Laila Ali: The Breastfeeding Mistake I Didn’t Make Again

06/29/2011 at 04:00 PM ET
Alison Dyer

Her second child, daughter Sydney J., meant a second chance at breastfeeding for Laila Ali — and the mother-of-two was ready to do anything to prevent making the same error she made with now 2½-year-old son C.J. Muhammad.

“About a week into it I made the mistake of giving my son a bottle so my husband [Curtis Conway] could help, and then the baby started liking the bottle, and I ended up having to pump,” Ali, who eventually exclusively pumped, tells Best for Babes.

“I wasn’t going to give up or stop. I feel like God gave us, as moms, our own custom formula specifically for our child. Why would I want to go buy something from the store instead, that’s made in a factory?”

Fortunately, nursing her daughter has been smooth sailing and everyone is thriving, including Conway, who has found other ways to bond with his 3-month-old baby girl.

“He knew that I didn’t want to introduce the bottle too early with Sydney, but it wasn’t like I had to say, ‘Honey, you’re going to be able to help in other ways,'” Ali, 33, explains.

“He already knows, when it comes to the baby and feeding the baby and doing things the best way, I’m in the lead as far as that’s concerned. We don’t have an issue with that.”

After all, adds Ali, nursing is a mother’s right — and shouldn’t be challenged!

“Breastfeeding is a job made for moms to do. I don’t see arguing with that, though I am sure people will,” she says. “It’s such a short period of time in a child’s life that you are going to be breastfeeding, so let Mom do her thing.”

For more from Laila, read the full interview at Best for Babes.

— Anya Leon

FILED UNDER: News , Parenting

Share this story:

Your reaction:

Add A Comment reserves the right to remove comments at their discretion.

Showing 160 comments

Lilybett on

She had me right up until she talked about herself doing things the right way over her husband. Sure, in terms of breastfeeding, a woman should always lead the way but it’s not outside the realm of possibility that men might do some things better.

One woman I know insisted on using particular products and changing the baby in a certain way and yelled at her husband for doing it differently, but then got told by the doctor that her way was actually giving their daughter the nappy rash and they should be doing it the husband’s way.

Abby on

You go, girl! I mostly like what she said because she stood her ground. There are times you have to give in when in a relationship and also times you have to compromise, but there are certain things that you just have to stand your ground. I hope I can breastfeed too with my first child.

Tabs on

Good for her! She’s being a very good advocate for nursing!! Logical but not too pushy!

Michelle on

Love breastfeeding advocates! And so happy Laila got a second chance. Such a fabulous thing we can do for our babies and she’s right, the milk we are able to give them is specially formulated – you can’t ask for anything better! Enjoy your breastfeeding journey, Laila – it’s amazing and such an awesome bonding experience! 🙂

Erika on

My children were all formula feed and all three are perfectly health. There is more than one way to do things. Breast feeding is not for everything for many reasons.

mommytoane on

Erika, I agree with you. BF is not for everyone. My DD thrived on formula, and is a healthy, intelligent child.

I think its sweet that Laila wanted to include her hubby in feedings tho. 🙂 Its an awesome way to bond with your baby…no matter how you are feeding.

Kari on

Thank you Erika. I am 32 weeks pregnant and have planned on formula feeding the whole time. Breastfeeding just grosses me out and it’s not for me. I shouldn’t have to explain myself, but for some reason I get attack for my decision. No one in my family was breastfed and we are all healthy and not overweight.

sarawara on

Yet another reason to LOVE Laila Ali!

jane on

I too agree with you Erika. Breastfeeding is great- for those who can/want to do it. No one should feel forced into or made to feel bad about doing something that they don’t want to do.

Jessie on

I don’t think she meant anything bad by it. If she wants to breastfeed, that SHOULD trump her husband not wanting her to breastfeed. She has milk specially designed for her baby, and yes, it IS superior to formula. That’s not to say formula isn’t fine or baby won’t be healthy, but breastmilk is better. That’s a fact, and even the formula companies admit it.

It makes me sad to see people say it grosses them out, though. That seems to close-minded to not even try, because you have sexual hangups.

Molly on

I use to respect Laila,but not anymore after this interview. Why judge women who don’t breast-feed. She ignored the fact that not everyone believes in a god which also offends me.

Jessie on

It’s kind of like eating organic, minimally processed foods. Obviously it’s better, but not everyone can/will do it, and their kids are still generally okay.

molly on

While I personally had no real major ideas as to whether I would BF or formula feed my son I soon fell in love with it and stuck to it for nearly a year and a half! There are some great benefits for mother/child and your pocket book!

But that being said…I and my 3 siblings weren’t BF by our mother and we were bonded tightly and healthy children. I think to each her own, and women just need to be informed for themselves and then decide what is best for them. Hopefully the women in their lives will support them for whatever choice they make and cheer each other on no matter what. I do love BF-ing a lot and actually am looking into doing it for my second child that will be adopted this coming fall but I think we need to stop judging others so harshly and just realize that each woman will have her own way of parenting and bonding.

krewcat on

My 4 kids were all on formula from the get go. I very much enjoyed my husbands input and help so that I could sleep and do other things. Combined my kids ahve had 1 bout of pink eye and nothing else.

I don’t see what the big deal is as long as your child is fed!

Crystal on

I am by NO means a bf advocate but I do understand where Laila is coming from. The first child is like the guinea pig!! Lol! Whatever you do right/wrong with the first you try to learn from with your second. She’s learing and growing from her experiences with CJ and I respect her for that. Great job Laila and Sydney is a BEAUTY!!! 🙂

Charleen on

I remember commenting here how I though nipple confusion was at play when this blog ran a previous post about her first attempt at breastfeeding and how she ended having to exclusively pump after her baby refused to latch on after receiving a bottle within the first few weeks. Apparently some people took offense to the comment about possible nipple confusion but now I feel somewhat vindicated now that Laila apparently agrees with my conclusion.

This is a lesson to be learned here that sometimes BF advice given is well intentioned and actually beneficial and not simply some attempt to bash the formula feeding moms who being told about advice after she is longer trying to breastfeed. Such advice is intended to help her with future breastfeeding attempts and help other women/mothers who might read it who could benefit from it now or in the future. It’s not an attempt to make the mother feel bad because by telling her what she could have done differently or imply she is a bad mother for not being better informed about breastfeeding. It’s simply an attempt to help her and others avoid the same mistakes and thus be able to have the breastfeeding experience they desire.

If you don’t want to breastfeeding that’s fine as it’s your choice ultimately but do consider others do want to BF and thus want access to accurate info on how to do so successfully, and want to be informed when they have been giving bad advice about breastfeeding they can learn from their experience.

Wah-bulance on

Here we go. Another bunch of ‘women’ who always feel personally attacked when anyone says breastfeeding is best. Guess what? You are a fool if you think that anything made in a vat in some factory will be better for your baby than the milk you produce naturally. How is that NOT pure logic, science and common sense?

Now, whether or not you CAN or DO nurse is a whole other subject. Obviously, some *can’t* do it for whatever reason and some *won’t* do it for whatever reason and that’s your business. Why do people always feel the need to defend themselves as if someone personally called them a horrible parent?

victoria on

“I wasn’t going to give up or stop. I feel like God gave us, as moms, our own custom formula specifically for our child. Why would I want to go buy something from the store instead, that’s made in a factory?”

you mums who think that breastfeeding is ;gross; you are a mother now sometimes you need to put your child first and give them the best that you can which is nursing not being able to do it and not even trying are two differnet things….

Gaby on

I hate it how these celeb moms like giselle and laila like to call baby formula “factory made” or “chemicals”…different moms are in different circumstances. Yeah brestfeeding is the best choice but not everyone has the luxury of being able to breastfeed…some unfortunate mothers wish they could nurse but cannot due to a medical condition, or moms that are under treatment such as chemo…its a very sensitive ssubject and if these celebs want to promote brestfeeding thats’s wonderful…they just need to stop referring to baby formula as if it were some type of chemical.

l on

Here come the breastfeeding Nazis…

Monica on

I don’t understand when people say they think breastfeeding is “gross”. It is in fact the most natural thing and what your body was made to do. Was it “gross” when you got pregnant and is it “gross” now that your body is physically creating another human being?? Wait until after the baby is born- your body will go thru so many changes that are truly gross!!

Show me another mammal in nature that pops out a bottle and mixes some formula when it’s time to feed their offspring.

I’m not saying that some women don’t have huge problems and aren’t able to breastfeed but at least they try before they write it off completely. I had serious problems nursing my oldest daughter and wanted to quit so many times but was determined to try all avenues, including taking herbal supplements & seeing a speech therapist to help her learn to suck better, before I gave up- because I knew it was the best thing for her. I ended up nursing her for 1 year and was darned proud of myself because I worked my butt off to make it work.

All I’m saying is even if you think it’s not something you would like or be good at- at least try it before you make that final decision- for your baby’s sake. If you are worried about it there are classes you can take before the baby is born to educate you. And there are lactation consultants that are immensely helpful after the baby is born. At my hospital they had weekly lunches for new moms where lactation consultants were on hand to weigh babies and offer help.

