Intro

All content of this blog is my own opinion only. It does not represent the views of any organisation or association I may work for, or be associated with. Nothing within this blog should be considered as medical advice and you should always consult your Doctor.

breastfeeding in public is offensive - see for yourself!

I can't take the credit for this (nor can I track down the original author) but it's great and so worth a share :)

I’m thankful for not having boobs thrown in my face all the time by offensive and indecent breastfeeding mothers like the ones below:


Wait…Well, this is a bad example. Let’s try again.

Hmm…Just a minute. I’m sure I can find better ones than these…

Eh, still not offensive enough. I’ll check one more time.


That is better. LOOK AT THAT! I see about a half inch of boob. DISGUSTING.
UGH. Look at that indecency! She must be from some third world country to be exposed like that!


Now that’s just…There are no words to descripe how inappropriate that is. Something needs to be done!

But why stop at breasfeeding women? There are boobs everywhere. Beware! If you thought the above photos were offensive, you WILL DEFINITELY be offended by the photos below.

Not this one, though. This one was in plain view on news stands and in mail boxes in 19 countries world wide!

Not this one, either. This one actually won an award!


Oh, and I guess this one is fine too. Everyone knows you can’t sell jeans without someone being topless.

Or beer, for that matter.

Or sunglasses.

Or movie tickets.

Or CDs…

You know what? Maybe I’m crazy, but I think that someone mixed up some photos here. The first batch are offensive, but the second batch are just fine and dandy???

People who live in glass bras:

Shouldn’t throw stones:

If you think women have the right to breastfeed their children no matter where they are, please repost this…comment vote it popular whatever . Support breastfed babies and their right to eat in public!


129 comments:

  1. You choose to view all of the other materials. You buy the CD, you pick up the magazine (those magazines aren't the ones in the grocery store checkout lines; they're the ones you have to look for). Even those ads for shades and movies are right out of the ads INSIDE of a magazine. You can avoid all of these images, except the breastfeeding women. You can avoid exposing yourself to half-naked women in the media; you can't avoid exposing yourself to half-naked women breastfeeding in public. Most public restrooms have mommy lounges anymore for this, so use them. Not only are there people who don't want to see you, but there are people who you don't want to have see you. There are so many perverts running around everywhere. Do you really want that image of you and your baby in some freak's "spank bank?" I think not.

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    1. I disgree. I have two daughters, 7 and 9, and despite trying extremley hard to avoid images of naked women, they are regularly exposed to semi naked woman using sexuality and their breasts to promote products on television and in print media. Images that I consider derogatory and degrading, yet unavoidable.
      As for the "pervert" I think you're over-thinking it. I couldn't care less what others think, my baby's needs come first.

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    2. what absolute drivel!
      just walk into any shop that sells magazines, look at almost any advertising hoarding, turn on any tv especially a channel with advertising, even get on a bus you are confronted with half-naked women constantly.
      I marvel when I see someone feeding a child, even with a bottle, because it is now so unusual that I wonder how children survive.

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    3. You can only avoid images of sexually suggestive ads if you stay in your home and don't own a television. I see half naked women in ads at Target, in the mall, on Newstands (HEELLLOOOOO! Sports Illustrated! VOGUE! VANITY FAIR! DUH!) All at childrens' eye level.

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    4. Anonymous,

      You can also avoid seeing breastfeeding Moms by doing exactly what you would do if you saw a magazine that made you uncomfortable, just turn around and walk away.

      The difference between "1/2 naked women" in the media and breastfeeding moms in public couldn't be more different. The first is using sexuality to sell a product, the later is providing a meal to her child. They should not be compared, as their motives are not associated.

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    5. what the heck! Unless you live under a rock, you are bombarded with sexual images whether you like it or not. You do NOT need to buy a cd, or watch a sexy show, ANY of that. Even On kids channels you are guaranteed to see some "Sexy!"> Heck when i go to the mall the ads outside the stores show half naked women, so am i supposed to stop shopping to avoid this? Get over yourself! Hey i cant avoid the ACTUALLY half naked men i see, so why should i cover up when i am NOT even half naked at all!I will cover up while feeding my baby when bottle feeding parent cover up to feed their babies, so NEVER!

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    6. Yes, there are restrooms and toilets, so if you see a mum feeding her baby and this upsets you, please feel free to go and sit in the restroom and have a little think about why you might be reacting in such a strange way to the nourishment and comfort of a baby human, and why it is ok to not be supportive of this.

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  2. Women who are breastfeeding their children in public are not half naked - get it right. Women walk around in slutty outfit, wearing practically nothing, and yet no one tells them to leave or to cover up. Those women are showing way more skin that anyone breastfeeding their child.

    And I will NOT feed my child in a bathroom. How about you go eat in the bathroom and tell me how you like it? My child is eating the way god and nature intende him to eat and I will not make him feel ashamed for it by eating in a disgusting bathroom.

    Do I want the image of me feeding my son in some freaks "spank bank"? Really? Is that your argument? Please. If anyone is a pervert around here, it's you.

    Breasts are not sexual. Just because this society has chosen to make them so doesn't mean anything. When a woman births a child, she produces milk for that child. Breasts for to feed children, not your sexual fantasies.

    If you don't want to see it, look away.

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    1. I have no issue if you want to feed your child wherever and whenever. My issue is that I dont want my child to see it!

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    2. if you had a four year old in a the mall ask mom for a snack and she "whipped out" a bag of goldfish would you tell her to take her kid to the mommy lounge? lets think practically and rationally here, do you have issues with bottle feeding in public? no? really? because the NIPPLE on a bottle is designed to look like and act like the human breast. Lets not forget that when a woman pulls a breast out to feed her child she uses one of 3 methods: pulls up the bottom of her shirt (revealing more belly and flank skin than breast tissue) pulls down the top of her shirt and latches baby on (baby's head covers all exposed breast other than maybe a little cleavage which you would see in a flattering (not "trampy" v-neck blouse) the third option is that a woman is wearing a nursing top designed to allow easy nipple access while covering breast tissue. there really is no need to "look away." and some baby's can't tolerate the nursing covers. My son hated them from the first time I nursed in the hospital.
      for those who you say don't want to discuss it with their children yet I say shame on them they are doing their children and society a HUGE disservice.

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    3. Zelda, your child has every right to see a woman breastfeeding and learn that a human breast is put there to feed a child. You sound like the kind of person who thinks getting dressed in front of a baby is rude, or sharing a bath with a toddler is wrong, or giving birth through our vaginas is wrong, because the baby might look on the way out and see a vagina! Get over it, a naked body is NOT wrong for a child to see, a child is either too young to pay much attention other than general curiosity or old enough to understand that breastfeeding is natural. Either way it should not offend your child, it is just you with the issue. Children do not sexualise breasts, children do not have sick thoughts, they are innocent, it is adults who think things are pervy or rude, kids just think things are normal.

      Oh gosh, quick put some clothes on those nasty naked animals, and god for forbid your child might find out where cows milk comes from?? Seriously?

      I would rather my son grew up seeing mothers feed their babies naturally (including me when his sibling is born later this year) than being completely unable to ask questions about the human body.

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    4. i know this is old but to zelda, or any one how finds bfinf 'offensive', i dont wanna see young children stuffing crisps an icecream, i dont wanna see 3 yr olds in bikinis and 9yr olds in hotpants yet im not allowed to tell the parents to take em home and change them or to go to the the bathroom to overfeed them junk.
      i find it offensive to see mothers yelling at children to stop whining and shoving formula bottles in there mouths and using a blanket to prop it up while they chat on the phone, i find it offensive to hear a baby cry while her mother carrys on shoe shopping or gossoping to her mates
      i dont want to have to explain why some babys have breast milk and others have formula. i dont want my child seeing every dolly with a bottle or toddlers older then her walking around all day with dummys in there mouths. do have any right to complain to the mothers about there choices just because i dont like it? no i didnt think so, u dont like it, shut up an dont look. any one whos rude eonugh to complain to me while i try to descreetly bf my 21month old will have me give up being polite or considerate and will see me bfing however im comfortable instead.

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  3. what is the difference if adult eats in public or a child or a new born baby. there is no difference at all. As a male I think Breast feeding is a beautiful thing and a special bond between a mother and her child so if anyone finds it offensive tell them to piss off or don't watch.

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  4. I have breastfeed my son whenever and whereever he needs it. If anyone told me off or to feed him in the bathroom i'd tell them to go jump. If you don't like it avert your eyes. It's a beautiful thing.

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  5. As a breastfeeding mommy, I love this post. When I nurse in public, you can't tell. I breastfeed in a wrap, in a mei tai, on my lap -- and nothing shows. I nursed my first until 13 months, and my second at 14 months is still going strong. There is absolutely nothing sexual about feeding my children.

