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A Do or a Don't: Breastfeeding in Public

A Do or a Don't: Breastfeeding in Public

It's recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics that babies should be breastfed for the first year of their life. While most women don't end up completing the entire year, a lot of them at least give it the old college try.

Some new moms say breastfeeding is more painful and tedious than giving birth while others feel it gives them the best opportunity to bond with their baby. Since not all public places, restaurants, stores, planes, etc. have private lactation rooms, women who are breastfeeding are stuck with no choice but to feed their hungry baby whatever and whenever is convenient. While some people don't mind seeing a woman breastfeed, others have a strong negative reaction to it, so what I want to know is, do you think it's a do or a don't to breastfeed in public?

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qbert qbert 8 years
It is crazy how uninformed or just plain ignorant so many people are . I am positive that if any person with even a modicum of intelligence and common sense were presented with all the facts about breastfeeding they would not be chastising mothers who feed in public. Enough said.
MuppetsForDinner MuppetsForDinner 8 years
This conversation just made me horribly uncomfortable. Let's face it, in our country you can do what you want and I'm not begrudging you your right to do whatever you want with your baby to keep him or her happy and healthy. But that same right also means that I can be creeped out when I see some stranger's breast. To those of you who say it's natural: yes, it is - but our naked bodies, our hair, our body odor, etc. are also natural and we cover those up every day.
MuppetsForDinner MuppetsForDinner 8 years
This conversation just made me horribly uncomfortable. Let's face it, in our country you can do what you want and I'm not begrudging you your right to do whatever you want with your baby to keep him or her happy and healthy. But that same right also means that I can be creeped out when I see some stranger's breast. To those of you who say it's natural: yes, it is - but our naked bodies, our hair, our body odor, etc. are also natural and we cover those up every day.
lms lms 8 years
I think if it is totally discreet then it is okay. I do find it weird at times though. I was at a casting with a friend of mine and our kids once. We were talking and all of a sudden there was a lull in the conversation. When I looked back at her she had the baby latched on to her boob while we were standing and waiting without a cover(I don't remember one). I must have given her a look b/c she said "What?" I said "nothing" and she continued. That made me really uncomfortable.I only breastfeed for two months b/c I was not producing enough. I always did a combination of breast and formula. I never breastfeed in public and even if I didn't do formula i doubt that I would ever do it. That is just me though.
lms lms 8 years
I think if it is totally discreet then it is okay. I do find it weird at times though. I was at a casting with a friend of mine and our kids once. We were talking and all of a sudden there was a lull in the conversation. When I looked back at her she had the baby latched on to her boob while we were standing and waiting without a cover(I don't remember one). I must have given her a look b/c she said "What?" I said "nothing" and she continued. That made me really uncomfortable. I only breastfeed for two months b/c I was not producing enough. I always did a combination of breast and formula. I never breastfeed in public and even if I didn't do formula i doubt that I would ever do it. That is just me though.
ErinM ErinM 8 years
Why on Earth would anyone be offended by breastfeeding?
koolbr33z3 koolbr33z3 8 years
This is something that really should be done privately. I mean you don't just whip it out in a crowded restaurant or out shopping. Use your judgement and you should know when an appropriate time arises.
spazzydana spazzydana 8 years
and whats with all this 'you wouldnt eat in a bathroom' thing. uh, i dont eat NAKED!
AucuneRancune AucuneRancune 8 years
Camarogirl67 - fantastic repsonse
Camarogirl67 Camarogirl67 8 years
Amazing.Women's breasts are MEANT FOR BREASTFEEDING.You shove them in a push-up bra, walk down the street or go to dinner in a halter top or revealing garment, and that's acceptable.But feeding your child in public with the mammary glands you were born with to provide them sustenance? NOOOO!!! Give me a break.
Camarogirl67 Camarogirl67 8 years
Amazing. Women's breasts are MEANT FOR BREASTFEEDING. You shove them in a push-up bra, walk down the street or go to dinner in a halter top or revealing garment, and that's acceptable. But feeding your child in public with the mammary glands you were born with to provide them sustenance? NOOOO!!! Give me a break.
SweetPeasMom SweetPeasMom 8 years
Yeah, they are both natural acts that create intimacy and bonding. But obviously, there are plenty of people in the world and on this thread that know breastfeeding is NOT a private act that should be hidden away in the home. :oy: I don't know how to tactfully put how disgusted I am that people would complain about a mother taking care of her child in the most perfect way.
nlw nlw 8 years