Molly on

Monica, sorry but Laila comments are offensive and so are your comments You and Laila should both just stay silent because you lack the ability to talk about breast-feeding without insulting women who choose not to

Yasmel on

Time to bring out my favorite quote

“While breastfeeding may not seem the right choice for every parent, it is the best choice for every baby.”

– Amy Spangler

Michaela on

My son was born at 30 weeks and weighed only 2 pounds. Because he was so tiny, he couldnt nurse. I pumped and pumped for around 4 months. Everyone told me to just use formula, but I wanted those antibodies for my tiny baby. After about 4 months he latched no problem and the doctors attributed his steady weight gain and health to the breast milk. He is now 3 and doing amazing. I just had my second and got to bf her from the start. I really believe unless you have some sort or problem where you CANT bf, there is no reason not to. Its important to think about what is number one for your babies. It is proven that its breastfeeding

Kandy on

Everyone relax. Why are people on both sides of the issue so insecure? If you can breastfeed, breastfeed. If you can’t breastfeed or don’t want to, then formula feed. Mothering is hard enough – we should support and uplift one another instead of turning every last thing into a debate of extremes. Good for her for trying again, good for those who do, good for those who don’t. Raising kids is hard enough – everyone does the best they can for their child. Trust me – how we feed our kids is important, but more important is how we love and support them all the years beyond that.

Michaela on

Monica – so you can express your opinion, but Molly cant? hmmm

Kandy on

I’ve know plenty of moms who breastfeed who pull their 3 year olds through McDonald’s drive thrus, and plenty of moms who formula feed who carefully nourish their children. Plenty of dads of breastfed babies are involved; plenty of dads of bottle fed babies are on the golf course. She’s trying her best for her child let’s applaud that, congratulate her on her new joy, and move on.

Kelly on

The sanctimonious mothers who breast feed all sit around looking down their noses at the mothers who don’t, but we’re not allowed to be uncomfortable when you whip that thing out in front of our faces, saying “oh it’s natural, get over it”. Well guess what? I don’t feel like being a damned disgusting brood cow, and I don’t care how much you shake your underarm hair at me in disdain. I gave my child the best start I could by taking extremely good prenatal care. I will give my child the best formula I can, from a BOTTLE, with my husband’s help. Oh and remember once your child is weaned to never give him fast food and to only allow him to eat organic….because that’s BEST! Get over yourselves you bunch of sanctimonious cows.

Michaela on

lol Kandy, great point!

Michaela on

Kelly, I have never breastfed in public. I dont think that name calling is the best way to make your point. The fact that you and your husband fed your child from a bottle is great. I nursed my kids, thats great too. Just because I believe in breastfeeding doesnt mean I lookdown on others that dont. Everyone has a right to express their opinion without being called a “sanctimonious cow.” We all want to do the best for our children.

Molly on

There are sooo many women out there who can’t breastfeed (lack of milk, can’t pump at work, adopted baby, etc.) but for those who simply don’t want to try because they want more sleep, or it’s “gross”… well those women are only thinking about themselves. Think about your baby and what is BEST for your baby, not for you. It’s called being a parent.

Jillian on

Jessie, just because someone finds breastfeeding gross doesn’t mean it’s because they think it’s sexual.

Baby, I really like what you said.

Everyone is allowed their opinion. No one needs to stay quiet. We are all going to have different opinions. Respecting them is what’s key. I don’t think she meant anything by her statements, but I did find them a bit one sided. Like breastfeeding is the only way to make your baby healthy bc of what god gave her. As someone who doesn’t believe in god or that there is anything wrong with formula, I think the message is not good. It rubbed me the wrong way. Sorta like Giselles did.

alicejane on

Molly, replace the word “God” with “nature” if it offends you so much. It still reads essentially the same way. I don’t believe in or worship any gods either and I wasn’t offended. If Laila believes in GOd then she has every right to talk about it, it doesn’t bother me. It bothers me when people preach it or are judgemental, but I didn’t get any such vibes from Laila.

My mom is a big breastfeeding advocate, and while personally, I do think it is a great option and the health benefits can’t be ignored, I get it might not be for everyone. I think it’s too bad, like other posters have said, that there are people with sexual hangups about it and that that might be the only reason someone doesn’t breastfeed. But it’s sad, the way people tear each other down. Women should know that if they can’t, or choose not to breasfeed, that’s okay.

Michaela on

btw Monica and Molly, I meant that the other way around 😉

Indira on

I can understand people who can’t breastfeed because of time constraints or physical inability. However, there is something jarring about an expectant mother refusing to breastfeed her child because she cannot see beyond the sexuality of the female breast. Essentially what she is saying is, I understand that nature has equipped me with what is best for my child but, I am not going to BF because it’s “gross”. It just sounds incredibly juvenile and, a bad mentality. It’s like hearing someone opting to give birth early because they’re afraid of getting fat.

You can argue that everyone is doing “their” best but, the pros and cons of BF vs. Bottle F are scientific and the bottle stuff doesn’t hold a candle to the custom.

Molly on

alicejane I still find her comments offensive. I use to respect her so much but now I’m ashamed I respected her.

Molly on

Indira, comments like that are so snobby and chauvinistic.

Frida on

Wow!!! i am totally with you, a lot of women just give up too soon, some mothers I comprehend they have to work but others just because they dont want to change a little habits in this beautiful and such a short period. Congratulations!!!

Marky on

Molly, you really DON’T have the right to tell Laila she cannot refer to the one she calls “God” in an interview. If you are “ashamed” you ever respected her, simply because of her comment, then you are the shallow one who should quietly go to the corner and think about your self-righteous attitude. She is giving her opinion after she was asked for it. She’s not going around knocking on people’s doors checking to see if they are BF! If you don’t want to BF, don’t, but stop being hateful when people say it’s best; it is.

That being said, it doesn’t always work out, and some women don’t want to. That needs to be acceptable to those of you who are being overbearing about how important it is, etc. I’m a L&D nurse who taught BF, I think it’s great and I enjoyed the experience. I also have 2 adopted children–hmmm, BF didn’t work for them, and they still thrived, because I didn’t prop bottles, I held them and fed them and gave them the same attention. My daughter couldn’t BF because her daughter had such a severe reaction to the breast milk that no matter what she tried, the child had such a high bilirubin she almost had to have a liver transplant before it was discovered that the breast milk was the issue. The whole first month, she was not able to be held unless she was being fed. Please don’t tell me that didn’t hurt her more than formula did! Both sides need to calm down!!

Tink on

Indira here’s a thought for you: maybe I don’t like the feeling of breastfeeding. Maybe it has nothing to do with sex or sexual feelings in any way shape or form. Physically it makes me feel ‘gross’, and I don’t want to stress myself out so I use a bottle.

Perhaps some people need to stretch their tiny little minds beyond the norm, beyond the common and think about the fact that not everyone feels the same way, regardless of how ‘natural’ something is supposed to be.

jessicad on

You have to be confident with the choices you make as a Mother, and try not to take offense to opinions. Unfortunately, someone will judge no matter how you choose to feed your child! I thought it was a nice article and wish people wouldn’t bash each other.

Chasmotherofthree on

I really enjoyed this blog. It’s sad that people take things out of context. I do not recall her saying anything bad about formula feeding moms. She gave her opinion about how she feels about formula. I find formula feeding moms get offended no matter what you say. I think they feel guilty or jealous. Not sure which. Great blog. Breast is best!

Jenna on

Honestly I don’t see how this woman was being offensive or attacking those who don’t breastfeed… and she certainly didn’t seem to attack people who don’t believe in God either. She expressed her beliefs and feelings on the issue… Breasts are there to nurse babies… otherwise they wouldn’t produce milk! What people chose to do for their child is up to them but she simply said her choice was to breastfeed… in no way did she say it was wrong for other people to bottle feed… she just said she didn’t want to spend money when her body made what her baby needs!

As for grossing people out… I really just don’t understand that… you really might be grossed out when you are in a store and your breasts start leaking milk… what do you think you have breasts for? I don’t care if people breastfeed or not but that comment just irks me.

Anonymous on

Indira, I completely agree with you. I don’t think that you sound snobby at all. There are lots of reasons to formula feed, but not doing it just because you think it’s gross is not a good reason. Immaturity is immaturity, anyway you slice it.

meme on

Wow, Kelly really sounds a little insecure…..

pla on

thank you for your perspective. Parenting is one of the most demanding and rewarding committments in one’s lifetime. The breastfeeding/bottle feeding decision is only the beginning. the best thing you can do for yourself as a parent is to find the support you need for your own decisions and not worry about what other people think.

Olivia on

I’m happy breastfeeding is working for her how she wants it to. Pumping is tiring, and I can’t imagine doing it full time for a baby. Little Laila is so cute!

amomtoo on

Most of you missed the whole interview. Yes she was talking about breastfeeding but not like you’re thinking. She clearly talked about how she felt “HER” mistake was going to the bottle too soon and that this time around instead of doing like she did with her son so that her husband could be involved, she’s taking the lead and going to strictly breastfeed for as long as possible; he’ll have to find other ways to bond with the baby. Which he’s learned and is doing. That’s what the whole interview was about! Yes she’s very strong in her beliefs and is definitely pro breastfeeding and for her it’s the right thing to do. Good for her! She knew she’d get some flack for her beliefs and she even said it in the interview. Do you think she doesn’t know that there are situations where some women can’t breastfeed and others who choose not to? But for some of you, she has to acknowledge that with words because instead of you as the reader using your common sense to know that, you assume she’s putting you down. Grow up ladies!

