Friday, November 11, 2011


Some things make me go "You can't be serious. They actually SAID that?"

#1: Old uterus = deflated balloon

Commenting on Michelle Duggar's annoucnement that she is expecting her 20th child, NBC chief medical editor Dr. Nancy Snyderman said: "She [Michelle Duggar] is a high-risk pregnancy because she’s 45, and because that uterus can’t have any spring in it anymore. I mean, really, it’s gotta be like a water balloon that has no tensile strength."

This is your uterus
This is your uterus on kids

#2: Breast is best, so feed your baby formula

From an report about a recent study showing--surprise!--that formula advertising decreases breastfeeding rates, I found this gem:
Alex V. Castro III, executive director of the Infant Pediatric Nutrition Association of the Philippines that groups infant formula makers, said the association fully supports breast-feeding.
Ha. Hahaha. Seriously!?! If you fully supported breastfeeding, you wouldn't be in business. Your business is dedicated to fully undermining breastfeeding. 


  1. You mean this week wasn't national make fun of Michelle Duggar's uterus/vagina day?
    And women were the worst. It was awful I had to stop reading.

  2. If you can't believe the quotes you blogged about here, you should come over to and see what is being said to childbearing women every day! It is just unbelievable!

  3. I am very grateful that the formula companies are in business. After breastfeeding my first three children for a year each, despite many hurdles, including severe recurrent mastitis that no medical professional was ever able to help me resolve, my fourth child was born with a posterior tongue tie and couldn't latch. We hired a lactation consultant and took her to a pediatric ENT. Even after having her frenulum clipped, she still couldn't latch. Meanwhile, I've got mastitis already and am literally running myself into the ground pumping and bottle feeding. Stopping and switching to formula was one of the best decisions I've ever made- for me and for my entire family, including my baby (who was born at home, btw).

    Please, Rixa, you're a smart woman. Don't fall into the trap of assuming that breastfeeding is natural, easy or even possible for all mothers and all babies. And don't fall into the trap of thinking that the overaggressive promotion of breastfeeding is any more helpful to women than the aggressive marketing of formula. There is a balance here. Women should be encouraged to do what is right for them. Please accept that for some women, that is formula.

    My baby, by the way, is happy and healthy as a horse. She may be short an IQ point or two, but she has a happy, healthy mother and a sane family- partly because of formula.

  4. I personally think formula should be prescription only - still readily available for mothers but obviously for situations were breastfeeding is not possible.
    My sister works in a homeless shelter and she can't beg pregnant women or moms there to even consider breastfeeding. Its so sad.

  5. Janie--I don't know if I'd actually want to make it prescription-only. Think of all the women who don't have health insurance or who can't easily make it to a doctor's visit. But I would wholly support banning formula advertising. I think that's where the big problem lies--not in the existence of formula itself, but in its promotion and advertising.

    Katie--I'm so sorry about your struggles to nurse your tongue-tied baby. Like I was saying to Janie, it's not that I think formula is evil; I see it as something that has a place in certain situations. But I feel very strongly that formula manufacturers shouldn't be allowed to advertise to the public. (I feel the same way about pharmaceuticals, by the way.) I'm not sure if you read the entire article about formula marketing in the Philipines, but the controversy was whether or not the government could limit formula advertising.

  6. Katie -- I fully support your right to formula-feed, and for whatever reason. I do NOT think formula should be by prescription only, and I also don't think I have any right to hear any of the myriad, valid reasons any woman chooses to (or in your case, it sounds as though you were forced to) switch to formula. Frankly, it's your body, it's your family, and it's your decision -- it's none of my business (or anyone else's). However, formula marketing doesn't help anyone -- it doesn't help people who breastfeed, people who formula feed, or those who do both. What it does it drive up the cost of the product for those who really do need it and undermine breastfeeding for those who really wanted to go that route instead.

    Formula as a product and a choice doesn't have to mean million-dollar, agressive, slick advertising campaigns. And the comment coming from the Phillipeans is especially troubling because of the lack of reliable sources of clean water for some people there.

