "I told you so" moment?


Image via nerissa's ring/Flickr

baby health, breastfeeding, formula, recalls


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Breez... BreezyButterfly

Two thumbs up for Julie!  I don't think I could have said it better myself!

I'm an advocate for breastfeeding when possible, but I'm not an advocate for pushy, know it all, self righteous, ignorant people that feel it is necessary to tell everyone else how to raise their children! 

I'm sure millions of women have shared what they believe to be helpful advice with other moms and don't intend to sound like a pushy know it all; I know I have been guilty of this a time or two.  The comments from the moms mentioned above were definately not helpful to anyone.  If you want someone to join "your side/team" you don't do so by bullying them.

lovin... lovinjade0916

very offended by little girl is 6 days old and i was so into breastfeeding when i was pregnant...i always said that i would stick with it but its hard! especially when ur the only one that can feed boyfriend works third shift so i have nobody to help me through the night and we all know babies sleep longer with formula...not to mention my baby was sucking so hard on my nipples that they had broke through and were pretty much bleeding in her mouth..and on top of that she never wanted to eat when i breastfed she was loosing weight and the nurses at the hospital were blaming me for it being 4 to 5 hours before she ate again...there are so many reasons why and these people should not be putting others down for their choices u never know the story behind it so dnt put others down

CafeS... CafeSasha

I honestly started crying when I read some of those comments and I exclusively breastfed to one year and am extended breastfeeding now (my son is 26 months). Breastfeeding rocks. Those kinds of comments to moms who are already worried about their babies? DON'T. It takes my breath away how mean people are.

RanaA... RanaAurora

I've got to agree here. While normally I think people seriously exaggerate comments of breastfeeders, there were some seriously insensitive comments made. My comments on this are that:

A. This is part of the reason people really advocate for more oversight in formula companies.

B. My heart seriously goes out to moms who have to use formula.

It's things like this that DO really make me glad I breastfeed, though, but I don't say that in a mean way -- I know that if something happened to me, a child of mine could end up on formula, and that scares the living crap out of me, BECAUSE of things like this... and I don't quite understand why people would take these risks, you know? But for people who for WHATEVER reason are using formula, I hope all of your babies are okay, that it is as benign as Similac says it is, and that you take this as your OWN soapbox to start demanding better of formula companies.

jayboff jayboff

I was a formula-fed baby (hey, I was adopted ... what can ya do?), so that most likely explains all of my multiple failures in life as well as my inability to do calculus, but some of those comments were, wow, just crazy mean.

LoriA... LoriAnn87

This is just sad that women would do this but I have seen more other nasty comments on my friend's facbook page that have posted this. There is a lot of reason why women can't breastfeed and I'm one of them. I wanted to breastfeed my son but once I developed preelcampisa and had to be put on med to bring my blood pressure that when out the window. But I did try to pump before getting the med and I wasn't succesfully because I wasn't producting enough milk to give to me son so I formula feed. Every women has the choose to choice what is best for there child and if you thnk breast is best great but don't put those down who choice to formula feed there kids.

Jen Dopson

Very offended. My daughter couldn't latch due to very low muscle tone. I didn't have the physical strength to keep up a pump, clean, feed schedule.

If you've never been forced to keep up pumping to exclusivity feed breastmilk but from a bottle then you have no idea of the level of exhaustion it can cause.

And I'm sure every woman who breastfeeds never eats fast food or any processed food. They all only eat whole organic foods and some lean meat based protein. They never take a pain reliever or drink alcohol. Yep and I'm the queen of England.

Breast milk isn't always best and can just as easily be tainted by things the woman ingests.

Cafe... Cafe Suzanne

If you breastfeed why is it even necessary to read a post about a formula recall (unless you are doing it to inform your friends), nevermind comment cruelly on it? Feel fortunate it doesn't affect you -- and move on.,

jeann... jeannesager

Thank you Julie! I don't think breastfeeders should be commenting at all on the issue in the sense that it's coming out incredibly sanctimonious. Jeez, people, these moms are worried about their kids. Have a heart!

RanaA... RanaAurora

Suzanne, why read about c-sections unless you have one? Why do formula-feeding moms read my posts on breastfeeding? Why read about anything? Because people read what we write, and be glad they do, or we wouldn't have jobs. ;)

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