    And to the anonymous poster -- you might choose to buy a magazine, but you don't choose what appears on the cover of the magazine while you're trying to buy National Geographic (which, btw, also has breasts on the cover), or Disney Magazine for the kids. It's just THERE. And it's also THERE, for public consumption, on the beach, at the mall, in the grocery store. I show less breast than the majority of fashion tells us is normal.

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  6. The second poster obviously doesn't live in the UK! We have charming 'newspapers' out on the stand on the bottom shelf with almost naked women on the front cover, and charming magazines like Nuts and FHM with *just* covered women on the middle shelves of the magazine racks. There is no avoiding them!

    Anyway you see more flesh on a girl in bikini or low cut dress than you do when most women breastfeed.

    All of which misses the point that breasts are actually made for feeding, and the baby is just eating. Breasts are not actually sexual organs and there's nothing remotely offensive about it.

    The spank bank comment is nonsense, people can be turned on by anything, there are even people who want to marry inanimate objects. If you lived your life afraid of what a 'pervert' might be turned on by, you'd have to stay in your house permanently!

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  7. Interesting that those who disapprove are hiding behind anonymity.

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  8. lol yes Anon - no sandals, think of all those with foot fetishes getting off thinking about your feet when they get home!

    I think anyone offended, it's clearly not about what you can and can't see - most women breastfeed like the first couple of pictures. I really liked the drop cup nursing wear and people couldn't tell I was nursing - I know by how many approached talking to me and got nearly on top of me before they realised! Some backed off apologising and some said how lovely - but none had realised until they got close.

    I would be interested to know whether those who find giving milk of our own species something "spank bank" worthy - is it just humans giving their young milk of their own species that's inappropriate or does any animal count?

    AND - as someone once said, if breastfeeding is sexual - surely a bottle is comparable to a dildo? plastic replica of nipples ok - it's just skin v plastic that's the problem?

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  9. I am soooooooooooooo proud of my grandma. She was 49 when she had my Dad. She breast fed him for 3 years. My Dad was born in 1920. How did she do it?????????
    I am a midwife. I have a passion n deep commitment 2 breast feeding. My kids were breast fed.

    R we losing out innate ability to survive as a species?

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  10. I find it quite amusing really that the very reason that breasts are considered sexual in the first place is what makes them so offensive lol. Men are attracted to breasts because on a subconscious level, a "good rack" indicates to him that his prospective mate will be able to nourish his offspring. Everything about sexual attraction is down to procreation. With odd fetishes, it's when something's gone awry in childhood and the signals get messed up, but generally, it's all about procreation. Men find a nice tight tummy attractive because again, instinctively it tells him that his prospective mate is not currently carrying another man's seed. Curvy hips suggested she'll be able to birth his offspring...

    We really have departed from our biological norm and heritage when the site of a woman nourishing her child causes offence!

    As a species, eating has always been a social event - why should it be any different for our babies?

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    1. Yay!!! Thanks for this comment. I was starting to think i was crazy!

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  11. Caro said "Breasts are not sexual". Actually they are. Name one other species that has breasts? Answer...none. They all have teats but not breasts. Breasts evolved as a substitute for buttocks when we started to walk upright, in order to attact males.

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    1. have you looked under cow recently? or a sheep? or a nursing dog?

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    2. "Breasts evolved as a substitute for buttocks"?? Buttocks evolved as we started sitting routinely, breasts have always been there as we are MAMMALs and they are MAMMARY glands. I'm studying Anatomy, where is your 'knowledge' coming from?

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  12. "Anonymous said...
    Caro said "Breasts are not sexual". Actually they are. Name one other species that has breasts? Answer...none. They all have teats but not breasts. Breasts evolved as a substitute for buttocks when we started to walk upright, in order to attact males.

    15 November 2010 12:43 "

    I saw pig feeding a newborn piglet with what looks like a pig version of breasts??

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    1. Did you ask the pig to cover up or did your leave her be while you looked on without disgust? We, as a race, have forgotten that we are still a SPECIES. We require procreation, and that end result is a baby(ies) that require proper nourishment, found in human milk that is tailor made for human babies.

      My oldest was only breastfed 3 months, and when I went to bottle feeding, it was 3x the work. I had to prepare bottles, clean bottles, sterilize bottles & nipples. And the out-of-pocket cost was enormous. She seemed somehow less happy, more irritable.
      Breast size has nothing to do with a mother's ability to breastfeed.Many a "small" breast has caused children to thrive throughout the centuries. Without breast feeding, we humans would not exist today.

      Delete
  13. Yes indeed, many body parts have dual functions. Breasts (as well as mouths, hands, you name it) can be sexual. But breasts are also nurturing. The difference is context, and I think that most of us are mature enough to realize the difference.

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  14. OMG "spank BAnk" really?!?!?!?!?!?!? Breast are meant to feed babies end off as far as I am concernened anyone who could refer to a woman a nd her childing feeding as "spank bank" material has a huge bloody problem! I breast fed my son for a t=year and nobody saw my breasts when I was out in public EVER!

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  15. Caro, I absolutely agree with the outrage at the hypocrisy and double standards. In fact, the argument for breastfeeding in public is solid and rational enough to obviate the need for spewing fallacies. You claim "Breasts are not sexual. Just because this society has chosen to make them so doesn't mean anything." Soo... then they *are* sexual. Well that does mean something. It means one has to address breasts' sexuality (even if it is a social construct) in the debate, not deny it.

    Furthermore, breasts' sexuality is indeed from "God and nature" as you say breastfeeding is. One example: breasts' and nipples' higher density of nerve endings (relative to other body parts) increase sexual sensitivity and did not just evolve in the last few generations due to societal influences. Are you saying a woman desires intimate physical contact on her breasts during sex because she's been brainwashed? The media does enough brainwashing; we don't need to give them credit for this, too.

    Lastly, I'm concerned when you talk about not wanting to make your son feel ashamed for eating in a bathroom (which may or may not be "disgusting"). Almost any child of breastfeeding age is too young to experience that kind of shame. If you are ashamed, that's perfectly valid and it's your choice to respond that way, but you do a disservice to your son's emotional development by projecting it on him.

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  16. i agree women should be allowed to breastfeed as it is of course natural. However the other side of the argument is; well why arn't we all just naked then? Why wear clothes at all besides the essentials to keep warm.
    It swings both ways.

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  17. Sorry if "anonymous" offends anybody. I just don't want SPAM so I don't use my profile for this kind of stuff. I'd say this to your face on the street, I'm not hiding behind anything.

    I must live in a very conservative community. We see Women's Day and Taste of Home on the magazine racks at the grocery store checkout. If you WANT the other magazines, you go to the MAGAZINE section and most of the scanty ones are covered by the shelf unless you pull them out to see. CHOICE.

    I agree with breastfeeding as some commenter put it; where no one sees, under a blanket or whatever. I don't agree with flopping your tit out in public for everyone to see. Some people aren't ready to discuss nature with their kids yet and you shouldn't force them to have to. Some people just don't want to see it and I agree that they can look away BUT why put people in a position to have to, instead of going to a more appropriate place or covering up? So you're going to justify your nudity by comparing yourself to the trampy dressers? Really? Using the lowest common denominator as a justification for your behavior never makes for a good argument.

    And comparing bare breasts to bare feet is really kind of pushing it, don't you think? Breasts are sexual for a far vaster majority than feet, I'd imagine. As long as we're going to keep making magazine comparisons, I don't see magazines with pictures of feet, or dildos, or bottle nipples on them to get them to sell; I see magazines with pictures of BOOBS. Do a public records search for registered sexual offenders in your city, or even your neighborhood; see how comfortable you are with being "natural" when you see how many there are, and how close. It's not a warm and fuzzy world we live in.

    Also, I didn't suggest that anyone go sit IN THE STALL and feed their baby in the bathroom. I said MOMMY LOUNGES. Most of the public mommy lounges I see are as nice as my living room and cleaner than most restaurants, so: Yes, I would eat there and I think your baby should too.

    I just don't understand militant granola mommies who profess that everything "natural" should be in the public view. Mating and defecating are also just as NATURAL and GOD-INTENDED as breastfeeding, but I'd imagine you don't want people randomly doing either of those things next to you in a public place, do you? Seriously, there's a reason we're at the top of the food chain; we don't let it all hang out...isn't that right?

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    1. I have to reply to this. I use my mouth for sexual things and get great sexual pleasure from being kissed. Therefore, should I cover my mouth in public?

      It is not your place to decide how and where I should fee my children. When you become GOD, come back and we can talk.

      My rationalization is that I am the parent of the child being fed and I decide how to feed my child, not someone else. And the decision is not going to be based on how a stranger feels. It is your responsibility to talk to your child/children. If they see it and ask about it, you can decide how best to respond. That place belongs to you. And as far as how you feel about it, I couldn't give a rat's behind about you. My child will always and forever trump you, a stranger, when it comes to my actions.

      Don't like it? I suggest you get over yourself and seek help for your narcissism, because it is not about you and has nothing to do with you!

