How do you feel about breastfeeding in public? And what do you say to people who are bothered by it?

Emilie - posted on 02/02/2010 ( 16 moms have responded )

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My Kids Aunt has a 5 month old baby, and apparently she dosen't mind showing my kids her whole boob when they are there. She is my ex husbands little sister and she stays at his house a lot, so she is always there when my kids are there. I don't have a problem with breastfeeding, I would just like for her to be a little more discreet, My 3 year old daughter has started breastfeeding her dolls, we was in a store and she decided to breastfeed her doll in the store and everybody was staring at her like she had problems or something. My son is greatly bothered by seeing his Aunt breast feed, he thinks it is gross, he is 7 years old.

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Kristen - posted on 02/02/2010

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Do you cover your head when you eat in public?! I'm guessing not so why should a baby have to?!

[deleted account]

I think you are overeacting. First of all, your ex-sister in-law is not feeding in 'public' (even though there is nothing wrong with that!) she is feeding in her home.



Secondly, there is nothing wrong with your three year old role playing breastfeeding. Toddlers role play all parts of life. It's an important learning tool.



Thirdly, there is no better place for your 7 year old boy to learn how to 'ignore' things he is not happy about and how to be politely respectful in situations like this and he can learn how to not lget bothered by it.

Kristina - posted on 02/02/2010

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Breastfeeding is a very natural, it is the one and only reason why women have breast. Our society has turned breastfeeding into something dirty. I am sorry but I breastfeed in public myself and I do not cover, I am disgreet with breastfeeding shirts. But I will not hide my baby under a blanket. I don't think that your kids Aunt should have to cover or go hide. Your kids should know what she is doing and that it is good. If you don't like it then take the kids to a different room. I breastfeed my daughter in front of my sisters kids and they could care less any more, they were curious at first but once they were explained what was going on they lost interest.
Breast is best!

[deleted account]

I have breastfed my now 22 month old son anywhere and everywhere. No one has ever uttered a negative word to me about it or I would tell them where they could go. Actually, no... I'm not confrontational enough to say anything, but I would WANT to.....



I don't see how breastfeeding in her brother's house would be considered breastfeeding in public though.



Little kids imitating breastfeeding is totally normal and it is CUTE. :) I think it sounds like your son could benefit from being taught that feeding a baby is NOT gross in any way, shape, or form. :(

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Emilie - posted on 02/02/2010

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Thank you for your responses, I don't think breastfeeding is bad, the only thing I am concerned about is my kids, mainly my son. It is just that he is uncomfortable and dosn't understand breastfeeding yet, I am planning on having more kids, I was unsuccessful at breastfeeding before and I would like to breastfeed if I have more kids, I just don't know how to handle my son and other people when the time comes for me. I wasn't impying that my ex husbands sister was breast feeding in public, what I meant was in front of other people or in public.

Suzanne - posted on 02/02/2010

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breastfeeding is a very natural thing. However, it really should be done discreetly. This is what makes it natural. It isn't natural to have a boob hanging out that isn't being used or just hanging out to feed a baby in public or when others are around. I have two children and I breastfed both of them, I was totally uncomfortable breastfeeding around others and would cover up. I strongly believe, that if it makes others uncomfortable then that person should have an obligation to cover up, especially children. I say this because seeing this part of the body naturally makes people uncomfortable no matter how you try to justify it. I certainly don't want to see someone else's boob, no matter what the situation, cause it makes me THAT uncomfortable. As an adult or older adolescent, it is associated with nakedness, sex and pornographic material. Again, people are naturally uncomfortable with nakedness. Furthermore, while young children do not understand sex or pornographic material, they are looking at someone who has a body part they do not, which can be weird because at that age they do not get the concept of puberty or understand why the woman has boob, when they don't or why the woman can use the boob to feed the baby, when they don't have one. While they can be told what it is being used for, they don't get it and they certainly should not be subjected to having to see it.



I would suggest talking to your exhusband or the Aunt about your concerns, so your children can be more comfortable. This is topic I feel very strongly about. I don't mind people breastfeeding in public, as long as the boob is covered up. Good Luck!!

Bev - posted on 02/02/2010

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There were a few times I had to nurse in public, but always under a blanket. There is nothing to be ashamed of, however, it is up to you how much you want your children to learn about breastfeeding and at what age. Personally, I don't think it's unhealthy for you to discuss with your children what they have seen and that it's perfectly natural. You can also teach them that although it is natural, it is not polite to stare at a breastfeeding woman. If you're not ready to talk with them about this subject, explain this diplomatically to their aunt. Hopefully she will not be offended.

Tammy - posted on 02/02/2010

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I breast fed 2 of my 3 boys...I was very private about it.I think it is a wonderful thing for those who want to and can do it.I loved having the opportunity to offer my children something so natural and healthy.But I also think it is important to still be respectful to others and yourself.This is still your body that needs to be kept private.You can easily breastfeed without showing anything!!

Heidi - posted on 02/02/2010

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I feel that if your baby is hungry they need to be fed i also think you need to be covered in public .i am covered is what i said to people if they even noticed.

[deleted account]

It's very natural and in no way should be considered gross, but when other people are present, I think it's in good taste to cover up. The baby certainly won't mind and you'll make the people around you more comfortable.

Tiffany - posted on 02/02/2010

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I think that it is fine to breastfeed your baby in public. It wouldn't be fair to make them starve just because they aren't bottle fed. I used to carry blankets with me and go somewhere that I was out of anyone's way though. There are always people that will say something but just ignore them they aren't important. Actually they sale these wraps that keep you covered pretty well so you don't have to worry about the baby moving a blanket =) I believe you can buy them at Walmart or Target.

Melissa - posted on 02/02/2010

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I personally have a hard time breastfeeding in public. I will breast feed in public with my hooterhider if I have not pumped and have a bottle with me. But I think that breastfeeding is a natural thing and that no one should be ashamed to do it were ever they are. It is such a beautiful thing, and I think most people forget why women have breast in the first place. If I were in your situation I would just talk to my children and explain to them what she is doing and the purpose of breast. As for the little one, she is just practicing for when she becomes a mother.

Lori - posted on 02/02/2010

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As long as you politely cover ;yourself, no person should take ofns. I have twins & had lots of outings... its just respect., for all around ;you.

I really don't want my son watch a woman flop a boob out & stick it in a babys mouth, but when a lady discreatly covers herself & tends to her child as mother nature has intended, all around is usually fine.

I have a five yr. old son also... my twins are 20 & in the National Guard.

By the way, you could always do the mommy thing & tell her! that is YOUR kiddo it is affecting!

Sharon - posted on 02/02/2010

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Flipping out the whole boob is a bit much.

People will get used to 3 yr olds breastfeeding. Hell, they're used to 12 yr old mommies, they'll adapt to this new thing too.

Discreet breastfeeding is always perfectly fine in public.

Rebecca - posted on 02/02/2010

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When my second child was about 2 weeks old we were at a local ice cream shop sitting waaaay at the back so i could nurse...under a blanket i might add, and a man in his 30's walked by staring, his wife and child were already sitting and didn't even double look so while he was starting i asked if he wanted some. His wife though it was hilarious but apologized for him lol



As for your aunts kid, ask if she could cover because your children are not used to seeing things of that nature. If you don't wish your kids to see the boob i would recommend you go to a different room while she is nursing then is she wont cover and maybe she'll get the hint, or if she has a birthday coming up you could buy her a cape:)

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