Some of you ladies need to read and comprehend what you’ve read with some sense of intelligence before you open your mouth and speak because in no way was she putting down others who chose not to breastfeed. You just took it that way because you feel differently and immediately got on the defense. Good for anyone who stands strong in there convictions but that doesn’t give you the right to call people names. Really, that’s a sign of real maturity there! The last time I checked all women have breast so to call someone a ‘cow’ you’re including yourself; even if you didn’t breastfeed. You’re just a ‘cow’ that didn’t use her utters!

By the way, for those of you that can produce breast milk and really don’t have any issues that would keep you from breastfeeding but you still choose not to breastfeed for whatever reason; for instance you find breastfeeding disgusting and gross, you can still use the breast milk to feed your baby. It’s called expressing (pumping)! Just express the milk and put in a bottle. Your baby will still get the best milk possible and still be considered bottlefed. Either way, the baby’s best interest is being put first and foremost!

SIDE NOTE: For those of you who are worried about getting your prebaby body back, breastfeeding also adds in weight loss!

Do you ladies really think that these celebraties give a crap about what you think and how you feel about them. Most of these celebraties can’t win for losing with some of you so do you think they really care?Not one of you sign their paychecks or hire them for whatever jobs they pursue so you really need to put it all in perspective and stop being so judgemental about other people’s lives! Hold the mirror up to yourself first!

You all have a nice day now! 🙂

Audrey on

Did you know, whatever you eat/drink, goes into your breast milk? while formula is not really a favorite, breast milk is not perfect either, how many of you stop and think about whats going into your breast milk before you eat/drink something? Stop judging, women who don’t breastfeed have as many a rights as the ones who don’t. I am not against breastfeeding at all, but I will NEVER judge the ones who don’t.

clara on

While breastfeeding may not seem the right choice for every parent, it is the best choice for every baby.
~ Amy Spangler

Sandra on

It makes me sad to know that there are mothers out there who don’t BF because they think it’s gross or they are embarassed to do it in public. I can’t wait to to have a baby and when I do I will breastfeed my baby. It’s the most natural and nourishing thing you can do for your baby.

I totally understand if your body doesn’t produce enough milk, I have a good friend who couldn’t and had to formula feed her son, but if you can you should. I will proudly breastfeed my baby anywhere I need to if my child is hungry. I have the right to express my opinion.

Dee on

Breastfeeding or Bottlefeeding is totally up to the mother. It is her choice of how to feed her child. There are two options – and each mom is able to make her decision for her child and herself. Why is there so much bashing on the website for those who have choosen to breastfeed or bottlefeed. I am sure these mother’s have choosen what they feel is the best. Geez, people get over yourselves. Why bash another woman for her choice. Quite frankly it is none of your business. Laila was asked so she responded with her choice and her belief. If you were asked you would have responded with your choice and belief.

Personally, I choose to breastfeed my daughter and I am currently pregnant now and will breastfeed this child. However, I also bottlefed after 8 months when my daughter started teething and biting me. I used to get nasty comments and stares all the time. To which I would respond, I was blessed with this child so I make the decision – just as they make decisions for their own child. I didn’t get offended – cause in my life and decision to breastfeed – their opinion didn’t matter much nor was it going to change anything. The decision to breastfeed or bottlefeed is a personal one – people’s matter of opinions are not personal to me – its just their opinion. So shake those opinion’s off, and keep on doing what you feel is best… whether it be breastfeeding or bottlefeeding.

Kari on

I wasn’t going to waste my time and reply, but for the people saying that those who choose not to breastfeed are selfish and shouldn’t be parents you need to mind your own business and worry about your own kids. I have lost 2 babies to miscarriages and have finally been able to carry my baby girl to 32 weeks. She is probably the only child I will ever be able to have, due to reproductive issues that run in my family, and I will appreciate and love her more than any of you could ever know. T

he way I feed my child is MY choice. I don’t care if you wish t breastfeed, so if I wish to formula feed that is MY business and calling me a selfish person just makes you look like a jerk. I love reading the stories on this site, but the way people attack each other on her over feeding their kids is just juvenile and ridiculous and makes me not even want to visit this site anymore. Since we are all supposed to be adults, we should know to respect each other and the decisions that each other makes as parents. Bottlefeeding does not make you a bad parent just as breastfeeding does not make you the best parent on earth.

Michele on

I agree with Kandy. We, as women and mothers need to support each other and not attack each other based on certain choices that we make. Yes, breastfeeding is best but formula fed babies are still healthy and happy. There is no one way to do things – that is just plain ridiculous. What a boring world we would live in if we all did the same things, wore the same things, thought the same things.

Everything in life is not black and white. We have the freedom to make choices that are best for each individual and family. What might be best for my family and me may not be best for someone else. Breastfeeding/formula feeding, stay at home mothers/work outside the home mothers, cloth diapers/disposable diapers, co-sleeping/crib sleeping – the list goes on and on. These are all choices that we make. Respect other people’s choices and move on.

Jenna on

@ Audrey

Hence why women are supposed to take care of themselves just like they were while pregnant… That is common knowledge at least to most women and I’m sure doctors advise moms to continue to eat healthy to provide nutrients to their baby while breastfeeding

Shi on

Some of you all need to grow up. I don’t care how old you are how mature you think you are, but you sound ridiculous. You can disagree with her in regards to thinking that breastfeeding is best or isn’t, but that woman did not make that comment to belittle you or put you down for your choice. She was talking about her experience, her beliefs and her choice regarding her child and she has every right to do that. If you don’t feel the same way, then fine. But don’t take offense to her comment and make it about you. This is about HER child.

And those of you who make the decision to breastfeed or not to breastfeed based off of how comfortable YOU are or what works for YOU, that’s your right. But in this case, Laila is not thinking about herself or her husband’s feelings (which I’m sure she otherwise does or she wouldn’t have tried to include him in the first place), but instead she is putting her CHILD first. She’s doing what she believes will best benefit her child. How in the world can you find fault with that? It’s can’t agree with her beliefs, just agree with the fact that she is doing what she truly believes is best for her child. And get over yourselves.

chelsea on

I see that a few non BF moms are taking offense to this article. I personally don’t think Laila was meaning people who chose not to BF are bad moms or making a poor choice, she is just stating her own feelings. You have to remember that our breasts were created to feed babies so it is not unreasonable for her to share the opinions she has in this article. It doesn’t mean that you are bad moms for not breast feeding, there are many reasons women choose not to. Breastfeeding is one of the most natural things a woman can do, but it’s not for everyone.

Some people get pretty defensive over a difference of opinion. You don’t have to take it personally because she feels the best way to feed and nuture her child is different from yours. We should be embracing the freedom of choice!

Kaili on

I don’t care how people feed their baby, as long as th baby gets fed. Some women can’t nurse, some don’t want to. I always say why not try it? I am the FIRST woman in my entire family to exclusivly bf. Only a few have even tried it. I did it because of the benefits for me an my new baby. By the time my ds was 6 months we switched to just formula. That was when the clothes became stained and the spit up was worse. You can’t pronounce half the ingredients on a can of formula. My dd hs NEVER had formula. There are no stains on the clothes, much less spit up. My formula baby was my skinny baby and my bf baby was on the chunky side. The bf baby is always eating. For me, I like that I dropped 50 pounds in 4 weeks after my dd was born. I like not having to get up to make a bottle in the middle of the night. I like not having to wash bottles eery day. I think I bf more out of laziness 😉

thekeoghfamily on

Good for Laila, when you know better you do better.

When a mom has a CHOICE, and some don’t, but most do, I cannot believe not choosing the BEST for baby…that’s beyond me.

If you know you are doing the very best for your child, then you shouldn’t feel so attacked by others stating the simple and obvious fact that breast milk is best. Yes, lots of babies do great on formula, I did, and many babies survive childhood without ever being in a carseat or wearing a seatbelt either, but that doesn’t mean it’s good.

And for those who say ‘breastfeeding is not for me!’, you’re right Sherlock, it’s not FOR you it’s FOR your baby, how about putting others first for a change?

Steph on

Good article. Not trying/wanting to breastfeed is completely different than not being able to breastfeed. If you make enough milk, why not give nursing a chance? It takes longer than formula feeding, at first, but babies take time and patience…and once your good at it, it can be much easier than sterilising/preparing/heating a bottle. I clearly remember the scandal in China where they put melamine in baby formula to save money…something to think about…. we always assume because we live in first world countries, that our food supplies are safe and healthy….just sayin’

blessedwithboys on

Love it! You go, Laila! I bet if your dh came anywhere near your baby girl with a bottle, you could just knock him out! LOL Thanks for your wonderful words of lactivistic wisdom. 🙂

Emily on

I think it’s great that Laila is doing what she has deemed best for her child and her family. As a working mom, I can completely understand her not wanting to go through exclusive pumping again. It is so much easier to just feed the child directly from the breast than have to deal with washing pump parts and bottles. I was lucky that I never had to exclusively pump, but others out there are not as lucky. I’m not sure I would have had the dedication to EP.