      Delete
  18. I see things in public all the time that I don't really want to see. Men who insist on taking their t-shirts off in the sun to allow their fat hairy backs to turn a delightful shade of Lobster, Spotty teenagers with masses of facial piecings snogging each other outside Tescos (does anyone else worry they might end up getting stuck together?), mothers walking along pushing a pram and smoking a cigarette to name but a few.

    But you know what... I put up and shut up. I don't give dirty looks to make them feel uncomfortable, I don't tut, point and pass comment - I just get on with my day.

    If you find breastfeeding in public to be a dirty, shameful thing then that is sad (and I am not going to bother to try and change your mind) but I suggest you show enough respect to let these women get on with their day too.

    Ta in advance

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  19. It's not about the baby being ashamed about eating in the bathroom. It's about the fact that bathrooms are not clean places (particularly public bathrooms - have you been in one lately? Most of the times, they're nasty) and most people wouldn't choose to eat in them. Tell me why I should sit on a toilet to feed my daughter. Or stand there, rather uncomfortably, using up the handicapped stall for 10 minutes (which means that any handicapped people - too bad on you) because people can look at a birl in a bikini with her breasts on display intentionally, but not at a nursing woman without freaking out.

    Explain to me that.

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  20. Response to Anonymous -

    Not all places have "mommy lounges". What do you suggest we do then?

    FYI - on a personal note, I am a very conservatively dressed person, and I don't feed my daughter in public (one time I did with my oldest daughter in a movie theater because I was responsible for my sister's children, and I didn't want to leave them alone... and it was dark). But I do believe that women have the right to feed their children in public.

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  21. I breastfeed my baby son in public and have never had any negative comments. In fact, I've only ever had positive ones. I certainly don't 'flop' my breasts out and the way I dress now is to allow me to do it somewhat discretely. Not for my benefit, but for others. I personally don't care. If he wants feeding, he gets fed. End of. For some reason, breastfeeding is seen as taboo even tho it's natural. Each to their own, I suppose. If my breastfeeding offends someone, it's their human right to be offended. But it is also my human right to feed my child how I see fit. This debate could go on forever without ever coming to an agreement. Maybe we should all just agree to disagree?

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  22. Anon I'm a bit confused - when you look at the top few photos (ie how women look breastfeeding in public) what exactly is it that's offensive - because you can't see nipple or areola, or even breast, any less than if a baby was under a blanket.

    The whole point about going to a specific magazine section (thus breasts on the front of there are ok) is just silly. My 7 yr old wants a mag - on the shelf further down and up a shelf are mags such as this:
    http://www.whosdatedwho.com/topic/7952/lucy-pinder-nuts-magazine-13-march-2009.htm

    This is a typical "lads mag" - not top shelf porn.
    The point is not comparing ourselves to those scantily clad - but pointing out society finds all these images acceptable. Breasts are fine until there is a baby attached.

    So is it the "what you can see" - or is it the thought of a baby sucking a nipple that irks you out?

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  23. "If my breastfeeding offends someone, it's their human right to be offended. But it is also my human right to feed my child how I see fit."

    Mandy, I think this is a shaky argument (especially when you invoke human rights as opposed to legal). Where do you draw the line when referring to an activity?

    If my public urination offends someone, it's their human right to be offended. But it is also my human right to void my bladder how I see fit.

    How about loud off-key singing? Loudly and explicitly talking on a cell phone about one's hot date the night before? How about harassing women entering abortion clinics? Or families grieving at a military funeral? All these things, except urination, are people's right to do (so far) and their right to be offended by.

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  24. ITA with Emily. I go out a lot and I see plenty of things that I don't care to see. So, I look away.

    I have seen a grand total of two bathrooms that have mommy lounges. Usually, I am lucky if I find one that has a changing table. What we are forgetting here is that this is not about a woman's right to breastfeed, it's about a BABY's right to EAT - anytime, anywhere. Those little tummies digest milk extremely quickly, and a mother's main concern should be about feeding her child when he needs to be fed, not about whatever hang-ups you may have about breasts.

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  25. BTW, Caro, your stance against vaccination is another example of emotions dangerously trumping empirical rationality, best exhibited by Jenny McCarthy. Here's Jim Carrey, her former beau, making a mockery of breastfeeding (actually, I'm not sure what he's doing) in Me Myself, & Irene. http://youtu.be/c5GlzyXe75Q

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  26. I personally feel that wherever it is ok to feed a baby a bottle of formula it is ok to breastfeed your baby. It is the same thing, nourishing your child. End of.

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  27. I think comparing breastfeeding to urinating in public is sick. It's not the same thing.

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  28. I'm not equating breastfeeding and public urination; they are certainly not the same thing. The existence of a debate about public breastfeeding attests to the different sensitivities people have about the issue. I'm only objecting to Mandy's argument that a person is entitled do what they want as long as they acknowledge someone else's "right" to be offended.

    I used public urination as one example among several of different (unequated) issues that are similar only in that people have different sensitivities about it.

    P.S. Since you singled out urination, are you implying that harassing women going for abortion *is* the same as breastfeeding?

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  29. I'm not sure public urination is similar in that people have different sensitivities about it - I think most people would be pretty narked if you peed next to their cafe table. But then it would be unhygenic and also illegal so I'm not sure I get the comparison in any sense really...

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  30. I breastfeed wherever and whenever my daughter needs it and I'll be damned if the sexual confustion of some random guy on the internet is going to come before her wellbeing and nurture. After 10 months I'm still waiting for an actual negative reaction to public feeding and I am left to conclude that bizarrely enough, most people are not that interested in what I'm doing and are able to mind their own business if they realise. funny eh?

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  31. Anonymous (the ridiculous "conservative" one/s) - if you have a problem with a child seeing breastfeeding and you want to protect them from it then quite frankly you will be giving your child a very screwed up view of the world. Sad fact but children are more at risk from their parents than they are the "stranger danger" you imagine, yes YOU are statistically more likely to harm your child than any sex offender on your list. Breastfeeding is normal and babies need to eat, his is a fact of life. You cannot expect a very small baby to wait until you have covered or hidden until it is fed anymore than you can expect it to take it to the toilet everytime it needs a wee. Suggesting that a parent wait to satisfy a baby's very basic need for nourishment until they are in an "appropriate" (normally a dirty hazard to the baby's health) place is very irresponsible parenting. Very little babies cannot and should not be asked to wait for their food, ever but especially not because someone who has a very warped and over sexualised view of the world might find it uncomfortable to be near. Grow up, it is a breast and what you are effectively saying is your prudishness is more important than a child's basic needs being met (because speed is of the essence when feeding your baby). It is hard to accept when you are wrong but I am afraid in this case you are unequivocally wrong... No argument, just wrong, your point is entirely unjustifiable. Two final quick points: the second set of pictures are advertising meant to attract new customers so there would be no point in their existence if you could choose whether you looked at them not (solely) for the private sexual gratification of individuals and secondly children do not need to be protected FROM breastfeeding; they need to be protected BY breastfeeding, part of that is growing up SEEING breastfeeding, learning about how it works and why it is necessary and normal so they are more likely to become breastfeeding families when they have their own children. Breasts might have a sexual association as well as a Nourishing and comforting use but the two are not mutually exclusive anymore than your hands, mouth or genitals.

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  32. QUOTE ANON Some people aren't ready to discuss nature with their kids yet and you shouldn't force them to have to.

    So you don't discuss the concept of mammals or how that means they make milk for their young? it's not as much nature as biology!

    What about those not ready to discuss same sex couples with their children? should we banish them to a special room too? or what about those from a different religion or culture in case a child wants it explaining why someone looks/sounds different. Maybe bottle feeding mums too? some people don't like their child witnessing the act of feeding a baby an artificial product from a plastic replica breast - and having to explain the concept of global merketing to their child. Where do we draw the line? who decides?

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  33. I think that those breastfeeding cover-ups are not very helpful to nursing women. They market them as if they're a normal "must-have" breastfeeding accessory. Everybody just needs to get over this so-called "issue" and whip 'em out - we don't need to cover-up to feed a baby, we don't need to spend 50 bucks on a cover-up to feed our baby and we don't need to be ashamed of our bodies. Come on ladies, grow up.

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  34. The fact that there are people who have no qualms about urinating in public indicates, for me at least, that people do have different sensitivities about it. I didn't say it was right next to your cafe table, just as no one indicated whether we're talking about witnessing breastfeeding "point blank" or from further away.

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  35. Sola - it was anon who mentioned "right next to you".

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  36. PS also whether something is "sexual" or not is often in the eye of the beholder and not in the act itself. Anon seems to suggest they find the act of breastfeeding a sexual behaviour even when it is performed by strangers...

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  37. Tracey - Proud Breastfeeding Mummy15 November 2010 21:47

    Kat!! Amen to EVERYTHING you've said. I couldn't have put it better myself.

