Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Borrowed Boobies Boon for Bloggers

It’s sad when moms turn on each other. Motherhood is tough enough without having to keep one eye on the kids and the other over your shoulder to see who is waiting to judge or condemn you. However, that is exactly what has happened in the blogosphere in the last day or so. While the action continues in the center ring, Twitter’s capacity is overloaded, the sparring blogs in question are racking up hits, and everyone else (including me) has something to say about it.

Who needs UFC? We’ve got blogmamas to tune in to!

It is my opinion, redundantly enough, that an opinion is just that: an opinion. It is not a condemnation or judgment, and we are all entitled to one. Like the saying goes, “Opinions are like assholes – everybody’s got one.” The difference is, while I am willing to display my opinion to the world, I really hope someone would tell me if my asshole was showing.

The problem begins when opinions evolve people into assholes. It’s when an opinion is so vehemently stated and defended that it becomes a judgment.

I’ve got opinions. Strong ones. Some of my opinions don’t curry the favor of others, and that’s okay. As a vegan, for example, I really think that eating should be a celebration of life, and that my personal celebration needn’t involve another living creature’s suffering. I’m open to other opinions, and I respect them. For the record, I’m married to a hunter.

As a woman who has mourned the loss of a miscarried fetus, it is my opinion that life begins at conception. How else, then, could I grieve for my unborn child, if it was not truly a life to begin with?

The current “blogroversy” turns on the issue of breastfeeding. Not breastfeeding in public, not breastfeeding photos on Facebook, not breastfeeding as a concept, but, specifically, one woman breastfeeding another woman’s child.

I am not going to name names, since anyone genuinely invested in the battle already knows the players. I am not going to defend either party, since I see both sides and respect both of their opinions (Opinions, not judgments or back-biting behaviors – if you are a mama engaging in back-biting behavior, STOP. Motherhood should be a sisterhood, not a junior high clique war.). As a writer and publisher, I defend the rights of these women to speak their minds, even if their respective opinions do not prove to be popular.

I have deliberately intended to put a child that was not biologically mine to my breast. Before my husband and I took in our two youngest daughters, we had looked into private adoption. As a true believer in the slogan “Breast is Best,” I studied up on adoptive nursing. I fully intended to nurse the newborn child we thought we’d be adopting. Things didn’t work out that way, but I was prepared. The purpose of my intent was not just to nourish, but to soothe, comfort, and bond. All of these are gifts of motherhood.

That being said, I can’t definitively state how I would feel about another woman nursing “my” child. Nursing is, at its core, a very intimate act. However, does that preclude my husband from intimately bonding with our child as he feeds her a bottle? Certainly not. I’m still emotionally muddled about how I might react to another woman putting my child to her breast.

In the same vein (so to speak), I can’t imagine another woman handling my husband’s member. If he ended up in the emergency room with an injured member (I don’t know how; it’s for the sake of argument, okay?), and the ER doc was a woman, I’d tell her to handle with care and get to work. It’s all about circumstance, I suppose.

Enough about all that, though. What I’m really amazed at is how these sparring women, who previously enjoyed a respectable degree of noteriety, have literally overnight lit up the Internet, made it next to impossible for me to access my mobile Twitter account, and garnered a plethora of new commenters, subscribers and followers while conducting their girl-war online.

It seems that nursing someone else’s baby (or observing the borrowed boob spectacle) and blogging about it is a sure-fire way to increase blog traffic.

So… who’s got a hungry baby? My 34Ds are here and waiting!

Or, I just need one mommy blogger to virtually bitch-slap me so that I can Tweet about it and crash the Twitterverse!

Any takers?

P.S. – Unlike the popular girls, my comments are ALWAYS enabled. Have at it.
P.P.S. – Just don’t be a pansy and comment as “Anonymous.” That’s lame.


  1. Hmmm... I think I'll just go back to watching the UFC.

    Oooh, or Gangland.

    Shiv anyone?

    My comments are always enabled because I can pretty say anything, on Twitter I even put a hashmark in front of unfollow Dooce... and nothing.

    It's good to be me and my boobs.

  2. It's good to be me and my boobs, too.

    No one pays attention to me, either. Sometimes, I like to pretend I'm invisible. My toddlers' super invisibility-detection skills are better than my invisible skills, though.

  3. I really thought you were going to be the one to virtually bitch-slap me, Betsey. I was counting on you.

  4. I sorta stumbled over all the hoopla on Twitter and felt the same way you did. I suppose I'm neutral on the actual issue at hand. What I found interesting, from a people-watchin' standpoint, is how the whole situation demonstrates, in one long Twitter/blog/comment stream, the very best and the very worst things that women tend do to and for one another. And the hype and attention it's all commanding? Well, it makes me think we women need to just finally beat our "bewbies" into plowshares once and for all.

    Or, you know, something like that.

  5. Betsey: Ah, shit. Thanks! *yanks up her chonies*

    Megan: I suppose it's the hype and attention I'm interested in. DID I GET A RT ON THAT LINK? HELLO!

  6. I agree with almost everything you said except for the questionably related bit on miscarriage and life beginning at conception. From a pro choice person who strongly believes neither life nor pregnancy begins at conception (and neither do any major medical groups, especially since most fertilized eggs pass without implanting), I can assure you I mourned by own miscarriage without any confusion. People mourn many things related to reproductive rights that are not defined as human life. A woman can mourn infertility. A woman can mourn a molar pregnancy, which is not a human life, but a chromosomal monstrosity. These discussions take nuance, and your pat opinion on this, excuse me if my asshole if showing, is rather insensitive to anyone's pain if their political opinion is different from yours.

