In one of my previous posts, I have discussed the patronizing tone most books on pregnancy employ towards pregnant women. One of the favorite topics of such books is breastfeeding. Instead of offering women information and letting them decide for themselves, they introduce a variety of scary stories aimed at shaming women into breastfeeding at all costs.
Pregnancy books are not the only source striving to bully women into breastfeeding. Recently, a new study has appeared linking breastfeeding with academic success. These studies crop up every two seconds, and each one sounds more hilarious than the previous one. Here is the main conclusion of this particular study:
"The study, published in the Journal of Human Capital, found that an additional month of breastfeeding was associated with an increase in high school grade point averages of 0.019 points and an increase in the probability of college attendance of 0.014."
Wow, if only my mother managed to breastfeed me, imagine what heights of academic achievement I might have accomplished. I mean, 0.019 and 0.014 points, that's some serious shit, people. Don't even think of depriving your child of these precious 0.014 points.
I have absolutely nothing whatsoever against breastfeeding. What annoys me, though, is seeing how difficult it is for everybody to just let women decide for themselves. The study I'm quoting based its conclusions on 126 children and arrived at 0.019 and 0.014 points. Doesn't this sound like a statistically negligible result? Is this kind of data really so conclusive and definitive that it needs to be published everywhere? It basically tells us nothing. But how on earth can we forego one more chance to tell women what to do?