This morning I read an article about public breastfeeding and one group of college students trying to make a difference. Then I read some of the comments, and I couldn't resist replying. One person wrote that the article was overly dramatic and that babies should be covered when nursing in public, and that exposed, they might get cold. Below is my reply.
The idea that a baby is going to get cold while nursing is incorrect. Unless the mother is sitting out in the snow, that baby is being heated by the mother's body heat. Add a blanket and the baby is more likely to over heat. Add to it that most babies don't want to be covered up. My sons always would pull a blanket or wrap off. They liked to be able to see my face and not feel all stuffy. The clothes that some women wear can often be far more revealing than a nursing mother. Heck, you got to Hooters' restaurant, which is touted as a "family" and you will see more breast there than at a nursing convention. I see on a nearly daily basis, women wearing tops that cover only from the nipple down. The whole top of the breast is exposed! Well, when nursing a baby, the nipple is covered. So how can that be more offensive? I never once nursed my babies in a bathroom. You don't eat where you shit. I covered when I could, and wore nursing shirts that provided plenty of discretion. No, I didn't sit there with my breast hanging out for the world to see, but I wasn't completely embarrassed if some breast accidentally showed for a second. I mastered breastfeeding while grocery shopping and nobody knew. I didn't do a "schedule" for nursing. I fed my babies when they were hungry. That might be at home, at a restaurant, or in a grocery store or mall. Sometimes it was while we were driving somewhere and I had to pull over to nurse them. You do what you have to do for your child. Not for anyone else. In that moment when you have a baby, nothing else matters or should matter. You change diapers on a park bench, you leave a grocery check-out line and your full shopping cart to rush your toddler to the potty, you nurse wherever you are whenever that baby is hungry. And you NEVER allow a stranger to make you feel bad for it. It's not their life. It's yours and your baby's.