The sheltered life I live

Last night I watched a documentary on “Xtreme!” breastfeeding.  (ok it was on “extreme” breastfeeding but that’s not nearly as fun to type.)

Anyhoo.  I was suddenly in a discussion about breastfeeding in public with the other occupant of the hostel.  Firstly a man kept saying that “the jury is out on whether breast milk is really best”

technically true but their is strong evidence to suggest that it is better to breast feed if you are able.  (cough* colostrom cough*)  So his view was if you are in public you should give them cows milk.

I kept trying to explain that regular cows milk is not the  most healthy choice for babies as it has a different protein/ carb ratio than human milk.

He then thought that I was automatically biased because I believe in veganism.

I kept trying to explain that babies need baby formula not plain cows milk because there are big differeneces between cows and humans so other animals milk needs to be modified for babie consumption because they can’t digest plain cows milk.

I kept gettting wound up.  not just because someone kept comparing breastfeeding to taking a shit, but because it was outside the realm of possibility in my head that anyone I got along with would do such a thing.  ( I can feel my blood begining to pump faster just remembering the conversation)

Back home I don’t think I know anyone who would be offended by someone breastfeeding in public.  Not only that but I’m pretty sure that most people would support rights for women breastfeeding in public.

It made me realise that I don’t discuss issues with people that will be controversial.  I didn’t conciously think that breastfeeding was so controversial as I sheltered myself so well, but i somehow manage to avoid the topic with people who disagree with me.  I think I’m genuinely afraid.  There are consequences to airing an opinion.  I’m in a society that though “laws” may protect my rights, they are not enforcable.  If I do or say something that is controversial lots of people will do their best at making my life more difficult than it currently is.  If I speak up against an injustice I will have to deal with even more shit that the origianl injustice.  This  silences people, gives them no voice.

I write here because I can be anonymous.  I can have my voice, though not as connected with myself.  it’s absolutely shocking that I lack the courage to stand up for myself and things “i beleive in.”  I just get tired of being greeted with animosity.  I know lots of people suggest that, “oh if people don’t accept you as you are they aren’t good enough friends.”   But I need people.  I cannot survive without human companionship (and I mean out side of the bed room even).  So I need to be friends with the enemy sometimes.  I’m not currently in a position to find a community of support.  I live with these people.  I need to get along with them at the moment.

But damn it’s frustrating.  But I resolve to speak up more anyway.

Published in: on June 17, 2008 at 10:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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