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PUBLIC OPINION > Time's Breastfeeding Cover Went Too Far

Living 2012/05/11 13:00:00
Anyone who got a glimpse of the cover of the latest issue of Time magazine will have that image forever emblazoned in their fragile memory banks. It depicts Jamie Lynne Grumet, an attractive blonde mother, with her 3-year-old son standing on a chair in front of her, mouth latched onto her left breast. The caption is, "Are You Mom Enough?: Why attachment parenting drives some mothers to extremes." Regardless of the article's intent, the image is striking and, some feel, a little bit... provocative. We asked the public if the cover went too far.



Well, it didn't top Google trends because it was "perfectly acceptable." First of all, the kid's almost four. That alone is awkward to the max. What is he going to think when he gets a little bit older? Second of all, the photographer who took that also took pictures of three other mothers who are breastfeeding their older children. Must they use the attractive blonde for the cover? Some said it looks like an act of pedophilia at first glance. Defenders argued that the public has no right to dictate how she should raise her child.

Christians Can't Stand It

Typically, when religion and politics play a dividing role, politics has the stronger pull. This time, it was religion. Christians were 33% more likely to say the magazine went too far, presumably because of the image's borderline inappropriateness. Atheists, however, were pretty split.

Men Don't Mind as Much

Both genders sided against the cover, but men were significantly less likely to point fingers. It's tough to say exactly why that is, but some of the comments -- "I'm jealous!" "Can I take the 4-year-old's place?" "Crazy mom doesn't look half bad" -- offered a clue. Awkward? Certainly, for most. But for some guys, the kid is just an inconvenient obstruction.

Married Mind It a Lot

Age didn't seem to correlate, nor did parenthood, but relationship status had a big impact. Married voters were 11% more likely than singles to disapprove, and 20% more likely than unmarried voters in a relationship.


If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit our poll about Time's breastfeeding cover. We'd love to hear from you!
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  • Muver Pronata... 2012/05/14 01:45:25
    Muver
    Well, people of certain ethnic groups, and peoples of other countries seem to agree with your birth control policies....but most of the time, these poor babies grow up with no father, and sometimes a barely there mother, and the majority of people can not afford to have a ton of kids....my feeling is
    children should not be born just for the sake of it, but only if they can grow and have all the advantages there are....parents die, children live on, and need educations, and jobs, and be able to provide for themselves, and not spend their lives living on the public dole....at least in this country....I believe in birth control, and wish more people would use it....and not just women....Just because you can reproduce, does not mean you should...
  • Pronata... Muver 2012/05/14 02:39:36
    Pronatalist Pronatalist
    The number of people who could potentially enjoy coming alive, suggests that large families should be encouraged worldwide.

    I believe in the natural unhindered flow of human life, welcoming the natural proliferation of the human race, but with individual liberty comes personal responsibility. Ideally, children should have not only a mother, but a responsible father who sticks around and helps. Pushing "birth control" works against that, by letting guys get their jollies of sex, but without the proper responsibility.

    Birthing babies is just as natural and proper, as the heart beating or breathing. In nature, life seeks to spread into most every available niche. Why should humans be exempt, when we can use intelligence to alter nature to, all the better, hold more people?
  • Laura Pronata... 2012/05/13 07:02:33
    Laura
    She is not practicing extended breastfeeding to prevent ovulation (BTW...is not a good method of birth control). SHe believes in allowing her child to wean himself which is often considered bother physically and emotionally healthier than forced weaning. Child led weaning is a naturally slow process and is often not complete until 3 to 5 years of age. Woman around the world often feed 3 year olds......it is not an unsual as our over sexualized society likes to believe
  • Pronata... Laura 2012/05/13 18:31:10
    Pronatalist Pronatalist
    Well I do believe American women ought to breastfeed longer than a month on average, and be welcome to breastfeed in most any public place.

    However, 3 years seems an awful long time. I just don't get it? Children with teeth ought to eat solid food. And is cow milk really so bad, especially if government would get out of the way, and let people purchase raw milk, if they think that better? It seems a lot easier to justify children that old that are still co-sleeping in the family bed, as that long was the custom and tradition, especially back when homes were small, before automatic home heating systems. Parental discretion, seems to be the obvious standard for some such things.

    Is our American society, just all wrong?
  • Lanikai Muver 2012/05/12 14:28:44
    Lanikai
    +2
    They cannot effectively use those teeth for nourishment until about 24-30 months. The breast feeding bible recommends nursing til about 2 or 2.5 years, when kids can chew food.

