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Breast Intentions: How Women Sabotage Breastfeeding for Themselves and Others

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Breast Intentions: How Women Sabotage Breastfeeding for Themselves and Others.pdf | Language: ENGLISH
    Allison Dixley(Author)

    Book details


Why do mothers fail to breastfeed their babies?

The majority of mothers know breastfeeding gives their baby the best start in life: improved health, superior intelligence, closer emotional attachment are just a few of the crucial benefits. Yet a mere 17% of mothers are still breastfeeding when their babies are three months old. Why?

There are plenty of books out there that offer excuses. Tiredness, sore nipples, low milk supply, breasts too big, breasts too small, excess marketing by artificial milk companies... the list goes on. This is the first book to look for answers in the mothers themselves.

Controversial author and The Alpha Parent blogger Allison Dixley argues mothers fail to breastfeed because women undermine each other, using a toxic mix of deception, guilt, excuses, envy, contempt, defensiveness and sabotage. Drawing on academic research in psychology, biology, philosophy and anthropology, she sheds light on the hidden emotions of early motherhood, and reveals the deep and widespread damage artificial feeding can have on a mother's confidence in her body, her mothering and in other women.

Heart-wrenching, polemic and ultimately a call to action, this is a book that will make you angry, but a book that will make you think.

This is a radical, controversial and provocative book which will challenge every pre-conceived notion you have about breastfeeding, even if you are already pro... Should be required reading for all women - and men. Hand this out, along with The Politics of Breastfeeding at maternity appointments, instead of all that Bounty guff! In fact, let's give them to our teenagers. It's time for change! --Attachmentmummy.com

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Book details

  • PDF | 288 pages
  • Allison Dixley(Author)
  • Pinter & Martin Ltd.; 1 edition (25 Nov. 2014)
  • English
  • 10
  • Health, Family & Lifestyle

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Review Text

  • By Moony on 13 March 2017

    In the 21st century, in the 'developed' western world in particular, we are expected to breastfeed, but are also simultaniously expected to fail at it. Society at large says that it's not our fault - that it's the bad advice we get, the lack of support we have, jealous husbands that need attention, and our 'broken breasts' that just don't do the job they're meant to, which leads to our downfall. This book says otherwise.Using studies, statistics and psychological analysis, this author points the finger at us. She says that we are responsible for our own failures! She holds us personally accountable and shoots down all of our common attempts are deflecting criticism and blame onto scapegoats, and away from ourselves.This book states that a woman could have the whole world against her, but if she's hopeful and optimistic - if she's 100% dedicated to breastfeeding, willing to deal with all the challenges that crop up in sake of the long-term benefits, and determined to give her child the best start in life, then she will succeed at breastfeeding. But if she is pessimistic and goes looking for issues, or if she is a particularly self-centered or selfish person, or a person who can't be bothered with breastfeeding, refuses to see the benefits, or just wants to get her old body/life back etc., then she could be given all the help in the world, but will still reach for that bottle of formula, make her excuses, and will ultimately fail to breastfeed.This book was a bit tough for me to read at times, not just due to the technical language, but because this book really doesn't hold back any punches. The idea that so many of us fail to breastfeed because we're lazy, weak-willed, can't be bothered, don't want to try hard enough, look for excuses to give up, put our needs above those of our babies, want instant satisfaction as opposed to waiting for the long term-benefits, and that ultimately we just aren't WOMAN enough, is a very tough pill to swallow. But this book will jam that pill straight down your throat and I, for one, am thankful for that. I appreciate not being talked down to. I appreciate that the author doesn't tiptoe around the subject, and just sticks with the facts.If you are planning to formula feed, or are already formula feeding, while I would still encourage you to read this book, the likelihood is that you are not going to enjoy it. Still, for anyone else looking for a hard-critique of formula, as well as a few pointers with regard to how to avoid the common booby traps of breastfeeding, or for anyone simply interested in the breast vs formula debate - definitely give this book a read!

  • By mosscottage on 5 July 2017

    I write this as someone who breastfed her first until he was nearly five, and who is exclusively breastfeeding her second still, both times despite difficulties. And yet to me it's a very bleak worldview the author has. There are indeed some harsh truths amidst the bleakness but in the main I found it hard to believe that most formula feeding mums are knowingly "making excuses" for not breastfeeding and I know that this breastfeeding mum at least has never felt anything like contempt for mums who didn't breastfeed. Just sympathy for those who were let down by the system (which I think is an actual thing that happens, not, as the author puts it, an "excuse") or fed breastfeeding myths.Equally I do think the author is right in that there are some myths that we struggle to counter because we're terrified of making someone feel guilty, so rather than challenge — especially when all our challenge would do would upset someone ("what made you think you didn't have enough milk?" or even "it's a pity no one told you cluster feeding is normal") we say nothing or sympathise because we don't want to wound. And yet because we didn't challenge the myth, it gets repeated and more mums fall for the same thing. You get the choice to be nice but in the long term have myths spread that can harm other women's chances of breastfeeding … or be thought of as "breastapo".

  • By Addicted to Amazon on 26 December 2014

    This book is interesting but not an easy read; it could be mistaken for the thesis of a degree in Psychology or Sociology being choc a block with research theories, quotes, Freud and 55 pages of references. It might make useful academic discussion material for students of Psychology or Women's Studies while as a discussion topic for mothers it has the ability to touch a raw nerve or two. The basic premise relies on the assumption that mothers who made the decision to bottle feed or who gave up breastfeeding at the first hurdle have deep seated regrets which cause them to exhibit a range of behaviours and emotions through deception, guilt, excuses, envy, contempt, defensiveness to sabotage. Indeed those are the chapter headings.For myself, the book didn't stir up any feelings of discomfort or anger. But then, according to the author I am "a positive deviant", a "black swan", "tough cookie" or a "diamond in the rough". I always knew I would breastfeed; not to just "try" or "see if I could", despite the fact I hadn't been breastfed myself and wasn't aware of a single person who had breastfed a baby successfully. And so I am inclined to agree with Allison Dixley that the successs of breastfeeding for an individual mother could indeed be down to that mother's personality and determination more so than social support or the health care system.But what about the author's assumption that all mothers who formula feed have deep seated feelings of regret about not breastfeeding? I'm not sure they do; perhaps it could explain why there was such a hate campaign on the publisher's Facebook page when this book was first announced... if the haters were formula feeders feeling discomfort. However much of the hate was spilling over from a popular breastfeeding forum on Facebook. Why did these breastfeeding advocates feel so strongly about the theories in this book? One possibility is that as they hadn't read it yet, they were basing their anger on previous controversy from the author's blog. The other is that it is not the done thing in breastfeeding circles to make mothers accountable for not breastfeeding. Breastfeeding supporters go to great lengths to blame the support network and not the mother for lack of breastfeeding. And breastfeeding mothers go to great lengths to downplay their achievements so as not to make formula feeding mothers feel guilty. Why? This is what Breast Intentions discusses.If you failed at breastfeeding or never started, and you're not over it, you probably won't enjoy this book. Similarly if you strongly believe a mother should never feel guilty for her feeding choices you will rail against it and write a bad review to deny the notions within and save face with your peers ("we never blame a mother"). In doing so however, you may be playing into the book's hands by perpetuating the myth of a culture of "broken breasts". Who will this book appeal to? I'm not really sure but if you are interested in a theory of academic psychology to explain low breastfeeding rates; Breast Intentions may fascinate you, even if you don't agree with it all.


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