I find it odd that one of the previous comments says that Laila should keep her mouth shut. If she had kept her mouth shut, you would have had to keep your mouth shut as well. She doesn’t bash formula feeding moms, she simply makes a good point that since she produces (free) milk, it’s silly to go buy anything else. I equate that to having a beautiful organic vegetable garden in your back yard, but you go to the grocery store to buy produce grown in Chile. Sure, both will sustain you, but if the stuff you grew is right there, it makes more sense to use it instead of the stuff that was flown in.

Oh, and for the person offended by the fact that she used the word God, it’s the same thing. She obviously believes in God, and although I may not agree with her, I am in no way offended by the fact that she does. I happen to agree with her that our bodies were made to lactate (in most cases); the fact that we may differ on how the body was designed to make that happen is not the point.

Jen on

For those of you out there that are convinced by all that “scientific evidence” that breastfeeding is best, please read this clip from a recent article in the Globe and Mail. Full Article can be viewed at link below.

“The evidence to date suggests it probably doesn’t make much difference if you breastfeed,” says Joan Wolf, the author of a daring book called Is Breast Best? Ms. Wolf, an American academic, has examined the medical literature in detail. The science clearly shows that breastfeeding provides babies with some protection against gastrointestinal infections. Beyond that, the evidence for the sweeping claims made by the advocates for breast milk just doesn’t exist. And women like Teena Campbell have been sold the biggest mommy-guilt trip of all time.

Ms. Wolf is not alone in saying that moms are being misled. One of the world’s most authoritative sources of breastfeeding research is Michael Kramer, professor of pediatrics at McGill University. “The public health breastfeeding promotion information is way out of date,” he says. The trouble is that the breastfeeding lobby is at war with the formula milk industry, and neither side is being very scientific. “When it becomes a crusade, people are not very rational.”

Enough said.

Dee on

I tried breastfeeding and would have LOVED it if my son would have taken the breast. I went to see lactation specialists, I had nurses come to my home. I sat and listened to them talk at me and brutally pull and tug and practically rip my breast off just so the baby could feed and in the end….he still didn’t take it.

I was made to feel like I did something wrong, as if I was broken and as such my child would be made to pay the consequences and to that I basically told them all to kiss my butt.

While it would have been great to breastfeed, I rented a pump from the hospital and pumped and pumped and felt like a cow in a barnyard being pumped for milk and in the end my son wanted and ate more than I could produce and had to go on formula. He developed a taste for it and the pump was expensive and having to pump, plus buy formula to supplement…it was too much.

I made the conscious decision to exclusively formula feed after two months I just couldn’t do it anymore. Does it make me any less of a mother? NO, it doesn’t.

I respect women who breastfeed, I think it AWESOME when a baby latches on and goes at it full gusto but I also respect the women who dont or cant for whatever reason. Breastmilk is best and better for the babies as they get sick less and constipated less etc. than formula fed babies but I would NEVER make a woman feel less than because she chooses to use formula.

Right after my son was born he was given formula and I believe that was a part of the problem from the get go, but that’s my belief. I applaud Laila for breastfeeding thats great for her but like I said. its not great for every woman!!!

fuzibuni on

I liked Laila’s blog. I doubt she realized her personal story would ignite the formula vs. breast debate.

I think the lack of breastfeeding in the US is a bigger issue with society at large, which doesn’t support moms breastfeeding. The inability to produce enough milk for your baby affects around 4% of women. The majority of moms who choose to use formula do so for reasons other than not being able to produce milk. Going back to work after 6 weeks is one of the biggest. Another cause is lack of proper support and education.

I know that people get really defensive when others talk about the breast being best, and they point out how their child is doing fine on formula. The reality is that yes, your child will probably be fine. But that’s like saying that a home cooked meal is the same as getting take out. Yes, your child will live and grow on McDonalds happy meals… doesn’t mean it’s good for them.

It’s the same in my mind as sending a 2 month old baby to day care and saying “oh she’s fine, she likes it there.” Children are adaptable and can survive in almost any circumstance. Doesn’t mean daycare is better than being with mom or family.

People will continue to justify letting society and industry raise their children… but I personally believe that the “absentee mother” syndrome, where children don’t get love, affection and nourishment from a primary caregiver is one of the biggest problems facing western society. The repercussions are widespread and growing.

Dawn on

Give me a break!! I have noticed that all of the mothers who choose not to breastfeed are the ones who are first to make a critcal remark about those mothers who do breastfeed their children. How many years did women who breastfeed have to defend themselves about their choice? Breastfeeding was looked upon as taboo. Now that breastfeeding is accepted and embraced, those who do not breastfeed take offense when someone talks about the benefits and how rewarding they find the experience. How you feed your child is a personal choice. However, can anyone explain to me why if you are choosing not to breastfeed do you feel the need to be disparaging to those women who do and when you are called on the carpet about those comments you get defensive?

This is a blog. The blogger can say whatever they feel because the situation is pertaining to them. It is not an attack on you personally. I think it is time for all the women who post to grow up and realize that they are not being judged by the blogger, they are the ones judging each other.

Maggie on

This ISN’T a blog. It’s a write up of an interview Laila did with a breastfeeding website. If it was a blog it would be written in the first person and say “Laila Ali’s Blog.” Saw that mentioned a couple times above and wanted to correct the misinformation.

I nursed my kids but would never judge another mother for her choices. For the most part we’re all just doing our best.

Jen on

There is no excuse for someone who says they aren’t going to breastfeed b/c its “gross” or they just don’t want to. Don’t have a baby if you can’t take care of it properly. In the case of people who truly can’t breastfeed there are alternatives such as exclusively pumping, donated breast milk from a bank or breastfeeding friend or you can make your own homemade formula, b/c yes store bought formula is a processed food. Agreed also that we have a societal problem in this country when it comes to breastfeeding. Celebrities like Laila are helping to change that.

Jen on

For those saying breast milk isn’t that much better than formula. Think about that. Why would you think anything made in a factory is better than something your own body produces? Its the same thing with most processed foods, we as a human race would be infinitely better off if we only ate natural things like fruits, vegetables, meat, some grains, and raw dairy. Yea if you look at two people one who eats well and the other who eats a lot of processed foods, the difference may not be obvious, but there is so much we don’t know that its hard to tell what damage its doing. Think of all the cancers and diseases so many people have, you think that has nothing to do with how we eat? Highly doubt it.

Kari on

“There is no excuse for someone who says they aren’t going to breastfeed b/c its “gross” or they just don’t want to. Don’t have a baby if you can’t take care of it properly.”

How you choose to feed your child has nothing to do with whether it is taken care of properly. Get off your high horse. What you do with your boobs is your business and what I do with mine is my business. A person that is so judgmental should perhaps not have children either. People with this type of attitude do not make me want to breastfeed, they just push me away from it.

Anonymous on

“For those of you out there that are convinced by all that “scientific evidence” that breastfeeding is best, please read this clip from a recent article in the Globe and Mail. Full Article can be viewed at link below.

“The evidence to date suggests it probably doesn’t make much difference if you breastfeed,” says Joan Wolf, the author of a daring book called Is Breast Best? Ms. Wolf, an American academic, has examined the medical literature in detail. The science clearly shows that breastfeeding provides babies with some protection against gastrointestinal infections. Beyond that, the evidence for the sweeping claims made by the advocates for breast milk just doesn’t exist. And women like Teena Campbell have been sold the biggest mommy-guilt trip of all time.

Ms. Wolf is not alone in saying that moms are being misled. One of the world’s most authoritative sources of breastfeeding research is Michael Kramer, professor of pediatrics at McGill University. “The public health breastfeeding promotion information is way out of date,” he says. The trouble is that the breastfeeding lobby is at war with the formula milk industry, and neither side is being very scientific. “When it becomes a crusade, people are not very rational.”

Whatever. Believe what you want. You must realize that the sources you rely upon are in the MINORITY, right?

Way to pick and choose.

Ms. Wolf is an “American Academic.” Not a doctor. Not a nutritionist. Not a child-development specialist. Not a GI doc. Sounds like she’s rationalizing her choices, not supporting babies.

The shameful myth that formula is “as good” as breastmilk has to go. Even your biased source say it doesn’t make “much difference.” Even “much difference” is still different. Look it up.

And “American Academic” could be used by any person wanting to put a title after her name. It’s not regulated.

angelica on

Just to put some info out there from a lactation counselor for those who are confused – formula IS chemicals. It IS factory made. No way around that. Facts are facts.

And no, not everything you eat goes in your breastmilk. Breastmilk is made the blood, vitamins, and minerals in your body. So even if you don’t eat the healthiest your baby is still getting perfect nutrition made just for him/her. Did you know if you smoke the AAP recommends breastfeeding rather than formula feeding to help protect thier little bodies over formula? And that formula is the 4th choice to feed a baby from the World Health Organization.

