Tan France and Rob France with their son. (Instagram/@TanFrance)
Tan France says he has been hit with “venom” and made to feel “guilty” for feeding his newborn baby with formula instead of breast milk.
In an Instagram video to mark National Breastfeeding Month in August, France, 39, spoke about the pressures new parents face when it comes to feeding.
He explained that while he believes breast milk is the “gold standard”, it is put on a “social pedestal” which can make parents feel “guilty” about the way they feed their child.
Since then, the Queer Eye presenter, who welcomed son Ismail with husband Rob on 10 July, has been inundated with abusive messages.
“Almost every one [of my direct messages] was filled with such venom,” France told the We Are Family podcast.
“Obviously I’m in a very interesting position where when we say that we’re having a baby, a lot of people have an opinion on how we’re having a baby, and how we will feed our baby.”
He added strangers had asked him whether he would be feeding his baby with breast milk, which made him uncomfortable.
“I want to make it clear to everyone listening: I 100 per cent believe that breast milk is the gold standard, so does Bobbie. We all understand that. If I could breastfeed my child, 100 per cent I would,” he said.
“I can’t… therefore, I need to not be shamed for that.”
In his August video, France said that he wanted to use his profile to support other new parents.
“There hasn’t really been somebody like me on a global platform before,” he said.
“I know that there’s also the added pressure to make sure that I am the best dad that I can possibly be, because people look up to those who are hopefully paving the way for them.
“Let’s start by sharing and supporting every kind of feeding journey… no one should ever feel guilty for feeding their baby formula.”
The fashion guru told NPR in 2019 that he has always wanted to be a father, and still wants to have a big family.
“I’ve wanted children since I was 19/20. If I’d had a stable relationship at that time, I would have desperately tried to have children,” he said.
“I was going to be a stay-at-home dad, which is something I’ve wanted for many, many, many years. And so that was the plan.
“And I actually – crazily, I still want six. I don’t know if that’s going to happen, but yeah, I still want six children.”
Read the full article here