Wednesday, February 23, 2011
My 2 cents
In response to “Breastfeeding Plan Mixes Partisan Reactions” (2-17-11), it is essential to first be reminded that breastfeeding is a health issue, not a political or social one. The data are well substantiated to show the value of breastfeeding to babies, mothers, and the community as well. Breastfeeding provides the perfect nutrition as well as infection protection, immunology protection, allergy protection and obesity
protection. Formula is a solution of nutrients with no antibodies, enzymes, or other protective factors.
It’s about time we remove barriers for breastfeeding mothers. After years of exhorting mothers to “try harder”, we’ve finally started to implement policies that remove the “booby traps” that undermine success. With the WIC Program spending billions on infant formula, the now available IRS one-time deduction for breastfeeding equipment is merely a drop in the bottle!
Gerald Calnen, MD
Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine
New Rochelle, New York 10801
This letter was submitted to the editor of The New York Times
I love the way the ABM responded. I agree that not everyone wants/can breastfeed and that it is a personal decision. However, I think if there were better resources for mothers in hospitals, at home and in their workplace more women would choose to breastfeed for some length of time.
I think it's wonderful that someone can deduct breastpump costs from their taxes. Honestly I think breast milk storage supplies should be in this category too. I'm saving so much money by choosing to breastfeed and like the ABM president said the government could save a lot of money too. Look how many people receive formula through government programs. Formula is not cheap!
I'm not trying to get all political and clearly I don't think it's a left or right issue. I think it's a health and society issue. America, unlike all other countries it seems, is not breastfeeding friendly. The one time I breastfed Kendall in public I felt so weird about it. Why? It's perfectly naturally and it's what my body is designed to do and I was covered. I felt weird about it because our society has made us feel weird about it.
I think if places were more breastfeeding friendly it wouldn't be such an issue. I'm not saying every public place needs to have a "Mother's room" like one you would find at Babies R Us. I just think it would be nice to have a chair in the bathroom at places like malls and airports.
I'm off my soapbox now! Happy Wednesday!
I leave you with one very happy loves her mommy's milk so much she falls asleep while eating baby girl!