Does Breastfeeding Controversy Sell?

Today I’m going to veer a little bit from my normal content. I haven’t posted a breast-feeding post in a while. And while I don’t typically use my blog to advocate for the #normalizebreastfeeding movement, I’m feel like I may start dropping a couple posts every now and then to bring some awareness because it is something I feel very passionately about.

Breastfeeding has been a wonderful part of my journey into motherhood.  It’s been a huge part of my life for so long.  Between both of my children, I’ve been breastfeeding for two and a half years. So I consider myself very versed in most scenarios pertaining to breastfeeding.  And although it hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows, I’ve definitely enjoyed most of my experiences.

One of the things I can appreciate about the breastfeeding community is the fantastic way we support one another.  It’s incredible how many women will come to the aid of another breastfeeding mama in need.  I’ve seen mamas offering to drive 40 miles to bring pumped milk to another mom in need.  I’ve also witnessed in person the support groups every Wednesday hosted by fellow lactivists and lactation consultants where moms gather to bring questions and concerns to the group for continued support and guidance.   And heaven forbid one of us are shamed or discriminated against while nursing in public (NIP).  These ladies will defend and support one another until their dying day.  It’s unparalleled.

Just a week ago, Alyssa Milano gained national attention regarding her breastfeeding stance when she appeared on the Wendy Williams show.

(Skip to 3:47 for the juicy part)

The response from the breastfeeding community was overwhelming. Within a day there were groups on Facebook and events scheduled for women to come together to support her by staging virtual nurse ins.  (A nurse in is essentially a flash mod of breastfeeding mothers.  Typically this is done as a means to protest and band together in solidarity over perceived mistreatment)  

It’s obvious that the breastfeeding community is a group not to be underestimated. The support from these mamas is unparalleled.  

Which is why when I came across this video labeled a so-called “social experiment” from internet celebrity Joey Salads, I was intrigued.  

Take a look.

 

And then a week later, I found this additional “experiment” from Joey salads again.  

 

So, to reiterate. there’s been an influx of breast-feeding controversy on social media as of recently.  It’s obvious the breastfeeding community is a large and powerful movement and a force to be reckoned.  Being a nursing mother, I can really appreciate the overwhelming support and sisterhood within the breastfeeding community.  Which is why, it bothers me beyond comprehension to think that someone is trying to use our movement for their own personal gain.  

Now, I want to make sure I’m crystal clear here.  

I totally support the Normalize Breastfeeding Movement.  

I am all about briging awareness on this issue.  And I know plenty of women run into unsavory situations when they’re breastfeeding in public, but I cannot possibly believe these reactions from these videos are authentic.  In my opinion, and several of my fellow breastfeeding mother’s opinions, this Joey Salads guy is a total fraud and he is creating a disservice to the breastfeeding community by posting his videos to the internet.  

And I’m going to tell you why.

Making a spectacle of breastfeeding works entirely against normalizing it.

I know controversy sells.  I get it.  But all this controversy has the potential to be counterproductive.

Don’t get me wrong.  I like the idea for these videos, but I can’t help wonder how they impact the breastfeeding community.  Some people may view them as a positive notion.  People may feel he is brining awareness, but I think he is making a mockery of something extremely sensitive and serious to many mothers.  This so-called social experiment is nothing more than a scripted prank.  It is counterproductive to the #normalizebreastfeeding movement.   How are we to educate people on a subject if the information you are showing them has been falsely presented?

Obviously, breastfeeding is a trending topic and this type of controversy equals views and dollar signs.  It’s disgusting that he is using a topic like this to gain attention.

My bottom line is this.  This guy is making money while people are fighting over his breast-feeding “social experiments.”  He created a couple videos that spark a lot of interest because the subject matter is a very sensitive and passionate subject that brings about a lot of support.  All the while, people are viewing it creating their own opinions about the material they just say.  Whether they think it’s real or not is just part of the issue.  This type of situation isn’t reality – at least not in the circle of breastfeeding mothers that I belong to.  We don’t typically get approached like that.  In fact, myself and a few dozen other moms were discussing how if we made our own videos like this, no one would watch it.  It would turn out pretty boring, because, most of the time, people just ignore you or are afraid to look your direction.  Me, personally, I’ve never been approached or spoken to in any manner such as these videos display.

So I guess what I’m trying to say is this.  Where do we draw the line?  What topics are off limits?  How can we trust anything or anyone online anymore?  If someone is willing to take something like public breastfeeding and attempt to gain social shares and likes on youtube for their own personal gain, what topics are going to be manipulated next?

Okay.  Rant over.

 

Have you ever been so riled up about something you saw online that you felt the need to talk about it publicly?

What is something that you would be outraged to see being presented falsely for someone else’s gain?

 

 

 

Hey there! Thanks for stopping by my little space on the web. I'm Haley. I’m a digital marketer & social media strategist, a running coach, compulsive movie quoter, a ketogenic athlete, wannabe photographer, Capricorn, and a slightly sarcastic, ultra chatty extrovert living in Tampa with my awesome family. I love spending my time helping folks find their best self through fitness, health and wellness. I strive to help you live your best life, and enjoy the journey. Sometimes I write. It’s rarely worth reading, but I like to put it out there anyways.

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2 thoughts on “Does Breastfeeding Controversy Sell?”

  1. Instead of the phrase “sex sells” I think our current society’s motto should be “controversy sells”. It is terrible but it doesn’t surprise me that someone is taking advantage of others anger and making a quick buck on it. Every one is so quick to be angry over everything, everything is a controversy these days. I think there are true injustices that deserve outrage and controversy in order to change things however I don’t think every “issue” should be a controversy. I think if people would just adopt the childhood lesson of “if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all” our society would be a MUCH better place.

    That being said. I breastfeed my son for two years, well past society’s acceptable age, and never had anyone ever say anything to me. I may have gotten a few weird looks and even then I can’t be sure if those were really towards me or just my paranoia.

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