Breastfeeding is normal. If you couldnt for whatever reason you shouldn’t feel guilty. Simple as that.

Elena on

To the people saying that women who choose not to breastfeed should not have children, you are crazy if you think that one decision outweighs all of the other ones that a mother makes toward raising a healthy, nice, well-rounded person. My daughter is now a toddler, and she was raised on formula because I knew that, if I were to try to breastfeed, I would be miserable, depressed, stressed beyond belief trying to balance breastfeeding every 2 hours with working full time, and all around a worse parent. Instead, I made the decision to formula feed her, and she is a healthy, bright little girl. But my decision to work means that I can give my daughter only the best and healthiest organic food to eat now that she is past the formula/milk stage anyway, a nice place to live in a city with great parks and great schools, and a college fund that will be enough to pay for a great education by the time she is ready to go to school. Can all of you moms that are so proud of yourselves for making milk say that?

Some women here seem to think that just breastfeeding makes them such a great mother that they don’t need to think or worry about anything else. Get over yourselves. When a child is 5, 10, 15 or an adult, nobody will be able to tell if they were breastfed or formula fed, but whether they had loving parents, a stable financial background and access to nice communities and good schools will always matter.

Janie on

Oh please. Breastmilk is what babies are supposed to eat. They are biologically designed for this and anything made in a factory from chemicals is a sad substitute.

Just because you were formula fed and “healthy” as an adult doesn’t change the fact that you were fed inferior food as a baby.

You should feel guilty if you didn’t breastfeed your baby because you know deep down that it isn’t the best for your baby.

Heather on

I had the same issue as Dee- I was planning on breastfeeding but my daughter wouldnt latch on and since she was 10lbs at birth I had to supplement with formula right from the start so she wouldnt starve. I pumped for a week and due to dry, cracked, and bleeding nipples (not to mention hundreds of dollars spent in trying different breast pump parts) I had to give up. I felt sooo guilty at first but she is a thriving healthy 4 month old who I have an extreme bond with despite not being able to BF.

Of course I think the benefits of breast milk to the baby, as well as to the mother, are better then formula (not to mention cheaper LOL) but for me it didnt happen and I refuse to beat myself up about it.

I think everyone is entitled to their own opinion but I don’t think that we, as mothers, have a right to berate other people if they don’t choose the same path for whatever their reason is….like someone else said earlier raising kids is hard enough without attacking each other on issues that are the parents decision, not a outsiders.

With the next child I will try again to BF but if it doesnt happen again I am completely fine with formula feeding

Elena on


You clearly have reading comprehension problems. Sure, the fact that you are healthy as an adult doesn’t change the fact that you were fed formula as a baby, but it DOES make that fact utterly irrelevant. That’s like saying “Just because you are a popular and successful adult doesn’t change the fact that you were sometimes cranky as a baby” or “Just because you have a PHD from Harvard doesn’t change the fact that you didn’t talk until you were almost two.” Great argument you have there.

But thanks for throwing “you should feel guilty” around some more. Clearly, women don’t have enough to feel guilty about, so thanks for that contribution.

Holly on

Love to hear a celebrity so positive about breastfeeding!

Toya L. on

I hope all the women who breastfeed/breastfeed with the logic of “the body is made for this”, also applied that same logic to their personal child birth(s) process=100% natural, after all “the body is made for that too”. I don’t see anything wrong with her article.

Robin on

And now I know why I don’t get along with any of the moms of my generation.

I am a single parent.

I breastfed for 5 weeks and HATED every darn minute of it.

I put my son into daycare at 7 months old.

We eat McDonald’s once a month. Occasionally more.

I think the PARENTS are behind much of the “entitlement” generation.

I’m not going to argue with the Little League coach if my son sits on the bench for an inning.

I could go on. Call the morality police on me. At this point I don’t care, because my son is happy, healthy, and the delight of my life.

Sandy on

WOW what a touchy subject!!!
I say do what works best for YOU.
I used formula and not only are my kids healthy, they are both in the gifted program- so I guess you can say other things come into play when your talking the development of a child. It’s the whole picture.

Charleen on

To the Jan who quoted the claim by Professor Joan Wolf that the evidence really isn’t as strong in favor of breast is best, I would like to point out that she is not a scientists or doctor but rather a woman’s studies professor. I can find nothing in her educational background that would suggest she is remotely qualified to preform the sort analysis of the studies she claims to have done. I realize she is saying what you and other formula feeders want to here but that does not mean you should simply take her claims at face value without looking into her background and determining if she is qualified to make the assertions she is making.

Now as to the claim that Dr. Michael Kramer, professor of pediatrics at McGill University, agrees with Ms. Wolf’s assertion, that is false. When a similar claim was first made about Kramer’s views on what the breastfeeding research actually proves or doesn’t prove in the article “Case Against Breastfeeding” by Hanna Rosin, he responded that his views where being “grossly misinterpreted”. Here is the basics of what he said: “The Times quoted Kramer, who is based at McGill University, Montreal, as saying there was “very little evidence” breastfeeding reduces the risk of a range of diseases from leukemia to heart disease. Yet, what he actually said was: “The existing evidence suggests that breastfeeding may protect against the risk of leukemia, lymphoma, inflammatory bowel disease, type 1 diabetes, heart disease and blood pressure.”

He also said: “There really isn’t any controversy about which mode of feeding is more beneficial for the baby and the mother, but when you read the article in The Times it sounds like there is.” Furthermore, he points out: “I’m not aware of any studies that have observed any health benefits of formula feeding. That’s important, and any mother weighing the benefits of breastfeeding vs formula feeding needs to know that.”

Marky on

LOL, Robin, you probably made more sense than many of the posters on here; especially the ones who want to criticize other mothers for choosing a different route for feeding their child. Why, or why do women do this to each other? Women used tosupport each other and encourage each other; now “it’s all about me, me me!” whether it’s childbirth, breast feeding, or what kind of clothes your kids wear, and more. Like you infer, how will they parent later? Will they scream at the coach, will they honestly believe their child should never hear the word, “no”? Will they demand special treatment everyday at school,or once the baby is off the breast, is the child on its own? Parenting is more than BF, and as a parent of adult children, and as a BF coach for a long time, I still say, your baby–your choice, period!

Marky on

So now we are dividing mothers into 2 groups–breast feeders and formula feeders? Really? Wow….

kimmie on

I find it interesting when women say BF is gross or it grosses them out because it comes from their bodies. Well so do your babies, do they gross you out as well? And the formula IS factory made. Even the formula companies now say that Breast milk is the best, and the formulas are the second best. There are women that only eat organic and vegan etc, yet dont hesitate to feed their babies commercially made formulas and leave them in disposable diapers full of chemical ingrediences all day long.

And fyi, breast milk has never been recalled, unlike formula, and according to one study only 4% of babies that died from SIDS were breastfed. The rest was on formula.

TJ on

I can always count on all of your comments for a good laugh. Ladies, you never disappoint! 😉

Jillian on

It is quite amazing to me how many pro breastfeeding mothers are coming on here and judging those who don’t do it and pretty much saying that if you chose not to, you are a bad parent. Really? That determines being a good parent?!? Yikes, so just by breast feeding you are a good parent? Cause I have met some pretty horrible breastfeeding parents and I have met some pretty awesome moms who chose NOT to breastfeed. As long as the child is taken care of and happy, it makes no difference what type of “milk” goes into the babies mouth. That is a choice for the family and they shouldn’t be bashed.

anonymus on

I am so saddened by all of this! I can’t believe that as women, as mothers, we can’t be supportive of each other. There is absolutely no reason to bash a mother’s choice when you haven’t been in her shoes. I am so offended by the people who say breastfeeding is gross and are disgusted by a nursing mother, and I am equally offended by those saying that formula is toxic and those who use it should feel guilty. Motherhood is hard, and shouldn’t we all be on the same team? I can’t believe that we are actually trying to SHAME each other to voice out opinions. It’s horrible.

romie on

Wait…Let me get this straight. Breastfed babies turn out fine and Bottlefed babies also turn out fine.
Mama mia, this is too much for me to wrap my head around.

meghan on

I wonder if Caylee was breastfed. Cause god knows if she was, it sure didn’t make her mom a good parent.

Devon on

You all realize that this is the internet, right? What you say here has no bearing on anything in the real world. People have opinions on what is right and what is wrong. They are going to do what they feel is best. No one here is right and arguing your point to the brink of insanity is, well, insane. It’s the internet. Get over it.

Renee Beebe on

I have to comment here. As a lactation consultant in private practice for 20 years, I have never seen a case of “nipple confusion.” Most professionals in my field agree it is a myth. There is probably an underlying cause for the baby having difficulty with the breast–it just wasn’t identified. But I guarantee it wasn’t the bottle that caused the problem!

exclusively pumping is difficult. Kudos to all those moms who can manage it!


Bree on

Wow I cannot believe how crazy this debate has gotten!!

I am 18 weeks pregnant and have no intention of doing anything but bf with my baby, never have.

