There is a new doll coming to the United States market which has sparked quite a controversy. It is the Breast Milk Baby, and its purpose is to teach young girls how to breastfeed. The girls wear the special shirt/top that comes with the doll. It has flowers where nipples would be, and the baby doll makes noises when held up to the flowers. From the website for the manufacturing company, the doll “lets young girls express their love and affection in the most natural way possible, just like mommy!”
This doll is produced in Spain and has been marketed with success all over Europe. Now that the company is bringing it to the United States, there appears to be a controversy. Should young girls be taught how to breastfeed?
I’ve been mulling over this question for a couple of days. I guess I don’t have a problem with it. While I realize that how and what you feed your baby is a personal choice (and there are many factors which influence the decision to bottle feed), the studies are clear that breastfeeding is best for the baby.
I haven’t done any deep research, but I can imagine that with teen and unexpected pregnancies, one reason that more mother’s do not choose to breastfeed is because they are not educated about it. While it is a “natural instinct”, it isn’t exactly plain and easy to get the hang of with your first child.
I struggled in the hospital with Elaine to learn how to hold her, how to get her to latch, and how long she should nurse on each side. It took some work and effort, but we did it. I nursed her for 14 months before she decided she was done. Nolan latched immediately, easily, and hasn’t looked back! The pediatrician was shocked that Nolan is breastfed because of how much weight he has gained – over two pounds in his short three week life.
I remember that I had been given a bottle sanitizer as a baby gift. Knowing that I wanted to breastfeed, I returned it to the store for a more useful item. The lady who processed my return was very opinionated about how I shouldn’t go through that pain to breastfeed when I could just use a bottle. Perhaps that is the opinion of more women who don’t understand the benefits of breastfeeding, or that the pain goes away with the engorgement.
If we teach young girls now to breastfeed their babies, and give them a head start on learning how you breastfeed, then maybe more of them will stick with it when they become mothers. That is my opinion. But what do you think? Leave a comment…share your thoughts.
If you are looking for more information about breastfeeding, you should contact your local chapter of the La Leche League, or visit Diary of a Devil Dog Wife. Marah writes for a Breastfeeding Blog Hop each week, and her posts are chock full of researched information on various topics surrounding breastfeeding.
And if you are/want to breastfeed, be sure to come back tomorrow for a giveaway that will help…a Baby Bond nursing cover so you can feed your baby no matter where you are!