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Wednesday, September 17th, 2014
If you’re shopping in Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar and your baby needs to feed, don’t be surprised if you get a few looks as he’s latching on. That’s because one-fifth of women in Turkey think breastfeeding in public is “wrong.”
That’s according to a new survey conducted by Lansinoh, a breastfeeding supply company, which polled 13,169 moms and pregnant women around the world to find out how they really feel about nursing. The countries involved were Brazil, China, France, Germany, Hungary, Mexico, Turkey, the UK and the U.S., reports the Daily Mail.
Not surprisingly, different countries had different reactions to this lightning rod of a topic. Nowhere was that more apparent than with the topic of feeding an infant in public. More than half of women in the U.K., U.S., Brazil, and Mexico said it was “perfectly natural” to nurse al fresco, while 41 percent of moms in Hungary said it was “unavoidable.” Mixed feelings about breastfeeding were apparent even in the same country: Roughly half of Chinese and French women said it was either natural or “unavoidable,” but almost half also found it “embarrassing.”
When it comes to nursing a two-year-old in public, the battle lines were more clearly drawn. Most respondents said 6-12 months is the ideal length of time to breastfeed. Small wonder then that the majority of women in Germany (58 percent) and Mexico (57 percent), and half of respondents in the U.K., thought a two-year-old was too old to nurse. Moms and moms-to-be in France, the U.S., Hungary and Turkey also shared that sentiment, though not by a majority. Chinese women were split down the middle, with 37 percent supporting breastfeeding that long and 35 percent saying the baby should be off the breast by that point. For its part, 44 percent of Brazilian women believed moms should try to nurse for that long.
But despite the differences, there are some things all of us moms can agree on. Everyone struggles with waking up at night to feed baby. Most of us grapple with “mom guilt” over not breastfeeding (well, except for Germany). And an overwhelming majority of women in all of the countries surveyed agreed that breastfeeding is best for baby.
Tell us: Do these findings surprise you?
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Image of breastfeeding baby courtesy of Shutterstock
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Tuesday, September 16th, 2014
Hannah Kersey is one in a million. Literally.
That’s because the British woman was born with two wombs instead of one, a rare condition called uterus didelphys. At first, her doctor wasn’t sure if she’d be able to carry a child in both wombs, so imagine her shock when she and partner Mick Faulkner found out they were having triplets. (After all, the odds of such an occurrence are a staggering 25 million to one!)
The against-all-odds conception happened when two eggs, one in each womb, were fertilized simultaneously by two sperm, according to an article in the New York Post. One of the eggs split into two, creating identical twins, while the other developed into one baby.
The couple’s three girls — Grace and twins Ruby and Tilly — were born seven weeks premature via C-section, each weighing under 3 pounds. They stayed in the hospital for about nine weeks, until they were strong enough to go home. Though their story is the stuff of daytime talk shows and Guinness Book of World Records, the triplets sound much like any other happy, healthy babies. As Kersey pointed out to the BBC, “they are three lovely and incredible children, all with very different personalities.”
Expecting? Get an estimate of when the big day will be with our Due Date Calculator. And be sure to like All About Babies to keep up with the latest baby news!
Image of bottles courtesy of Shutterstock
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Monday, September 15th, 2014
I don’t know about you, but nothing gets to me quite like the sound of my child crying. All it takes is a bad enough-sounding wail, and I’m on a panicky mission to do whatever it takes to make it stop. Science, of course, has some explanations for that.
On the one hand, my urge to soothe could be because my own parents were so hands-on with my sisters and me — at least if recent findings from a study at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro are true. The university, together with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Fuller Theological Seminary, discovered that our childhood memories impact how we tend to our own crying kiddos. Specifically, moms who have positive memories of their parents or caregivers — or have worked through any bad ones — are more likely to be more responsive to their child’s needs. By the same token, women who are still grappling with a less-than-idyllic childhood are less responsive to a baby’s cries. The study followed 259 new moms and their babies, from conception through the first six months of baby’s life, and the results were published in Child Development, reports Science Daily.
