public breastfeeding?

Hannah - posted on 01/11/2010 ( 171 moms have responded )

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should i just whip it out? legally, i am allowed to breastfeed everywhere i am admitted to be, but what do you think?

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171 Comments

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Lorianne - posted on 01/15/2010

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I think you should do what you feel you need to do! Some babies dont like being covered, and I mean, there are some grown ups that I wish would cover their heads when they eat, but alas, can't make them, so don't be ashamed to nourish your baby!

Amanda - posted on 01/15/2010

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Personally I think it's fine. I do it myself, well I wear an udder cover so no one sees anything, but I do do it wherever I feel. I even had someone come up to me once and say I should go to the bathroom so her and others kids didn't have to see what I was doing. I asked her if she would tell her kids to eat in the bathroom. She said of course not and I told her not to ask mine to eat in one than. She stormed off. I sit for a family that has a baby and a four year old. The four year old asked me why I always cover up my son, I told him that some mommies keep their babies warm that way. The mother explained what I was doing by using a cow and calf as examples. I almost died laughing.

Margot - posted on 01/15/2010

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I say do your thing. I was so nervous and timid when I would feed my baby, who is now 14 mths. Now when we are out she climbs up in my lap and wants to nurse, I cant deny her... so she has her way and most people are accepting. Haven't had any negativity, tho if I did my hubby would likely flip out. Do your thing!

[deleted account]

I have nursed all my 5 children and am still nursing my 22 month old. I use a nursing bib when I have it but if I don't have it and my child is hungry I nurse very discreetly. Your pinky pulls down your shirt in case any part of your boob is showing, your index pulls back the boob so the baby doesn't get smothered and the thumb pulls down your shirt over the top part of your boob. With practice it's very easy. I don't like exposing myself because it does make others uncomfortable. Good luck!

Kassie - posted on 01/15/2010

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i do...i've fed her so far in the movies, at starbucks, in the car, old navy, new york and company, anywhere. if she's hungry i feed her. why deprive her of her food because of my embarrassment.

Korey - posted on 01/15/2010

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I try to be discreet by covering with a blanket. I breastfeed anytime baby Jack is hungry. In Ontario at least it is legal for a woman to be topless although I have never seen it. Only friends have said anything but they don't have babies. I've breastfed in a public lineup, at a restaurant, in the car in a parking lot, at friends houses etc. I'm not trying to expose myself but to feed my hungry son.

Tiffany - posted on 01/15/2010

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I have breastfed in public twice now. I don't really feel too comfortable just showing my breasts to the whole world so I use a blanket to cover us up. A couple people have kind of looked when walking by, didn't bother me. The people I was sitting with/doing business with, completely understood. It is what it is, has to be done. :) I've bought a nursing tank and nursing bra which make breastfeeding super simple now. The nursing tank hides my tummy and breast really well. I recommend them both. Good luck, and don't worry, Mom. :D

Jemma - posted on 01/15/2010

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i used to feed my son anywhere. when i was having lunch in a cafe, walking around shopping centers. i never had anyone say anything the whole 10 months i did it. although i have had friendsho have been kicked out of cafes and shops for doing it? but i was quiet cofortable doing it anywhere.

Julie - posted on 01/15/2010

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We have a breastfeeding circle at our hospital that I go to every week and the lactation consultant that runs it has explained that she wants more and more woman to breastfeed in public. Many woman don't breastfeed because they are afraid of what people think. It is all cultural, and our generation is desensitizing it. Once it is more commonly seen, then it will be the norm to breastfeed...and all babies will be so much healthier. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE breastfeed in public so we can have healthier babies.



I think it is already becoming the norm.



ETA: In public you don't need to cover yourself, but I do when I am around family members who may be uncomfortable. Some older people don't get it and probably never will.

Ashley - posted on 01/15/2010

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Bottom line is your baby needs to eat. When I nursed my daughter, I didn't care if people saw me breastfeed. I'd make sure I wasn't exposing myself to anyone but if she needed to eat, I wasn't about to take her into a bathroom stall just so she could eat. If you feel comfortable and the law says you're allowed to, I say go for it...and if someone gives you hell, tell them that you don't make them eat in a bathroom stall, why should your baby?

Stephanie - posted on 01/15/2010

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go for it. :) be discreet for your own sake, but otherwise it's perfectly fine. I did it all the time, and I plan to with this next kidlet in a few months.

