…I am more inclined to go with option two.

In fact, the second I saw this thing pop up in my Facebook feed, it was something I couldn’t believe existed.  I was immediately filled with a fierce combination of anger and disappointment.

Now, I should also mention on the positive side, as I was getting my feathers all ruffled over this, I simultaneously saw how beneficial a feeding system like this might be for a baby with special needs, feeding difficulties or trouble beyond the average child and I held out hope that it was actually invented for these special children who might not be able to eat or take medicine or water by natural means.  I thought, what a great idea for those kids- it was probably invented for them and then random people saw it could be convenient when necessary like long car trips or for emergencies when you can’t, for whatever reason, do it yourself.  Like, sitting on a plane during massive turbulence and you can’t get a baby out of their car seat.  Sure, that makes sense… Although, logically, you still wouldn’t want to feed a baby in the car seat while strapped in because if they choke, you can’t get to them easily, so it would be pretty irresponsible and dangerous.  My mind started racing, trying to come up with some rational reason for this product to exist.  The photo I saw online didn’t make sense, so I started looking into it because I was confused.  Beyond a special needs child, I could not come up with a single reason why this would be a good idea.  I figured their site would provide answers, help me to relax those flustered feathers about to throw a tizzy and set me straight before I went off on a tangent.

Then, once I began to research the product on their site, I realized how much worse it was than I had originally thought…

Here is some information from the product site:

A hands-free feeding system for your infant, “a welcome solution for today’s busy, on-the-go parents”.

Seriously?  I was in a state of disbelief reading this… it wasn’t invented for medically challenged babies or emergency situations on airplanes or 12 hour car rides.  It was designed for parents who don’t want to stop what they are doing to hold and feed their babies.

You can even get a cover for it, made of “neoprene material that helps keep the baby bottle warm or cold longer during feeding.”

A bottle that you don’t have to bother holding for your child or even monitor them because it stays warm all on its own, AND it controls the amount of liquid that comes out so they don’t choke?  Sounds like a dream for the mom who didn’t want to be one…

Although, it does have “An adorable plush little lamb with front pouch” to hold the bottle.  “Your baby is sure to enjoy its soft touch and warm, friendly face.”

…Seeing as how you won’t be anywhere near by to cuddle with the baby yourself, good thing you can have them squish with a little fuzzy lamb while they’re learning to earn their keep right out of the womb by feeding themselves, right?  At this rate, they’ll be making their own lunch and giving themselves baths by the time they turn a year old!  Great job, tiger mom, your child is advanced!

A bottle that “does the work for you” and allows an “infant to feed in an upright position” so you can “keep going without having to stop to feed”?

That way, you don’t have to worry about that messy, unnecessary and time consuming issue of actually feeding your child directly or even burping… never mind the fact that babies are LITERALLY designed to eat, at a breast, in an horizontal position during infancy…

Testimonials claim it can save parents “a lot of time and energy” during feedings to allow them to “remain active and not have to slow down” just because they have children.

Geezus, people… are we really THAT lazy??  THAT selfish?  I mean, really- at that point, why even bother having children??

If you saw this product and wanted one… PLEASE don’t have a baby.  Get a dog.  No, wait.  They’re too much work.  Get a cat.  They can feed themselves, walk themselves, even hunt for themselves if you forget to pay attention to them and they won’t get emotionally damaged by your neglect when your busy life is so much more important than their health and well being that you can’t bother to even FREAKING FEED THEM YOURSELF.

Oh man, I was ANGRY.  The more I read on that website, the more angry I got.  The more disappointed with humans I became and the more depressed I found myself while thinking about so many babies who have parents who just “want babies” but don’t want to bother with actually HAVING BABIES.

For the last few years, I have sat idly by, doing my best to be supportive of moms who choose alternative processes for their children, respecting their choices when they put themselves before their babies because of careers, comfort or convenience, because well, I’m not them.  I don’t know all about their lives or why they choose what they do, and I always try to give every mama the benefit of the doubt, knowing that no matter what their choices with any issue, they are doing what they think is best out of love.  I REALLY do try to keep that perspective.  I have tried to be an unbiased friend to all, offering a perspective of compassion by providing education and information in the areas of feeding, sleeping, communicating, discipline, potty training and so many others, but this is literally the last straw and I am DONE.