    I wrote about cross nursing on my own blog. I also hate mommy wars of all kinds (come to think of it, I wrote about that, too.)

  7. I'm all for cross nursing - with parent approval (of-course). I wish it weren't so strange to people. Have you heard of milk banks? You can sell and buy mommy's milk. It doesn't weird me out at all to think about another mama nursing my baby, or me nursing another baby that's not born from me. People put too much sexual stock in breast! I just can not equate my beautiful, milk producing, powerful enough to be the only food my baby ate for a year, nurturing breast with a man's come squirting, pee soaked smelly dick. And I like dick. :)

  8. I would never cross-nurse or let my children unless there were a dyer{sp?} need. Period. Doesnt have anything to do with my parenting, the bloggers' parenting, my relationship to my children etc.....I'm not into seeing others breastfeed in public either. JUST ME! I don't think anyone is BAD etc, maybe a little gross in my eyes (in public), but that's it. I may have rather helped the lady squeeze it out with my hand than handed her my child. my child=my booby! Your booby=whatever you wanna do with it. I had some nasty things to say about the cross-breast feeder at first, but I misrepresented my feelings on the whole matter. I am a firm believer in do what you want, as long as you ain't hurting anyone, that doesnt mean I approve of anything you're doing...ya know what I mean?!??! It also sucks that some people are using this "battle" as a way to get "followers"!

  9. Here I am, reading your blog! And I'm so glad I did. I think this post, for the most part, encapsulates exactly how I feel about the whole situation. I can see both sides, and both parties are to blame for the virtual cat fight that did nothing but draw unnecessary attention to the fact that judgment just never goes away, no matter how much we moms are "in this together" and connected via various social networks. Thank you for writing this. I feel like you took the words out of my mouth...er fingers.

  10. Wow, I totally missed this one. Totally.

  11. this is from connie in CO. i haven't heard about this until i read this blog, but it's unfortunate that people have to so vehemently attack someone else's choice (unless it wasn't consentual on both parents' part) i nurse my roommates daughter if she's hungry and mama's not around and she's tried to nurse my son, but i think we tried to late and he just wasn't interested (in eating anyways, he is interested in poking and prodding). i think it's an issue that is totally up to the parents and it has to be something agreed upon. i wouldn't put just any kid up to my boob. we'd have to have a relationship and have talked about it with parent(s). i am very pro-breastfeeding anytime, anywhere, and whatever. i have no problem whipping it out in church, a restaurant or whatever. people don't have to look if they don't like it and mostly i've gotten nothing but positive feedback if any at all. to me there is nothing gross about breastfeeding period. and as long as there is an agreement between folks, i see no issue with cross nursing. i see as beneficial to the baby cause they get a wider range of the good stuff that is individual to a woman's milk..anyways, enuf for now i guess...milk on!!

  12. Yes, yes and yes!!! (oh, I mean I completely disagree - slap/slap - let's both increase our traffic). LOL.

    Seriously though. I have strong opinions about what is right for me, and what I think generally is right for society. But, within that, I respect the rights of individuals to make different choices and I do not judge them for their choices because I do not know the whole background around how they got to that place.

    I also don't judge them because I know I am not perfect (I'm a meat eater, I have fast food at least once per week, I don't always pay my bills on time, I don't make home cooked meals as often as I should, etc.). But when I do something that is not perfect, I don't expect the world to rally around me and congratulate me for it. I don't try to pretend away facts or science that demonstrates my poor choice. I don't expect other people to not be proud of doing a better job than me in that aspect of their lives. I just recognize that I am human and humans are not perfect.

  13. MomTFH: Your asshole, my dear, is not showing. Opinions are made to be expressed (pardon the pun) and discussed.

    I went over to your virtual world and enjoyed myself! Some of the medical stuff is over my head, but I'm just a mom... :)

  14. Michelle: Um, YEAH! My boobs are way better than a pee-soaked, smelly dick, too!

  15. MJMILLS: Good to know that your willing hands are available to help out engorged mothers!

    I'll spread the word.

  16. Jill: Thank you for your support. Haha. Support... boobs... Get it?

    AmyinOhio: Yeah, I would have totally missed the drama, too, if it weren't for Twitter. Glad I got in on it, though. It's been sort of fun making fun of controversy.

  17. Connie in CO: Wow... you heard it here first? On TheGonzoMama.com? You need a life, girlfriend!

    Anyway, I whip mine out anywhere, anytime, too... I find people are less tolerant now that I'm not nursing, of course...

  18. Annie@phdinparenting: Well said.

    Uh... I mean... You bitch-slapped me! Oh, it's on now! My followers are so gonna post comments on your blog!

    (Both of 'em. Watch out.)

  19. I enjoy your writing. I do however have a hard time understanding why the cursing is being written. As Christians aren't we supposed to be a example of Christ in all things, including our careers,socially,etc. Melanie Lindbloom

  20. Hi, Melanie... Your point is taken. I think the message of the post was that we shouldn't judge others and, as mothers, we should support one another.

    I did use some colloquial sayings that contained swear words, but I do hope that the message speaks louder than the language.

    I do hope you will continue to read, and that things are going well for you!


  21. Well said...although I'm coming in a little late here. I voiced an opinion. I do it all the time. Don't need traffic or more readers--most of the time I'm muttering to myself. Something always goes overboard when someone mentions a breast. Insanity. Glad it's quieted down now.


No anonymous comments, please... Be loud 'n' proud, and leave your name!