Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Childcare Centers Harassing Nursing Mothers?

I have heard some internet grumbling among some young moms in Weslaco whose childcare centers have tried to pressure them to start bringing formula for their babies instead of breastfeeding them.  The moms have said that the centers used phrases like "it isn't appropriate at his age" to shame them into bringing formula, while mentioning that they really think the childcare centers just want to be able to make the same bottles for all the babies and not have to trouble with breastmilk.

This is horrible.  

It is also illegal.

I remember how hard to was to keep providing breastmilk for my babies when they were in childcare.  It was mainly hard because pumping just is hard, but the ignorance and occasional attitudes of childcare workers certainly did not help.

I can remember a childcare center requiring me to bring a note from a doctor that my exclusively breastfed daughter's stools were normal and not diarrhea because they were ignorant about what exclusively breastfed babies' stools looked like - which cost me time off work and having to pay for a doctor visit to get the note.  I can remember a childcare center requiring me to provide documentation to back up how long I had told them breastmilk could be kept in the freezer and refrigerator respectively, because they did not know themselves and apparently felt the need to question me.   I remember a childcare center trying (unsuccessfully) to get me to nurse my baby in a separate room so that other parents and babies did not have to see us. I remember the constant struggle to get the childcare staff to feed the baby on demand rather than on a schedule that bore no relationship to when she was hungry and which wasted precious milk.

It wasn't easy.

Childcare workers really need to be trained better about breastfeeding.

I never had staff dare to try to pressure me to stop, though.  If they had, they would have quickly had trouble with childcare licensing.  If your childcare center ever does that to you, please call childcare licensing and make a complaint immediately.  Childcare centers who find it too inconvenient to provide the infants in their care with the protection of their mothers' milk need to be shut down. No excuses.

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