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  38. Talk about boob-a-phobia! This is what they were made for, to nurse the baby! This is not man made formula, it's God made total nutrition! Just because society has a fetish about breast, doesn't mean their perversion should affect the moral decent reason boobs exsist. Young girls develope boobs about the same time the become capable of housing a fetus. Duh! Leave nursing mom's alone. Most of them are very concealed and try to nurse there child without a hassel, please a give them a smile and go about your business!

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  39. Why would you not want to tell your children about how babies are fed? I don't understand it. My older daughter's nursery took up the "baby" theme when her sister was born. Nice. Until I found out that they covered filling bottles and measuring milk into bottles. They did not cover breast feeding.
    A nursery teacher even came out (baby was crying) and asked my older daughter if her wee sister needed a bottle. She could have said "a feed". But she chose to say "a bottle". My daughter demonstrated in no uncertain terms how her sister was fed.
    It's not embarrassing to children, it's the adults who make it into an issue. For children it's a fact of life (as it should be for everyone) and breast feeding needs to be normalised a lot more, including in pre-school education.
    http://mummydothat.blogspot.com/2010/11/normality-of-breastfeeding.html

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  40. My daughter breastfed for half an hour, every hour. There's no way I was going to lock myself behind a closed door every time she had to eat. New moms feel isolated as it is - let's tell them that they have to hide their shameful selves away every time their baby needs to eat? Smart. You wonder why so many of us would just rather pull out a bottle. And they wouldn't be breastmilk bottles, pumping is not a viable option for many of us.

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  41. Let's see...looks like a lot of you are Brits. I understand in Britain and Europe people aren't raised to be ashamed of their bodies and nudity as they are in the U.S. It's probably very different for you there. Probably why you're finding porn in the market magazine racks, too. Whatever. I guess the US has a lot more mommy lounges too; or if the person who lamented there aren't many is from the contiguous, maybe she should drive over to the nicer side of town. In any event...

    I don't think it's productive that so many of you are turning against other posters and name-calling. Let's keep it to a civil debate, shall we? And since some of you are bent on analyzing me and my motivations or state of perversion, let's get ME straight, and quit drawing unfair conclusions: I don't condone the harassment of nursing mommies. I am not offended or "irked out" by nursing mommies. I think Armadillo made a good point with this original post, pointing out a clever irony; the only problem I have with it is I think the comparison is apples to oranges.

    I just think that some people have a very narrow viewpoint on this and lack some basic common courtesy. I don't think you should do anything in public, brazenly or blatantly, that is likely to offend those around you (whether you think it's legitimate or not, and please don't get crazy with the "what if breathing offends someone" crap); WHEN YOU CAN HELP IT. You know you're going to have to nurse, so be prepared. If you're not going to think far enough ahead or are too opposed to use a breast pump (obviously those women are not women who work for a living or they'd have to, and I condone them for raising their own children instead of paying strangers to do it for them), there are plenty of other things to do. You obviously don't have to spend $50 on a cover-up or fancy gadget; a napkin or sweater is perfectly fine for the purpose. I do NOT think ANYONE should breastfeed IN THE TOILET which I shouldn't have to say twice. I have walked up on breastfeeding women and not even known they were doing it, which I think is great. I have also walked up on women baring themselves belly (and frankly, recently pregnant bellies are about as pretty as those hairy beer guts someone else mentioned) to breast and literally put the kid on the nipple for everyone to see, with no discretion. Yes, I do think that most of the images above are not conservative enough and I think in the first image the kid is too old to be nursing, period. I'm not saying that I find the images offensive, but I am saying I would see those mommies as inconsiderate of others. I think you should have a right to nurse in public (here, you do; biologically and legally) but I also think you have an obligation to be civilized about it.

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    Replies
    1. So Anonymous knows exactly how and where all mothers should breastfeed their babies and it seems he/she is also privy to the exact length of time a child SHOULD be fed. Maybe someone should consider an appointment as a decision maker in the Health Department. This reminds me of a line from Job "I'm sure you speak for all the experts and when you die there'll be no one left to tell us how to live."

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    2. I'm sure the "in the first image the kid is too old to be nursing" comment is based on some highly scientific measure such as weight, intellectual development or nutritional requirement notion.(not) Since there is no evidence that any of these truly dictate when it is "best" to wean. Babies and moms somehow "figure it out" when left to their own devices. The babies grow up, are well adjusted and just plain don't worry about the time thing. Would that everyone could be so reasonable.

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    3. The AAP recommends nursing for *at least* one year and the WHO recommends *AT LEAST* two years! I personally believe it is disgusting to give children (or adults) milk from another species breast. I will not apologize for being the best mommy I can be for my little man. And I will not hide because he needs me.

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  42. I think the remark about peoples' different sensitivities is right on the mark. I think breastfeeding in relative states of uncover is very fairly comparable to urinating in public (to the comment that it's unsanitary, I'd like to point out that children with unwashed hands spread more infectious germs than urinating on the ground); also to potential social offenses such as belching, farting, or swearing loudly without regard for other people, scratching or "adjusting" genitalia in public; I liked the example about talking loudly and explicitly on the phone about a sexual encounter, which is also good. Nobody's likening it to public masturbation for chrissake, or murder. I think if you are doing any of these things (belching, scratching, urinating, breastfeeding uncovered as above) and someone asks you to knock it off because they're a captive audience (or their children are), you should do so (stop, leave, or cover up). By the same token, I don't think anyone should ask it of you. By the same token, I don't think anyone should be put in a position to ask it of you, because you shouldn't do it to begin with.

    Good point AA on the nursing animals; although even in rural America I must admit I don't see that a whole lot, and city kids probably never. However, I will concede that point happily based on the Discovery Channel. :) I don't think same sex couples shouldn't be hidden from view but I think blatant public displays of affection beyond hand holding or peck kissing (on the parts of straight or gay couples) should be, and that renders it a non-issue. Besides, do children really an oddity there? Kids hold hands with and kiss each other all the time regardless of gender - I doubt this piques their interest at all until their bigoted parents attach a stigma to it for them.

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  43. As to Whip it out. That is not necessary to breast feed anyone. That is only necessary for you to make yourself feel better then everyone else. Unless you are new to this. The first few times my wife breast feed it was an interesting experience with clothes being quite the hinderence. Now we have been approached MANY times by people telling me that "Breastfeeding is ungodly," and you should use a bottle and formula.
    One poster said that the first girl in the picture was too old. How old should she be for you to feel better about yourself. According to the New England journal of health the immune system is not fully developed until age 5 and that breastfeeding helps until that age. Now they do not recommend exclusively breastfeeding after age 1 to 1 1/2 as it is very difficult to get all of the calories needed to grow.
    The Mothers room that is so nice. I have seen exactly 2 of those in the last 5 years. One was at a baby store and the other a new mall. That is it and I go out a lot.
    If the mothers are flaunting what they have, that is childish. If they aren't and you are offended that is childish. I am tired of people who can't see anything telling me and my wife what we can and can't do in public.
    I have had women tell us off who had way more skin showing than my wife. I can't see any skin and I am holding my wife by her waist. No one has a better view unless they are trying REAL hard to look.
    To many people want to intrude into other people's lives if that wasn't true the tabloid newspapers would go out of business.

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  44. The only lounge I have ever seen was at a baby store, and it's also a changing room. And it happens to be the only place to really sit down there. I have never seen one in a restaurant or anywhere else.

    The fact of the matter is, that when women breastfeed, there is rarely any skin shown. Plenty of people - including my husband - haven't even realized I was breastfeeding. But it seems that some people are offended just at the very thought. And the sad thing is, it's mostly women who bitch and moan.

    Covers are bulky and plenty of babies won't use them. If a woman wants to wear one - for whatever reason - then that is her choice. But she shouldn't feel like she "has" to wear it to keep other people happy.

    When I said I didn' want my son to be ashamed of breastfeeding because of having to eat in a bathroom, I meant when he gets older. But I also don't want him to start crawling to the bathroo bc he's hungry and he's learned that that's where he eats. Because it's not right.

    And since when did my stance on vaccination have anything to do with this? We aren't talking about vaccines. We're talking about breastfeeding.

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  45. The problem here is that teenage boys, who (as the pics at the top highlighted) are breast-obsessed. When they see a breast-feeding mother, they find it erotic and can't bear to tear their gaze away ... but they're also filled with embarrassment and consequent fury because the breast is not for them.
    Some teenage boys just never manage to grow up, so get this problem for the rest of their lives.
    However, I agree, this is a problem for those individuals. The primary function of breasts is, and always has been, to feed babies. If some folks are so screwed up that they can't differentiate between appropriate and inappropriate erotic feelings, then they should see their therapists, not try to banish feeding babies to bathrooms.

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  46. Hey - has that poster ever *tried* using a breast pump, or watched someone else doing it? He seems to think it's an easy and natural substitute for feeding. It's like trying to pump up a car tyre with a bicycle pump, only worth using in absoloute dire situations. Like trying to feed someone with a hammer and chisel instead of a spoon.
    The only positive thing here is that any nation which finds breastfeeding offenisive is destined to die out. Sooner the better ...

