Well yeah, that’s the general idea. And that was my previous thought too.
But I did not put it as a big deal to my breastfeeding job (job? yes it is a job. I will mention about this in the next post). It doesn’t affect my motivation to keep breastfeeding although two of my babies were formula fed during their first hours at the hospital. It is definitely not a right policy for hospitals to ‘force’ formula-feeding of course. But whatever, that’s the ugly truth here in this country.
Later I found out that this exclusive breastfeeding label has in fact caused some new moms to lose their breastfeeding motivation. They even ceased from being a breastfeeding mom. This happens only because they have to add a few bottles of formula to support their babies while waiting the breast milk to be fully produced. What a pity and what an impact of what labeling can do.
Let’s just break things down. We breastfeed our babies to get the most of the best food for babies under 6 months old.
Some of breast milk’s advantages are (as we all know :P):
- almost none allergic reaction (if there is, observe the mother’s diet)
- full of antibody that works way beyond the breastfeeding age.
- full of primary nutrition that is needed for baby’s growth and development. Mostly for brain and the neurological system.
- lowering the risk of breast cancer for the mother
- natural way to lose weight for the mother
(as for me, add caring 2 more toddler without any assistance, and I get my size 29 jeans back before my baby is 9mo :P…but I still have to get rid that baby fat in my tummy for sure *sigh*)
So with all these advantages, why should we bother whether we had breastfed our babies exclusively or not if it was just about this few unimportant bottles of formula?
How significant it is considering that later on we will breastfeed for at least two years?
How significant it is the 2-3x 30ml of formula, than a freezer (or more!) full of pumped breast milk?
How significant it is…to sacrifice our descendants’ well-being, just because the label?
I’m breastfeeding three babies since December 12, 2004 until this very day. I have stopped only for 1 month + 4 months, both during pregnancies. My first baby got about 2-3 days of formula during his first days. While my second one got 1 x 30ml because my husband, unknowingly, has given the authority to the hospital for giving formula while I’m still in the recovery room after a C-sect.
Fortunately I have won the battle with the hospital staffs *lebay* so my youngest boy haven’t had a drop of any formula. Such an unimportant and annoying effort *sigh*…
Still, I’m proud and I claimed that I have breastfed all of my babies EXCLUSIVELY for their first six months, regardless what people might say about my situation.
But my point is…let’s just breastfeed and ignore any label. Breastfeeding can never be wrong.