I remember the first time I did it. I was nervous. “What would people say?” “Are they going to stare?” But her cries kept getting louder and there was only one way to soothe her. With nothing to cover me, I ever so slightly lifted my shirt and placed my hungry baby on my breast. As she ate, I looked around to make sure I was not offending anyone. Nobody said anything to me. And the world kept on spinning.
Lately, there has been a movement to #NormalizeBreastfeeding. There are several social media groups dedicated to supporting breastfeeding mothers. I have read countless stories of mothers NIP (nursing in public). Most of them have had a positive experience. But there have been mothers who have been met with stares and even rude comments.
Human breasts make milk and feed babies. I know it’s a shocker, but it is true. We have been conditioned to think that breasts are play toys for ourselves and our partners. But alas, breasts true purpose are to feed and nourish babies.
I know you are thinking why don’t you wear a nursing cover. For me, it is a personal preference if I am in public. I may or may not cover up. As my oldest got up in age I stopped covering up. She didn’t like it and it was a hassle to always spend time putting on the cover. Have you seen a hungry baby in action? It can get ugly. Also, do you eat under a cover?
You may also ask well why don’t you pump a bottle before you leave the house? In the case of my oldest, she was not fond of bottles. As a matter of fact, she outright rejected bottles starting at four months. My youngest is the same way and she is only two months. Pumping a bottle is not an option in my case. My girls like their milk fresh from the tap. Plus, I don’t want to pump a bottle. I am not whipping my breast out for fun, but to actually feed my children!
Well, why don’t you go in the bathroom or somewhere private to nurse? This is my favorite question. One I don’t eat in the bathroom because it is nasty. So why on earth would I feed my baby in a public bathroom? No, seriously. Why would I? Furthermore, why should I sit in a car and run my gas out feeding my baby? It doesn’t make sense to me. Plus I have legal right to NIP in almost all 50 states (click here to see if your state is on the list).
You decide whether to wear a cover or not. Whether you decide to nurse in the bathroom or in the restaurant. It is your decision. Don’t be afraid to feed your child as you see fit and where you see fit.
Nurse on mama!