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  47. To Anon who said "I must live in a very conservative community. We see Women's Day and Taste of Home on the magazine racks at the grocery store checkout."

    Yes--you DO live in a very conservative, protected bubble unlike most of the modern world. Both Rolling Stone (per above) and Cosmo are regularly featured at the check-out stands at Safeway where everyone can see mostly-exposed breasts on a monthly basis.

    There is no connection between public urination (an illegality because of health concerns) and breastfeeding, other than the fact that both utilize body parts associated with sexuality.

    However, they are not equivalencies. Notably, most pedophiles who expose themselves to young children in parks or to women generally claim to have been "urinating in public" --so there is a sexual side of that particular male practice that does not have a female equivalent. No woman has ever been arrested for public indecency or exposing herself because she was discreetly breastfeeding her baby.

    Nor does breastfeeding, unlike public urination, pose a general health hazard.

    Breast pumps are painful, expensive and difficult to use--if you'd ever used one, you wouldn't recommend it as an alternative. It also requires some method of refrigerating the milk, so is impractical in that sense as well.

    I'm from California, so this isn't a matter of US versus European sensibilities.

    I'm not Anonymous, I'm Sarah but the Comments don't allow me much leeway.

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  48. Teenage boys would only be agog at breastfeeding because it's something they don't see often enough and aren't used to. My friend's teenage boys took it in their stride when I breastfed my son discreetly in front of them as they had seen their mum feed little brother and their aunties feed cousins. They therefore saw it as something to be expected, not something to goggle at, and really didn't take any notice.

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  49. I am a breastfeeding mom who feeds her baby in public. That said, I do see where the "conservative" anonymous poster is coming from. I do think it should be done modestly and I take offense to women completely exposing their breasts to feed their babies. I agree with the public urination analogy. It's natural, it's necessary but it should be done in a way that your naked body isn't exposed to the general public.

    As for the special nursing rooms, I'm not a fan. When I'm at the mall watching my daughter play in the play area and the baby gets hungry, I sure as heck am not going to stop everything and completely relocate to the other side of the mall to wait outside the bathroom till the "mommy nursing room" opens up. (I can assure you it will be occupied!) No, I'll just throw a blanket or a jacket over myself and feed my baby where I am. I learned early on that excusing myself every time my baby needs to eat is quite inconvenient! But, yes, I cover myself. The sad fact is that there ARE perverts out there. I don't think that the person who mentioned that is a pervert just for pointing it out! The world isn't full of kind, understanding fellow moms. So, I cover up to avoid being gawked at by some creep.

    As for the comment about putting people in a situation where they have to explain breastfeeding to their kids...that one irks me! Why not explain it to them? They should know where a baby's food comes from!! What really bothered me was when my nine-year-old neighbor came to MY house and I had to explain to her why the baby's head was under her blanket. I don't understand why on earth a parent would hide the topic of breastfeeding from their kids.

    ~Anna

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  50. I was going to rant about the people who are against breast feeding in public, but I really cannot be bothered. All that I can say is that if I agreed with you, then I'd be wrong too.

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  51. I wonder for those who find it offensive - what about this:
    http://tinyurl.com/32p5qdj

    or this:
    http://clipt.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/0031.jpg

    Also offensive if used to feed a baby? I couldn't work this one out using the pee in public example as there doesn't seem to be fake penises that you can use to pretend to be peeing (and which are widely used rather than the real thing) to compare it to!

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  52. All I have to say is breastfeeding is not easy. The person who mentioned planning- do you always plan every snack? My son certainly doesn't and if he's hungry (or thirsty for that matter) then I have to feed him where ever I am. I'm not prepared to make him wait until I find a place where I can hide away from people who might be offended. It is so important to breast feed and not enough help is available nevermind all this negativity. Can we just remind ourselves that God gave us breasts to feed out children!!

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  53. when i breastfeed my son no one knows what i am doing until they are very close. in fact i have sat in a room with my husbands grandfather feeding my son and his asked "does he often sleep snuggled right into you like that?" he though he was asleep as he was so quiet and i was completely covered up.
    and as someone else said as a resident of the UK it is unavoidable, right there below my sons thomas the tank engine magazine is a woman barely hiding her nipples behind a couple of stars, and this is posing as a NEWSpaper!!!
    when i go about my daily business i dont look at women with their babies long or hard enough to determine if they are just cuddling them or feeding them. if you find it offensive dont look.
    i live in the country side but i dont feel the need to climb into a field and ask the cow if she can kindly stop feeding her calf while i pass by as i find it offensive!

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  54. oh and 2 final points. you seem to have this idea that we just get our whole boob out in public. look at the images above the ones at the very very top are what the majority of publicly breastfeeding women look like. i went through great lengths during the summer and might i add was hotter than i needed to be, in order that when out in public if my son needed feeding i wouldnt over expose myself.
    the comment about not being ready to explain about that stuff to your kids, when you ask them where milk comes from do they say "the shops" or do they say like my eldest son did at 2 years old (with out ever seeing a breast feeding woman) "from cows" ?? when he subsequently asked about my feeding a new brother a couple of years later i told him that mummies make milk for their babies the same as cows and all the other animals do.

    oh there we go just thought of a 3rd point, all this talk of perverts, i was sexually abused, by my step dad. the man had raised me from 2 years old, but he never laid a finger on me until i was 12. 10 years he waited. your children are more at risk from that close family friend who regularly baby sits than the bloke with no friends who wanders past a little too slowly for your liking

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  55. It's hard to believe that breastfeeding in public is even up for debate! It's crazy. Of course mothers should nourish their hungry babies in any place they see fit. Breastfeeding is natural, convenient, healthy and totally normal. To suggest otherwise is just ridiculous.

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  56. What about the fact that the more people who breastfeed in public (whether discreet or not) help to 'normalise' breastfeeding in a world where artificial feeding is the norm.

    I do not go up to Mum's emptying their carton of ready made formula into bottles and tell them that they are increasing their childs risks of obesity, diabetes, certain cancers, cot death (the list is endless) so why would she have the right (or anyone else) to tell ME to cover up or go into a 'mommy room' (where are these by the way?) when I am actually not only feeding my baby but also PROTECTING them.

    Breastfeeding is so much more than just food & I hope that one day ALOT more people realise that. So I will still feed wherever I am & as discreet as my clothes and daughter will allow (which is not always that discreet as my 11 month old daughter hates things over her head) just to raise awareness that people do still breastfeed & if anyone tells me to cover up I will take pride in educating them about how I am not only feeding my daughter & if they listen - great - if not maybe someone else will over hear & people will realise that breastfeeding in public is important.

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  57. A Couple of thoughts from me (Mary-Ellen)....

    For those who find breastfeeding, (especially in public) is ungodly or unnatural, perhaps they should ponder that, (according to the story), Adam & Eve were created in God's image - i.e. NAKED! It was their sinfulness which gave them cause to feel shame & therefore the wish to cover themselves up. And so, perhaps breast-feeding mothers are nearer to being natural & godly than any of the rest of us and it is the sinfulness & shame of those who object which causes them to demand that they be covered up?

    As for the teenage boys & men & women who look on with an unnatural interest, envy, aversion or disgust... perhaps if all children were allowed to be breastfed until the age of 5 when their immune systems were fully developed, or until they naturally weaned themselves off, then perhaps society as a whole would have a more wholesome attitude to breasts, breastfeeding, women, children & of course to life in general?

    But sadly, as long as there is money to be made from the sale of formula milk & the associated paraphernalia: bottles & thermometers & steralising units etc and the building & provision of 'Mommy Lounges' in those immensely 'natural' places called shopping malls, then the consumer society that we are will continue to be brain washed into feeling embarrassment & into trying to make others feel ashamed & embarassed for being natural, caring human beings towards their offspring by feeding them the way nature intended: with a mothers own warm, fresh, naturally protective milk as & when their baby needs it!

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  58. I've never felt to need to LOP my breast out to feed my little boy. I feed him as per the first few pics, cause funnily enough, I dont want to show off my E cups to the world. No one has ever complained.
    Before I had him, I would sunbathe topless (C cup then). Anyone had a problem? Tough tits to them!!

    My 5 year old cousin thought it was hysterical when I explained to her that my son got milk from my udders :D

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  59. if YOU want sexualise me go ahead.....

    see all this do you want to be in some freak's "spank bank"

    how would I know?
    see here's the thing I'm told I have a cute bum
    so shall I stop walking round?
    heaven forfend some guy ( or girl!) find little old me attractive!

    I'm rather flattered actually!

    I buy carrots that look like small willies my husband and I tend to giggle when the kids are innocently selecting them the carrots are NOT sexual - our thoughts are...
    shall I ban the kids eating carrots because some of them resemble a sexual body part?


    if I'm sat feeding my baby then that's what I'm doing FEEDING my child
    if someone is getting "Off" on that ... good luck to them I for one do not waste my energy wondering if every person I pass finds some thing I'm doing attractive and thinks about it later
    I cannot control others thoughts ....

