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Old 12-18-2015, 03:45 PM
 
13,021 posts, read 12,464,716 times
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I really find this debate kind of stupid.

I get really uncomfortable when I see a woman breastfeeding (I'm a woman) - I just don't know where to look. I like babies, but if I'm looking at the baby, I'm basically honed in on her boob. I have no idea what the etiquette is! It's different from a locker room at the gym - also not my favorite place - where I can just politely avert my eyes, because if it's someone I know, I have no idea where to look. This type of thing is difficult for me because I've got fairly severe ADD and let's just say my social development was somewhat delayed. I've gotten better, but really, I just made my peace with being awkward. And it's kind of funny because I'm the kind of person who likes to be naked at home - I really have very few hangups about my body.

That said, all of my discomfort is ON ME. It's not anyone else's problem. I've accepted it, and I just deal. Breastfeeding is a normal biological function. Kids gotta eat, and I don't see why women should be asked to cover up or go into a bathroom (EW! WTF?). It is not shameful, and it is not a "private" thing - it's a kid getting his nutrients. And while it makes me uncomfortable, I certainly don't find it gross or disgusting when a woman exposes her breast to feed her child. It's just... life.

 
Old 12-18-2015, 03:59 PM
 
10,090 posts, read 6,503,366 times
Reputation: 23714
Quote:
Originally Posted by saibot View Post
Just for the record, I looked it up: Secondary sex characteristics are features which appear at puberty. These secondary characteristics are features such as pubic hair, breast development in females, and beards in males.

To quote my previous post:

What part was incorrect?
You were saying it in context that being called made them a "sexual" thing and that doesn't mean that at all. Glad you could learn what it actually means.
 
Old 12-18-2015, 04:00 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
19,049 posts, read 10,079,571 times
Reputation: 27863
Quote:
Originally Posted by ADVentive View Post
My wish is that a mother breastfeeding her child will be able to comfortably do so in any location and with the same amount of discretion as would a mother bottle-feeding her child. Nobody expects a bottle-feeding parent to cover their child's head while they are feeding. I don't think a breastfeeding mother should be expected to do so either. If a mother *wants* to and prefers it for her *own* reasons, that is up to her, but nobody else should expect that of her. For example, some mothers are very modest, and others have very distractible babies. Cover because *you* want to though, not because it is expected by someone else. There is nothing inappropriate about it either way.

I do not wish to see any social stigma attached to breastfeeding. I think that the expectation that a mother should cover or hide while breastfeeding promotes an underlying idea that there is something shameful about it that is worth hiding. Even the expectation that a mother should cover by default, even if it is "okay" if she can't for some reason (ie too hot, too wiggly), still promotes this idea that there is something worth hiding. I worry that our culture sends mixed messages when it tells mothers "breast is best - as long as other people can't see it".

If you have a story about so-called inappropriate breastfeeding, consider whether you would have still found it inappropriate if the mother was bottle-feeding. If a mother was bottle-feeding at the bank, would that be inappropriate? If a mother was bottle-feeding at a baseball game? If a bottle-feeding baby's head touched your arm? If you would still find it inappropriate, then this is a story about a time when you found the presence of a *baby* inappropriate. If you would not find it inappropriate if the mother was bottle-feeding, then I think you are misguided to think it is only inappropriate because she is breastfeeding.
Exactly. If you wouldn't expect a bottle feeding mom to go somewhere else to feed her child, then don't expect a breast feeding mom to leave.

It's true that some individual women might choose to find a quieter, more private space. However, as someone who both breast and bottle fed, I was just as likely to do that when I was bottle feeding as my child was very distractible and going someplace quieter made him more likely to focus on his bottle instead of on everything going on around him.
 
Old 12-18-2015, 04:03 PM
 
Location: Charlotte Area
3,170 posts, read 2,903,908 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saibot View Post
Okay! Everything is acceptable in public as long as it's sanitary. At least we have cleared that up.
Urinals were the last thing I was expecting to see. Believe me.

