I recently created a post on Facebook about an issue I read earlier. It was about a campaign ad from Mead Johnson’s “Best Start with Dad”. Apparently, some mommy bloggers are saying that it was a sly move and there was a subliminal message. I have nothing against this, nor a pro simply because I feel I am not that knowledgeable enough about this sensitive issue.
BTW, for my own reference and hopefully to some who happens to read this post, the Milk Code is:
E.O. 51, commonly referred to as, “The Milk Code”, is a law that ensures safe and adequate nutrition for infants through the promotion of breastfeeding and the regulation of promotion, distribution, selling, advertising, product public relations, and information services artificial milk formulas and other covered products.
When I gave birth at Fairview General Hospital, I immediately asked for my baby the moment I was coherent enough to ask. They gave me a simple answer that the baby is still in the nursery, and that I should provide them a small can of S26 infant formula. Being a first time mom, all my researches flew out the window, so even if I knew that I wanted to breastfeed right away, I was not given that right at the moment. In my mind, maybe it was just the way it was supposed to be, as the baby was not even placed on me after he came out. Simply put, Geoff’s first taste of milk was an infant formula.
When he was finally roomed in, I had him latch on, and had his taste of breastmilk. Yes, he liked it, yes, it was painful, yes, it was tiring, yet, fulfilling. With this note, I acknowledge Babe’s support. To be truthful, I will still be able to do so without his help, pero his presence helped a lot, his presence and re-assurance helped make it easier. This is what I call #beststartwithdad, though I won’t limit it to such.
Fast forward to 2 months after, though I gave birth through CS, I had to go back to work. With this, I really struggled. I pumped every chance I got. Most of the milk was wasted when I had to pump in our office CR. I have scheduled break so I had to be patient even if I was feeling full. The milk that is able to be brought home, we heat for tomorrow morning, when I am in the office. I breastfeed when I am home. As my preserved milk was not enough to last the day, the nanny and even Babe had to give in to infant formula. Baby Geoff is a really hungry baby and would cry a lot whenever milk is not enough. Until finally, by the end of the third month, I can barely fill half a 4 ounce bottle. Even Geoff refused to nurse from me, so even if I wanted to, even if my heart is breaking every time I force my breast to him, even if I am crying because I feel ayaw na nya sa akin, I had to give in and feed him formula. It was not a happy ending, but not a bad one either.
I think the issue started because of the subliminal message that the campaign was trying to get across daw, meaning, the use of “Best Starts” which could equate to giving formula to new born. In my knowledge, and lack thereof, I was not even aware na bawal pala i-advertise ang infant formula because breastmilk should be the only option for babies. I only read about it today because it is trending in twitter. If I can wish for something, I will be wishing to be breastfeeding pa din, kaso, ito na yun eh. In my opinion, I don’t see any adverts on TV, nor radio. Plus I think most mommies would really prefer breastfeeding rather than spend money on expensive formula, they are smart like that. I really envy those who are able to breastfeed even if their babies are beyond 1 year old, however, I also get the dilemma of those who are unable to express milk after a brief period of time (particularly me).
So, in summary, I feel I am being neutral. Geoff is now 14 months old, still drinking his infant formula and so far, he is doing okay. Everything I wrote here, these are purely my opinion.