Mom Wonders If She's 'Terrible' for Refusing to Donate Breast Milk to an Anti-Vaccine Mom

The mother took to Reddit, writing, "I'm a terrible person for not donating my breast milk to a woman who refuses to vaccinate her children."

breast milk in bags on counter
Photo: Karunyapas/Shutterstock

February 7, 2019

A mom on Reddit is getting tongues wagging after sharing that she refused to donate her breast milk to a mom who is against vaccination. In r/breastfeeding, the Redditor who goes by SayYestoDogs titled her January 31 post, "I’m a terrible person for not donating my breast milk to a woman who refuses to vaccinate her children." She explained that she's part of a breast milk donation group on Facebook and makes "excess amounts of milk that would otherwise go to waste."

"Often times, I’ll make a general post offering to donate anywhere from 60-100 oz to a baby in need," she shared. "There is a woman who always messages me. The first time she told me of her story and her baby, I was prepared to give her that particular stash. Then, I clicked on her profile—oh boy."

What the Redditor found was "anti-vax propaganda and just disgusting things."

"I can’t explain it, but I get this awful, icky feeling thinking about giving her my breast milk," she wrote. "So I tell her someone else already claimed it. This happens about three more times over the course of several weeks and I keep telling her, sorry someone else has claimed it."

She went on to share that a little over a week ago, she wrote a post about having milk to donate. "She literally messaged me asking for it mere seconds after posting," the mom shared. "I replied with the same response. She called me out this time and says she feels like I always say that to her and that she thinks I have a problem with her."

That's when the Redditor decided to get real with the anti-vax mom. "I tell her that I’m extremely uncomfortable donating my milk to someone who refuses to vaccinate her child (who is a sick baby, btw, and born very early as per her first message to me) as well as spreads misinformation about immunizations. Well as you can guess, she got very upset and basically called me an awful person. Kind of went on a tirade about how we don’t know what’s in vaccines and the ingredients we know about are poisoning our children. I almost asked her how she was okay with accepting everyone’s home-pumped milk for her kid when god knows what’s in it. Whatever. Not sure why I’m posting this but I felt super butt hurt about the whole exchange."

Commenters in the thread pointed out that parents who are against vaccination may very well be turned off by the mom's milk. "Just tell her that since you're vaccinated, your breast milk is contaminated with vaccines so she wouldn't want it anyway," one wrote. To that, she replied, "Okay, I totally thought about doing that well after the conversation ended lol. I think the next time I make a donation post, I’ll mention something along the lines of 'I don’t take any medication or alcohol, I eat dairy and soy, I am fully vaccinated, last one being the flu shot in December.'"

Most Redditors who weighed in gave the mom props for donating her breast milk in the first place. One wrote, "I donated about 40 gallons of milk while I pumped for the first year of my son's life. Pumping is a labor of love - heavy emphasis on the LABOR part. It's hard and horrible. So who you donate to - that's personal and you don't ever have to justify who's getting it. It's a DONATION. You're spending your time and energy to extend a kindness, so anyone who gets it should be grateful and anyone who doesn't should STFU. I would have had issues with donating to a vocal/ardent antivaxxer as well."

Others encouraged the donor to consider going through a milk bank. After all, though the process is far more labor-intensive, it may be one way to circumvent headaches like this one.

Ultimately, no matter what the mom chooses to do, the bottom-line on her concerns can be summed up by a fellow Redditor: "You’re a good person for donating your breast milk at all. It’s totally your right to choose who to give it to."

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