I'm a mom of 2 and breastfed both my kids though I never did it in public. I don't have a problem with mom's BFing their babies in public. It's when they get older like 18 months and up where I think they should do it in private. I think it's harder to be discreet when the kids are that old.

I was pregnant with my first child and my husband and I were out to eat at a Japanese steak house. We were facing the other tables. A child of about 5 (or he was just very big for his age) lifted up his mom's shirt and started to eat. She didn't really pay him any mind and went right along eating. It was the most uncomfortable thing ever....for everyone in the room.
 
Old 12-18-2015, 04:14 PM
 
2,093 posts, read 797,805 times
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Breastfeeding should be discreet. That means turning away from the crowd for example. No need to run off to a germy bathroom unless you need to take the baby in there to change it's diapers. Planning ahead is the key.
 
Old 12-18-2015, 04:20 PM
 
10,410 posts, read 7,495,645 times
Reputation: 18361
Covered up but I really can't remember being in "public" while breastfeeding. I do think it's a private matter.
 
Old 12-18-2015, 04:32 PM
 
Location: USA
7,778 posts, read 9,621,396 times
Reputation: 11672
I'm reminded that my dad nursed until he started to school in 1st grade. This was in the backwoods mountains in Arkansas. He said his mother would hide behind a door and call him to come to her. Maybe that's why he lived to be 97 and didn't have high blood pressure or high cholesterol.

It's been interesting to read the various reasons given about breastfeeding: to cover or not to cover.
 
Old 12-18-2015, 04:42 PM
 
Location: Texas
598 posts, read 476,675 times
Reputation: 1815
Why do some women act like you can't feed your baby while NOT showing your breasts AND not covering the baby. I breastfed publicly and my breasts were not exposed and I did not cover my baby. Okay -maybe 5-10% was. All you have to do is pull your shirt down about an inch shy of the nipple. It's not hard.

Do women have the right to breastfeed in public? Of course they do but show some respect for others who do not want to see the whole boob or want their teenage sons, husbands, etc. to.

Honestly, why is it so hard to understand?

"Natural" is not a logical argument. Being naked is natural. But I do not want to eat with naked people.
 
Old 12-18-2015, 05:06 PM
 
12,922 posts, read 19,812,959 times
Reputation: 33964
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayerdu View Post
Why do some women act like you can't feed your baby while NOT showing your breasts AND not covering the baby. I breastfed publicly and my breasts were not exposed and I did not cover my baby. Okay -maybe 5-10% was. All you have to do is pull your shirt down about an inch shy of the nipple. It's not hard.

Do women have the right to breastfeed in public? Of course they do but show some respect for others who do not want to see the whole boob or want their teenage sons, husbands, etc. to.

Honestly, why is it so hard to understand?

"Natural" is not a logical argument. Being naked is natural. But I do not want to eat with naked people.
So your discomfort while eating trumps the baby's real need to eat? And btw, nursing doesn't require nudity of any part of the body that men are not free to flaunt.
 
Old 12-18-2015, 07:01 PM
 
23,948 posts, read 31,164,080 times
Reputation: 28601
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayerdu View Post
Why do some women act like you can't feed your baby while NOT showing your breasts AND not covering the baby. I breastfed publicly and my breasts were not exposed and I did not cover my baby. Okay -maybe 5-10% was. All you have to do is pull your shirt down about an inch shy of the nipple. It's not hard.

Do women have the right to breastfeed in public? Of course they do but show some respect for others who do not want to see the whole boob or want their teenage sons, husbands, etc. to.

Honestly, why is it so hard to understand?

"Natural" is not a logical argument. Being naked is natural. But I do not want to eat with naked people.
That^^. I breastfed my son, and never openly exposed my boob but never had to cover his face either. I mean, you would have had to have been really up close, to see anything. It's isn't rocket science. I think most women these days that pop the boobs out, just want the attention, frankly.
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