Fathers are parents too

All the media releases and interviews on the possible contamination of infant formula I’ve seen or heard have talked about mothers’ concerns.

What about the fathers?

One of the advantages of bottle feeding rather than breast feeding is that fathers can have a more hands-on role in parenting.

Even if they weren’t buying formula and/or feeding their children every good father would be just as concerned as the mothers over the health of their babies.

There would be an uproar if media releases assumed all politicians, professionals or other occupations were men.

It is just as wrong to ignore them and make the assumption that they don’t now have a place in what were traditionally women’s roles.

Family matters don’t matter to women only.

Fathers are parents too.

6 Responses to Fathers are parents too

  1. Andrei says:

    All the media releases and interviews on the possible contamination of infant formula I’ve seen or heard have talked about mothers’ concerns.

    You didn’t look very hard: Dad: ‘It’s hard not to be worried, it’s your baby’

  2. homepaddock says:

    I’d missed that one, but all the ones I found yesterday said mothers.

  3. Andrei says:

    You looked at this through the lens of gender politics.

    In the real world it is the mother of a nursing infant who will make the decisions on how that infant will be fed.

    The harridan brigade would be up in arms if a man dictated to his wife that his child be breast fed or alternatively formula fed, ultimately these are choices best left to the mother – who in the real world holds all the cards when it comes to feeding her child anyway. Not that there is ever any conflict over this matter in normal relationships where both the man and woman concerned cooperatively work together to ensure the best possible outcome for THEIR child

    Which is why when stories related to the feeding of nursing infants are in the media the first port of call for reporters is nursing mothers rather than the husbands of nursing mothers – which is exactly as it should be

  4. TraceyS says:

    “There would be an uproar if media releases assumed all politicians, professionals or other occupations were men.”

    Of course there would, but there is a bit of a difference between the roles. Mothering is not a career equivalent to the roles of professional or politician. It would be so sad if we thought it was!

    Women are physically geared up for the act of feeding babies. There is no denying the feeding function of breasts even if they are not used in this way. Women who don’t breastfeed are still engaging in a profoundly motherly experience when feeding their babies.

    Therefore I support the media on this one. Given the seriousness of this situation it is entirely proper to appeal to motherly instincts by referring to “mothers” in press releases. “Mother” is a word with special meaning to all of us, just as “father” is. But I will bet they conjure up distinctly different mental images for most people.

    “Mother” and “father”, when used on their own, are still legitimate terms in society thank goodness. We should not make it non-PC to use these terms on their own – to have to write mother/father like we have to write she/he, or him/her.

    Fathers are not mothers. I seem to recall not so long ago the reciprocal being argued on Homepaddock.

    Maybe a few gay male couples raising babies will be upset by this use of terminology. But the language itself didn’t exclude them from listening, doesn’t stop them from protecting their baby. No one is going to stop them at the supermarket door and say “sorry you’re not a mother so you can’t return that product…”

  5. TraceyS says:

    “In the real world it is the mother of a nursing infant who will make the decisions on how that infant will be fed.”

    And in life, often the nursing infant has a strong influence over the decision. Some won’t take a bottle. Some won’t take a breast. Mothers engage in this interaction with the baby much more intimately than fathers do. The father should have a supporting and empowering role. My husband would say it was such a hard time for him (it was) but you can’t say that the role is the same. He can’t know what it is like to have his breast rejected or for other reasons not be able to do as nature intended because of the plain fact that he does not have breasts.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: