Streams

Ricki Lake on Breastfeeding

Friday, November 15, 2013

The American Academy of Pediatrics, the World Health Organization and the New York City Department of Health all recommend mothers breastfeed their babies for at least six months, but some mothers have trouble with the physical and logistical challenges.  Director Dana Ben-Ari and executive producer Ricki Lake discuss their new film “Breastmilk,” which advocates for breastfeeding while documenting the problems some new moms have when they choose to breastfeed their babies.

Guests:

Dana Ben-Ari and Ricki Lake

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Comments [16]

Ladielyberty from Hibbing, MN

Yes this is the best way to feed your BABY! Yet keep your boob in your shirt in public ... I had 4 babies and breast fed them all yet deep inside I KNOW flipping my boob out in public is not the way to do it. Stay home more often for your babies sake! Running around isn't the best thing for your breasts or your baby. If you have a problem with flipping your yahoos out in public, let's try the term modesty...

May. 09 2014 11:58 PM
Anne from NJ

Of course breastfeeding is a struggle. Most women have at least a hint of that story. But most often women talk about breastfeeding as a kind of martyrdom or ecstasy, and nothing in between. We don't talk about how it's merely sensible, astoundingly cheaper, incomparable for bonding and facilitates a relaxed environment that modern society barely recognizes. As a feminist, I still feel that we women are so estranged from our bodies that--whether in sexuality or in caregiving--we never dream of allowing our bodies to inform our choices rather than the other way around. Instead we pump our bodies full of synthetic estrogen and our babies full of formula, and sigh. So what if we stop working for two years, god forbid? I used the opportunity to switch careers. I make less money but eight years later am 1000% more sure of myself and love what I do. Fellow mothers, chill out. Bodies hate stress and overthinking, and modern anxiety will sabotoge your best efforts. Downshift, recreate, dawdle, observe. To me, that's the real beauty of motherhood, and it can't be measured.

Nov. 20 2013 09:09 PM
Jamie from Brooklyn

I think this is so very important and I disagree so strongly with a previous commenter that the only relevant topic related to breastfeeding is doing so in public and the other commenter who distills breastfeeding difficulties down to a quick call to La Leche League.
Breastfeeding is HARD for many (most?) women and there is great pressure to do so, now more than ever. In our economy running a household with a single earner is often impossible and usually results in some tough lifestyle choices. My husband and I make sacrifices from the type of vacations we take (only to visit family) to the type of groceries we buy (not as much organic as I'd like)not to mention choices regarding clothing, personal care, etc so that I can stay home with our kids. I can say with certainty that I would not have been able to continue breastfeeding my daughter (now 5) had I been required back at work after three months. Our society does not support women and families and until we do so (in the form of extending maternity and paternity leave, giving postpartum benefits, lots of good ideas out there)the AMA, Mayor Bloomberg and anyone else can blow as much hot air as they like about how babies should be breastfed but the results will breed nothing but more guilt and division.

Nov. 15 2013 01:22 PM
Jamie from Brooklyn

I think this is so very important and I disagree so strongly with a previous commenter that the only relevant topic related to breastfeeding is doing so in public and the other commenter who distills breastfeeding difficulties down to a quick call to La Leche League.
Breastfeeding is HARD for many (most?) women and there is great pressure to do so, now more than ever. In our economy running a household with a single earner is often impossible and usually results in some tough lifestyle choices. My husband and I make sacrifices from the type of vacations we take (only to visit family) to the type of groceries we buy (not as much organic as I'd like)not to mention choices regarding clothing, personal care, etc so that I can stay home with our kids. I can say with certainty that I would not have been able to continue breastfeeding my daughter (now 5) had I been required back at work after three months. Our society does not support women and families and until we do so (in the form of extending maternity and paternity leave, giving postpartum benefits, lots of good ideas out there)the AMA, Mayor Bloomberg and anyone else can blow as much hot air as they like about how babies should be breastfed but the results will breed nothing but more guilt and division.

Nov. 15 2013 11:55 AM
Tony from Canarsie

To the filmmakers: Good luck with the documentary, but you might want to tone down the hyperbole a notch or two.

Nov. 15 2013 11:44 AM
Hester from Jersey City

I'm expecting my first child and navigating the unfamiliar waters of maternity leave, etc. I'm extremely anxious about breastfeeding as it relates to returning to work. I know my workplace will allow me to pump at work but I'm more than a little nervous about the logistics of getting enough milk to feed my baby while I'm absent (12 hours including my commute), transporting the milk on my commute (2 trains and a bus) and still being able to breastfeed my baby on my days off. I am realizing for the first time how unfriendly our society is toward motherhood, breastfeeding and the like. Hospitals and healthcare professionals can push breastfeeding all they want (and should) but until other aspects of our society change (such as maternity leave), there will be a certain amount of mothers who fail or aren't able to breastfeed as long as they would like.