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  60. "and frankly, recently pregnant bellies are about as pretty as those hairy beer guts someone else mentioned"

    Wow. Thank you for contributing so pointedly to us recently postpartum mothers' body image issues. We really enjoy our bodies being compared to "hairy beer guts"...ugh! Mr./Ms. Sensitivity over here...

    "Yes, I do think that most of the images above are not conservative enough and I think in the first image the kid is too old to be nursing, period."

    She looks to be maybe 2 years old, which is well within the WHO and AAP guidelines, which both advocate for breastfeeding AT LEAST a year or two, or LONGER as long as mother and child desire to do so. So unless you have some new evidence to contradict those recommendations, your opinion is just that...opinion.

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  61. from one anonymous to another... please, you cant avoid people picking their nose, littering the ground and the atmosphere with there nasty smoking habits its all just there and accepted, its very sad that you put such unnecessary pressure on mothers to cover up and be ashamed of such a natural and selfless thing, nurturing and caring for their child in the best way possible, now if you suggest i remove myself from the rest of my family and other children to go off and isolate myself and my baby in an area cordoned off for perverts like me,to go off and anxiously feed my hungry baby while i get impatient because i dont know if im taking too long or my other kids need me around while we sit in unsanitary conditions most of the time a stinky toilet cubicle is the only shame space available, then i would suggest you remove yourself from this planet because you have indecently exposed your mind and i don't want to see it. I see homosexuals transvestites slutty woman and things that perk my ears all the time and not even then do i make a fuss of it i move along and carry on with my own business, maybe that's what you should do.

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  62. I killing saw in these picture collection. This is reaally very hot or sexy collection "Yes, I do think that most of the images above are not conservative enough and I think in the first image the kid is too old to be nursing, period."I am a breastfeeding mom who feeds her baby in public. That said, I do see where the "conservative" anonymous poster is coming from. These are amazing blog.

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  63. Breasts are 'first' food providers for the child... it is only the chauvinistic people who want to control everything who have decided that because they cannot control their testosterone they will make it 'unlawful'. Breasts are '2nd' an indication of attraction to males that indicate if the woman will be a good prospect for maternity and childbearing. It is this 2nd perspective that has morphed into a sick belief that breasts are 'dirty', encouraged by the church.

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  64. Some people clearly have issues with the fact we are mammals....

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  65. I have breastfed all of my children in public at one time or another... I almost always use a light blanket to cover up with, because that makes me feel the most comfortable. However, I can't even count the number of times that people have come over to me, and said "Oh, let me see your baby!" and picked up the cover!! LOL... They usually backpedal rapidly when they realize that baby is eating, but seriously, I feel like you can't win! So I will continue to feed my babies when they need to be fed, discreetly. Oh, and as someone else pointed out, the WHO actually recommends breastfeeding until 2 years of age... so don't freak out when you see a baby who can walk still being breastfed. It is not unnatural or disgusting, it is what is best for the child.

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  66. Its not a "Choice" to see these ads. I see them walking into stores, on billboards, posters, and yes right there by the checkout line. They are not hidden or covered. I see near topless women on tv, in movies, on internet ads on common pages like facebook. If I wanted to escape this I would be hard pressed to do so. Non of the bathrooms I go to have Mommy lounges and honestly I wouldnt go out of my way to one anyways. My son feeds in his carrier when we are out, most people dont notice.
    The concept that a mother should have to hide away the basic feeding of her child is in my opinion completely stupid. We are Mammals get over it.
    Covering doesnt work because like April Jo I have been decently covered and had people walk up and un-cover me before I can react.

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  67. fortunately the law is on our side, so the naysayers opinions are their problem. not ours.Nurse away mothers, that is in fact what I'm doing right now.

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  68. Breastfeeding is beautiful, natural, and vital to the survival of babies AND toddlers. When you see a baby and mother engaged in breastfeeding, you are witnessing the giving and recieving of LIFE. Who knows, that baby you're watching suckle at the breast may be your president some day, so let him/her do their thing and get that nutritious, delicious mommie's milk wherever and whenever they need it!
    On a separate note, I'm a vegetarian and I'd prefer not to see people eating dead animals on a regular basis, but I'm not going to condemn them or ask them to leave. I'd sooner focus on something more relevant to my life than spend hours on the internet judging people for eating.
    Still happily breastfeeding my one-year-old, in home and in public! If you have seen my nipples while doing so, which is probable, then lucky you! ;)

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  69. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  70. Thank you for this! I am reposting it to my blog with a link back here :)

    Jenna
    momofmanyhats.blogspot.com

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  71. I agree with so many of you.

    It's hard because no matter where you turn there is an argument or opinion both ways.

    I think that as animals (and yes we are civilised BUT we are still mammals, with breasts to feed) we have the responsibility to feed and nurture our young. Breast milk is the BEST way of protecting our children from disease and infection as well as nourishing and hydrating our young.

    When I fed my son, I will admit I never felt comfortable feeding in public- BUT that was because of my own insecurities about my body image, which is not helped by people who find breast feeding offensive. And let me tell you now, I was back to pre pregnancy body figure in 1 WEEK!!! At the lower end of the heathy BMI range, so there was and is nothing wrong with my body- just the way I see it because of the way society makes woman feel about their image through sexualising breasts and hips and tall, thin little rake-like looking bodies.

    If you don't like seeing a mother feed her child, look away, no-one is forcing you to gawk and stare and be "disgusted". If and when I decide to have another child I will decide what to do and how to go about breastfeeding my child in public, or in general for that matter- but there is no way in hell I will be going ANYWHERE if I am asked to leave due to someone finding it offensive, in fact, ever heard of not messing with a cub because the lioness will rip you to shreds, well you telling a mother she can't feed in public, or that you find it offensive goes against our instincts to protect our children.

    I do remember my great aunty once making a comment about a top I was wearing as she thought it was revealing too much of my breasts, well the thing was, I was lactating and they were huge, there was no way of hiding them, when I bought the top it was not so revealing, but with lactating breasts just about nothing could conceal them, and on a 40oC day, there was no way I was even going to try and cover up more.

    To me, seeing a child who is older (like in the first picture) does appear to be strange, but not because it is disgusting, but because you don't see it often. And why, because immature people make mothers feel bad about doing it and companies take over with their baby formula and bottle markets. It is so hard to get some mothers to breast feed, and so hard to get even more to stick with it, because it is not an easy thing to establish or do or continue for many, many woman. They need all the support they can get, to provide the best chance for their children. So even though it appears strange to me at first, it always puts a smile on my face.

    So IF YOU ARE OFFENDED, LOOK AWAY. OR GO AND EAT YOUR DAMN FOOD IN THE "MUMMIES ROOM" OR UNDER A BLANKET!

    PS, I LOVE the cow comment about asking the cow to stop feeding her calf while you walk through the field.


    Oh and 1 more point that no one else bought up- If you think breasts and breast feeding is so offensive- In the old days they used to have wet nurses, to nurse your children, that is far more natural than sticking a bottle in your child's mouth with the milk from another animal- Which by the way, we happen to be the ONLY animals that actually consume another animals milk purposely, and farm them to do so.

    Mid student -Rinny

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  72. I would like to say that I breast fed my son for 13 months. My husband did not want everyone to see my breasts...fine with me because I didn't either. My son did get fed wherever we were and whenever he was hungary. We were at Cracker Barrel once and OUR waitress didn't even know I had a child with us until he got finished eating! I know everyone has their opinion and have the right to this, but a child still has to eat and if they are anything like my son was...he wanted right then and there...no waiting

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  73. I am a man and it doesn't bother me at all. Looks perfectly natural. I wish all mothers loved their babies enough to breast feed them. What amazing love a woman exhibits when she is willing to face public scorn for the sake of her child! I pledge myself to defend openly any woman breastfeeding who is attacked for it in any way. I will boycott ANY establishment that does not allow it and I will become as involved as necessary to defend it.

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  74. i think the fact that your arguing about it is nonsense.. people are always gonna be offended in some way shape or form soo who cares.. i breastfed my son and never once did i get a negative comment about it. and its not our faults that boobs are sexual. and if u think a baby sucking a nipple is sexual you seriously have issues, like pervert issues. hes hungry i'm gonna feed him, i shouldn't have to hide b/c society thinks its offensive. and yes i do use a blanket when its hot out and i have a tank top on but nowadays clothes are designed to solve this "exposer" issue soo really?? your offended by this?? really?? get a life, why are you staring anyway?? didn't your mothers teach you that staring is rude??

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  75. lmao.
    ignorance surely abounds...
    grooooow up, people!