    I nursed for 21 months. Teeth were never an issue, and since my daughter refused every bottle on earth, I had no choice.
  • Muver Lanikai 2012/05/12 16:02:31
    Muver
    Don't know about the breast feeding bible, but there is more than enough nourishment in todays baby food....and all my kids, as well as now my 14 mo. old granddaughter is getting plenty of vitamins and nourishment with her 8 teeth...she eats everything, and chews it all just fine...
  • Mr. Won... Muver 2012/05/13 18:10:04
    Mr. Wonderful
    +1
    Breast feeding beyond 9 months is a reflection on the stupidity of the mother doing it.
  • Muver Mr. Won... 2012/05/17 00:06:30
    Muver
    I don't view it as stupidity, but just not necessary in this part of the world, where we are lucky enough to have plenty of good and nourishing food, fruits, veggies, healthy meats(meat in small amounts) and fish when appropriate for the age group..Some other parts of the world are not as lucky and possibly women must
    continue to feed in that manner....but the mother has to stay healthy as well, and needs nourishing food...to be able to nurse....
    Further, to make my point, we do not need fur to keep warm and protected any more, so there is no reason to kill animals for their fur...
  • Pronata... Lanikai 2012/05/12 20:05:52
    Pronatalist Pronatalist
    I thought that was what the blender or the baby food jars are for? Helping make the transition to solid foods. A baby doesn't have to be very old, to eat apple sauce?
  • Lanikai Pronata... 2012/05/15 15:05:01
    Lanikai
    It is more about the digestive saliva enzymes. babies don't have them until the point at which they can chew to release them. Probably why so many get "colicky" when rice or apple powder get tossed into their bottles to fill them up and help them sleep all night.
  • Pronata... Lanikai 2012/05/15 16:46:41
    Pronatalist Pronatalist
    Well I do think breastfeeding should continue for more than a short month.

    What a terrible disservice to mothers, that breastfeeding was though to be "low-class" or something?

    But making a spectacle of breastfeeding a 3 year old, 5 or 6 year-old, seems to be just provocative and wrong. But then, would I expect such a worldly magazine as Time or NewsWeek, to ever reliably tell the truth for long? Aren't those New-World-Order-criminal-elit... publications?

    Why couldn't they have just put a cute and adorable baby breastfeeding, on the cover? Then we'd have to say, isn't that cute, normal, natural, or whatever?
  • Lanikai Pronata... 2012/05/15 17:10:50
    Lanikai
    +1
    I think breast feeding beyond the two year mark is generally not a great idea, but to three is the kid is low weight or cannot take any of the formulas, probably alright.

    TIMES used that to push a theory and make breast feeding look vile and nasty. They unfairly represented it as a bad thing, I guess in order to bolster the sales at formula makers companies.

    Formula is horrid stuff.
  • Pronata... Lanikai 2012/05/15 17:28:39
    Pronatalist Pronatalist
    +1
    Well like a lot of things, best to leave things to parental discretion, as we sure can't trust the statist government to decide hardly anything right.

    As I think matters of co-sleeping, and how much modesty and the closing of bedroom doors, have to be decided by the parents.
  • Lanikai Pronata... 2012/05/15 17:37:02
    Lanikai
    Co sleeping is okay, if done right. We had a nursing in bed, which was beside our bed, at the same height, but was like a pack and play, so the baby was never IN the bed-too many stories of parents rolling over and smothering the baby prevented that as an option.

    After they are a little older ( past 1) co-sleeping can be a good way to help them learn to go to sleep when the lights go off, but after a certain point, it is more of a wall in the parents relationship.

    We did some co sleeping to help her learn to sleep when the lights-lights off indicated close the eyes and sleep time, and it was a faster way to teach independent sleep.

    That part of it-totally at the parents choice as long as they don't have pre teens sleeping together with them. Which is just icky,.
  • Pronata... Lanikai 2012/05/15 20:02:06
    Pronatalist Pronatalist
    But throughout much of history, the entire family sleep in the same room, or even the same bed. It's understandable, if their home is too small to do otherwise. Families still grew, even with children in the bed.

    Ideally, I'd like to see older children have their own bedroom, but only if space permits. Better to have more children, regardless of lack of space.
  • Laura Muver 2012/05/13 06:59:59
    Laura
    That is not true...most babies get teeth within the first few months of life...but they cannot be weaned at that age. The bare minimum is year, unless you are going to switch to formula. And why would you do that if its going smoothly? Switch out human milk for your baby human for COWS milk based formula for your baby human? To me, that makes no sense....

