In a candid discussion about the decision
to use milk formula, deputy editor Kathryn Blundell of Mother & Baby
magazine said she bottle fed her children because “I wanted my body back. (And
some wine) …”
She also said that her decision
meant she had a better chance of retaining a pleasing decotellage.
It has already prompted a Facebook
campaign supported by about 600 users of the social media site, and at least
six complaints to the Press Complaints Commission.
The UK Department of Health
recommends that babies are fed only breast milk for the first six months of
life, but many women are unable to do so or opt for formula milk out of choice
in the case of an outspoken pro-breastfeeding lobby.
The article said: “The Milk Mafia
can keep their guilt trips”.
“So, let’s hear it, ladies, for modern
nutritional science, but most of all for our freedom of choice.”
Describing her own feelings about
using her breasts for feeding, the author wrote: “They’re part of my sexuality,
too – not just breasts… And when you have that attitude (and I admit I made
no attempt to change it), seeing your teeny, tiny, innocent baby latching on…
well [feels], a little creepy.”
The article did concede that all
the studies showed that breastfeeding reduced the risk of breast cancer and
Among those to complain through
Facebook were bottle-feeding mothers who objected to the tone of the article,
which pondered whether formula users “just couldn’t be fagged or felt like
getting tipsy once in awhile”.
On the Mumsnet website, the article
was the subject of hundreds of comments. One contributor said: “People pay
attention to these sorts of articles and if anyone who is having any wobbles
about [breastfeeding] this may be the one article which steers them away from
it, if they think that being seen to [breastfeeding] is in any way ‘creepy’.”
However, other contributors
welcomed the article as “tongue-in-cheek” and for dealing with a “taboo”
Miranda Levy, the editor of the
magazine, said the publication was, “a constant and vocal supporter of breastfeeding”
and that the article was reflected “personal experience” and had been praised
by some bottle-feeding readers for making them “feel ‘normal’ and less of a
‘failure’ for not managing to breastfeed”.