Originally I wasn’t going to include the controversial cover of Time magazine because it doesn’t deserve any more press than it’s already received, but, if you haven’t seen it yet (how could you miss it?), it’s really a necessary part of the conversation.
I breastfed all three of my kids until they were ready to stop. With my youngest that meant nursing until she was about 2 years old. I have family members and friends who nursed their children until almost 4 years old. I am the biggest proponent of breastfeeding that you are going to find. Anywhere. I believe every child should be breastfed for at least a year, longer whenever possible.
But I was stunned and disappointed and disgusted to see this exploitative photo on the front of Time magazine in the name of attachment parenting. What a disgrace and a disservice to mothers everywhere. As someone who has received looks of shock and disapproval even when I was discreetly nursing my babies with blankets and coats piled on top to hide us, I can tell you that no one nurses a child like this, and no mother-child nursing scenario has both participants looking away in total disconnection. This is the most false photo I’ve ever seen, and that’s saying something in this photoshopped world of ours.
Breastfeeding (and attachment parenting if that is your choice) deserve to be promoted and supported and encouraged at every single turn. This photo may have people talking about the topic, but not in a good way. In a provocative way. In a controversial way. In a maddening way.
Something as beautiful and natural as breastfeeding deserves so much better than this. Something like this much more realistic photo.