Praise for Bottled Up

“(Barston) begins with the astute observation: ‘Whether as a matter of necessity or preference, the way we feed our infants has become the defining moment of parenthood. Breast is not only best; it is the yardstick by which our parenting prowess is measured.’ To offer real answers to mothers for whom breastfeeding is not working, the reason Barston wrote her book, will require not just an interrogation of the science of infant feeding and risk, she says, but also asking the question of why science has come to dominate questions of personal choice…The result is a compelling and occasionally moving book that spends as much time exploring the roots of America’s obsession with breastfeeding as with the breastfeeding itself. Barston has a gift for expressing difficult concepts, such as the confounding factors that complicate the study of the effects of breast milk, in an accessible way…Reading Bottled Up, I found myself thinking that it should be required reading for all new parents, regardless of how they feed their infant, just because it does such a great job of interrogating the scientism that has come to permeate every child-rearing decision.” - Nancy McDermott, Spiked Review of Books

“A sharp and measured critique of America’s discourse on breastfeeding.”—New York Observer

“As a parenting and family journalist and a diligent researcher, [Suzanne Barston] is uniquely qualified to write about this topic. Her book is a balance of experience and researched-based information about how postpartum depression, feminism, and media campaigns exert influence in such a personal realm.” —Foreword

“Though I don’t always agree with the particulars of Barston’s arguments, I consistently find her to be one of the most engaging, open-minded and articulate women on the subject of baby-feeding. Like her blog entries over the years, Bottled Up conveys more nuances than absolutes when it comes to the question of how and what to feed babies. On that note, here she is elevating the breast V bottle conversation and answering important questions like, ‘How we can normalize breastfeeding, without abnormalizing formula feeding?’”—Babble

“It would be wonderful if we could get to a point where true support and not just lip service is given for those who wish to breastfeed, and where those who need or wish to use formula can do so without judgment, lectures, or hoops to jump through. When that happens, I’ll believe that we’re actually putting people and not agendas first. Until that day, I think those of us who need or wish to formula feed could use Barston’s book.”—Stirrup Queens Blog

“As a women’s mental health advocate I frequently hear from women, researchers, providers and policy makers that for women with mood or anxiety disorders the choice to breastfeed is not easy. I began following Suzie Barston’s blog, Fearless Formula Feeder several months ago, and have been impressed with her ability to (a) unpack the science, and (b) impact sensibility and respect for women who choose to formula feed. After reading her book and then interviewing Suzie, I know that this community will appreciate her academic rigor, and social insights.”—Sense & Sensibility Blog/Lamaze International

“Formula-feeding parents will find support, information, and encouragement in this well-researched and compassionate text, and breastfeeding moms and advocates will benefit from Barston’s authentic experience and perspective as well.”—Publishers Weekly

“Barston’s defense of bottlefeeding declares a moratorium on using motherhood as a dumping ground for our cultural anxieties and ambivalences. Through the deft interweave of personal narrative and sharp analysis, Bottled Up reveals how mother-blaming, sloppy science and deficient policies are far more pernicious that artificial milk.” —Chris Bobel, author of The Paradox of Natural Mothering

Bottled Up is a truly timely book. It is testament to how messed up things have become when it comes to motherhood that it even had to be written. The end result is a serious, engaging, challenging and also accessible account, drawing on the best of scholarship, science and journalism.”—Ellie Lee, Director of the Centre for Parenting Culture Studies, University of Kent

“This is an informative and well-reasoned book that looks acutely at the meaning of baby feeding alternatives. It will be helpful to mothers, no matter what their choice.”—Sydney Z. Spiesel, Ph.D. M.D., Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, Yale University School of Medicine

“This book is a must-read for every woman and man who is fed-up with the shaming and blaming of bottle-feeding parents. Barston explains with evidence, anecdote and humour why breast isn’t always best and why women will never be free to enjoy their babies and map the maternal landscape until infant feeding decisions are no longer used as a test of good motherhood.”—Dr. Leslie Cannold, author of The Book of Rachael

Barston gives a heartfelt defense of mothers who go against the dogma of Breastfeeding Over All Else. Based on both personal experience and expert consultations, her conclusion: occasionally it’s healthier not to breastfeed, and anyway don’t stress about it. Surprisingly, such a reasonable point of view is poorly represented in the Mommy Wars. Barston’s book is a welcome contribution.”—Sam Wang, Ph.D., Princeton University, co-author of Welcome To Your Child’s Brain: How the Mind Develops from Conception to College.

I was impressed with how Barston presented the information in such an unbiased fashion, given that this can be somewhat of a volatile subject. The book doesn’t approach the issue as anti-breastfeeding or pro-formula. While affirming that breastfeeding is usually the optimal choice, many women, due to emotional or physical problems or work restraints, cannot breastfeed. What support can be given to these mothers? I found this an utterly fascinating read despite the fact that I have breastfed my two children. It helped me to understand both sides of the “feeding frenzy” and feel more empathy towards all mothers. I think it is a useful read no matter how you feed your baby as it attempts to pull mothers together rather than tear us apart. — Aubrey Degn, PowerofMoms.com

“A one-of-a-kind tour through not only Suzanne’s own complicated breastfeeding experience but the science or lack thereof…” — Polly Palumbo, PhD, Psychology Today (Named “Bottled Up” on of the Best Parenting Books of 2012 – http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/momma-data/201301/best-parenting-books-2012)