Melissa - posted on 01/15/2010

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I can't just whip it out unless I am in a safe area, like the feeding and diapering area of Babies R' us or at home (with or without company). I have, however, fed a starving baby while waiting at the end of a grocery store check out line with a cover.



I try to be understanding of others around me. However, I don't worry about my modesty. Just other people's modesty.

Brooke - posted on 01/15/2010

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In a word: Yes. Whip it out anywhere and everywhere. Why shouldn't you? Your child has the same right to eat that a bottle feeding child has. If you are modest about it, there are a number of devices (hooter hider, etc) available, but my son enjoyed flipping them up and showing me to the world, so I gave up on that pretty quickly. Just remind yourself (and anyone else who might have a problem with it) that feeding children is a breast's intended purpose.

[deleted account]

It is simply what you are comfortable with. I always wore Bella Bands so the world wouldn't see my belly. That was my biggest concern. I did get dirty looks from some people but my response was to point out that my baby's need for food was more important than their comfort. I also pointed out that staring was bad table manners. Haven't you ever noticed people in public doing much more offensive things than feeding their baby? Point that out if anyone makes you feel bad for doing what is best for your baby.

Amy - posted on 01/15/2010

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I have nursed all (5) of my children anywhere they are hungry. I try and use a blanket if I noticed that other people (like my husband) are embarrassed by what I'm doing. Other than I wear clothes that baggy enough that you only see my stomach. I still wear a lot of maternity tops because they are easier to cover with. I think it depends on how comfortable you are with what you're doing for your baby.

Cassie - posted on 01/15/2010

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at first i felt a little weird about it, but you get over it. i've fed in restaurants, on a bench at the mall, in the fitting room at a store. i just cover up with a blanket, and no one seems to mind. if someone has an issue, then thats their problem. theres nothing obscene about feeding your baby- thats what boobs are for!

[deleted account]

I think it depends on who you're around. It makes me really uncomfortable when moms whip it out around my four year old son. This is sometihng that I've been thinking about with my new babe (due 2/16) and I've asked my MIL to make me some nursing covers to use in public or when I have guests over.

Tasha - posted on 01/15/2010

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Get yourself a nursing cover and go to town. when your child is hungry its more convenient to whip out the boobie and give it to them then to listen to them scream while you warm up a bottle. with a little bit of practice using your wrap at home it should start getting easier. You may even get to a point where you can do it in public without a cover and without showing off your goods. your baby will like it better.

[deleted account]

My opinion( and I dont force it on anyone else is...) I would not Bf in public. I just don't have the want to be private in public.

I dont enjoy seeing somen's boobs hauled out in public.



However with that being said, if they are in say a mall, and have a cover over them, i dont see any issue with it.



I have seen a LOT of older and younger men get off on seeing women BF'ing in malls and such. It's sad but I dont feel the need to put myself out there.



Around here everywhere had many bf'ing friendly areas. (i.e. Couches and chairs in a corner of a few spots in the mall for this purpose, comfy and low traffic.

Megan - posted on 01/15/2010

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i always figured u cant see anything anyway the babies head is big enough to cover everything

Caitelyn - posted on 01/15/2010

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go for it!!!!! i recently had my ex partner (who until now has been inredibly supportive of my breastfeeding) go mental in the middle of a shopping centre because our son was whiny, so i picked him up and started feeding him as we were walking along!!!!!!! its what your breasts were made for! not for some man to grab lol... ;D

Nicole - posted on 01/14/2010

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I've already posted but to add to the fun- I've nursed openly in a church (the only two times I've been cajoled into attending) and was very well received. The first time Phoebe was a week old- a nice usher even got a boppy from the nursery for me. The second time was this past Christmas- the 8 month pregnant minster felt the need to point it out to the congregation that jesus wasn't given a bottle of formula now was he? and that in a few weeks time she too would be nursing a baby in there. ( afterwards she inquired about my moby because she wanted to nurse and preach at the same time :D) That was an excellent day!
Heh I am such a regular at Barnes and Noble the cafe folks know to cool my drink a bit so I don't slosh hot drink on my habitually nursing baby.

Meredith - posted on 01/14/2010

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You should do what is best for you and your baby. I am still nursing my 20 month old daughter. Now there is not much reason to have to breastfeed in public because she usually only nurses in the morning and at night. However for most of the first year I breastfed in public several times a day. I just didn't find it practical to try to "hide" every time my daughter needed to eat. It feels awkward at first just because it takes some practice but I just did it and got better at it with time. I used a "hooter hider" for quite some time but as my daughter got older she started pulling it away and playing with it so it was actually easier to nurse her without a cover. I also am not a big fan of nursing tops or bras. All the snapping and unsnapping!