I grew up in a small community in the NWT and formula was just to expensive to ship in, the only mothers who formula feed did so for specific medical reasons and had to get special notes from the dr to order it in.
To me it is not only the healthiest but the cheepest and most convenient.
When I was six months old my dad had his appendix burst and had to have an emergency medivac to Edmonton to have surgery. My mom had literally seconds to pack up for all three of us, because I was being BF all she had to grab for me was a couple changes of clothes and enough diapers to get me through the night, she didn’t have to worry about bottles and cleaner and formula and how long we would be gone.

I am not being a snob or sanctamonious but the simple facts are that breast feeding is the best possible thing for your baby. Whether you like it our not even the top of the line organic formulas are factory made. I am not a cow and I shave my armpits. This is not a new age hippy thing this is simply doing what is best and natural for your baby and for yourself. You are going to lactate whether you like it or not and taking medication to stop that natural process it not healthy and it some cases may have long term effects.

I respect that fact that everyone is entitled to their opinion and to make their own choices, just because I don’t understand why you wouldn’t BF doesn’t make you wrong. Don’t assume that because someone is bf they are judging you for not and looking down their noses at you. But don’t ignore the reality that all formula is factory made and that bf is always going to be the cheepest and safest and most convenient form of feeding for a newborn.

Sanctimonious Cow on


Georgina on

Well done Laila! Nobody is attacking those who don’t breastfeed or saying you are a bad parent if you don’t, but there is no argument that breastfeeding is the most normal and the best way to feed a baby. Breastfeeding = best does not mean formula feeding = bad. It’s just not as good. If you choose not to that’s your decision. Anyone who thinks breastfeeding is “gross” is an idiot.

In response to this quote:

“I hate it how these celeb moms like giselle and laila like to call baby formula “factory made” or “chemicals”…different moms are in different circumstances.”

Formula is factory made, where do you think it comes from? Gisele and Laila aren’t making that up.

joan on

“Breastmilk is best and better for the babies as they get sick less and constipated less etc. than formula”

you know, I hear that a lot, that breast fed babies get sick less, and I am beginning to think its a myth. I work with mothers who breastfeed and their children are as sick as much as mine formula fed ones were- ear infections, colds, etc.

I fed three on formula – only one needed tubes for ear infections. just one, so it isn’t necessarily the formula causing it.

While breast milk is more natural – it isn’t the end all, be all. It’s a one option women can use. It is more economical, but its also limiting.

kimmie on

meghan, if you’re referring to Caylee Anthony, she wasn’t breastfed. Her mother said in some interview she hated the idea so she was on the bottle from the get go

Paula on

Being brazilian, this whole discussion seems nonsense for me. =)

Here in Brazil, virtually every doctor recomends breastfeeding exclusivily for the first 6 months after the baby is born. I don’t know anybody who chose to not breastfeed (although I do know moms who couldn’t). I know it happens, but mostly with women who choose to go back to work soon. In fact, a couple of years ago the law was changed and the maternity leave went from 4 to 6 months – after all, if babies need to be bf for 6 months, moms need to be by their sides.

So when I read posts like this, or comments like Gisele made, it seems natural for me.

BTW, about the whole “God” thing, I am an atheist and don’t thing she said anything wrong. She has the right to express her beliefs.

Liz Hamel on

Dee and Heather- I had a similar experience with my first, and beat myself up over it. Now that he is a very healthy 1 year old, I wonder why I did that to myself. I tried my best, as we all do. The kids will be alright. Let’s just hope the Moms are, this blog scares me sometimes!:)

Molly on

After reading these comments, I’m defiantly NOT breastfeeding. I was on the fence but thanks to the breast-feeding moms posting and reading their comments I never, ever want to breast-feed.

Molly on

Paula, thanks for the laugh now, please stop insulting atheists by lying and saying you are one.

Tee on

Well, breastfeeding vs. bottle feeding always brings out some highly opinionated and far too often, rude people. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that breast is best for baby. It’s natural. Period. But I also know beyond a shadow of a doubt that it’s the mother’s choice for HER child. Do I have to agree? Nope. Does that give me the right to call her names and insult her parenting ability? Nope.

What really shocks me here in the comments are the number of people attacking Laila for talking about her opinions! For the love of Pete, she was being interviewed! In an interview, you talk about your opinions! She was not rude or condesending at all! She simply stated her opinion on breastfeeding. I can’t believe the number of people getting up in arms or saying that they lost respect for her over this interview! And even worse, someone saying that they lost respect for her because she said she believes in God? Oh my word, that’s just insane!

Paula on

actually YOU made me laugh! =) This is the first time I’m criticized for not being “atheist enough”!

On the other hand, I’m sorry if you think an atheist can’t respect someone who’s religious, or the other way around. I myself was raised in a very multicultural environment, so for me it’s important to respect those who have different oppinions from mine, although I usually have strong opinions about stuff like these.

anonymous on

Paula, i am religious and fully agree with you about respecting other’s beliefs. everyone has a right to believe what they want. opinions, beliefs, and how one raises their child are areas in life i believe should not be judged as long as one isn’t harming another person.

Holiday on

I didnt have much success with nursing my son because I was young and ashamed to nurse him in public because of people like lots of you on here. I did nurse him for 6 months but never in public, I would take a bottle out because when I was 22 I was self conscience. Then I had my daughter 4 years later and realized I dont give a damn what people think of me nursing. It is so much healthier, cheaper and natural then man made formula. So from day 1 I have nursed her in public and no one even bats an eye at me. She is almost 14 months and I STILL nurse her in public because she barely eats solid food and when my baby is hungry I dont make her wait until I can find a place to hide from all the judgemental people in the world.

Holiday on

I wanted to add I would NEVER judge a formula feeding mommy either. I did both formula and breast milk with my son and I could care less how any mother feeds their kid. I just do not want to be judged and thought of as a “cow” for feeding my baby.

Jillian on

I am also an atheist and thought she said nothing wrong, as it relates to the god piece. I also thought Paula said nothing wrong. I too, will respect peoples beliefs even though I don’t agree with them. My family and in laws all believe in god and I love and respect them and they do me. There have been times when I dont agree.

Tee, I agree with you. I myself don’t believe in god, but would never dislike someone because they do or because of what she said here about god.

Molly on

Paula, good I made you laughed. I was laughing and still am at your arrogance and ignorance.Do all breast-feeding girls act like this? No wonder people are against breast-feeding and can’t say I blame them now

Jillian on

Oh Molly! I just saw your comments on the recent kingston Rossdale post. Someone said they didn’t like the way he dressed and he looked like a clown and you said they were a racist and homophobic?! And here you call Paula a liar?! And on another post you called someone a liar when they said they were African American and someone else for working with disabled kids. But I am the hateful one……..okay!

Elle on

Seriously? People are MAD at Laila’s comments? She simply stated her opinion.

My opinion? Everyone should breast feed unless it’s physically impossible. Your mom didnt breastfeed? Culturally, times have changed. Breast milk you make is for YOUR child alone. Why the he’ll would anyone feed their tiny babies man made chemically altered garbage? The only reason breastfeeding seems ” limiting” is because it requires that you actually take time to be there for your baby instead of conveniently filling them with fake product that only requires your money.

My opinion, of course.

Kit on

Perhaps someone should explain the whole “gross” comment. Personally, I felt gross when breastfeeding because my breasts always felt hot, heavy and leaking. Every time I was out and heard a baby cry, they would start leaking again. I ran a fever alot, my nipples cracked and bled, and I was constantly tired and felt ill. So that made me unable to be the best mother to my child.

That is what feeling “gross” from breastfeeding was for me. It had nothing to do with sexual hangups, or anything of that nature. It had to do with me not physically being able to be the best mother to my son.

Please understand that BF is not the same wonderful experience for everyone. People should not be made to feel like a failure because they make an alternate choice for THEIR OWN child. I don’t tell you what you should do for yours, don’t tell me what I should do for mine….thank you.

Shannon on

Love her! I personally believe breast milk is best but everyone is entitled to their beliefs. Stop taking everything so personally and lashing out at anyone who doesn’t embrace your perspectives on motherhood.

Michele on

“In fact, a couple of years ago the law was changed and the maternity leave went from 4 to 6 months – after all, if babies need to be bf for 6 months, moms need to be by their sides.”

Boy, I wish maternity leave was like that here in the U.S. I went back to work full-time when my daughter was 7 weeks old and I managed to breastfeed her for 17 months, so I most definitely was not constantly by her side. Between pumping and nursing, I made it work because that was what was important to me. This is not in reference to you Paula, however, I will always respect a woman’s right to choose how she will nourish her child (or how she decides to raise her child). Why? Because it is the mother’s right (& father’s) to decide what is best for her and her family.

Krissy on

You all must know each other for you most certainly are judging one aother…..

mommylove on

every time someone, especially a celebrity, advocates breast-feeding, people think they are saying it’s the only way to go. did she say feeding your baby formula was bad?? no. people totally twisted her words.

martina on

I personally think breastfeeding is important. Is it enjoyable? It depends. I didn’t particularly like the physical discomfort associated with it. But knowing I was doing something special for my baby made it all worthwhile.

