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Empowerment: Women Now Choose Objectification Over ‘Creepy’ Breastfeeding

June 30, 2010

My latest post at NewsReal:

You’ve come a long way, baby. But make sure you keep babies off my “fun bags.” Or so says Kathryn Blundell, editor at the parenting magazine, Mother &  Baby.

Under the headline “I formula fed. So what?”, Kathryn Blundell says in this month’s Mother & Baby that she bottlefed her child from birth because “I wanted my body back. (And some wine)… I also wanted to give my boobs at least a chance to stay on my chest rather than dangling around my stomach.”

She goes on to say: “They’re part of my sexuality, too – not just breasts, but fun bags. And when you have that attitude (and I admit I made no attempt to change it), seeing your teeny, tiny, innocent baby latching on where only a lover has been before feels, well, a little creepy.”

She concedes that “there are all the studies that show [breastfeeding] reduces the risk of breast cancer for you, and stomach upsets and allergies for your baby. But even the convenience and supposed health benefits of breast milk couldn’t induce me to stick my nipple in a bawling baby’s mouth.”

Thanks bunches, ’sexual empowerment’! You’ve now made nurturing a child “creepy”. Many websites, like Lactivist, are upset over the negative, and misleading, message that the above article sends about breastfeeding and the benefits thereof. That is an issue; breastfeeding is frowned upon far too often and many women succumb to the pressures of family or work, and wean their babies earlier than they actually want to.

I breast fed my daughter for nearly two years. She weaned herself but, admittedly, I would have likely cut her off at age two regardless. Because, unfortunately, if one breast feeds older babies, they are often looked upon as if they should be wearing Birkenstocks, making tie dyes, and following around Lilith Fair in a volkswagen van.

But, there is another issue here that I find equally disturbing. What bothers me immensely is the fact that women now see their breasts as “fun bags” and as something meant for “lovers” only and not as a part of nurturing and motherhood. This concept epitomizes the very worst in female and motherhood degradation and it shows just how much damage the “sexual empowerment” fallacy, pushed by the Leftist Femisogynists, has caused. The thought that women should exist solely as sex objects is now rampant — even amongst women themselves.

The theory behind this whole article, in a woman’s parenting magazine, is that motherhood and nurturing a child is, as they always claim, a punishment. Something that results in the cramping of one’s “empowered” style. Sex is super fun! Motherhood? Not so much. Also, creepy. And anyone who says otherwise is a nutty wing nut liar!

They have ended up diminishing women and womanhood itself with these constant attempts to demonize motherhood and to try to turn it into a punishment and a detriment to one’s happiness. Instead of realizing that being a life bearing nurturer is one of the very best things about being a woman and is an attribute in and of itself, they constantly try to take that away, all in the name of some delusional perceived equality via sexual empowerment.

They’ve dehumanized women, as Kathryn Blundell’s article shows, by encouraging women to focus on sexual “equality”.  That has now removed any requirement that women be treated as something other than a sexual toy – even by themselves. And now, this has culminated in the idea that being a sex object is more important than nurturing a child.

But oh-how-wrong they are. Guess what? Those concepts aren’t mutually exclusive. A woman can be a mother and a sexy and sexual being. A woman can nurture and breast feed her child, bonding  in a way that brings so much joy that it honestly cannot be fully described, and still be sexually enticing. Considering yourself, and your body, as only a vehicle for sexual amusements is not empowering; it’s oppressive. Resenting the natural functions of your female body is not empowering; it’s enslaving.

Breast feeding isn’t creepy. What is truly creepy is when women dehumanize themselves and demean motherhood to the point where they see their breasts as nothing but “fun bags.” Not creepy, and actually empowering, is embracing all aspects of your feminity, including being a life bearing nurturer. That is sexy. Moms can multi-task, you know. We can be barefoot, in the kitchen and still practice getting pregnant.

—–

Follow Lori  on Twitter and read more of her work at Snark and Boobs, iOwntheWorld , Right Wing News and Red State.

74 Comments leave one →
  1. killtruck permalink
    June 30, 2010 1:04 pm

    That’s weird. I tried to breastfeed, but I just *sucked* at it and made my peace with formula for my own sanity. If anything, I had an inferiority complex over whether not breastfeeding made me less of a woman, etc. In all honesty, I felt judged by the lactivist types, so I don’t have a whole lot of sympathy for them.

    The relationship between breastfeeding or not breastfeeding and my own sexuality never crossed my mind, but if it did I think I’d choose nurturing a lifelong bond with my child over a year of optimal sexiness. But then again, I don’t see why you would have to choose.

    Newsflash: Funbags of any size are going to sag to some degree whether you breastfeed or not. At least that’s what I’ve heard.

