I've been thinking about doing it for years, since the days when I actually HAD a breastfed child and first got involved with the whole online lactivist thing. Every now and then, a response I'm writing to a comment or post gets out of hand and dissolves into a metaphorical story analogous to the situation. I've got several of these saved on my computer, that have never made it online (as I tend to go off at tangents.)
So, I'll pop 'em up here, as and when I get round to tidying them all up, alongside my thoughts on current relevant news and articles.
- I am lazy and a talented procrastinator - so I will probably not update this as much as I should - or will update MORE than I should when I ought really to be getting on with real life stuff. I might get bored and not check comments for weeks or months. This is a hobby for me. Don't expect a professional standard of response.
- I'm English. I'll refer to nappies, dummies and trousers, rather than diapers, pacifiers and pants. If I use the word pants, I'll probably mean underpants. I will also spell colour and favourite with a u. (And, not that it's going to be relevant unless I write a poem, I pronounce 'grass' and 'castle' gr-ah-ss and car-sul. Which is EXTRA fun when I have a 5 year old son who is learning to spell, and most of the people around here say 'grass' and 'cassel'. And 'scone' has a magic e, dammit. Ahem.)
- I use sarcasm a lot, and have little patience for hypocrisy. If you comment on here, and you can make a respectful, logical argument stating your case, I'll listen, whether you agree with my point of view or not. If you make illogical or hypocritical arguments, or are disrespectful, I will call you out on it, whether you agree with my point of view or not. I'll probably be polite about it, at least as long as you are.
- I don't care if you are male, have no kids, or have never breastfed, you still have every right to your opinion. The validity of an opinion is based on its own merits, not the experiences of the person who holds that opinion. (Although such experiences can lead to a more informed opinion, the lack of them does not mean it is ill-informed.)
- Everything we do is based on a risk/benefit analysis - and only we can make our own judgements as to how these balance out. ALL parents choose how to feed their children based on which method they believe to tip the scales more towards the benefits than risks. ALL parents are doing the best they can in the circumstances they are in. It is rude, arrogant and, frankly, stupid to claim that because a parent made a different decision to the one you did/would make that they have deliberately chosen a more risky, less beneficial path. That's like assuming that because you found sports easier than music lessons at school, people who joined the choir instead of the football club were deliberately making things harder for themselves.
- And finally - I am a true agnostic. I am talking here about my thoughts, feelings and beliefs. I have not done serious medical research, and am taking it on trust that the scientific research I have read (in summary - I'm pretty smart, but I'm no expert and find the actual research papers hard to digest) is genuine. However, to put this into perspective, I am also taking it on trust that Australia exists. I've never been there myself, after all. I am such an agnostic that I am not absolutely convinced in the non-existence of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. It seems astronomically unlikely that such an entity exists, but it is not, I repeat, it is NOT impossible. Similarly, if you believe that formula is better than breastmilk, I will admit that there is a possibility you are right. You are extremely unlikely to be right, according to all the evidence I have ever seen - but the possibility exists. If you can make logical arguments to support your belief, I will listen to them. (See also point 3).
- General disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. If I ever give any advice to anyone (I almost certainly won't, I'm not qualified, but if you ask, I might tell you what I think) - it's just that some random person, who did do a breastfeeding peer support course 5 years ago, and has kept up to date online on related stuff, but that's all, thinks. Nothing I say is to be taken as proof of anything. (See point 6.)
So - welcome to my blog. There will be stories, suggestions and similies; there will be discussions, debates and diatribes; there will be rants, reasonings and randomness; there will be mammaries and metaphors, mostly on matters of motherhood. There may be an aspect of alliteration....