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Young Adults and Addiction: The Benefits of Inpatient Care

For many young people, drug use and experimentation is a rite of passage of sorts. However, experimenting with drugs and alcohol is far from harmless, and can often result in lifelong...

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Feeding Frenzy

Feeding Frenzy

During my pregnancy, I was amazed by the number of times I was asked the same question—and it wasn’t “Is it a boy or a girl?” No, the number one query on everyone’s minds was “Are you going to breastfeed?”

For me, the answer was a resounding yes. Everyone has seen the research on the benefits of breast milk over formula, so the decision was a no-brainer.  And then my son arrived.

The little guy simply wouldn’t latch on, no matter how hard I tried. During one 5 a.m. feeding in the hospital, I actually begged him to cooperate (yes, I actually pleaded with a two day old). Nothing. I had no other choice but to supplement with formula.

While I felt bad enough about my situation, I couldn’t believe the pressure I got from others—especially women. “The breast really is best,” said one maternity nurse. “Doesn’t he need the colostrum?” cried my mother (who ironically didn’t breastfeed any of her children.) “You’ve got to keep trying!” cheered my roommate, whom I had known for less than 48 hours. Does this happen to every new mom, or just me?

We arrived home, and the FDA announced it had found traces of melamine in certain US baby formulas (including the one recommended to us by the hospital). After sobbing uncontrollably over the potential damage I had inflicted on my newborn, I called a lactation consultant. And after a two-hour visit—and $250 fee—my son is slowly getting with the program.

This experience has made me sympathize with women who aren’t able to breastfeed or simply choose not to. As women, aren’t we supposed to support one another? Has anyone else experienced new mom guilt brought on by others? Share your story with us.

Posted: 12/8/08