  2. Tennessee Budd permalink
    June 30, 2010 1:31 pm

    Although we have no children together, my wife is a mother, and loves being one. If she thought that way, I’d think her unfit for motherhood–and if she’s that self-centered, I wouldn’t want her for my wife, either.

  3. macleod permalink
    June 30, 2010 2:10 pm

    Bigger newsflash killtruck: breastfeeding does NOT cause saggy ” funbags”. Medical fact! Time causes saggy “funbags”. Not keeping your undergarments up-to-date ( and most moms don’t. They always put themselves last, for some reason) causes saggy “funbags”. Not using the appropriate undergarment for your particular ” funbags” causes sagging. Feeding your baby is what “funbags” are for.
    The original article is really not about funbags( which ARE a great deal of fun regardless of a little sag) or babies. It’s about self-centered people who can’t put anyone, including their own child, ahead of their own selfishness. That’s what abortion is about, and what women’s rights and “women’s studies” are about. Look at this from another angle- Is it any wonder so many women who undergo mastectomy for breast cancer feel they will be unloved without their breasts with articles like this?

  4. June 30, 2010 2:25 pm

    Now that I’ve picked my jaw up off the floor….

    Wow. Funbags, even. That woman is friggin’ insane. Oh, and she should not have children.

    What those types somehow fail to get through to their bubble-brains is that women, not men are capable of incubating a life within their body. Women, not men are capable of creating nourishment for their child within their body and feeding it to their child at the perfect temperature every time, without the use of bottles or bottle warmers, without all that extra work. Is that not amazing? Is that not miraculous? It’s certainly gives us more power than just lying on our backs and spreading’em. Being a Mommy is power, baby! We can do things that men cannot do, and that makes us indispensable. Life could not carry on without us, funbags or no. (Don’t worry, men, you’re indispensable, too.😉 But only the good men.)

    And here’s a newsflash: Most of the good dads that I know actually think that a mother who is so caring and nurturing toward her child/ren is sexy.

    I know a man who tells other men “Your dog is not your best friend. Your mother is your best friend. Remember that.” I wonder how many more generations that will be the truth. Will anyone still be able to say that when Mommies are more concerned with keeping their “funbags” firm than with actually being a mother?

    Shit, if I had this moron’s attitude, my first child would have starved to death, because he wasn’t interested in anything but breast milk.

    Also, I have a theory that attitudes like this one seriously contribute to numbers of horrible mothers who put having a “man” before caring for their children, which increases the number of children who are abused in various ways and/or murdered. I believe it is also a contributing facter in the rise in the numbers of female sex offenders.

  5. June 30, 2010 4:26 pm

    Sorry,but I don`t get the “sexual equality” thing. I always thought that women were sexually superior since we men spend so much time and effort trying to get what you ladies have. Furthermore, most of us “good guys” understand gravity and age so we( I) don`t mind if your “funbags” sag a bit because they are still fun.

  6. June 30, 2010 6:59 pm

    How sad. So there are Nipple Nazis (who think I’m a horrible mother for bottle feeding after failing with breast feeding) and now there are P*rn Moms (who want to be treated as objects).

    As for breasts being sexual, well, that’s kind of a new obsession. Check out what happens if you Google “Nursing Blessed Virgin Mary:”

    http://www.google.com/images?client=safari&rls=en&q=nursing%20blessed%20virgin%20mary&oe=UTF-8&um=1&ie=UTF-8&source=og&sa=N&hl=en&tab=wi

  7. June 30, 2010 7:00 pm

    Oh, and ignore the trash that pops up in between all of the lovely old artwork depicting Mary breastfeeding the Baby Jesus.

  8. macleod permalink
    June 30, 2010 10:35 pm

    Well, I will never have Mother and Baby in my waiting room, and I will tell my moms to avoid it.

  9. sqt permalink
    July 1, 2010 2:45 am

    Good lord. Can you imagine what kind of mother this idiot will be? I struggled to breastfeed and my doctor told me that our societal reactions to it (like this woman displays) often act as a deterrent to women and affects their ability to breastfeed. I believe it. I managed 4 months with each child but had to supplement with formula. I gave it my best shot. And my boobs look better now than they did before I had kids–do yours Kathryn?

    • July 1, 2010 10:34 am

      I went from a “B” to a “D”.🙂

      • killtruck permalink
        July 1, 2010 4:19 pm

        FWIW, mine went from C To D without breastfeeding.