But maybe it’s not that simple. Maybe our fight-or-flight reaction to crying is really just something that has been ingrained in us from the very beginning. With that in mind, a grad student at MIT has posited that our prehistoric ancestors were also deeply affected by wailing babies, so much so that they used them as a motivator to fight battles, reports NPR. According to Tomer Ullman, soldiers probably wore babies on their backs during wars and used all their screaming, or “infant stress vocalizations,” as a “natural adrenalin boost.” In essence, babies were the original WMDs.
While I can’t wrap my head around the logistics of wearing a baby while fighting, I admit that I can see how being attached to a sobbing child would make someone want to run for the hills. And apparently, I’m not the only one. Ullman made this proposal during last year’s BAHFest, an annual meeting where highly intelligent people present way-out-there ideas. Attendees there voted it the best of the event.
Tell us: How do you deal with your baby’s crying?
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Image of crying baby courtesy of Shutterstock
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Friday, September 12th, 2014
I looked around my apartment yesterday and wondered, When did all this stuff get here? My kid has discovered arts and crafts and Scotch tape, so from my waist down, the walls are covered in finger-painted construction paper, heavily markered looseleaf paper, and (my personal favorite) scrawled-on pieces of junk mail.
But I know I’m not alone here. Every parent I know is grappling with how to tame the ever-growing mountain of baby art. After all, it’s not like I can just throw the stuff away. Even if I could get over the guilt, there’s no way I could sneak the trash bag past my son, who regularly takes inventory of his creations.
So when I saw the creative way Ruth Oosterman handled her two-year-old’s scribbles, I was floored. Instead of chucking them out or collecting them in a pile on the closet floor, the Canadian artist used daughter Eve’s drawings as the foundation for a series of beautiful works of art called, “A painting collaboration with my toddler.” (h/t Scary Mommy) Check out some of her pieces below — and prepared to be dazzled:
Tell us: What do you do with your child’s drawings?
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Artwork courtesy of Ruth Oosterman via The Mischievous Mommy
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Thursday, September 11th, 2014
Facebook censors have struck again. But this time, instead of yanking down a Coppertone baby-inspired photo, they’ve rejected a picture of a sick newborn in a hospital, saying it was “scary, gory or sensational.”
The battle began this summer, when the baby, Hudson Bond, was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy of an unknown origin, reports WTVD (via The Huffington Post). After learning that his son would need a new heart, Kevin Bond did what many of us would do: he started a Facebook page to publicize his son’s plight and raise money for medical expenses. Along with news of Hudson’s condition, Kevin posted photos of the baby in the hospital. To reach a larger audience — and hopefully garner more support — he occasionally forked over $20 to boost the posts.
But Facebook censors rejected his September 4 boost, which included a photo of baby Hudson hooked up to a few different tubes. Their reason? The photo was “scary, gory, or sensational and evokes a negative response. Images including accidents, car crashes, dead and dismembered bodies, ghosts, zombies, ghouls, and vampires are not allowed.”
Boilerplate language, for sure, but to Kevin, those were fighting words. He told WTVD, “I was really hurt, actually. I mean, I kind of cried. He’s my son, I love him. And to have someone reject a picture… [of] my beautiful son lying in a hospital bed needing help — that really cut me.”
Kevin tried to sort out the situation with Facebook, but the social media giant wouldn’t respond to him. However, the Bonds’ situation did catch the attention of the media, who spread the story quickly. Soon after the news broke, Facebook recanted: A company spokesperson told The Huffington Post (though not the Bond family directly), ”This was a mistake on our part, and the ad has been re-approved. We apologize for any inconvenience this caused the family.”
But it wasn’t enough for the Bonds. The distraught father called Facebook’s apology “half-hearted” (which it kind of was). After writing a scathing post about it on September 10, Kevin received a call from Facebook. Besides a verbal “I’m sorry,” the company explained that an automated system accidentally flagged the photo of Hudson in the hospital. As an olive branch, it offered $10,000 worth of Facebook ads. The Bonds have asked that $5,000 of it go to help Eliza O’Neill, a 4-year-old girl with Sanfilppo Syndrome; they’ll use the remainder for baby Hudson, who continues to wait in the hospital for his new heart.
Tell us: Do you think Facebook has done enough to make amends for censoring the photos?
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Image of Hudson Bond courtesy of Hudson’s Heart via Facebook
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