For some babies, a bottle isn't an option. They have to adjust to taking a bottle, it's not the same as the breast. So for someone to say, pump and take a bottle with you, it may not be that easy. And as for feeding on public transportation, what would you rather have: a woman feeding a baby or have the poor baby crying and screaming bc it's hungry? I nursed both of my children and if they were hungry, I fed them. I didn't whip it out for all to see, but if I was in the middle of the mall or some other public place, I covered up with a blanket and stared right back at those staring at me.
Advah Advah 8 years
I really don't understand the grossed out reactions here! As for being 'discreet', a breastfeeding mum is not stripping or getting topless when it's time to feed her baby. Unless you put your eyes on it, the breast is hidden by the baby, and even if you see a bit of it, come on it's just a breast! Do you ask people not to kiss in public, or not to hold hand? It's the same thing to me: breastfeeding is natural, and if you feel uncomfortable with it then it's your problem not the mother's.
bugness bugness 8 years
I think it's tacky that people have made breasts taboo enough that a woman can't feed her baby without worrying that she's offending someone.The day that I learned that seeing a naked body was not a big deal was quite enlightening. It's like a huge burden is lifted when you stop caring about "modesty" and ancient morals that just don't seem to go away.At the same time, I do realize that a lot of people still aren't comfortable. My best friend isn't, so I respect her and never just strip down, and I'm sure I wouldn't "whip it out" in front of her or others that would certainly have a conniption. There are very simple ways to cover up.
bugness bugness 8 years
I think it's tacky that people have made breasts taboo enough that a woman can't feed her baby without worrying that she's offending someone. The day that I learned that seeing a naked body was not a big deal was quite enlightening. It's like a huge burden is lifted when you stop caring about "modesty" and ancient morals that just don't seem to go away. At the same time, I do realize that a lot of people still aren't comfortable. My best friend isn't, so I respect her and never just strip down, and I'm sure I wouldn't "whip it out" in front of her or others that would certainly have a conniption. There are very simple ways to cover up.
jiujiu jiujiu 8 years
a do and a must! who cares if you're on a bus next to a baby who's feeding? DEAL WITH IT. if you can't help but stare in disgust when a woman is breastfeeding, then you're the one who is tacky and inappropriate.
californiagirlx7 californiagirlx7 8 years
I said other, I don't mind if you breastfeed in public but please cover up.
PinkNC PinkNC 8 years
Yes it's natural, but we have to remember that there are too many sickos out there lately. Everyone has a video camera. Therefore you might just see an image of yourself on YTube, or someones My Space page.
redegg redegg 8 years
And SPM, I said breastfeeding was "kind of like sex" because in my opinion they are both natural, intimate, private acts and I was just using it as an example. I was not saying they have the same timetable needs where you would have to have sex every three hours whether you were in public or not.
BeachBarbie BeachBarbie 8 years
It doesn't bother me at all. It's totally natural, and I think women should try their best to breast feed.
kai3 kai3 8 years
I am currently a nursing mom, so this hits home! When you are a new mom you're supposed to nurse about every 2-3 hours. If you were determined not to nurse in public you would be sitting at home ALL day, for a good 3 months. I never enjoyed nursing in public - trust me, I'd much rather be in my glider at home - but I COVERED UP and made do. I think it's rude for someone to nurse without covering, it's so easy to grab a blanket before you leave the house. In my opinion, nursing in public is unavoidable if you're going to have a life, but try to do it tactfully, cover up. :)
jennifer76 jennifer76 8 years
I think breastfeeding is one of those things that makes people uncomfortable until they actually do it. It's such a natural thing that once you've gotten used to it, it really seems absolutely absurd to label it offensive or disgusting as many of you have.As for the blanket, you try sitting under a blanket with a baby pressed up against you in weather over 80 degrees. It's ridiculously uncomfortable. Why should baby and mom be uncomfortable so that the few people who are uncomfortable with the idea of feeding a child can go happily on their way? Even better, feel free to throw a blanket over your own head so you don't have to see the horrifying sight of a baby nursing. :oy:As SweetPeasMom said, when I fed my children in public I was so discreet that you probably wouldn't have even noticed what I was doing. Between nursing tank tops and bras, etc...it's very easy to feed your baby while showing significantly less skin than any of you are perfectly happy to see in MTV videos and reality shows and just walking around the mall for that matter.I hate that people insist on whining about this. Why don't you go after the mom beating her child in public? Or the mom smoking around her children? Or the mom with young kids in the front seat? Or the mom dressing her very young children in sexy little outfits? Why the hell people would pick on breastfeeding moms is completely beyond me.
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