The Disturbing End of Our Modern ‘Me’ Culture

By: - March 1, 2024

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In his popular work Culture of Narcissism, Christopher Lasch wrote:

To live for the moment is the prevailing passion—to live for yourself, not for your predecessors or posterity. We are fast losing the sense of historical continuity, the sense of belonging to a succession of generations originating in the past and stretching into the future.

Now, more than three decades after Lasch wrote those words, the consequences of this culture of narcissism are bearing rotten fruit. And no one is paying the price more than children.

We need look no further than the news last week revealing that a trust of the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) claimed that the nipple secretions of transgender-identifying men were “comparable to that produced following the birth of a baby.”

The trust has previously advertised its pride in pioneering within the NHS vocabulary like “chestfeeding” instead of breastfeeding and “birthing parent” instead of mother.

Meanwhile, in the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released guidance last July saying, “transgender and nonbinary-gendered individuals may give birth and breastfeed or feed at the chest (chestfeed).”

What these medical bodies are far more reluctant to admit is the cocktail of drugs required to induce this “chestfeeding,” in addition to any hormone therapy already being undertaken by the adult in question. As highlighted by The Telegraph:

For a person born male to breastfeed, they must develop milk-producing glands by taking the hormone progestin.

A drug is required to lactate, such as domperidone, which is often prescribed to women struggling to breastfeed, and helps to stimulate the production of prolactin – a separate hormone that tells the body to produce milk.

Domperidone, also known by the brand name Motilum, was not intended for this, but is prescribed off-label by doctors, despite the manufacturer, Janssen, itself recommending against it because of possible side effects to a baby’s heart.

The patient leaflet for Motilium says: ‘Small amounts have been detected in breastmilk. Motilium may cause unwanted side effects affecting the heart in a breastfed baby. [It] should be used during breastfeeding only if your physician considers this clearly necessary.’

The NHS trust in question has pointed critics to a 2022 study of male “chestfeeding” that found milk testosterone concentrations of under 1 percent and no “observable side effects” on babies. However, the study only lasted for five months and obtained no long-term data on the research subjects.

The trust has also taken down its webpage promoting the practice of male “chestfeeding” and instead now links to an external site, La Leche League, which “supports everyone who wants to breastfeed or chestfeed in reaching their goals” and does “not discriminate based on sex, gender or gender identity.”

While the trans “milk” furor may seem to be merely the outworking of an offbeat ideology, it actually has a lot in common with long-term family trends in the West. No-fault divorce, same-sex marriage, and gay surrogacy—like male “chestfeeding”—all share one thing in common: They put the needs and desires of adults before those of children. They are prime examples of people living solely for themselves.

No studies have been undertaken to determine how the drug-laced secretions of a man will hurt the long-term health of children, though we already have a fair idea from the FDA’s warnings about domperidone.

Indeed, for the health of their babies, breastfeeding mothers have long been urged to consider their intake of alcohol, nicotine, recreational drugs, caffeine, artificial sweeteners, fish high in mercury, and even herbal supplements and teas.

Common sense be damned, the message being sent by peak health bodies across the Western world is that the needs of children are of little consequence, so long as the adults in the picture are gratified.

As a recent paper in the Journal of Human Lactation stated, “For transgender women and nonbinary people on estrogen-based, gender-affirming hormone therapy, the ability to nourish their infants through production of their own milk may also be a profoundly gender-affirming experience.”

Basic truths that were once unspoken now need to be voiced. Babies do not exist to affirm the supposed identities of grown men.

As my friend James Macpherson has observed:

Thousands of years ago King Solomon identified the true heart of a mother as one who was willing to sacrifice her own desires to ensure the welfare of her child.

With two women claiming the same infant, Solomon ruled that the baby should be cut in two and half given to each woman.

When one of the women immediately gave up her claim, Solomon knew he had identified the true mother.

Real parents are willing to give up their rights in order to guarantee the welfare of their children.

For these men, it’s never about the child. The child is a prop to justify their own weird sense of self.

We can do better. For the sake of our children, we must do better. It’s time to put the safety, health, and welfare of children back where they belong: above the self-interested wishes of adults.

Image credit: Pexels

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