Breastfeeding is making it to the headlines more and more, and unfortunately not always in a positive way. While hardly anyone bats an eye when it comes to a visible breast as part of a cleavage, the sight of a baby sucking a breast is deemed controversial and sparks fierce discussions on a supposed moral authority of social media to ban these images.
Luckily, the virtual world offers more than these small scale wars, with thriving online breastfeeding support groups for mothers and with technological novelties such as breastfeeding apps popping up like mushrooms.
Although the online world offers valuable opportunities to change the prevailing culture and attitudes towards (public) breastfeeding, it also has its limitations. In order to not throw the baby out with the bathwater, it is important that we remain focussed on the essence. Breastfeeding is about a mother and her child making real contact. It’s about feeding the new generation with both essential nutrients and essential skills of human kindness and availability.
In this respect, I have some doubts about the omnipresence of mobile devices in labour rooms and maternity wards that I have observed over time. With that in mind, I wrote a contribution for the WABA (World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action) newsletter on the importance of eye-contact above iContact. You can read it here. Enjoy!