Sharmaine - posted on 01/14/2010

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think if ur baby is hunrgy then feed them! but if ur not comfortalbe just whiping them out just go to a change room or into a coffeee shop.= D

Kelsey - posted on 01/14/2010

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You have to do what is comfortable for you! I have no problems nursing my 9 month old baby. If I get a dirty look, I smile politely back.

Kimberly - posted on 01/14/2010

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I do but i am usually discrete about it i do not cover my baby its not fair a bottle fed baby gets to eat without a cover and not a breastfed baby. By the way world, breast were made for breastfeeding and babies were made to breastfeed. So it should be no big deal. This sometimes angers me so.

[deleted account]

I have this thing called a hooter hider LOL because I feel uncomfortable just whipping it out. I like the hooter hider, because it has a wire in a half circle so you can actually look down and watch your baby eating. A blanket also works, but takes some practice getting used to.

[deleted account]

I have a nursing top, where it just looks like my baby is sleeping against me, I found the blankets and such too hot. Ive breastfed 3 now and its been a pleasant experience and in VA the law is on my side anyways...i've had one guy ask me to go to the bathroom (while nursing my first child) and I said "I'll nurse my baby in the bathroom if you'll take your lunch and eat in the bathroom too" and that was the last time anyone said anything to me,lol

Jessi - posted on 01/14/2010

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hello
i think your fine to do it however you wish! im in canada and its not uncommon to see a woman covered up breastfeeding wherever- though it is less common to have one who has just "whipped it out" i dont have a problem with those that dont cover up, its probly way easier! as for myself i feed my baby wherever whenever, but i always cover up with a recieving blanket or one of those breastfeeding covers.
during christmas shopping, when there was a big sale on at a store i saw a woman walking around shopping breastfeeding her baby, she has a recieving blanket tucked in to her bra so no one saw her tummy or back and one over the baby. all i could think of was good for her! she was still shopping and still breastfeeding. even if she hadnt been covered i still would have thought it was a good thing. do whatever is comfy for you and baby and if anyone stares at you; pointedlystare right back! i find that works ;-)

Carmen - posted on 01/14/2010

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I am nursing my first child and prefer to wear clothing with easy acsess for me and baby. I don't like raising my shirt and showing my belly, so low cut shirts are a must. However, breastfeeding in front of family is okay.

Crystal - posted on 01/14/2010

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i am nursing my second child (almost one) and do so whenever and wherever i may be. i don't eat my food in private and nor should he. i fold a gauze blanket in half to form a triangle and knot the two corners (wear it like a sling) it's lightweight for warm weather and doesn't cling to him or get pulled off - sometimes baby needs cover to avoid distractions.

Melissa - posted on 01/14/2010

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I never mastered breastfeeding in public. I was unable to be discreet. They say to practice in a mirror, but I was always showing too much. I would pump before hand and not stay out too long.

Melissa - posted on 01/14/2010

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I never mastered breastfeeding in public. I was unable to be discreet. They say to practice in a mirror, but I was always showing too much. I would pump before hand and not stay out too long.

Emma - posted on 01/14/2010

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i would never feed my girl in a smelly toilet i would never eat my lunch there so dont expect her to! if people think there is something wrong with feeding your baby the best way then its them that have the problem. whenever i feed in public nobody notices an i dont flash lol

Goldie - posted on 01/14/2010

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I agree with Cristy. I like having a blanket or my Moby wrap for when I am out where a man can see me. I know that personally it isn't a huge deal if she pulls the blanket off but I know for my husband it is. Do what you yourself are comfortable with. I know some nursing moms that have to pump bottles for when in public and they carry a hand pump with them to help with what they make while out.

Tara - posted on 01/14/2010

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Go for it.



I, personally try to be somewhat modest by making sure the blanket is there so people don't look to hard (sometimes it moves - but do I have to post a sign?).



Look, I can pull a granola bar out of my bag anytime, a child needs their nourishment much more than an adult. I'd also like to point out that even when on punishment it is considered abuse to not allow you child to have a beverage if they ask. Find out more from your local child protection agency. I had someone tell me once that I should have pumped, I gave them the cost of an electric pump (conditions prevent me from using a hand pump for more than two minutes) and encouraged them to buy one (not that I planned on using one much anyway).



