Only Bad Mothers Don't Breast-Feed Their Babies?

World Breastfeeding Week can leave bottle-feeding mothers feeling guilty and resentful of society's judgemental pressure.

Picture this. A newborn child is brought to the mother for its first feed. Mother and child both glow with health and happiness as they bond over this age-old ritual, which has well-documented benefits.

But in the case of Simran Jha, 28, the experience wasn't quite like this rosy picture. "It was embarrassing as I tried to breast-feed but couldn't produce milk for over an hour," says the accounts executive. The fact that all her relatives were around, trying to figure out what was going wrong, only added to her woes.

Jha eventually opted for bottle-feeding a month after her baby was born but resents the labels that come with the decision. "Women who don't breast-feed their kids are accused of being selfish and lazy," she says. "To people who make such harsh allegations, I say: it is my breast, my milk, and my child."

The benefits of breast-feeding have been well established -- it is nutritious, economical, and boosts the immunity of infants, besides reducing the chances of breast cancer in women. But as a massive campaign to promote World Breast Feeding Week kicks off, it has left a number of bottle-feeding mothers feeling alienated and defensive.

Rina Bhatnagar*, 25, a homemaker, hates it when she watches TV and comes across an advertisement that encourages breast-feeding: "It is all fake; the mum looks happy, her skin is glowing and healthy -- very unlike what actually happened in my life."

Bhatnagar didn't have an easy delivery. After a caesarean section, her wound didn't heal for a couple of months. "While breast-feeding, you are asked to sit up straight and feed your kid. That was very painful for me. I have on many occasions given my kid a milk bottle as I didn't have the energy to sit up or feed him."

Dr Anjali Malpani, author of How To Have A Baby, says, "There are young urban mothers who are preferring bottle milk for a variety of reasons. But it is rare that society understands their position. These mothers are faced with societal pressure and feel guilty for not breast-feeding their children."

Doctors say that high stress levels and demanding jobs among young mothers along with fewer public facilities for breast-feeding are aggravating the problem. "The city lacks a breast-feeding culture and it is rare to find nursing rooms at public places where mothers can breast-feed their kids," says gynaecologist Rashmi Nair. "In restaurants, mothers are asked to use the most uncomfortable place to breast-feed their kids -- the toilet. So when out on parties or at work, if the mother happens to forget to pump her milk, she will usually ask the nanny to give bottle milk to the kid and, over a period of time, bottle milk replaces breast milk."

While most mothers insist that what they feed their children is a personal choice, the spiral of negative emotions can cause reluctance to seek support on bottle-feeding their infants. For Kurien, lack of information on bottle milk was a disadvantage. "I once placed the bottle with the milk inside the microwave to heat it. Later when I removed the bottle the plastic had melted. It is taboo to speak about bottle milk when you have a young child at home. If you try to speak to doctors and relatives about how to proceed with bottle milk, you get a lecture on breast-feeding instead. There is little information and literature available on what can be given to kids who aren't breast-fed."

For Jha, World Breastfeeding Week is not a happy prospect. It is likely to be filled with phone calls from relatives to tell her how wrong she is in not breast-feeding her child. "Neither my parents nor my in-laws live with me," she says. "So during the week, they will take the opportunity to remind me of my responsibilities."

Breast-feeding advocates are adamant, however, that there should be more promotion for breast-feeding as the rates are falling.

Shah Rukh Khan and Ash Jodi are back Together

Time heals all wounds, especially in the entertainment business' and none would vouch for this truism of life more than super icons Shah Rukh

Remember, they parted on a sour note after her hasty departure from his home production Chalte Chalte six years ago?

She had already canned a portion of the film when Salman Khan reportedly landed on the sets... and, well, the rest as they say is history.

Post that scene, SRK let Ash off the hook and took Rani Mukerji as his leading lady. And, since then, many big banners including Yashraj and Dharma failed to reunite the pair that created such magic in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Devdas.

Subsequently, though the Bollywood Badshah wasn’t invited to the Ash-Abhishek wedding, King Khan and wife Gauri posed with the Bachchans for the shutterbugs at the Drona premiere last year. And more recently, at Karan Johar’s birthday party on May 25, the two couples — SRK and Gauri, Ash and Abhi — spent quality time together.

In the light of this thawing of relations, comes the news of cinematographer-director Rajiv Menon (whose Kandukonden Kandukonden in Tamil had Tabu and Ash) reuniting the SRK-Ash jodi. Menon is said to have flown to London to narrate a dramatic script (with Ash in mind) to Shah Rukh, which the actor liked.

At this point of his career, SRK is looking to do films that explore his dramatic intensity as in Devdas. He has no problems working with Ash and she with him. At Karan’s birthday, the Bachchans and Khans got along famously. Rajiv Menon’s film is being seen as a natural progression towards mending the bridges between two of the most powerful families of Bollywood.

8 steps to go about a Sexy Eye Make-up

Sexy eye makeup will only really be sexy if you know what you are doing. That means that before you can learn how to apply sexy eye makeup, you need to figure out what your best colors are. To do this, you can either experiment or ask an expert. Keep in mind that the colors you choose may also depend on what you are wearing.

Prep your eyes with concealer: Concealer can be used to cover dark circles or the bluish discolouration just under your inner eye. Apply three dots of concealer under each eye. Start at the inner corner where skin tends to be darkest, then under the pupil and the third on the outer edge. Pat until it disappears.

Apply eye base to your lid: Eye base is the secret to keeping your shadow in place for hours. Your eye shadow is likely to end up as a greasy line if you don’t prime your lid properly first.

Apply shadow: It’s great to use a three-toned shadow and build from lids to brow. Start with a light colour that almost matches your lid. Sweep the colour across the lid and up to your brow bone. Follow with a medium colour across your lid only. Build on this with a darker colour in the crease. Blend the colours well.

Follow with eyeliner: Dark eye shadows work great as eyeliners. Wet a slanted brush, and then dip in a dark eye shadow. Line eyes as close to the upper lashes as possible from the inner corner to the outer corner. Follow with liner on bottom eyes, but only line from the middle of the eye out. Smudge the bottom line with a cotton bud. You don't want a prominent line. For a smoky eye, use a brush to pat in a dark eye shadow along the upper lid and below the lid.

Brighten your eyes with a highlighter : This step involves only the inside part of the eye. With a gold or pink highlighter, draw a v-shaped shape that follows the inner corner of your eye from top to bottom. Blend with your fingers. This will help make eyes ‘pop.’

Highlight your brow: Take the same highlighter and dab it on your brow bone, concentrating on your mid-brow outward. Blend with your finger.

Curl lashes: An eyelash curler will make even long lashes look gorgeous. For added effect, you can heat the curler under a blow dryer for a couple seconds. Test curler before applying to lashes because you could burn yourself.

Apply mascara: Place the wand of your mascara brush at the bottom of lashes and wiggle back and forth. Follow with a few sweeps of the wand. Apply to bottom lashes as well.