Day 12: What Not To ExpectPhotobucket - Video and Image Hosting

When you get that notion, put your backfield in motion

Officially a Mom

Putting that Backfield in Motion since 2003

Wednesday, June 27, 2007



This picture is inspired by this photo.

The female breast is quite functional and more often than not in the United States, is recognized and appreciated for the function on your left (my right).

Breastfeeding (especially the breastfeeding of a two year old) is often seen as gross, dirty, unnecessary, and something that gets in the way of the aforementioned man-centered function. Those things couldn't be further from the truth.

It boggles my mind to think about the double standards in our society regarding female breasts:

Big, bouncy, and out of control for a man's (or female's) pleasure? Quite all right. More than all right, in fact. Breasts can sell everything from cars to hamburgers.

Milk producing and attached to an infant and a (shock, gasp) toddler? Put those pillowcases away you crazy hippie.

The idea that breasts for sexual pleasure and breasts for breastfeeding are mutually exclusive is totally and completely wrong. Breasts are for both.

Even more than that, MY breasts are for ME.

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Anonymous thordora said...

I loves it.

10:02 AM  
Anonymous Heather said...

Right on!! You tell em!!

11:26 AM  
Blogger Christie said...

say it again!

i am nursing my 3 yr old and my youngest son nursed until 4.5. gasp!!!

3:02 PM  
Anonymous radical mama said...

Very pretty, Amanda.

6:30 PM  
Blogger Marie said...

You have it! Yes! People will get in a yank about b/f'ing and oogle at a girl in a tank top in the same breath -- really, get a grip.

10:34 PM  
Blogger The Soul's Muse/Jennifer said...

10:57 PM  
Blogger karrie said...

Beautifully done, Amanda. :)

8:34 AM  
Blogger karrie said...

And wow, is Grace getting TALL!

8:34 AM  
Blogger Amber said...

Can I just say you are an absolutely amazing photographer and I love looking at your work! You captured so much emotion in this picture. Love it!

2:02 AM  
Blogger jenica said...

wow. you are all so beautiful.

3:18 AM  
Blogger Chrissy121875 said...

Happy 4th of July to you and your family! :) Hope you have a great day!

11:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know that I will be viewed as a chicken for doing this annon, but alas, no blogger account.

I followed you from Flickr, and you are quite a photographer. I too realize the importance of breastfeeding as well. I am just curious as to when you say enough. I can't help but feel that if your child is old enough to help you unclasp your bra, maybe the time has come to let go. I know, some will say that 2 isn't too old, but I guess it is a personal opinion. Has your pediatrician recommended a time to stop?

Again, sorry if this seems argumentative. I am a mom with 2 children, one who is 3, the other a month old. I unfortunately couldn't produce enough for my children, so bottle fed they are.

Oh, for the record, TOTALLY agree with this post about the double standards of boobs! Very well put.

10:46 PM  
Blogger Amanda. said...

Wow! It's weird to drop in after all this time!

Thank you to everyone for stopping by and leaving a comment.

Anon- at this stage in the game I generally would have only responded to your comment to say "thank you" because I fully recognize that extended breastfeeding is not the norm and it is not for everyone- mostly because everyone is ignorant on the subject. I accept the ignorance. It is what it is.

However, in the past two weeks I have been told that I am "traumatizing" my child by nursing her and an RN told me I should "stop nursing".

This leads to me to think that although I'm only one person, perhaps I need to do more.

To answer your question, I do not say when it is "enough". I am trying to practice child-led weaning and that means Goose will decide when it is enough. That's not to say I don't place limits. I don't nurse her when we are out in public and if I am busy doing something else I will tell her "no". I don't like to nurse her before bed, either, because that means brushing her teeth again and that's no fun for us.

Short story long, Grace is the one nursing and Grace will decide when she is done.

With regards to the bra unclasping, I haven't let her try but I don't think Grace has the fine motor skills to unclasp a bra so maybe that argument is a straw man? :):)

"Time to let go."

Time to let go of what? Time to let go of nursing? Believe you me, I am more than ready to let go of nursing. I have been ready. I have been ready since she was a week old. I am not one of these women who love nursing. Sure, I may have moments after she is done nursing that I will look back and miss it but I guarantee those moments will be few and far between.

As I am practicing child-led weaning, it is Grace who will determine when it is time to let go.

I think your comment about being time to let go may reflect the myth that mothers nurse older toddlers and children because they don't want their babies to grow up and because they are trying to keep themselves an important part in their child's life by being the only person who can provide a unique type of nourishment and comfort.

Those myths are entirely false. I don't think there is any mother- breastfeeding or not- who doesn't see their child's development as bittersweet but breastfeeding does not slow the development or make it not happen at all. If anything, breastfeeding enhances the development. Studies have shown over and over again that children allowed to self wean are happy, independent and confident (and I'm not implying that children who do not self wean are unable to be happy, independent and confident.... I stated that merely to show child led weaning is NOT a hinderance to development).

Grace is a two and a half year old who nurses. End of story.

Also, I don't need to nurse her to feel secure in my mothering or in my relationship with her.

I know a lot of people who will say two years is too old but those people are not me, Grace, the husband, or a medical organization.

My pediatrician has not recommended a time to stop and if she did, she would not be my pediatrician. Why would any pediatrician recommend worth the initials after their last name recommend a time to stop when the American Academy of Pediatric's policy on Breastfeeding and the use of Human Milk clearly states "There is no upper limit to the duration of breastfeeding and no evidence of psychologic or developmental harm from breastfeeding into the third year of life or longer"?

Besides, I'm the one with the advanced degrees in human nutrition and foods. I believe I trump the pediatrician when it comes to matter such as this.

Anon, I hope you don't think I'm picking on you because I'm not and I really appreciate your opinion. I don't expect my blog to be a place where only people who agree with my post and I always appreciate people sharing their thoughts.

That said, I hope you recognize that your thoughts on extrended breastfeeding are simply your opinions. There is no scientific or anthropological determinant for when a child should be weaned.

Unfortunately, there are plenty of social ones.

9:04 AM  

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