This morning I was reflecting on my mini break over the weekend, it was hot hot hot and we were on Abersoch beach so as you can imagine there were a lot of people running around with not much on (really not much on in some cases). So this got me thinking about boobs.... yes you heard me right BOOBS! I was wondering why no one bats an eyelid at ladies flashing their boobs and pretty much everything else on the beach and yet I keep hearing stories of ladies getting slightly scornful looks (and in some cases full blown tutting) in cafes and restaurants for breastfeeding their babies. Why should this be?
By way of introduction to this subject I will share my own experience with my babies. I breastfed both of my babies and not purely out of being au natural! I must confess I really like my sleep and the thought of waking myself up to traipse downstairs in the dark and faff about with sterilisers did not appeal in the least! i preferred to take the lazy mans approach and feed them from the comfort of my bed. I was lucky that both my babies took to breastfeeding almost instantly and i had no real problems but i do remember feeling very self conscious with my eldest daughter when I needed to feed her in public and recall an instance when I was asked to stop feeding her at a family meal in a country pub by a rather large red embarrassed looking landlord! I did as I was asked but on reflection wish I had made more of a fuss ( it may be wise to point out that nothing was on show in fact I think my mum may have been showing more cleavage than me).
With my second daughter I fed her wherever I liked and if I felt there was a particularly anti breastfeeding vibe about a place I simply wouldn't go again, this was probably impart due to the instance with my elder daughter.... I was determined I would never feel embarrassed or ashamed about feeding in public.
By attitude is just don't give a fig about what others think about you feeding your baby in public, go ahead and do it anyway! The alternative is a very grumpy hungry baby! And in answer to those who are offended I say get over it, its just a boob you see more every time your on a night out, on a beach or in a newsagents.
The question is why on earth does anyone think discrete breastfeeding is offensive? Looking around Abersoch beach on a sunny saturday I certainly couldn't figure it out...... frankly there were some far more offensive sights on that beach than I ever see when mums give their babies a feed. Harking back to my own experience I wonder if that landlord would have been as offended if I had whipped out a copy of the sun and left it open on page 3? i suspect not!
Better still get one of these hats for baby