Mom posts bottle feeding selfie on Instagram as a giant “F Off” to mom guilt
As moms we worry constantly over whether we’re making the right choices for our children, and we fear judgment from other parents who don’t agree with us. The decision to breastfeed versus bottle feed is one of these major decisions that parents agonize over, and it seems that everyone has a strong opinion one way or another.
It’s great if breastfeeding works for you and your baby, but the truth is that for a variety of reasons, not every mom breastfeeds her child. For some bottle feeding parents there’s guilt associated with feeding your baby from a bottle over a boob. Australian mom Siobhan Rennie of the blog Me Oh My feels that same guilt. But last week she set about trying to do something about it. She posted a photo of herself feeding her 13-month old daughter Aoife on Instagram explaining why it’s time for moms to abandon any guilt they may feel for not breastfeeding.
I still feel guilty every day that I’m not breastfeeding Aoife anymore. Because mum guilt is a HUGE BITCH. I had my reasons for stopping. So many reasons (she took hours to B’feed, it wasn’t fair on Harry, so many latching probs meant too much air then too much wind and reflux, ohh and my PND and anxiety…). At 4 months we called it quits and it was such a painful decision. Life definitely got easier, we were all a lot happier. But I still, 8 months on, think I gave up too easily. I didn’t, I know that, but I still can’t help being really hard on myself… Add to that the stare I got from a woman today at the park when I pulled out Aoife’s bottle… Jesus, it was SO judgey. The thing is, FED is best. Aoife was (and still is) more satisfied on the bottle. It doesn’t matter how we feed our babies, as long as it’s safe and they’re nourished and happy. Never doubt your choices, you have to do what’s right for you and your whole family – whether that be breastfeeding until they’re toddlers or never being able to even start. And tell mum guilt to just F OFF 😜😂 [PS I’ve found the comfiest ‘I don’t have to change bras before leaving the house’ wire free bra that actually holds me up properly – prior to finding these I was still wearing my old grotty maternity bras around 😂 🙈#sohotrightnow Thanks @bfreeaustralia 🙌🏼] #fedisbest #bottlefeeding #uniteinmotherhood #nofiltermum
“I still feel guilty every day that I’m not breastfeeding Aoife anymore, ” she writes. “Because mum guilt is a HUGE BITCH.”
Rennie goes on to detail her many valid reasons why she decided to stop breastfeeding her daughter at four months old. It was difficult on her two-year-old son Harry and her daughter suffered from latching issues and digestive problems as a result of having a poor latch. On top of that, Rennie had her own postpartum anxiety to cope with. Still, she struggles with her decision. “But I still, 8 months on, think I gave up too easily. I didn’t, I know that, but I still can’t help being really hard on myself.”
If you wrestle with those same feelings of guilt, then listen up, because what Rennie says next is important. “The thing is, FED is best. Aoife was (and still is) more satisfied on the bottle,” she writes. “It doesn’t matter how we feed our babies, as long as it’s safe and they’re nourished and happy.”
Rennie told The Huffington Post it’s her goal to promote parents supporting all the choices other parents make, not just bottle versus breast. “There’s too much judgement out there about the different choices a mom can make,” she said. “As long as it’s safe for the baby, why should we judge another mum for however she chooses to ‘mom’?”
As for the judgment we place on ourselves, she has advice for that as well. “Tell mum guilt to just F OFF.”