On Breastfeeding — My Body, My Choice
Mirah Curzer
11226

I breastfed my oldest until he was 3 (not that I specifically wanted to past ~18 months) and am currently nursing my 21 month old. I totally agree with a lot of what you said but one point bugged me. As far as I know, the WHO does recommend breastfeeding for HIV positive mothers in developing countries. It isn’t a good idea in the developed world but, if your alternative is using local water to make formula, babies have a better chance with breastfeeding. If baby didn’t already contract HIV at birth, the risk of contracting it with exclusive breastfeeding and abrupt weaning is less than their risk of diarrheal disease (leading cause of death for young children in many areas) and/or malnutrition from their family not being able to afford adequate formula. Breastfeeding with HIV is not a 'good' idea but there is no magical perfect solution that negates the realities mothers face in the developing world.