Op-Ed: Readers furious over article against breastfeeding, 'fun bags'
Kathryn Blundell, a woman who works for the parenting magazine Mother & Baby, recently wrote an article in which she says breastfeeding is creepy. The article goes on to call breasts "fun bags" and a lot of people are unhappy about both statements.
A scandal is brewing over an article penned by deputy editor Kathryn Blundell of Mother & Baby
magazine. The article, headlined “I formula fed. So what?" is in the current issue of the magazine.
In today's society, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and this woman is free to say she doesn't want to breast feed. However, this article appears in a parenting magazine that targets young and inexperienced pregnant women, and so critics argue the author is not properly conveying information about the benefits of breast feeding.
Blundell's blunder has caused protests to the UK's Press Complaints Commission and has prompted outrage on the Internet. For example, a Facebook group
has been created to encourage women to join and demand an apology from Blundell.
In reaction to the controversy, the magazine says it also has positive reactions from readers who feel somewhat relieved of their guilt about not breastfeeding.
That said, many formula-feeding mothers are also not pleased by the article because some do not choose this method, and are instead unable to breastfeed naturally. They fear Blundell's self-centered stance will make people believe they are similarly egocentric, not wanting to "ruin" the looks of their chests.
According to the Guardian
, even though Blundell acknowledges breastfeeding is good for both child and mother, she wrote:
"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."
According to The Medical News
the quote that has many people on edge included the term "fun bags":
“They [my breasts] are part of my sexuality, too – not just breasts, but fun bags. And when you have that attitude, seeing your teeny, tiny, innocent baby latching on where only a lover has been before feels, well, a little creepy.”
Now, one could perhaps find this a merely surprisingly bad choice of words coming from a woman. On the other hand, a look at the magazine's subscription page
shows the publication is – by total coincidence, of course – giving away free breast pumps and breast-milk bottles to every new subscriber. These are "Natural Touch Breast Express Pumps" and "Natural Touch bottles" are worth nearly £26, from a company called Nûby.
All in all, it seems the whole exercise of placing such an article is to give that company a rather interesting chance to advertise their products
which are also sold on Amazon.
About the health aspect of breastfeeding, see the following report
on Digital Journal from April 2010.