  10. Molten permalink
    July 1, 2010 5:07 am

    Lori,

    I believe that your headline should read:

    Empowerment: A Woman Now Chooses Objectification Over ‘Creepy’ Breastfeeding

    How you can take one single woman’s opinion and change it into many women’s opinions is beyond me. Was Kathryn Blundell speaking for anyone other than herself in that piece? I think not.

    Question…Since you claim that there are no “woman’s issues” and that all issues are “people’s issues,” is breastfeeding a “womans issue” or not?

    • killtruck permalink
      July 1, 2010 12:32 pm

      Holy moly! When all else fails gripe about a post one letter at a time.

      “Was Kathryn Blundell speaking for anyone other than herself in that piece?” Technically, no, but many people will read her piece and think that all moms who choose not to breastfeed do it for her ridiculous reasons.

      And I believe Lori’s point, which sadly devolved into the bottle-breast debate, was that modern feminism has twisted our perceptions of breasts to solely sexual objects and turned our nurturing instincts into a burden that needs to be triumphed.

      • Molten permalink
        July 1, 2010 4:04 pm

        I tend to think that “modern feminism” plays a very small role, if any, in the perception of woman or their breasts as sex objects.

        Real feminists have been fighting against real sexual stereotypes for a very long time.

        The real culprits in sexual objectification are advertising, television, music, films, beauty pageants, pornography, titty bars, push up bras, butt floss, boob jobs, labiaplasty, and prostitution, just to name a few.

        • killtruck permalink
          July 1, 2010 4:17 pm

          I tend to think you’re clueless. Modern feminism is responsible for teaching women to resent their biology, their nurturing instincts as evidenced by Ms. Blundell’s limited, narrowminded view of her own breasts.

          • Molten permalink
            July 1, 2010 7:53 pm

            Kathryn Blundell’s opinion of her own breasts equals the modern feminist movement now? Nice try. Is that all the “evidence” you have?

            • killtruck permalink
              July 1, 2010 9:42 pm

              It’s a *product* of modern feminism. It sure as hell isn’t a product of conservatism.

          • Molten permalink
            July 2, 2010 5:26 pm

            1 Corinthians 11:9
            Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man.

    • July 1, 2010 12:37 pm

      Actually, while breastfeeding may be a “women’s issue”, it is also a “people’s issue”. The mothers who may or may not be breastfeeding aren’t the only ones effected by it. The infants who are breastfed or not are involved here, and whether or not they are breastfed and their mother’s attitude towards breastfeeding do effect them. And these babies then grow up to effect society in some manner. And, as macleod pointed out, about half of them are male.

      Also, I’ll have to find the information again to link to, but I had read that many women are uncomfortable with breastfeeding, viewing it as “indecent” or “gross”. This problem was more so with low-income women, who could have benefited financially from breastfeeding because of the money-saving aspects (let’s face it, formula is not cheap, but eating an additional 500 healthy calories a day to feed your baby is.

      Again, I’ll have to find the information to link to, but the idea that breastfeeding isn’t as good, or is an inconvenience, began in the late 1800’s or early 1900’s. Women were told that breastfeeding was “unhygienic”, and that bottle feeding was better. This carried on until around the 1970’s or so, and was heavily promoted by the formula manufacturers (my mother had given me a copy of my vax records, and it had been provided by Enfamil). In many families of my generation, only the youngest sibling was breastfed. I know this was the case in both my and my husband’s families. So, essentially, that choice was taken away from women. For women to take it back would not only be empowering to women (particularly mothers), but would be extremely beneficial and empowering for their children and for future generations. That’s something only a true Feminist would consider… not just the here & now, or “Gee, I don’t think I want to deal with that sort of disruption to my sex life”.

  11. macleod permalink
    July 1, 2010 11:13 am

    Well, Blundell is what they call a “thought leader”. She edits a magazine, presumably read by moms, and she influences the writing in that rag in her role as editor. So she is, potentially, affecting breastfeeding in a lot of homes. Trust me when I say, it is frequently a battle to get moms to breastfeed. There is something about the two week mark. If you can get them past it, most women are content to go on forever. There are lots of barriers. The labor and delivery nurses are frequently not supportive because it takes more time to coach breastfeeding than it takes to stick formula in a newborn. Many of the people who are ” lactation consultants” are really not good at their job, and many hubby’s don’t like to share.
    I always tell my moms there are three pluses to breastfeeding:
    1) It’s always the right temperature
    2) You can take it anywhere
    3) The containers are much more attractive

    As to whether this is a “womens” issue– Approximately half of the potential breasfeeding recipients out there at any given time are– male! It really does affect both genders.

    • killtruck permalink
      July 1, 2010 12:34 pm

      Lactation consultants played a key role in me not breastfeeding.