Yet I find Laila’s comments insensitive. She makes it sound like moms that don’t breastfeed somehow fail their children. Breastfeeding doesn’t work for everyone. For a million different reasons. We all do our best. No need to insult every mom that cannot breastfeed by saying that formula is some factory made chemical.

Heather on

WOW! Ladies, really? To each their own. Jeez.

Jenna on

@ Michele

The USA is far behind when it comes to supporting family structures… In my diverse families class we talked about how there are some countries that PAY women to have children and regulate jobs give them a year off work. I have a friend at work now that is pregnant (we work for a branch of the USA federal government) and she has to save up her sick and annual leave time for when she has her baby because we don’t get time for maternity leave. People blame so many things on a declining family structure (for instance saying that gay marriage will cause a decline in families) but in reality our government and our country as a whole don’t support families.

Robin on


At the point when my child was getting more of my blood than milk in his meals, and was nursing almost constantly, it was certainly horrible and gross. My own pediatrician told me to switch him to formula since he was deemed as a “failure to thrive” baby.

I have an RD. All throughout school we were grilled with the “breast is best” mentality. But we were also taught about formula, the history, the regulatory environment, and the like. That is so you can receive fair and balanced information, not militant LaLeche (or militant Enfamil) information.

Paula on


I totally agree with you. I think it’s definitly harder for moms there in USA. I wish all moms could have the option to stay more time with their babies without loosing their jobs or their incomes.

I also agree with you and respect a woman’s right to choose how she will nourish her child. Even though I believe BF is the best, it’s not my children so not my decision to make. But I think it would be much better if we could make life easier for moms and dads by giving them more time with their babies, especially during their first year of life.

In fact, there are some groups here advocating that dads should also have a longer paternity leave (now it’s 7 days).

ecl on

Hooray Jenna! Thank you so much for your comment!! You are dead on. Was it a sociology class?

Charleen on

Renee Beebe wrote: “I have to comment here. As a lactation consultant in private practice for 20 years, I have never seen a case of “nipple confusion.” Most professionals in my field agree it is a myth. There is probably an underlying cause for the baby having difficulty with the breast–it just wasn’t identified. But I guarantee it wasn’t the bottle that caused the problem!”

I don;t know whether you really are an certified lactation consultant or not but I can say that I know lots of certified LC’s who would disagree with your statement that nipple confusion is myth and thus I disagree with your claim that most LC’s agree it a myth. Sure some do but most, from what I have seen, say it’s a real possibility if you introduce a bottle with the first 3 weeks and that while not every baby will suffer from it, enough will that it’s it’s not worth the risk of introducing a bottle in the early weeks. There are other ways to get formula or EBM into a newborn such cup feeding, finger feeding, etc. that you really don’t need to introduce a bottle that early.

Dr. Jack Newman, a well-known expert on breastfeeding, has this to say on nipple confusion: “She/he tells you that there is no such thing as nipple confusion and you should start giving bottles early to your baby to make sure that the baby accepts a bottle nipple. Why do you have to start giving bottles early if there is no such thing as nipple confusion? Arguing that there is no evidence for the existence of nipple confusion is putting the cart before the horse. It is the artificial nipple, which no mammal until man had ever used, and even man, not commonly before the end of the nineteenth century, which needs to be shown to be harmless. But the artificial nipple has not been proved harmless to breastfeeding. The health professional who assumes the artificial nipple is harmless is looking at the world as if bottle feeding, not breastfeeding, were the normal physiologic method of infant feeding. By the way, just because not all or perhaps even not most babies who get artificial nipples have trouble with breastfeeding, it does not follow that the early use of these things cannot cause problems for some babies. It is often a combination of factors, one of which could be the using of an artificial nipple, which add up to trouble.”

tinytexan on

So many children in this world are malnutritioned for a variety of reasons. So, to argue over HOW a child is fed when the parent has CHOICES seems ludicrous. The same people who berate mothers for bottle feeding are probably the same people who feed their kids french fries to keep them quiet in the back seat of the car! I guarantee you the “breast-feeding” moms quickly forget about nutrition and health when their kids are old enough to suck soda from a straw and eat chicken nuggets!!!

Holiday on

Wow tinytexan did you not breast feed and now have some guilty feelings?

Janie on

tinytexan, really? You can guarantee that breastfeeding moms go on to feed their children soda and chicken nuggets and stuff french fries in their mouth to keep them quiet? *roll eyes*

I would think if a woman did enough research into breastfeeding and made it a priority to breastfeed that same woman would also be educated enough to understand basic nutrition and make that a priority, as well, as her children became older. Not talking about the occasional fast food meal, but nutritious meals made at home as the norm.

You obviously have no clue.

Molly on

@Jillian, Get help seriously. You’re life is devoted to stalking me. That’s pathetic.

I’m ashamed Laila is a black woman. Our community deserves better role models than her. She keeps saying ignorant crap. Her comments were offensive to not only women who choose not to breast-feed but also people who don’t believe in god.

Btw, jillian, Why are you still here? You’re not a woman and you hate children too.

Molly on

Holiday, the homophobe is still here?

Alisabeth on

Women that do not breast feed are very selfish. There is no reason not to.

Indira on

Molly what a foolish statement considering how god-centric the african american is. The woman literally said the words Its her opinion.

momof 3 on

I think people overreact when anyone talks about breastfeeding versus formula feeding. I will say when I was pregnant with my first, the idea of breastfeeding did bother me. However, I tried it and loved it. It was my special time with my baby. It was also a huge help financially. I am now have my third child and all are breastfed babies. My first child did have to get formula as well. I know breastfeeding isn’t for everyone. As a mom who works full-time, it was something I wanted to do for my children and myself.

momof 3 on

Also, not all women who breastfeed do so in public. The only people who’ve seen me breastfeed are my mother and husband. This is my choice and works for me.

Jillian on

Hey Mols, Now I hate children?!? And I am not a women?!? Why because you say so? Where do you come up with this? It is quite comical. You throw out insults and it makes no sense on numerous posts. Why are you here?

Holiday has been posting here for awhile and while I don’t always agree with her, I have never read anything from her that would make anyone think she’s homophobic.

Molly on

Indira, thanks for making me laugh. If you respect her than something really is wrong with Laila. Thank goodness I know about how ignorant her personality is now. I wish I hadn’t wasted years thinking she was someone to admire. That won’t happen again!

Molly on

Jillian, you still haven’t said why you are here? You basically had admitted to hating children and that you’re not a woman since you didn’t deny it Yes, Holiday is a homophobe and of course you would defend her since you are proud to hate the LGBT community as well. I’m here because I actually like children and support women’s rights. Sorry to disappoint you. Now stop stalking me. Nothing you can say will change my mind about you. =

Molly on

BTW Jillian,I’m staying here. If you’re not happy with my comments, I’m saying the right things 🙂 I would never, ever want you to like anything I say since your comments are racist and homophobic most of the time.

Concha on

As women and mothers we should all choose the best path for our babies and ourselves. We all have the freedom to choose formula or breast milk. I was six months pregnant when my daughter was born weighing two pounds. The doctors at the hospital told me that it was my decision to bf or use formula, but they stressed if I could I should breastfeed since it could determine if my baby survived or not. Since my baby could not latch on to my breast, I had to express my milk, and I am sure my daughter lived because GOD WHOM I BELIEVE IN GAVE ME THE ABILITY TO PROVIDE MILK FOR MY BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Women it is your choice, formula or breastmilk, no one can decide for you. But, we cannot deny in most cases breastmilk is 100% better than formula. There are 100 ingredients found in breast milk that cannot be duplicated in formula. For me the choice was simple, I wanted to give my daughter the very best.

I am not judging anyone, so why should we should judge Laila. Stay blessed ladies!!!

Indira on

Yes, Molly because a person only warrants respect if they share identical views with you.

Holiday on

Homophobe?? That is ENTIRELY wrong! In fact I am 100 percent supportive of gay and lesbian rights and I am very outspoken about it. Lots of people have disagreed with things I have said but I have never once said anything negative about homosexual people and I take offense to being called a homophobe.

JMO on

Here is a lesson for everyone:

Why doesn’t everyone just mind their own business about what they do with their children and their lives?!

Carrie on

I think what was missed in the comments here is that the original interview was given to Best for Babes, a breastfeeding advocacy/support site, and was reproduced by Obviously Layla felt comfortable speaking openly about her beliefs in breastfeeding as the intended audience was women who were seeking support for breastfeeding.

In the same vein, I don’t think that it was her intention to upset and FF moms with comments, but merely to support and encourage moms who chose to breastfeed.

km on

I do not like the comment why she would want to buy anything in the store>like formula. I had breastfed my baby and then I could not at 4 mos b/c we found out she was allergic to milk and it was not colic like the peds said. It took a surgeon to tell us try soy formula b/c I want to stay away from the sx. There are woman that cannot and it is not nice to comment that.

Sheila on

I tried nursing both of my kids and it just didn’t work out. A baby drinking a bottle and formula is not a bad thing and there i nothing wrong with that. My children are beautiful and wonderful and just because they were bottle fed doesn’t make them any less just because they weren’t breastfed for a year. Every mother has to decide what works best for her and her baby and not be made to feel guilty about it.

