MFMers take sides on the ‘paid to breastfeed’ debate

Just more pressure for new mums or a helpful incentive?

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A new trial paying new mums up to £200 in vouchers to breastfeed their babies has got everyone talking on our Facebook page.

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The controversial incentive, which we reported yesterday, is currently being offered to 130 new mums in Derbyshire and South Yorkshire to try to boost the very low rates of breastfeeding in these areas.

But if the scheme is successful, a national pilot could run next year.

MFMers have been keen to weigh in on the hot topic.

Some argue that the scheme could put pressure on new mums…

  • “It puts even more pressure on people that struggle or can’t breastfeed,” says Maxine Goodfellow.
  • “Ridiculous, women already feel under pressure to breast feed to the point where they feel guilty or that they have let the baby down if they cannot manage to breastfeed long as they are told they should.” says Dan Faulkner. “This is going to add even more pressure and add to the feelings of guilt because they are now being treated as though something is being taken away for not doing well enough i.e ‘if you don’t breast feed you don’t get the £200!’”

But others are pleased that new mums are being given even more encouragement to breastfeed..

  • “I struggled to breast feed my son but persevered,” says Rachelle Lowes. “It was then found he had a tongue tie. He had the op at four months. I expressed for another three months and bottlefed him. I understand some people can’t but some people don’t even try and that gets me. As we live in a weight obsessed world maybe they should sell it more on how quickly you can lose the babyweight and body back in condition breast feeding! I just wish more people would give it a go, to be honest. It’s a darn sight cheaper and a lot easier. And you get a wonderful bond with your child.”
  • “I believe if one person decides to give breastfeeding a try, then how can that be a bad thing?” says Gemma Parkinson. “How many people are discussing breastfeeding because this voucher incentive has made the news?! If any mum even tries breastfeeding as an option for one day, one week or onemonth then they should be so proud!”

What do you think? Do post your thoughts in the comments box below: we’d love to hear your views!

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