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More mothers should know about this type of marketing. I received a "free" backpack type diaper bag from a local maternity wear store. It was stuffed full of formula samples and coupons for more. I've been around the block a few times so I knew enough to keep the bag and toss the formula, but a new, insecure mom? It's so low. It's really despicable.
It really does bother me that women who want to breastfeed their babies are handed handy bags filled with sabotage materials. I got my handy Similac sponsored "breastfeeding" bag upon discharge when Kolbie was born. I didn't get anything 2.5 years ago when Kaija was born - but I think they just forgot really my discharge was a bit of a cluster... I need to donate my sample cans of formula I have. I'll never use them. It's ridiculous that this can happen. If I came right out and said I wasn't going to breastfeed, fine, give me the free stuff. But otherwise, no thanks.
This just makes me so mad. I too received a "bag of goodies" at the hospital, even though all thr nurses knew I was breastfeeding. One nurse looked at me and said, "Just in case!! You never know!" I know the concerns from the nurses were genuine, but it really ticked me off later that I had all this formula in the house, expecially when I was going through a rough patch in the beginning and used some of it. It got to the point where I just had to throw it all away because it really was sabatoging my beginning breastfeeding efforts! I think its even more ridiculous they gave her this stuff AFTER she had been breastfeeding so well!!!
I have a constant stream of mail coming in from the formula companies. Not sure how they got my name but its annoying. I also have a bunch of free formula samples that are just sitting around collecting dust. I might give them to my friend at work who is supplementing with formula though.
I too had the doctors and nurses at the hospital giving me formula gift bags. I just ignore the formula and take the free stuff that I'll actually use. Its obnoxious, but I do get a little satisfaction throwing away all the formula advertising and crap ; ). Although one of my doctors that I really like did give us two Avent bottles, and those things are not cheap.
I also get formula in the mail, I have gotten 2 cans of Enfamil so far. I am guessing they got my name when I registered for a couple of free magazine subscriptions when I was pregnant...but still, I specifically said "no thanks" to formula coupons.
I also got a big bag from my OB's office, he was like, "oh here, they're just free gifts we get to distribute to our patients" and on the front it said something like- "For breastfeeding and formula feeding moms" so I took it home and was surprised when I found formula samples, coupons, and little plastic containers for holding formula. There was also an ice pack that said ENFAMIL across it. I was so annoyed that I just tossed it, bag and all, even though I guess I could have used it (the bag). It really is too bad because as a new mom, I was worried and I did keep the formula. Now I am not sure what to do with it cause I don't know any moms IRL.
Mama to Jackson (23 months)
Fiance to Matthew
I used the ice pack for my breastpump and I did use the bag but cut off the Similac tag, LOL. I have a hard time throwing things out. The little plastic bottles actually screw on to my breast pump. There are a bunch of campaigns out there (you can find them on FB and the internet) to stop the bags.
I've gotten one at the beginning of each pregnancy and one during discharge.
Yes each were enfamil sponsored, but I actually liked it. Each one at the hospital was slightly larger w/ a few parenting magazines and a years supply of each if I signed up. Each contained a Ameda manual breast pump, breast pads, I used the freezer packs for breastmilk w/ Bailey, with the other two Tom took them for work Each contained a magnet with LLL resources, not one on the list was from a formula company (not to say there wasn't enfamil pamphlets ab BFing. And my favorite was the rubber bracelets with 1-12 on them and a little circle (like the heart on the similac ones) to keep track of the last feeding, and I would switch it from hand to hand to know what side to nurse on in the beginning. I also loved the little snappie BM bottles- each old holds 2.5 oz, but worked perfectly for bringing milk to the hospital when I was d/c before Bailey.
There should be a lesson in booby traps so new moms can know what to take from the freebie, and what to leave behind.
Oh, and the bag worked PERFECTLY for storing my Purely Yours pump, extra batteries, and bottles (and milk) when I was working
Nicole: Tom's Wife [5.7.05]; Mommy of Thomas [9.6.05], Collin [1.17.08], & Bailey [10.2.09]
I have had to fight off getting the nestle new parent back pack so many times this pregnancy, the one that disgusted me the most was the sign up "Draw" box in my dr's office for it. I did sign up for a free rice cereal sample and lo and behold they sent me a full size can of formula with it and a reusable bag advertising formula (I resisted the urge to throw it out and donated it to the food bank)
The belief that there is only one truth and that oneself is in possession of it seems to me the
deepest root of all evil that is in the world.”
— German physicist Max Born Like Bear Moon on Facebook
Wow! That is horrible! And all of bad information out there drives me nuts! My best friend stopped BF-ing at 4 months bc she was made to believe her milk was drying up and told to supplement with formula, which dried her milk up! She wants to BF longer next time (June 2011 and I am due July 2011! hehe!). We didn't get reconnected until her DD was 15 months but when she told me the story I was shocked and told her very few women actually lose their supply. But it is easy to decrease supply (or increase) with just a few changes. BUT you can re-lactate even after MONTHS of not breastfeeding!!!! Sorry- prego hormones. Stupid formula companies!!!!
I got the "breastfeeding" bag at discharge this time. Of course it had the free can of formula in it. At least my hospital and my pedi never suggested or pushed formula. The pedi we see most often is a breastfeeding mother herself.
While I do think it is ridiculous to give out formula to breast feeding moms (I wondered why the hospital gave it to me when I was breast feeding) it did actually come in handy for me. I had to have a procedure done and wasn't going to be able to breast feed my son for 48 hours because of some medicine I had to take. I had tried so hard to pump enough milk for him but he was going through a growth spurt and I just didn't have enough saved up. I did need it for two or three feedings but thankfully I had it there when needed.