Marsha on

I think breast feeding is a beautiful thing and should be done in public and in a proper way. Anyone who would find it distasteful is ignorant. I have heard people say they should go into the public bathrooms, would you eat dinner in there?

Ali on

Thanks Laila for being a breastfeeding advocate especially for the African-American community! Studies have shown that babies that are breastfed have fewer problems with allergies, etc., later on. It is meant to be by God and nature afterall.

Anti-Molly on

Attention Everyone! We have a troll in our midst! Molly the Troll! Molly the Troll!

Karen Dailey on

I never thought I would like breast feeding until I had my first child. It was a chance to completely stop everything around me for 30 minutes and sit down and relax with my baby. Once a week I did give him forumula so if we ever had an emergency we’d be able to feed our baby. I breast fed my first child for 2 years and my second completely gave it up on her own around her first birthday. All babies are different so there are not cookie cutter rules.

I spent a year working at Babies R Us and was shocked at the amount of money people spent on fulltime formula feeding. Breastfeeding is a great value for that reason. But it is a huge commitment for working moms.

Anonymous on

Breast is Best

m on

has anyone of the ladies who are appalled by women who don’t breast feed for “selfish” reasons considered how a stressed out mom will affect the breastfeeding baby?

you say do what BEST for baby. Sometimes it’s BEST for baby to be bottle fed even when mom can breast feed because the amount of grief and stress caused by breastfeeding would make it an awful experience for both mother and baby.

how much bonding do you think will occur when a mom is forced to breastfeed just because she can? she will resent her child instead of bonding with him/her. you really think a mother who cries every time she breastfeeds is what’s BEST for baby?

eternalcanadian on

Wow, that comment from Laila seemed self-rightous, “…when it comes to the baby and feeding the baby and doing things the best way, I’m in the lead as far as that’s concerned…”

Sometimes the father or other parent can be right or do things a better way, especially if that person is a doctor or has already been a parent or had lots of experience with babies. I just don’t think one person is the know it all and be all.

I also don’t see what’s wrong with pumping milk or using baby formula (as in the case of women being medically or physically unable to breastfeed) and letting other people feed the baby. There’s some really excellent pumps out there that make quick work of the milk extraction, plus there’s ways to fool the baby into not being able to tell the difference between a real nipple and a fake one.

One thing I have noticed is the “formula generation” aka the people that were fed formula pretty much made it through infancy and childhood without a whole slew of stuff like food allergies or biochemical issues like autism. So don’t knock formula because your parents or grandparents did okay with it, right?

nava on

Breast feeding is always the first and best option, but it doesn’t always work for everyone. My friend struggle for 2 days to get her new born son to feed, even pumping breast milk for the bottle, but he still refused, it’s once she gave into using the formular that he only started feeding…

breastmilk is best, but therés nothing wrong with formula. society has a way of making mom’s feel bad for doing thing one way or the other.

at least my godson is now strong and healthy exactly because there were other options available!

Kat on

We all do the best we can for our kids. Breast fed or not, for whatever reasons, is a personal choice for each woman. There are some people in the world who will argue anything with anyone, and find fault with every little thing, no matter how tactfully spoken a person tries to be. It’s best to just ignore those that make comments to cause strife just for the sake of arguing. People will always disagree. Why not just agree to disagree and move on? No matter a persons personal choices, feelings or opinions, women should be encouraging and supportive of other women, fully realizing that each person is going to feel differently about any given subject. Period. End of story.

Emily on

Breastmilk or formula–your choice, as long as YOU are paying for it. If WE (the taxpayers) are footing the bill (ie. on WIC), TRYING breastfeeding should be required (w/ rare exceptions for medical conditions). Decades of scientific data indicate fewer illnesses in breast milk-fed infants/children (I know, YOUR kid was perfectly healthy on formula). Healthcare is so expensive anyway and there is so much we have NO control over w/r/t our kiddos’ health. If we know it costs the taxpayer more in the short-term (hello, $300/m per formula fed child), AND in the long term (more ear infxns, respiratory issues, obesity, etc), PLEASE ATTEMPT to give breastmilk so you can support your own child.

audrey on

Who ever said Laila was judging bottle-feeder moms is rather silly. No is VERY SILLY.
Listen, it’s not about what she said anymore. It’s about everyone realizing that there is freedom to choose and freedom of expression. If you want to breast feed great! If you want to bottle feed great! You decide what is best for your baby as a mother. Keep it that way. There is no need to feel judged by Laila’s comments, because she doesn’t know you, and doesn’t intend to judge you. All you defensive people, go sit and think about your children. It’s not about being gross or being in sync with nature. Just stop quarreling over something this irrelevant. You will only feel guilty if you want to. So stop wanting to if you all have good reasons for your choices. if you feel guilty, do something about it! GOSH!

Jillian on

You are a delusional pathetic joke! Now I am a racist and homophobic? You say things, but have no foundation to make these statements! What I have I said that’s racist or homophobic??? When did I say I hate children??? I have said multiple time times that I am a mother and that I love children. You are a sad person. I believe nothing that comes on this page by you. I am going to jump off this page and join my family which contains family and friends that are both gay and mixed race. I don’t hate a soul, even your ignorant ass. Just because you dream it or say it Mols, doesn’t make it true. But keep making stuff up, we all need a good laugh once in awhile and I don’t mind laughing at you!

Holiday, don’t get upset or offended over what she says. She says the same about me and worse with NO foundation. I also am very vocal about gay rights. I am not racist, don’t hate kids or women. She says this to get a rise and stalks my posts. Shes all kinds of crazy.

Julie Ann on

The fact of the matter is whether non breastfeeding women want to face it or not breast milk is superior. I’m not saying they love their children any less or that they are bad mothers. I am also not trying to imply that their children are worse off. Its just a plain fact that breast milk is better. I can’t blame anyone for saying its obiviously better for the baby in most cases. Non bf women should just be okay with admitting they are providing second best for their children given the choice to do better. That isn’t to say they don’t have good reasons. Everyone is different.

Mama Cow on

My children are full and growing.

My children are happy and thriving.

End of story. While I breastfed my kids for over 18 months each I could really care less if someone else fed their child formula. I am to busy with my kids to worry about yours. I discreetly fed my child in public because I don’t see the point in going to the bathroom and sitting on a toilet (and honestly I don’t know how anyone gets their child to eat with toilets flushing every 5 seconds). I loved places that have nursing mothers rooms but really I live in the USA where that is a rarity. If possible I chose a discreet corner or a place where I wouldn’t bother someone and while I didn’t cover up (I usually wear a cami under a shirt) you couldn’t see anything at all. I am also conscience about what I eat/drink while pregnant and nursing and take a vitamin and cod liver oil to supplement just in case. I would assume most people know you are what you eat and that goes for your breast milk too.

I don’t know why anyone is saying formula is just as good as breast milk. I am sure the formula companies would love to see your research because they can’t even claim that. Its not going to kill your child though so if that is your option and that’s what you choose that’s fine. When your comfortable with your decision you won’t take offense if someone disagrees.

I also think its ironic that people think its gross to breastfeed but the majority wouldn’t blink an eye at drinking cows milk. Granted its not from the udder but its another animals breastmilk.

Kay on

This is for Elena several posts back that thinks breast milk is not as important as money: do you think a baby at breastfeeding age gives a rat’s a@@ about your financial portfolio? Babies need their mothers and their mothers nurturing — why have kids if you are not willing to make some sacrifices. IMO, it’s about my baby, not me.

Jillian on

Julie Ann, I agree with you for the most part until you say that formula feeding mothers should say they are providing second best for their child. I believe that a mothers decision is the best decision for her child, whether it’s bm or formula. No one knows the families situation and why they made the decision, so to say they should admit they are choosing second best… way! A mother should never feel like she is failing her child and that is how that reads to me. I really hope that any expectant mothers don’t read that and feel that. Your choice is the bedtime end number one choice! Period!

Mia on

What’s best for the baby is most important – I wasn’t able to digest breast milk — but was fine on formula.

Galen on

I am always amazed by the negative comments people sling at others regarding a matter as personal as how you feed your baby. The “here come the breast-feeding nazis” comment really takes the cake.

As an OB/GYN nurse, of course I wish more women breastfed…BUT that is my personal opinion, and the goal is to have a HEALTHY HAPPY BABY. How you get there is YOUR personal choice.

Breastfeeding is recommended by the APA for the 1st year of life. It is specific to human babies, contains antibodies that help a baby stay well, and is perfectly digestible-poops don’t reek, etc…blah, blah, blah. These are facts. Sorry if that makes people who chose (or are choosing to not breastfeed) to bottle feed uncomfortable or defensive.

However, today’s formulas are the best ever, and if mom chooses to formula feed-that baby will be healthy and happy as well. As long as the baby in question is growing and developing along a normal curve YAY!!! You go, mama!!

Not so sure on

@Lilybett – IMO you’re reading making something out of nothing. I didn’t read it that way at all. But thanks.