(Closed) Asking moms whether they breastfeed or formula: rude or not?

posted 8 years ago in Babies
  • poll: Is it rude to ask if someone is breast-feeding or formula?



  • Post # 62
    3979 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: July 2011

    Personally, I wouldn’t care. They are asking what food you give your child. To me it is the same as asking what brand of diapers or what kind of passifier. If they are asking to be judgy, then it is rude. But if it is pure curiosity, I don’t see the problem. I am curious about many things when it comes to breast feeding (since I have never done it and want to) but I never ask because so many people could take it the wrong way.

    I did ask once. It was one of those women (and I have nothing against them. I will probably be one.) who openly breastfeed in public because it is natural and their right. So, I asked her how difficult it was to begin with. And she got offended and told me it was none of her business how her breastfeeding was…. After she gave me the lecture on how natural and normal it is. So, I figure, why try to figure out who will be offended by what and just not ask at all.

    Post # 63
    3450 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2012

    I don’t think it’s rude.  Another woman might be asking so she can get more information for herself.

    Post # 64
    4322 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: January 1992

    I don’t understand how this is rude, assuming I am a friend of the person I am asking. 

    Sometimes you’re just making polite conversation, and maybe it’s socially awkward, but those who don’t have children don’t always know what to talk “baby-shop” about, and what’s off limits. Be that as it may, a non-parent who is contemplating the role may want some perspective from those moms who have breastfed versus those who chose not to, to weigh experiences and see what fits the potential parent’s style. Why not seek a first-hand source of information? No need to get panties (or bras) in a bunch over it. Questions aren’t always asked to be judgmental. 

    Also, a new parent may ask a veteran about breastfeeding to get pointers on an issue she’s having getting the milk to flow, getting the baby to latch, or just wants to lament the obstacles of breastfeeding in public. 

    I’d listen to the reason for the question before jumping to offense. 


    Post # 65
    5654 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: April 2011

    I would never ask a complete stranger but if I know the mom/soon-to-be mom then I do ask.

    Breastfeeding sucessfully, or really just at all, if freaking HARD! Support and having good resources is so important… If I can help support a mom or point her in the right direction then I want to & would appreciate it if it were the other way around as well.

    Post # 66
    9050 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: June 2010

    I voted no, but think it depends on closeness and the reason behind the question. I’m a pretty open/want to be helpful type person so if someone asked me just out of curiosity or gathering info for their own choice that’s fine by me. If its just the office nosy nancy or someone who just wants to be judgy that’s rude, but it’s more the judgement than the question I have an issue with. 

    Post # 67
    3586 posts
    Sugar bee

    I think it’d be interesting to see how moms answered this and how those without children answered.

    Post # 68
    299 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: May 2011

    Just caught this thread, so sorry for the bump.  I find it rude because whenever I’ve been asked, it’s been with a “hopefully you ARE breastfeeding” tone.   They never ask “do you formula feed or breastfeed?”  they ask “are you breastfeeding?” with a hopeful tone to their voice.  Like an earlier poster, I had a breast reduction 15 years ago and as a consequence, I wasn’t able to produce milk.  I feel enough guilt about it, hearing the hopefulness in someone’s voice as they ask the question and then seeing the dissapointed look on their face when I respond that I formula feed just makes it worse.  I also get annoyed at the crazy pressure out there for mothers to breastfeed.  Frankly, I feel like it’s getting a little ridiculous.  There is nothing wrong with formula feeding but people act as if you’re poisoning your child if you do it.  The constant “are you breastfeeding?” questions just add to the pressure. 

    Post # 69
    666 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2012

    I woudn’t mind if my friends/coworkers asked me but I would mind if some strangers do that.

    Post # 70
    2597 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: October 2010

    I do not understand why this would be of interest to ANYONE, with the possible exception of my mother and Mother-In-Law. 

    It smells of giving oneself entre to expound upon the virtues of breastfeeding and the perils of formula, which is seriously inappropriate and rude. 

    I also drive a car. Do people have any idea how bad that is, statistically-speaking, for babies’ health? 

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