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  76. They are breasts! For crying out loud, who hasn't seen a pair?! Sexual or not they produce milk naturally for new borns to feed. Get over it. I didn't breast feed my child but I would never condemn someone else who choose to. I admire them for doing it. As I've seen a lot of others say, I agree...IF YOU DON'T LIKE IT DON'T LOOK. Wait, I just had a thought...those who look...do they offend the breast feeding mom? I mean I wouldn't want someone staring at my breasts as I was trying to feed my child. Does that make the person looking a perv? Just wondering...

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  77. I support breastfeeding whenever and where ever. I am very discrete about nursing and used cover ups while my son was young and I do continue to be discrete about it. But he is now 9 months and for the most part hates nursing under the cover up, it is close to impossible to do so now. I have not nursed in public with out a cover up yet, but if he shows me he needs it and I have to I will, his health and nutrition come first. My son is also very tall only being 9 months old, he probably does look too old to be nursing for some and he isn't even a year old. I think mother and child should nurse as long as they are comfortable and successful at nursing. If you mind your own business you likely won't really notice the majority nursing mommies. Nursing moms need all the support they can get, not be made to feel that they should hide what is 100% natural. Gail

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  78. I have breastfed my daughter on airplanes, on a train, in Disney World, in Mexico, on the beach, at the pool, at the grocery store, at the mall, in a shoe store... The list goes on. I will feed her anywhere she is hungry. I can't stay in the house, or retreat to a dirty bathroom, or a cold/hot car, when she is hungry. That is not fair to either of us. And NO she would not accept a bottle. Breastfeeding is FEEDING OUR BABIES. Feeding our babies should be normal, accepted, and encouraged, no matter where the mother and baby are. Breastfeeding is a human rights issue! Don't mess with my rights as a human, please.

    And I see boobs showing in many public places, have you ever walked through the mall and seen a freaking Victoria Secret with the giant images of women naked except for skimpy bras and panties????? Yeah, if you have a problem with boobs showing, go boycott a Victoria's Secret. Don't tell me not to feed my baby unless you wanna fight, cuz I'm ready, let's go!

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  79. Just a few things...
    First, for the person who said that the top picture is of a child too old to be breastfed. That child is the size of my son who is 10 months old. Regardless of what you think of breastfeeding older children, you can't always judge the age of a baby by size. According to most doctors breast milk (ideally) or formula should be a child's main source of nutrition until they are a year old. There are proven health benefits AT LEAST until 2 years of age.
    Second, you are more likely to see skin if I attempt to breastfeed under some sort of "cover". If I attempt to latch my son on without a cover, he is focused on latching on and getting his food. Thus blocking any skin from view. If you see anything at all it's because you happened to look at the one time we had a clumsy latch for the millisecond that that skin was exposed. If I attempt to latch him on with a cover he is focused on "GET THAT THING OFF OF ME!" I can't say I blame him, especially on hot days. How would you like to go around with a blanket over your head? It gets stuffy. Either way, him flailing tends to rip the cover off and since he isn't focused on getting the nipple in his mouth, my breast tends to be exposed for an extended period of time while I wrestle with a squirming baby and an uncomfortable nursing cover.
    My preference is a quiet, private room to nurse in. It's more relaxing and my son isn't as distracted. If I'm nursing in public it's not because I'm trying to make a political statement (or a statement of any kind) or because I have some weird compulsion to have my breasts out in public, it's because I need to feed my son and I don't have a better place to do it. I have sympathy (for men especially) for people who feel awkward around me while I'm nursing and don't know where to look. And for their sake (and because I'm a modest person) I tend to be a discrete as I can. For people who are offended by my son eating, I don't give a... *ahem* well... let's just say it doesn't bother me.
    BTW... I have NEVER seen a bf mother (in public) who had her entire breast out, or even more than you would see from a woman in a bikini. So I'm not entirely sure what the fuss is all about.

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  80. Where does the person live who said that "most" public restrooms have mommy lounges? Because I have never in my life seen one outside of a church, and it sure would come in handy when the family is out at the park or a restaurant or even the grocery store.

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  81. I am so tired... honestly mentally and physically tired of feeling like I have to be so discreet in public when breastfeeding. This is a backwards society. Thankfully my school has a nursing room but she still needs to eat outside of that. When walking, when in class, when grocery shopping. I have to find the perfect outfit so that I can lift up one shirt and have the other left down so that others feel more comfortable with me feeding my child. Why can't it just be what it is? It is feeding a child!! Society is what made it sexual and sorry but in developing countries they are worlds more mature and wise than we are about this type of thing. I'd rather be in a developing country and able to breastfeed my child anywhere without being judged than to be here in America feeling oppressed and isolated. Sorry but I am not going to stop feeding my child in public even some make mothers feel like they shouldn't. Babies have a right to eat when they are hungry!

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  82. To the poster who says that you have a choice to see breasts in the media but not a breastfeeding mother? I went to Walmart this week and as I waited in the checkout line I saw a lot of boob on the Cosmopolitan cover that I did not even have to remove from the stand to see. Now I can turn my head and not look if I choose, just like you can turn your head and politely not stare at a woman while she feeds her child.

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  83. PS. most location do not provide nursing areas, not even the zoo. They actually didn't even have a changing table so I plopped my LO down on a table and changed his butt!

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  84. i never really knew people took it so offensively i feed in public but i always have a receiving blanket to cover myself-not because of other people but because that how i feel comfortable i would never cover for someone else and i would absolutely never feed her in a bathroom.
    i think it is very natural and is why we have breast its the way it was done for so many years before there ever was formula (i am in no way bashing formula feeders) and were the mothers back then "expected" to cover up or hide in a bathroom like it was shameful to feed a baby i dont think so

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  85. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! I still don't understand why we (breastfeeding mothers) have to defend ourselves, but this post makes it incredibly easy. Thank you!!!

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  86. Great post! I had a lot of nasty comments when I breastfed my infant son in public, even if I covered him with a receiving blanket! I'm a midwife so I ignored them secure in the knowledge that I was giving my son the best food I could offer.

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  87. Wahahahahaha! Spank bank! (Nov 15 2010). Breastfeeding is natural and I'm pretty sure that you wouldn't be here without it, even if you or your parents were bottle fed I'm sure you'll not have to look far into your ancestry to find the healthy baby raised through breastfeeding.
    And what you're saying, anonymous, is that if you want to get your smut on, flash those titties but if you're doing something wholesome and positive with you're breasts you'll have to slope off to the cubicle of shame. Pretty messed up world you live in.

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  88. OMG please stop equating feeding a baby with urinating and defecating. They are not even remotely close to the same.

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  89. BTW this is a diff anon i dont want my accounts spammed either.

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  90. OMG I can't stop laughing!! "no other species has breasts" ??really??

    One word: mammals. with mammary glands!

    also the reason that we are "head of the food chain" (although not sure we ALL are???!!!)
    is breastfeeding! Extinct without it!!

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  91. The fact that some of you have a problem with breastfeeding shows a flaw in our society...
    Comments like that show your educational back ground and your narrow-mindedness. I feel sad for you =( ...
    I feel happy that moms feed their babies anywhere... I never wear a smock or a cover-up.. it doesn't bother me to feed my child.

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  92. When I was fourteen we went to a new church. The youth pastor's wife was breastfeeding her then 15 month old little girl. She had three more daughters in the course of the next five and a half years. She breastfed them all. I babysat for them regularly and never missed an event with the youth group. She was always discreet. By the time the fourth little girl was born I had stopped noticing altogether. Now it doesn't even register when I pass a nursing mom in a public place.

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  93. I've seen this article before but never read the comments. I completely disagree that one chooses to see images of the second type - I DON'T choose for HMV to put Britney's latest album (or any other "boobs out" female artiste) next to the one I've gone in to buy, nor do I choose for a massive poster advertising perfume/ jeans/ sunglasses to have been placed on the bus stop I'm waiting at, nor do I choose for the latest copy of Nuts or FHM to be placed on the newstand above the newspaper I'm buying. If I glance in that direction, I'm going to see that image. If I find it offensive, I CAN choose to avert my gaze. So I suggest anyone offended by public breastfeeding does the same, despite the fact that the majority of times you won't see any more than is on show in the first picture on this page...

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  94. Brilliant,

    But the comments of some people here beggar belief!

    No we dont CHOOSE to see media images. They are there in full view on billboards , underground posters, cd cases , posters, front of newspapers on till counters as I buy something etcetc... EVERYWHERE. Half dressed sluts walk down the street showing of copious boob etc etc, topless sunbathing everywhere. Adverts on the TV that are innappropriate and show more breast than breastfeeding.

    So no I dont think it is wrong to breastfeed in public.

    And anyone who does must be completely stupid given the amount of breast shown everywhere else!

    Perhaps they should remember what the breasts primary function are?

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  95. Anonymous is just using the pervert angle as an excuse. Uptight and judgmental is HIS reality, it really has nothing to do with anyone here. Ignore him here and ignore that type in public ladies. Soon the dinosaurs will be outnumbered.

