Leave the Baby a Bottle of M*

Recently I helped the daughters of two friends breastfeed their own babies. Both these women remember their mothers happily nursing their younger siblings for an extended period of time, and I wish that more young mothers shared similar experiences. Today my friend Menucha Chwat, mother of twelve, told the following story:

Her first-grade daughter Gefen has a Mesibat Siddur (party in which the children receive their first prayerbook). The teacher said that brothers and sisters may not attend. When Gefen cried that her mother couldn’t come without her two-month-old brother Eliya, the teacher said to leave him a bottle of M*(!). (Notice the implication that the baby doesn’t need a person to care for him, only a bottle of formula.) Gefen replied,  “But M* is very unhealthy and we sing, ‘You should watch over your souls.'” (This verse from Deuteronomy 4:15 provides halachic justification for taking care of our health.)

In the end, Eliya will stay with his big sister and her baby, whom he knows well, and will drink the milk that Menucha expressed for him. I suggested bringing the baby anyway, but Menucha doesn’t want to embarrass her daughter.

If you know any pregnant mothers, Menucha provides private religiously oriented pregnancy/childbirth education in English or Hebrew for women or couples, in your own home, throughout the greater Jerusalem area including Bet Shemesh and Modiin. For more information call 02-9995836.

Related: Quality Time


  1. I have never heard of a nursing infant being considered an “annoying younger sibling” at such events.

  2. Hello again, I’ve gotten rid of blogger (used to be MotherofIsrael) thank you for sharing these. I got looks when I said that I breastfed my 2 Goons for a lengh of time ( 1 1/2 yr) Us moms neeed to stick together on this one.

  3. mominisrael says

    Yes, at least my ganenet suggested pumping when I discussed it with her.
    Ways of Zion–I’m glad you changed your name; even I was getting confused. Good for you for nursing so long.

  4. I think we were all getting confused, and this one I took from my favorite Psalm.

  5. Frum in Tokyo says

    Reb. Menucha Chwat is the best! I loved listening to her class she taught us every week in sem. She is by far one of the smartest and learned people I have met. Did I mention she is so modest too!!