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A different spin on nursing another woman's baby

Posted by on Aug. 5, 2014 at 3:16 PM
  • 27 Replies

 

Poll

Question: Would you breastfeed a motherless baby?

Options:

In this situation, yes I would.

No, I wouldn't feel comfortable


Only group members can vote in this poll.

Total Votes: 31

View Results

Nursing women give motherless boy a good start

  Yesterday, I wrote a blog post about a “Good Morning America” segment on cross nursing, or moms breast-feeding one another’s babies. In a nutshell: The ABC Morning show presents cross nursing as a “small but growing trend” and makes a big deal about a mom who breast-feeds her friend’s baby. The show leaves viewers asking themselves, Would you nurse your best friend’s baby or do you find it gross? In my blog post, I posed a similar question to my readers.

“GMA” missed the point (and so did I). An SFGate reader forwarded me a recent story in the Detroit Free Press about a group of women who are breast-feeding a motherless baby, Moses Goodrich. In this story, crossing nursing isn’t about being a part of a growing trend, or doing something that 46 percent of Baby Talk readers deem “weird.” Rather it’s about helping out a friend, a family member, someone in need–and building community.

Robbie Goodrich, center, and his 6-month-old son Moses, surrounded by some of the women in the community who are wet nursing Moses at Goodrich's home in Marquette, Mich.

SUSAN TUSA/Detroit Free Press

Robbie Goodrich, center, and his 6-month-old son Moses, surrounded by some of the women in the community who are wet nursing Moses at Goodrich’s home in Marquette, Mich.

Moses lost his mother only 11 hours after she gave birth. Susan Goodrich passed away due to an amniotic fluid embolism.

Susan’s husband, Robbie, was devastated. “I’ve known grief,” Goodrich, 44, a professor of history at Northern Michigan University, told the Detroit Free Press. “I’ve lost a brother. My mom has died of Alzheimer’s. Grief wasn’t anything new. But this was different. This was despair. It was black. I really didn’t know what to do.”

Then Robbie received a phone call that changed everything. A family friend, Laura Janowski, who was a nursing mother, offered to breast-feed Moses. Janowski knew that Susan wanted to nurse her son. After Moses was born, Robbie ordered $500 worth of milk from a milk bank.

“She was very cautious and almost even apologetic in her call, and I know why,” Robbie told the Free Press. “Because nursing someone else’s baby in our country is not a normal sight. Heck, breastfeeding itself in public still gets people offended.”

Robbie agreed, and Janowski and other friends helped organize a group of 25 nursing moms to visit the Goodrich home and feed Moses.

The Free Press reports:

That sense of community has been the unpredictable byproduct of a tragic situation. In the first six weeks, Robbie said there was almost always a nursing mom in his home. Eventually, they came seven times a day. Now, it’s five.

They often bring their own children, who romp around the house with Julia. And the women, who plan to nurse Moses until he’s a year old, chat with Goodrich over tea and pastries.

“It’s life-changing,” said 20-year-old Keskey, who nursed Moses for two months. “I think the biggest thing is … that people can do amazing things when they’re open.”

“The thing that I’ve come to appreciate the most is the nurturing aspect,” Robbie said. “It’s the love. That’s the most important thing. Maybe he would have been a happy child anyway. But he’s held multiple hours throughout the day in a mother’s arms. … No one can tell me that’s not just as important as the milk.”

by on Aug. 5, 2014 at 3:16 PM
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Replies (1-10):
cc5112
by on Aug. 5, 2014 at 3:34 PM
1 mom liked this

Yes, I would offer. Of course the mother ( if she was still around) would have to ok with it. I'd also offer to pump if I had extra milk if the mother , like me, was not comfortable with another woman nursing her baby. 

This story is so very sad. Yet, it really is uplifting to see these women come together to nurture and feed the baby. Most importantly, it's wonderful that the father has no problems with this and truly sees the value of having mothers around his son who not only feed him, but nurture him and help him thrive. 

How wonderful for this family and what generosity from these mothers!  :)

Kmakksmom
by Stefanie on Aug. 5, 2014 at 5:35 PM
I wouldn't, but not because I don't feel comfortable with it. I wouldn't because I never made much milk for my own kids, no matter what I did.
hayliedlr
by JoAnna on Aug. 5, 2014 at 5:38 PM
1 mom liked this

yep

polkaspots
by Bronze Member on Aug. 5, 2014 at 5:40 PM
1 mom liked this
I would breastfeed any baby that needed it if I was asked to.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
CrossStitchMum
by Member on Aug. 5, 2014 at 5:43 PM
1 mom liked this
I would in this situation
LeapBaby123
by Kathleen on Aug. 5, 2014 at 7:09 PM
1 mom liked this

I totally would!

cjsmom1
by Silver Member on Aug. 6, 2014 at 1:23 AM

I wouldn't

Devious333
by New Member on Aug. 6, 2014 at 1:24 AM
That's amazing!

Yes, I would do it.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
abigailsmommy11
by Member on Aug. 6, 2014 at 1:36 AM
1 mom liked this

 I would, that's just amazing 😊

mylilsunshine
by New Member on Aug. 6, 2014 at 1:48 AM

In this situation, I definately would. I wouldn't breastfeed a friend's/ family members baby out of conveince, like "Hey I know you're still lactating so I didn't bother packing any milk for Little Billy" LOL.

Anyway, if they mother is able to bf then I feel nobody should nurse that child other than the child's mom.

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