Over the last two weeks the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new transgender guidance programs on how biological men can “chestfeed” infant babies.
The news was met with disbelief by mothers across the nation, many of whom are well acquainted with the vulnerability, intricacies, and intimacy of breastfeeding their children.
In recent years our society has been urged to “follow the science,” but is this following the science or pushing a social and political agenda?
“Transgender and nonbinary-gendered individuals may give birth and breastfeed or feed at the chest (chestfeed),” the CDC says in guidance on feeding infants. “The gender identity or expression of transgender individuals is different from their sex at birth. The gender identity of nonbinary-gendered individuals does not fit neatly into either man or woman.”
In its program, the federal agency recommends using “gender-inclusive language” such as “breastfeeding parent” or “lactating person,” but uses the words “women” and “mothers” in every other article about the benefits of breastfeeding your newborn child.
A section of the webpage is also devoted to instructions for people suffering from gender dysphoria who wish to breastfeed, suggesting options like medications and artificial hormones.
The CDC also cites the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine protocol that breaks down how biological men who identify as transgender women and have had “breast augmentation” can “chestfeed” an infant baby.
A transgendered man needs to take a regimen of drugs including domperidone, estradiol, progesterone, and breast pumping in order to have the slightest chance of producing any fluid.
In 2004 the Food and Drug Administration warned pregnant women not to use domperidone to increase milk production due to safety concerns: “Because of the possibility of serious adverse effects, FDA recommends that breastfeeding women not use domperidone to increase milk production.”
Now the CDC is bypassing the regulation because it conflicts with its social agenda.
Dr. Jane Orient, the executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, is warning that many people no longer believe domperidone-induced lactation is harmful. “A lot of people are pushing for off-label use of a drug,” Orient reportedly said.
“It’s become so politicized that you can do all kinds of things for a politically approved purpose. The CDC has a responsibility to talk about the health risks, but they have been derelict in doing that,” she said.
The CDC’s guidance on this topic should be scrutinized further. More scientists and doctors should weigh in.
Catholics should also be concerned as this is another sign that the divine bond between a mother and child is being challenged.
As Catholics, the birth of Jesus with the Virgin Mary doting on him in the manger is one of the most powerful images in our religion.
This new “guidance” from the CDC continues to blur that line.