    Many health organizations feel that the one year currently recommended by the AAP is too low....I have heard even the AAP is planning to change the recommendation at this point. The WHO recommend breastfeeding exlusively for 6 months and than continuing until AT LEAST 2 years (with the addition of solid food), longer is mother and child want. The health benefits of breastmilk are MANY and they are not just about nutrition....
  • Ken Muver 2012/05/14 18:15:52
    Ken
    They claim the boy in the photo is 4 - he looks to be around 6 to me. What do you think?
  • Angecael 2012/05/11 23:38:55
    Angecael
    +2
    In ten years he's going to see it and kill himself.
    I'm not even joking. That picture will stick.
  • nobiggov 2012/05/11 23:26:00
    nobiggov
    +2
    This is what happens when people don't use good ole common sense....of course a young boy walking around should not be sucking milk from his mother's breast. This is a consequence of the attitude "everything is ok" and nothing is good or bad. This is flat out ridiculous and lacks any kind of rational thought.
  • Cthulhu 2012/05/11 23:19:34
    Cthulhu
    I wonder what kind of mom she would be.
  • conservyT 2012/05/11 23:12:53
    conservyT
    +2
    REPULSIVE!!!
  • Chokmah conservyT 2012/05/12 02:53:59
    Chokmah
    +2
    Jesus was breast fed...and in public!
  • Lanikai Chokmah 2012/05/12 14:29:36
    Lanikai
    Not at that age, by then he had brothers nursing, AND women covered to nurse in those days, as all smart women do now.
  • Chokmah Lanikai 2012/05/14 22:18:52
    Chokmah
    And just how in the heck do YOU KNOW what women did IN THOSE DAYS?
  • Lanikai Chokmah 2012/05/15 15:01:28
    Lanikai
    Historical documentation. GO read some.
  • Chokmah Lanikai 2012/05/15 18:33:56
    Chokmah
    There is no historical documentation from those days, only myths!
  • Lanikai Chokmah 2012/05/15 20:02:27
    Lanikai
    There is a lot of information you can take it or leave it.

    I don't really care.
  • Chokmah Lanikai 2012/05/16 02:29:02
    Chokmah
    Ahhh... now the truth comes out, "I don't really care". I thought so...
  • conservyT Chokmah 2012/05/14 18:44:24
    conservyT
    +2
    I’m all for breastfeeding, I breastfeed my 3 children, but the problem here is the way this woman has chosen to illustrate the nature of breastfeeding.
    There’s Nothing natural or significant about a BIG KID who should be able to feed himself dangling from his mother’s breast to “depict” breastfeeding.
    For my personal taste, I find this to be unnatural because we are NOT in a 3rd World Country, whereas women in 3rd World Countries understandably so breastfeed their children as long as they can for the sake of keeping her child alive!
    Furthermore, the mother on this article and any mother in our Country that chooses to go in public with BIG KIDS and breastfeed them are just REPULSIVE!!!

    Please do this in the privacy of your own home…

    Thank You =)...
  • Platinum Fangs 2012/05/11 23:05:50
    Platinum Fangs
    +5
    This all started back in the 1950's when baby formula came out and it was viewed as lower-class to breastfeed. Odd, since baby formulas do cause deaths. Odd since mothers milk is more nutritious. Odd, since mothers milk never runs out and is FREE. Odd, since America is an anti-feminist, patriarchal, prudish nation.

    "That was hardly porn. It was a topless woman on a tractor. You know what they call that in Europe? A cereal commercial."- Modern Family
  • uninfor... Platinu... 2012/05/12 00:06:21
    uninformedluddite
    Mother's milk is not more nutritious (at least in the USA). Several years ago tests where done that discovered that breast milk was unfit for human consumption.
  • Airhead uninfor... 2012/05/12 03:11:31
    Airhead
    HAHAHAHAHA! YOU TOOK THAT WAAAAY OUT OF CONTEXT!!!!!!
  • uninfor... Airhead 2012/05/14 08:07:06
    uninformedluddite
    who am i......
  • Lanikai uninfor... 2012/05/12 14:32:09
    Lanikai
    +1
    You are a moron. It has essential nutrients and antibodies that a man made, mostly vegetable oil solids, product can ever contain.

    For the sake of argument, how about we compare autism rates in nations with mostly breastfeeding to nations with mostly man made formula. See, easy to determine which is superior. Breast, as God created them, provide superior nutrition, and your study was done by formula companies-wonder what their interest in that was.
  • DizziNY Lanikai 2012/05/12 15:56:09
    DizziNY
    No actually, when a kid can at solid food, u stop. Why r u feeding a child baby's formula?

    Cow's milk is bad for humans. I think uni got the 2 mixed up.
  • uninfor... Lanikai 2012/05/14 08:14:25
    uninformedluddite
    I resemble that remark
  • Foxylady 2012/05/11 23:05:15
  • uninfor... Foxylady 2012/05/12 00:08:05
    uninformedluddite
    It is un-PC to complain about breast feeding in public. What age is the cut off for acceptable feeding in public?
  • Foxylady uninfor... 2012/05/12 00:24:02
  • Lanikai uninfor... 2012/05/12 14:32:39
    Lanikai
    18 months, but all breast feeding should be done under a feeding wrap.

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