      • July 1, 2010 12:42 pm

        The unfortunate fact of the matter is that some of them very obviously don’t really care or have received woefully inadequate training. If you’re lucky enough to have insurance that covers it, it might be best to seek out an independent lactation consultant rather than the one staffed at the hospital. If you can find one that is a member of La Leche Legue, all the better (the good ones won’t make you feel inadequate if you’re actually unable to breastfeed, but instead will work to make you feel that you’re a good mom for doing your best in either case.)

        • killtruck permalink
          July 1, 2010 1:50 pm

          It’s too late now for me, but I’ll remember that for other new moms I know.

    • Molten permalink
      July 1, 2010 4:10 pm

      Yeah, this is a “peoples issue.” If male infants could talk, I’m certain that they would support their right to choose the boob, instead of the bottle.

      • killtruck permalink
        July 1, 2010 9:43 pm

        They’d probably choose late term birth over late term abortion too.

        • Molten permalink
          July 2, 2010 5:02 am

          If you’re old enough to suckle, then you’ve already been born. So that probably wouldn’t be and issue for a talkative infant.

  12. macleod permalink
    July 1, 2010 1:14 pm

    Well, I don’t know Ms. Ziganto, but the reason I like her blog is that it stimulates discussion and she doesn’t feel compelled to control it. To stimulate a thoughful exchange of ideas is a great achievement. So, I’m not bothered that the article ” degenerated” into a conversation about breastfeeding. Where else should it go.
    I’d be be somewhat cautious about Laleche, in that they frequently advocate for breastfeeding well beyond infancy. When a ten year old walks in, unstraps mom’s bra and starts sucking breastfeeding loses a certain aesthetic value.

    • killtruck permalink
      July 1, 2010 1:54 pm

      On one of the other sites where this was posted it turned into breast vs. bottle right out of the gate. I fed into it myself, and I regret it.

    • July 1, 2010 3:06 pm

      10 year olds nursing… ew. That’s an exaggeration, right? I mean, it must be. I’ve known at least one mom who nursed hers until he was almost 5, and would have thought that odd if I hadn’t learned that it’s the norm in a couple other countries. But 10?

      I would feel weird about a 4 year old nursing, but at least they’re not in kindergarten yet. x^p
      My first nursed until he was nearly 2&1/2 (the last 6 or so months was night-nursing as part of his bedtime routine). He weened himself about 1&1/2 months before his baby brother was born. Not sure how long this one will nurse, but he’ll be weened before he’s 3.

  13. macleod permalink
    July 1, 2010 4:04 pm

    It’s not an exaggeration, or an isolated incident. We have a whole 60’s refugee movement here that refuses immunizations, breast feeds long past any possible health benefits, and of course, doesn’t shave anything or use deodorant

  14. macleod permalink
    July 2, 2010 10:31 am

    The odor’s not……

  15. July 6, 2010 12:37 pm

    Now see, maybe it’s because I’m a guy, but I didn’t read the same vitriol into that argument that you seem to have. This seemed to be more of a bit of a slap at the breastfeeding activists who proclaim that you’re not a good mother if you bottle-feed. (I’ve got friends like that.) The point is that breasts are intended for sexuality as well as nurturing, and if a mother chooses not to breastfeed, that should indeed be her choice.

    • Solipslip permalink
      July 7, 2010 3:46 pm

      Successful was your training… At any mention of anything female related, always respond:

      “It’s a woman’s choice, or, It’s her body-her choice”

      Why is it men are the most ardent supporters of such things?

      Do they fancy themselves enlightened or just well trained?

      • July 7, 2010 4:52 pm

        It is an “easy out” like when a woman asks a question “Do these pants make my butt look big”? How do you answer a question like that ? You will catch”Hell” no matter how you respond.I`m just sayin`.

      • July 12, 2010 12:53 pm

        The only time that’s NOT true is when it affects another life. In other words, abortion, because it kills another human being, is not a matter of choice. Breast or bottle? That is indeed a woman’s choice to make. The baby should live either way. Is the breast better? Certainly…

        I’ve seen marriages fall apart after children are born because when the wife goes into “mothering” mode, she has a hard time seeing her body as sexual, and will deprive her husband of sexual contact.

        My point is, don’t take one woman’s point of view as final authority, even for the flakes on the Left. This is simply a matter of choice, and it was a choice that was hers to make.

  16. Thag Jones permalink
    July 7, 2010 9:52 pm

    When I first started breastfeeding, I found the idea of having a grown man at my boob kind of weird (and it IS a lot more weird than having a baby there, when you think about it). I got over that though, and now I don’t really see a problem with being both a nurturing mother and a hot lover in the same body. And please, “fun bags”? How juvenile.

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