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  96. Guess there'll always be people who find breastfeeding in public offensive. But for the life of me I can't work out WHY! What the heck is so gross about a baby eating?

    Mothers have enough grief and hard work without feeling like they need to struggle and find somewhere completely isolated to feed their bubba. Especially when you consider how isolating it can be having a little baby anyway.

    Why not say good on that momma for managing to get out of the house and to give their baby a nice healthy drink at the same time!

    I also saw the comment on how awful new mommas' post birth tummies are. Seriously unclassy comment. You're talking about a body that has gone through the equivalent of an internal earthquake to produce a new human being. Pretty amazing. And kind of essential to the human race. Cut those tummies some slack!

    And cut breastfeeding mommas some slack too and let them get on with their important job. Way more important than getting hot under the collar after spying some innocent skin.

    I feel very sad for you anonymous. Your mind is in the gutter but you blame others for it.

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  97. I don't know about every other woman but my breasts are made for feeding my children. If they weren't, then I wouldn't lactate. I've been breastfeeding my first son for three and a half years and I've been breastfeeding my newborn son for one month. I'm not going to force them to eat in a bathroom, would you sit down and eat on a toilet? I don't think so. My children are human just like any other human. Except I can't tell them "wait until you get home to eat". I'm going to feed them as I damned well please.

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  98. Harassing mothers for breastfeeding in public or trying to deny them their rights is just as wrong as telling a black person or a woman that they cannot vote or harassing them for doing so. It is completely inexcusable. Breastfeeding mothers are harassed as much as any other minority. I had to quit my job because I was harassed so much for pumping. People would stand outside the door yelling and cursing at me, and others would yell out how disgusting I was and how ashamed i should be as i walked by to go pump, completely in private. My point is that it isn't the sight of breasts that these people are offended by, otherwise you would never even watch a PG movie. It's the idea of it and anything else they don't understand. Breastmilk improves the immune system, has saved many NICU babies' lives, and the length of time breastfed has been directly linked to higher IQ's later in life. What kind of parent would deny their children that?
    And pumping isn't such an easy replacement. Pumping doesn't provide near as much milk as actual feeding, so to use what precious little one has would be ridiculous if the mother is right there. Also, most breast fed children don't care for bottles. Mine refuses to take one if i am anywhere near, much less from me. My options are breastfeed, or starve her. If you would say the second, I dare you to come to me when i breastfeed in public. Not to mention i would be happy to ask any police officer to intervene, and by law i know whose side they would take.

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  99. I am a breastfeeding mom, I cover up, whether by blanket or discreetly lifting my shirt (which by the way I always were a tank top underneath any blouse or shirt I wear.) and feed my daughter. I work, pumping is really hard, in fact I personally don't know any working mom who pumps. They bottle feed. I also know mothers who tried and tried to breastfeed and they couldn't produce enough milk and resorted to formula. Do I think there's any shame in bottle feeding, absolutely NOT!. Me personally I breastfeed, and my daughter all the way up till she was 6 months pretty much ate every hour. I had to go to the grocery store, I wanted to see my friends, B/C I want a social life. We are after all social creatures.

    My male boss gave me a big pat on the back when I told him I still breastfed. My daughter is 19months old, and I have no intention of stopping till she is ready. My mother breastfeed till my youngest sibling was almost 3. Just because AMERICA doesn't like it doesn't mean the rest of the world is on the same page as us. I'm guilty of it too, but we Americans are usually totally oblivious to the rest of the world. I'm not going to be made guilty by breastfeeding in public, because lets face it, I get people who tell me even though, they can't see ANYTHING (I make double sure) I'm disgusting and how can I do that, then I get people who congratulate me. Its really about sensitivity. We live in a society that is mixed culturally, spiritually, religiously, to name a few. So we all have different views on the world.
    However I'm in firm belief that breastfeeding shouldn't be a Taboo to talk to your children about if they notice someone in public or for that matter see you breastfeeding their sibling. Human milk really is best for human babies. I want to make sure my daughter and future Children know that it is natural and normal and something they shouldn't be ashamed of. So that they will do that for their children.
    I don't need to elaborate more because the person above me nailed the rest. My point is don't harass me for pumping (in private) at work, and don't harass me or tell me my kid is TOO old to be breastfeeding when I do it in public. Its rude and unlawful.

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  100. Mischief Managed8 December 2011 06:37

    I've breastfed both my children. I'm still breastfeeding my twenty-month-old daughter (despite the increasingly frequent comments on her age and 'when are you going to wean?'). I've never thought of my area as particularly progressive or liberal - my state's anti-gay laws were only overturned in the late 90s - but I've never had any negative comments about the breastfeeding itself. My eldest daughter mimes breastfeeding her dolls instead of play-feeding them with bottles (in fact I throw away the bottles those dolls usually come with).
    I keep it as discrete as possible, although if my daughter suddenly sits up and start chatting, you'll all just have to excuse my nipple for a moment. In a world in which the public health consequences of a few generations of 'normalised' bottle feeding are becoming increasingly obvious in rising rates of allergies, obesity, heart disease, diabetes, etc, it seem mad to chastise women for taking the first steps in protecting their children's health. Not to mention that breastfeeding has been shown to lower the chances of a woman developing breast cancer.
    Whether a person sees breasts as inherently sexual or not (and both opinions are perfectly valid), breastfeeding itself is not a sexual act (although I don't want to kinkshame lactation fetishists, just YKINMK and good lord there are too many parentheses in this sentence!).
    It'd be easy to get into a discussion about how most Eurasian cultures tend to view the naked body as sexual, and that perhaps this stemmed from the fact that the climate made clothing neccessary and therefore it would generally have been only the person you were having sex with who ever saw you naked. And it's easy to argue back and forth about biology, religion, nutrition, and morals. The bottom line is that breastfeeding mothers are not hurting anyone or seeking to hurt anyone, and we are within our legal rights to feed our children in public. I think wearing the skins of dead animals on your feet is pretty disgusting, but I don't go around harrassing people about it, you know?

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  101. I am all for breast feeding but i have seen both ends yes most woman do cover up and that is fine but i have seen some woman whip it out the whole breast and all hanging out and than puts the child on it to feed and walks around with it all hanging out, now that is wrong. Yes she is feeding the baby but i dont want my kids seeing this and the baby comes unlatched and the whole breast is flopping around for everyone to see. So yes i did breast feed as well and tried to go into nursing rooms if available if not, i had a bottle ready with breast milk but not all woman want to do that, so if you choose to do it in public just cover up

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    1. Actually.. i won't be covering up thank you very much, not until people covering the "nipples" up on their bottles. Until then, i will be equal to bottle feeding mothers.

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  102. You don't want your child to see a breast? Do you object to them seeing bottle teats? Because if a breast is sexual, a bottle teat is surely the equivalent of a dildo?

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  103. I breast feed my 27 month old child. I do it all the time in front of my 17 year old son (in public and at home). At first, when he was 15, and she was first born, he would react if he came upon it. After a few weeks of exposure to his sister eating this way, he thinks nothing of it, tho he is still quite fond of girls. The solution to boys being uncomfortable (or anyone) is exposure, exposure, exposure. And my teen didn't get all sexual about it--the discomfort he did feel was the whole teen "gross, might see part of mom's naked body" LOL.

    Most confusing argument out of all the stupid "cover up" or "do it some where else" arguments is : I don't want to have to explain that to my kids/ I don't want my kids to see that? Seriously? So, the natural way to feed children...you don't want your kids to see a baby eat? Because that would be too hard to explain? Why? What do you teach your kids about women's bodies that you think it would be shameful if your kid actually notices and asks you what is going on and you say "she's feeding her baby". Is your kid gonna freak out because it involves breasts? What have you taught them about breasts that that would be an issue for your child? Wouldn't it be so much better for a young child to think of breasts as nurturing than worry about anything sexual to do with them? Isn't that something that only comes into play later, when you wouldn't have to explain a damn thing cause they're old enough to figure it out? Seriously, try playing it out in your head before you post next time and see how far you get.

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  104. This is such a dull debate. No-one actually cares except the people who get so irate about it they have to perpetuate it by moaning about women breastfeeding their babies, or the people trying to justify breastfeeding. Just ignore people who you disagree with you. So much time and energy must have been expended unnecessarily.

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    1. I think actually people do care, Discomfort with breastfeeding in public has been identified as a contributing factor in shaping infant feeding choice and the decision to stop breastfeeding in particular (McIntyre et al 1999; Smyth, 2008)

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  105. I breastfeed all the time, in public, sometimes with no cover. I could not give a rats if some pervert uses it for his 'spank bank'. That's his problem, not mine. My only concern is that baby is fed. I get my job done, I'm happy.

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  106. If you have a problem with the most vulnerable and new members of our species receiving comfort and nourishment in your presence then you need to seek out the 'mommy lounge' or restroom, and hide yourself away from us, and think about why you might be reacting so strangely to such a normal function, and why you might think its ok to bully a mother and her child.

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