Weighing in on Breastfeeding in Public

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I feel so lucky that I live in a place that is so open to nursing in public. I have never been asked to cover up, given funny looks, or asked to move to the bathroom to nurse my children. But I know so many mothers who are terrified of nursing in public because they have been questioned, given looks, and asked to move.

As much as those stories infuriate me, today I feel there is cause to celebrate…and to weigh in. Some of you probably already have accounts on Opposing Views because they seem to cover quite a few topics (spanking among them) that AP parents care about. Today they launched the debate: Should Women Breastfeed in Public?

The reason we should celebrate is because it’s not even a debate–no one stepped up to take the “No” position on this one. I choose to make this mean that we’re winning the battle against ignorance and I commend the three wonderful experts who spelled out all the many reasons to support nursing in public. But your votes still send a strong message to any dissenters (and as long as neanderthals people like Barbara Walters are around, there will always be dissenters on this topic), so go on, vote to support a baby’s right to eat in public.

While you’re there, you might also want to vote on these two:

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Author: API Blog

APtly Said, Formerly API Speaks launched in April of 2008 as part of Attachment Parenting International's larger effort to offer interactive content through their newly-redesigned web site: http://www.attachmentparenting.org. All contributors to APtly Said, as with so many of API's staff, are volunteers who donate their time and energy to promote Attachment Parenting world wide.

7 thoughts on “Weighing in on Breastfeeding in Public”

  1. I am also blessed to have never been given a hassle about nursing in public. It has also occurred to me that I may have simply ignored any judgmental glances and misinterpreted any rude comments…or perhaps it is my all consuming passion and confidence that just sends off a “don’t you dare” vibe to would-be nay sayers…whatever it is, I have enjoyed nursing my babies “Anytime, Anywhere”

  2. If someone had a problem with me breastfeeding in public, I’d give them the riot act. How dare anyone get in my business about how I tend to my child. The US is just so far behind in so many ways. The simplest, most natural acts of life cause such a flurry. Geez people. MYOB.

  3. I think breastfeeding in public is different for everyone! I know it is natural but I have always gone to the bathroom to nurse my baby. I’m not ashamed, just not comfortable having my boobs out for the public to see. When I do see women nurse in public though, it doesn’t bother me. It’s their choice and I don’t think anyone should judge them for it.

  4. When a woman in a restaurant told me that I should feed my baby in the ladies room, I said, “You think my son should eat his lunch in the bathroom? He’ll have his lunch in the bathroom when you do.”

  5. We need to remember not everyone in your space is share this loving maternal moment, to some ( if not most ) this is simply a naked breast in public..I am one of those people. I think the argument is on the level of discreteness, not the right to fed a baby anywhere, obviously that is not the issue. I has nothing to do with being ashamed and it is a natural process yad yad yad..it is about mutual respect to everyone. I saw a woman on the subway during rush hour..only when her baby fell asleep was when i realized she was nursing. She wore a sort of bib (very loose with the side free, cotton) device which her baby was happily feeding under.

  6. I beleive that a womans breast are solely for their child, having said this I also believe in being discreat. When I nurse is public I always cover up. I use a soft blanket and my babies seem to be very comforted by it. Many times a friend has come up to me and ask where my baby is. I smile and look at my chest. They always laugh and say, I couldn’t even tell. I feed my baby while grocery shopping or eating out, but because of the way the US has sexualized everything, I do stay covered up.

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