Elsewhere I have pointed out the advantages of breast-feeding over unnatural feeding. That the natural food of a baby is its own mother's milk is so obvious it hardly needs emphasis. It is, then, certainly the duty of the woman who brings a baby into the world to do the best she possibly can in caring for it. Breast milk being the ideal food for the infant, it is certainly her duty to promote a sufficient supply of good milk for her child.

A woman whose maternal instincts have been lost or have failed to develop, and who has not attained a degree of moral and ethical responsibility, which compels her to protect her child, should not become a mother. If she does not feel the responsibility for giving her child the best antenatal and post-natal care she should not bear children. Men who are lacking in a sense of responsibility, in aiding their wives in the proper care of their children, should refrain from becoming fathers. They are better off single.

Mothers who turn their babies over to the tender mercies of a nurse or a day nursery while they go to business, and deny their children the benefits of their breast milk, are not deserving of children. There are cases where the mother is the support of the family and in such cases she cannot avoid this, no matter how much she desires to do so, but there are probably many more of the other kind. Mothers who deny their breast milk to their babies and who dry up their breasts so that they can shine in social functions or be forever "on the go," or because of the mistaken notion that nursing will ruin their figures (as though the figures of their children are not of more importance than their own caricatures of the human form), are fiends. If a woman is unwilling to sacrifice her parties, swimming, club work, drinking, and chocolate and indolence, for the sake of the health and normal development of her child she is morally and biologically unfit for motherhood. She should avoid it.

No woman of sound mind and normal instincts would ever think of refusing to nurse her child if she fully realized how much more likely it is to live and develop normally and how much less likely it is to be sick and die, when it is breast fed than when it is bottle-fed.

Nursing a child benefits the mother, as well as the child. Mothers who cannot or who will not nurse their children are deprived of these benefits. There is, first, an improvement in the nutrition of her own body. Second, nursing the baby assists in involution of the uterus. The uterus of a nursing mother returns more quickly and more perfectly to its normal prepregnancy condition, than does the uterus of a woman who does not nurse her child. It is claimed that the reciprocal affection between mother and child is greater, if she nurses her child, than between babies and mothers where the mother does not nurse her child. This is not a far-fetched claim and is quite likely true. I put no credence in the claim that the nursing mother transmits, through her milk, traits to her child which the non-nursing mother does not. Not only is proof of this entirely lacking but I can find no grounds upon which to base such a belief.

Too many women are looking for an excuse to give up nursing their children and there are too many physicians who encourage them in this. They give up nursing their children on insufficient grounds, because they do not want to nurse them. They wean their babies too early because they do not want to go on nursing them to the normal limit of the nursing period. In this they are encouraged by doctors and manufacturers of patented baby foods who tell them that their milk is not good for the baby after a certain period. The manufacturers of "Dr. Moffett's Teethina" advise:

"Baby should be weaned for its own sake as well as for it's mothers sake at about ten months. By this time the child should have become accustomed to artificial feeding from the bottle, gradually introduced as the breast is gradually withheld so as to avoid a too sudden change."

This is pernicious advice and is followed by the equally pernicious advice to "try some of the prepared foods," "if the first substitute food does not agree with the child," and lastly, "where certified milk cannot be had, give the baby some one of the standard makes of condensed milk or baby foods." The advice to take an infant off the wholesome milk of its mother and put it on such stuff is criminal, and any mother who follows such advice, after learning the truth, deserves to lose her baby.

Women often give up the effort to nurse their babies because there is no milk, when, if they will persist for a few days. the milk would be forthcoming. The supply may be small at first and will later increase in amount.

Other women are unwilling to bear the discomforts of cracked nipples for a brief spell. Doctors and others frequently tell them that it will make the child ill if, where the mother does not have enough milk for the childs needs, she feeds it both from the breast and from the bottle. The information is both false and pernicious. The baby will fare all the better for receiving the mother's milk. Babies should have the advantage of their mother's. milk in addition to the other foods used, as long as possible.

There are many women who make up their minds that they cannot nurse their baby long anyway, so they give up at once. Such a thing cannot be too strongly condemned. A mother's milk is of more importance to her child during the first few weeks of its life than subsequently.