Moms Are Loving Chrissy Teigen’s Viral Twitter Thread Normalizing Formula Feeding

When it comes to breastfeeding, it seems like everyone has something to say—except asking the new mother if they want to nurse or use formula. Breast milk is known to be nutritious and help baby’s immune system in those early months, but some mothers either cannot produce milk or simply do not have the time. (If I hear anyone say “breastmilk is free!” that just means you see women’s labor and time as worthless.) Guess what? Breastfeeding is not free. It can be hard and painful, and it puts an undue burden on the mother.

I speak as someone who did breastfeed, but when we introduced formula into our baby’s diet, it changed everything. I had more time to take care of myself (which helped me be a better mom), and my husband got to experience a new way to bond with the baby during feeding time. A lot of families do this, but for some reason there is a lot of shame related to being unwilling or unable to breastfeed. Now, Chrissy Teigen is speaking out about the stigma. 

Teigen took to Twitter on Sunday to talk about formula, writing, “ok I’m gonna say something and you all are definitely gonna make it a thing but here goes: normalize formula.” 

She followed up the first tweet with some personal information about her breastfeeding experience, explaining that she “felt way more shame having to use formula because of lack of milk from depression and whatnot.”  

“The stress of it, combined with the guilt that you cannot do nature’s most natural thing for your own baby is too much. I dunno why this is my crusade now. I just remember the sadness I felt and want you to know you are doing it right if your baby is fed, mama,” Teigen wrote. 

Teigen, who recently lost a pregnancy, has been open about all aspects of motherhood, including her use of IVF. Folks on social media praised Teigen’s candidness and willingness to talk about such a (ridiculously) controversial issue. 

Another user commented that it seems no matter what choices mothers make for their babies, there is someone out there ready to criticize them.

Breastfeeding in public? Cover that up! Using formula? You’re depriving your child! Why isn’t your baby wearing a hat every minute they are in the sun? Why did you choose that stroller? What do you mean you’re not doing baby-led weaning? Are you seriously giving the baby your phone to look at?

Kudos to Teigen for igniting a necessary conversation about the ways we can nurture our children.

More Chrissy Teigen:

Patricia Grisafi

Patricia Grisafi, PhD, is a freelance writer and educator. Her work has appeared in Salon, Vice, Bitch, Bustle, Broadly, The Establishment, and elsewhere. She is passionate about pit bull rescue, cursed objects, and designer sunglasses.