And I, personally, would never eat in a bathroom. You?

Alison - posted on 01/14/2010

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I personally am very against this. I breastfed mine but would never do it in public. There is always somewhere you can go that is private (eg..bathroom stall) I have no problem with other mothers that do it DISCREETLY but I shake my head when I see a mother just whipping it out for everyone to see. Yes, breastfeeding is a beautiful and natural thing...but I dont need to see a stranger's boob when Im eating lunch in the foodcourt at the mall. Also, why would these mothers want other people to see their breasts? There are a lot of sick perverts out there...this is just how I feel.

Tammy - posted on 01/14/2010

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i nurse in public in my baby carrier (i have a Baby k'tan and a ergo, but Baby k'tan is good for nursing). no one even sees anything! can't even tell that im nursing!

Momma_duck - posted on 01/14/2010

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I do, mine won't take a bottle, I've tried, but I'm always covered...that's just my preference, no one has said a thing! It's natural and if someone cares oh well!

Cristi - posted on 01/14/2010

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I breastfed all of my children. The longest was my 3rd child at 31 months. breastfeeding can be done anywhere discreetly. I had a pouch that I carried my last two in that worked great. I breastfed everywhere, including church services, shopping, the zoo, etc. If my baby was hungry or needed comfort he/ she got it right then no matter where we were.

[deleted account]

I always breastfed my son in public, but always used a breastfeeding blanket. If we went to a resturant or something I would ask for a booth- there is a little more privacy there. But I breastfed for 15 months and never had any problems in public. If you do it right most people, especially guys don't even know what you are doing. :)

Erin - posted on 01/14/2010

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Once you get the hang of it - it's easy to do discretely. I've BF in a restaurant in a booth with friends, about 5 min after I was done she said "I thought you had to feed the baby?" To which I replied "I already did!" I also love this product called BellyBands - it's like a tube top for your belly and they come in different colors so it looks like you are just layering shirts. They cover your belly while you feed and as an added bonus - they kinda suck in the baby belly for ya!

Lisa - posted on 01/14/2010

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I haven't read any others yet so this is just my thoughts. Top three...

One. I have been breastfeeding for 3 years non stop so far. I am so professional and have so many breastfeeding tops and little blankies to cover anything that might show, most of the time they don't even know I am doing it. There is no need to WHIP anything out (unless of course you want to...that is your business! LOL)

Two. The law and what actually goes are two different things. People with no experience with breastfeeding can be uncomfortable around you (like my in-laws were) but they will get used to it eventually. Took mine about one year to keep talking to me and stop treating me like a leper. Those who have had breastfeeding in their family will not hardly blink an eyelid, in fact my male neighbour poked his head over to look at my pretty baby feeding once ( and that is THE most beautiful angle to see thier angelic faces) so casually, comfortably and non-sexually. I recall it back at it fondly.

Three. I never really feed in restaurants. I think it might put some people off their food. Yet out door cafes seem more ok. It is up to you to draw your own lines. Just be considerate and remember, like the Australian Breastfeeding Association points out, they have just as much right to eat as anyone else. Any you wouldn't expect anyone to eat in a toilet, so why should they be banished there.

Brenda - posted on 01/14/2010

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Oh, and just an FYI, all states that do not exempt breastfeeding from public indecency laws have another law that covers breastfeeding. I'm in one of those states, Missouri, but there is a state law that allows breastfeeding in public "as discreetly as possible". So that sucks, but if you try to cover, and baby won't let you, that's discreet as possible.



http://www.llli.org/Law/LawBills.html

Aicha - posted on 01/14/2010

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I always take a big shawl with me and drape it over my shoulder and the baby while she is nursing

Candice - posted on 01/13/2010

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you are doing one of the most beautiful and natural things - i see no problem in breastfeeding in public - an employee at a bank tried telling me off about that - i reported her and demanded a public apology - needless to say she felt very "skaam"!!!!!!

Robyn - posted on 01/13/2010

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Hi
I have a 7 month old that i am currently feeding (She is my 2nd), so im a lot more comfortable with it. But i feed her where eva she is hungry. If you are a little uncomfortable with it or people are starring. I find it helps to either stare at them =D or drape a wrap over your shoulder, covering him/her!
Hope this helps, otherwise most shopping complexes do have nice breastfeeding areas in the toilet section,

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