We have been scolded by a doctor today, can you believe it? I was so surprised I haven't even answered back. He said I haven't been feeding her right. She is approximately in the 3rd percentile. I knew M is small -both short and thin-, I am not a big woman myself and we have had this problem all the time. At the beginning we were told to bottle feed her in order to make her put on weight. Nobody succeeded at convincing me and time proofed it was right to breastfeed her exclusively up to the sixth month (a bit more, actually). During the first months she put on weight and grew all right, nearly reaching the 30th percentile. Lately, after the 8th month or so she has been growing, slowly, but growing.
Today the doctor, an old-fashioned, severe doctor, has scolded me and told me to give up breastfeeding "'cause the breast is not feeding her at all now". Humm, my dear doctor, let me disbelieve you. If it weren't for the breast, she would be much smaller... Since she was able to sit and showed interest in food, we have let her lead the weaning and this has meant that some times she was not eating much. Nevertheless, she kept trying new things and eating solids every day, apart of course of nursing on demand. This doctor has probably never heard of "baby-led weaning" but I don't find this surprising. What surprises me is that a doctor may still have this kind of behavior as if he were THE authority. He has scolded me as if I were a young girl doing mischief. Then, the doctor's nurse has meant to correct me when I was explaining my daughter what they would do to her next. To be more exact, the nurse's words have been: "don't tell her so many things, just say "it's nothing, it's nothing 'cause otherwise she complains more". "Oh, my!-I've thought- how many of the attitudes towards children I dislike in only 10 minutes!" I firmly believe it is healthier and more honest to explain things than to discredit a child's own experience. My baby sometimes complains, whimpers or cries but never without a reason and we have encouraged her expression of feelings. I feel to say "it's nothing" is just to repress the expression of feeling.
Well, I would like to see the positive side of this. From now onwards, I will offer M food more often and try to get her to eat more. I won't force her, though. She knows more than I do when she is thirsty or hungry. It amazes me how doctors tell you how and when to feed a baby as if the baby would not exist.
I wish the real patients at the pediatrician's surgery, that's children, were treated more respectfully.
What is your opinion? I would like to hear about your experiences at the pediatrician's surgery.
Do you believe it is good to tell a child "it is nothing" when something is indeed happening to her?