  7. I guess it's better a deflated balloon than a clown car...I've read that! I have had 7 births and have one baby on the way this spring. I know the last time my baby was born, at my 6 week visit, the midwife told me my uterus was "very small again." I know a uterus responds differently after many births, but it's not completely BROKEN! I think OB's don't know what to do with mothers of many. And considering how far women have supposedly come, why is it okay to attack a woman who is quite content to have as many children as her body will have while she's fertile? She's married, her husband supports this, and her kids seem to be well taken care of. People are so cruel!

  8. The last birth i attended was with a mama having her 10th baby. We ended up in the hospital and the doctor had never attended a mom who had had so many children. He was freaking out a little i think. AND, her uterus was fine, shocking, but true!

  9. I made this meme just for you, big sister.

  10. Yeah I could very much stand behind the no-advertising thing.

  11. You know, I thought of you when I first read that quote... Unbelievable.

  12. Seriously. A formula company FULLY supports breastfeeding? That's like chickens fully supporting fox integration into their coop.

  13. Thank you Katie for your comments. They really hit home. I'm a mom and full-time student with my husband's student schedule and two part-time jobs to juggle. Breastfeeding just wasn't an option after about 3 months when my milk supply started drying up. At first, I felt like a failure, because I, too, believe breast is best. But formula saved the day! That doesn't mean I don't support breastfeeding. Come on, Rixa. That statement at the end of your post is offensive to all women who can't even produce milk. You should think before you jump to drastic generalized conclusions.

    I didn't switch to formula because of an incredible ad. I did it because I needed it. Give us women a little credit for being capable human beings and knowing how to make a decision.

    And for the lady who says it should be prescription? What's wrong with you?! This is oppression against women. Not all are as lucky as you, so why don't you try to be a little more understanding. This whole conversation is a disgrace to our sex. There's already enough pressure on us to be everything and do everything. So spare us your judgments.

    I think we (women who can't breastfeed, or choose not to) deserve an apology.

  14. @Anonymous: It sounds to me like you possibly still have some underlying guilt for choosing to formula-feed rather than breastfeed, even though that decision was made out of necessity and because it was the BEST decision for your family. You're projecting that guilt when you assume that Rixa and other breastfeeding advocates are judging and/or vilifying you for using formula. Why would I make that assumption? Because I did it for nearly two years after the birth of my first child until I woke up and discovered the issues were my own.

    What these women are criticizing are the tactics that advertising companies use to promote formula. Yes, women are intelligent and capable of making their own decisions; however, formula companies have a way of finding us at our most vulnerable times when we are least likely to be able to ignore their influences (here are some links to a couple of great essays on this exact subject).

    Since no one is criticizing you or your choice to use formula(particularly since you mentioned that you weren't influenced by formula advertising, which is the topic under fire) I don't think you DESERVE any kind of apology. Perhaps what is deserved is a little understanding on BOTH sides of this issue.

  15. "Perhaps what is deserved is a little understanding on BOTH sides of this issue."

    ditto, Jessica.

  16. I for one am so happy for the Dugger's. If my husband and I had the support system and funds to have that large of a family I would never stop having babies. And a uterus is not like a balloon...WTF is all I can say to that statement.

    As to the formula question. I think that advertising of formula should stop. Period. Mothers who want or need it know that it exists. There is no need to shove it in anyone's face.

    For instance, do you know the first ad that is in the Parent's Magazine this month (a double page spread)? A Simialac formula ad. Guess what it says - that it contains the same ingredients as breastmilk. No disclaimer, nothing. Just that it is the same as breastmilk. That should NOT be allowed.

    Those ads, on TV and in Print undermine women everyday. Yes, many women can make an educated decision on formula vs. breast (or a combo of both). However, many many more women have no information. All they see are ads saying that it is the same or better for mom and baby, and do not look for or have other information. That is why the ads should stop.

    The main population being hurt by the ads are low-income and minority groups, who already deal with worse birth outcomes and more low-weight babies than any other group. Do we really need to add to their problems by misleading them with formula ads?

  17. This comment has been removed by the author.

  18. I just posted a question about how advertising undermines minority/low-income women and, lo and behold, scrolled up a bit to find some reading on just that. I should skim less. :)


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