Nov. 15 2013 11:43 AM
janny1006 from jersey city

I had huge issues breastfeeding. I had to supplement with formula (using the tube contraption to simulate breastfeeding). I had no family support system (including a MIA husband, who soon became 'ex'). A friend had bags and bags of milk in her freezer, and i cried, thinking how inadequate i was. La Leche told me to get in bed and stay there for a few days. Not possible. I gave it my best shot for about 6 mos., then went to formula 100%. Looking back at photos now, every shot of my daughter pre formula was a scowl. Once she got on formula = happy smiling baby. Poor baby was hungry. It literally, to me, was the most unnatural thing. I wish my experience was different, but that's what it was.

Nov. 15 2013 11:43 AM
janny1006 from jersey city

I had huge issues breastfeeding. I had to supplement with formula (using the tube contraption to simulate breastfeeding). I had no family support system (including a MIA husband, who soon became 'ex'). A friend had bags and bags of milk in her freezer, and i cried, thinking how inadequate i was. La Leche told me to get in bed and stay there for a few days. Not possible. I gave it my best shot for about 6 mos., then went to formula 100%. Looking back at photos now, every shot of my daughter pre formula was a scowl. Once she got on formula = happy smiling baby. Poor baby was hungry. It literally, to me, was the most unnatural thing. I wish my experience was different, but that's what it was.

Nov. 15 2013 11:41 AM
Truth & Beauty from Brooklyn

I suppose breastfeeding is NOW an option - as that is what breasts were designed for (despite Hugh Hefner's empire) - but it didn't used to be. It was the ONLY way to feed babies and if a woman was unable to breastfeed, she got a wet nurse. I have an newspaper from the late 18th century with ads from wet nurses looking for new babies to feed.

Only the advent of commercial formula made breastfeeding optional and deprived babies of the important nutrients and immune properties that they get best from breast milk. Of course, the other, equally important, benefit of breastfeeding is the bond between mother and baby, AND, of course, the fact that breastfeeding helps the mother's body return to its pre-pregnancy state more quickly.

Unless a woman has a serious problem or is on some kind of medication that can be excreted through breast milk, breastfeeding really is the way to go.

Nov. 15 2013 11:40 AM
janny1006 from jersey city

I had huge issues breastfeeding. I had to supplement with formula (using the tube contraption to simulate breastfeeding). I had no family support system (including a MIA husband, who soon became 'ex'). A friend had bags and bags of milk in her freezer, and i cried, thinking how inadequate i was. La Leche told me to get in bed and stay there for a few days. Not possible. I gave it my best shot for about 6 mos., then went to formula 100%. Looking back at photos now, every shot of my daughter pre formula was a scowl. Once she got on formula = happy smiling baby. Poor baby was hungry. It literally, to me, was the most unnatural thing. I wish my experience was different, but that's what it was.

Nov. 15 2013 11:40 AM
Lauren D. Macioce from Spanish Harlem

As a new mother of a two month old child, I discovered, somewhat to my surprise, that breastfeeding was not as intuitive or instinctive for me as I had anticipated. Many of us get off to a rocky start; the support of my doula, Bethany Nevin, who worked with me through my birth, was instrumental in helping my daughter and me successfully work out the kinks. It is crucial to acknowledge the amazing support of the doulas who work with new moms to help us figure out how to nurse our babies successfully, without judgment or pressure, often on a sliding scale to make this amazing resource accessible to all women.

Nov. 15 2013 11:38 AM
Rachel from Sunset Park

I breast fed and had no qualms about supplementing with formula. Just like the epidermal, even though, I wanted to have natural childbirth, I had no qualms having the epidermal. Why do women feel all this pressure?

Nov. 15 2013 11:36 AM
Siahro

I am sad to say I don't really see the point of this documentary. Seems a little redundant. Let's talk about societies view on Women breastfeeding in public maybe and how we can change people's attitudes on it. The Business of Being Born was a truly life changing and eye opening documentary for me as a female who wants to have children in the future, however this documentary doesn't necessarily seem as compelling.

Nov. 15 2013 11:34 AM
The Truth from Becky

to breastfeed or NOT to breastfeed is an individual choice, not every one can and not everyone wants to.

Nov. 15 2013 11:30 AM
Sue from NY

If you have trouble with breastfeeding, you call La Leche League, they help, and then you breastfeed. You get the help you need and you avoid filling your baby with corporate chemicals.

STIGMA of breastfeeding in public? Ha! Breastfeed in public PROUDLY and MILITANTLY! Yo, just TRY telling me I can't or shouldn't.

Nov. 15 2013 11:28 AM
Dan from Inwood

I went to a liberal Art school in Manhattan. There were acting students who went on the Ricki Lake show & portrayed whatever role was needed to fill (ie crackheads, homeless people, sexpots, skinheads, whatever).
How can we trust anything you put out now ??

Nov. 15 2013 11:26 AM

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