Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Sometimes I am hypocrite. An apology to David Koch



.

Yesterday, I called Kochie a dickhead, and made reference to him being bald. it was was really just a light hearted dig at what scandals I had missed in my time spent in a self imposed Internet ban, which other that Ed Sheeran tickets, (FML) was pretty much nothing, and I'm sarcastic, it's the only way I know how to be funny, also, no one cares what I say.

When I caught up on the whole scandal, I rolled my eyes at his ignorance and thought to myself, that his offense was because he viewed breasts in a sexual way, making their exposure slightly confronting, rather than viewing them as they were biologically intended, and that was his fucking problem. He is also bald, and I like the word dick head. 

Not seven hours later.. And I can't believe I am even going into this.. But not seven hours after I hit publish, I had a phone conversation with my mother, in which.... I expressed feeling slightly confronted, and I think I even used the word disgusted, when I was asked, in all seriousness, if I would mind breast feeding another woman's baby. ( yes I said disgusted, dear lord, please don't eat me alive)

OK, I know it isn't even the same thing, but hear me out.

It is important that you know, that I came from a fairly "free spirited" upbringing, in which my siblings and I affectionately refer to as a fanny hair from the commune.

Tits were always around, nude artworks hung from the walls, breasts fed infants, sometimes more than two infants of different ages feeding at the same time from the same mother. Not a single fuck was given through out the land, but thats not the point.

 Breast feeding was not something to be hidden, it was celebrated, and breasts themselves were viewed as neither sexual or biological, rather as a marvelous and beautiful creation of mother nature, to be appreciated and celebrated in all forms.. There is a moon for it. I shit you not, but anyway I won't go into it, but tits happened, every where, all the time.

We were introduced to cultures in which sisters breast fed each others children, and I remember being slightly disturbed by the theory at the time, but when an Aunt of mine asked if I would breast feed a starving infant if I could, I answered yes, without a doubt.

If it was starving.
Also if there was no other conceivable alternative.


I can't tell you why I feel like this, I have absolutely no excuse, I am not ignorant, or ill informed. I spent a total of three years breast feeding my infants, and have been angered by my fair share of discrimination during that time. My feelings regarding feeding another persons baby, just are, that I am uncomfortable about breast feeding another persons infant, for reasons I am not quite sure.

So now you know that being asked to breast feed another persons baby was as normal as a Vegemite sandwich as far as dinner table conversation goes in my family, I will explain how I came to write this post.

When I was asked if I was capable of breast feeding a newborn infant, who's mother was in need of some respite for a few days, inside, I recoiled in horror, outside, I politely declined, as I my last drop of breast milk shriveled up in the great PND of 2008, but had I have been able to, my answer would still have been no.

GF.FO.

I then phoned my mum to express my... Distaste, at being asked, and although my mother tended to agree with me, she gently reminded me that I called Kochie a bald dickhead for almost exactly the same ignorance earlier that day, and perhaps the only difference was that my argument was slightly more socially acceptable than his and that I didn't say it on National Television with a primary audience of SAH parents, and that for someone who has spent as much time in social exile for my upbringing and my views as I, I was quite willing to hand it out to someone else, whom in all fairness, was probably from a time when his opinion was not so outrageous.

She went on to say that this was how wars started, and a little tolerance goes a long way on both sides of the argument, she then brought up something that happened back in 1972, and I tuned out.

It got me thinking though, about many things, mainly, just how fucking Bizzare my family is, and I also thought about a time when I was completely unaware of just how fucking Bizzare my family was.

  I also remember a time when  brought a breast fed, newborn baby boy to the home of my in laws, whom are saints by the way,  and their extended family, whom had all gathered to delight in the new baby.

So there I was, weilding a squishy newborn babe, in all my Fan hair from the commune glory, perching myself up on the lounge and releasing my breasts to feed said newborn, without much of a thought, as well I should be able to.

I distinctly remember my husbands Nana affectionately touching me on the shoulder and smiling at me, remarking about how amazing beautiful breast feeding was, and wasn't it fabulous that I could feed whenever the baby was hungry, rather than having to feed discreetly as women did in her time.

It wasn't a passive aggressive gesture to get me to be more aware of my surroundings, there wasn't an aggressive bone in her body, 
She genuinely marveled at the changing times, at how far women had come, with a twinkle in her eye, and I remember thinking... 

Where is this alternate universe where breast feeding was not publicly celebrated, with a moon and a fucking parade and a collaborative independent art exhibition and or film festival?!?

It was then I looked up, and saw the mild discomfort of the male relatives around me, although their discomfort was foreign to me, it was perfectly clear that their discomfort was not intended to make me feel ashamed, or to starve my infant for their comfort, their discomfort came from a time when it wasn't the done thing. 

They didn't see breast feeding openly, two infants at a time, swinging from each nipple like I had my whole life. 

Their discomfort came from not knowing the etiquette in where to look, whether or not to make eye contact with me or engage in conversation while I was exposing a breast, they were concerned above all for my discomfort, for having to feed in a room full of men, it was rightly or wrongly, foreign to them

In all of my mung bean flinging glory, I fed my infant, despite their discomfort, I let them know that their presence did not make me feel uncomfortable, that I would be regularly flinging out a tit should the need for feed arise, and that I did not know of another way to do it.

They were honest about their discomfort, I was honest about my not giving any fucks about their discomfort, which in turn made them less uncomfortable to know that Imwas OK with their presence and eventually,  they got over it.


I'm not saying that what Koshie said was excusable,  or that women should hide their breasts when feeding to appease the discomfort of people who may be confronted by the sight of their natural use. 

I realise Koshie is in the public eye, and his views are out dated, and ignorant, but I couldn't escape the feeling that calling him a bald dickhead was out of line, and also hypocritical after my conversation about breast feeding another persons baby.

That perhaps Koshies expression of discomfort was just an honest, all be it a little misguided and irresponsible statement in which he shared a view that was not uncommon among his demographic.

The only thing I know to do, in this situation, is to feed anyway despite his discomfort till everyone gets over it and as we all know, I apparently I have no plans on doing that.
For Anybody.

So I will leave the arguing to the currently lactating, whom have my full support, and I apologise for the earlier unnecessary name calling.

I also apologise to anyone whom may be offended by feelings on communal feeding.
 I am also going to leave now, before another apology is necessary.

Hypocritically yours

Emma.


















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