Really and truly DONE.

What have we become when we design a bottle that allows an INFANT to feed themselves for absolutely NO OTHER REASON than because we are too busy to stop and do it ourselves?  What does an invention like this say to this generation of children?  What message are we giving to them?

Well, here’s what it says to me:  Sorry kid, your parents only had you to fulfill an emotional quota.  They didn’t REALLY want to be a parent, they just wanted to have children.  It’s important, child, for you to understand the difference and to fill your role appropriately.  Your mom and dad have better places to be and more important things to be doing than feeding you. They want to remain active, busy and on the go.  Unless you can manage your own affairs, they won’t get to do what they want to do anymore and this is unacceptable.  Child, you need to learn your place now, because you must remain convenient to your parents- be a source of entertainment and amusement, allowing them to fulfill a deep hole of emotional damage by your adorable existence all full of cooing and cuddling, but only when they are available.  Otherwise, you will have stepped across an invisible line- no longer a darling baby, but a whining, needy monster that is deliberately and maliciously depriving them of sleep, their friends, their social activities and their work.  You will find yourself succumbing to a “firm hand” and a “strong, hard heart” when it comes to sleeping, eating and going potty.  This will help to make you realize you belong on the other side of that line, to make you a model child, one your mom and dad can be proud of and show off to friends.  They’ll be so happy and love you so much when they can show other parents how WONDERFUL it is that you are such a “good baby” because you don’t need them at such a young age.  Don’t step across that line, child.  Don’t bother reaching out.  Your mom and dad have paid someone to be nice to you because they’re busy living their own lives and when you are with them, they need to find ways to make it as simple as possible to deal with you.

THIS is what this bottle says to me.  If I were fed with a bottle like this, I would have a really hard time NOT feeling like my parents were the most selfish people in the world and you can guarantee I would be asking them what else in their lives were so damn important that they couldn’t actually just stop and take care of me naturally?  Was it really so hard to just sit down and cuddle with your child and feed them the way God intended?  Was your deadline, your job, your dinner date with friends really that much more important?

I feel bad for these babies… the ones who will grow into adults and wonder why their parent’s tasks and schedules were more important than they were. The ones who will ask themselves why their parents even bothered having babies in the first place.

But, maybe they won’t think any of those things.  Maybe they will be okay with it… maybe this is the new norm and as they grow, everyone else will be doing the same thing and it won’t be out of the ordinary.  Maybe it won’t cut into their hearts and make them feel less than valued, less important or unnecessary. Maybe it will be the thing you do, just the way things are.  Maybe by the time these babies grow up, there will be a hundred more products that allow inanimate objects to manage what a parent used to do back in the “good ol’ days” and this will be just one of many to choose from.

Eventually we won’t have to touch our children, even give birth to them ourselves and our bodies won’t have to be destroyed or modified by such unnecessary, unpleasant processes as birth and breastfeeding.  I mean, why bother with all that inconvenient messiness?  Isn’t it much better to have all the status with none of the fuss?  The perfect child for the modern parent…

Being productive and having fun, keeping your “pre-baby” body and making sure your life doesn’t have to change at all just because you are saddled down with children is far more important than actual child-rearing, right?  Especially if we can create amazing inventions that take that pressure off of us as parents, I mean, that is a much better way to go…

Maybe we can even begin to engineer them to be smarter,  tweak their brains to make sure they are good at science and engineering or art or math.  We won’t have to push them or beg them or tutor them, they’ll just naturally be brilliant and contribute to society and we won’t have to worry about it ever again because they can have iPads on their bouncer seats and feed themselves from the time they learn to suck on a bottle while we go about our lives.  In fact, all we need is a device that detects and changes their diapers and we’ll be good to go!  Parenting made easy thanks to the modern age.

We’re on our way to a great future, folks.

A future where our offspring can survive without us.  A future where they can move forward quickly, Bravely… into a New World of comfort, stability and perfection.

Are you ready for the future?  The one that looks like Pixar’s Wall-E?

It starts with products like this.

This, friends… is the Podee Hands-Free Bottle.  Designed to make your life easier, your child happier and your world a brighter, more convenient place.

Welcome.

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