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Breastfeeding in Public: Should You use a Cover or Not? #NormalizeBreastfeeding

I have been nursing for a little over two weeks now on a very constant basis, and I'm a fairly private person so I wasn't sure how I was going to feed our son (in the car or use a cover) if he needed to eat when we were out in public. I am giving my opinions and input in this post, and some research as well.


Do you think it's needed for all nursing mothers to use a cover while in public?
While this is my first time nursing as a mother, it's not a new topic to me. I think that it's a personal choice for the mother, on if she wants to use a cover or not. It should not be forced upon a mother to feel like she has to go to the bathroom like you see in the news sometimes to feed her child. 

The way I see it is, if the mother is not using a cover then just don't look at her if you have an issue with nursing. There are people who say "just pump a bottle", and my reply to that is "No, I only give our son a pumped bottle after 10 - 11pm", he's solely nursed during the day.

Babies feed on demand:
I get so annoyed when I read about moms being told that they need to leave a public place where they themselves are either shopping or dining, all because they are nursing their baby / child. NO, I do not agree with that in the least. It's wrong that people sexualize breastfeeding, when all it is, is feeding your child the natural way that God intended you to feed.

Nursing moms do have rights in certain states:
Thankfully, the state we live in is all for nursing mothers and no public store or place can ask a mother to leave for nursing their baby. Our rights are protected as they should be in all 50 states, in my opinion! I do use a nursing cover, but it's kind of difficult to position him to nurse with a cover on, but I am not someone that wants to nurse without the cover on, so I deal with it. 

The first time I fed him in public, we were at our kids' school and during a break time where the kids were all inside eating lunch, we sat on the bench and he ate. He was 3 days old at the time. There have been a few times when I chose to sit in the car with the air on or window cracked to feed him so I didn't need to use a cover. 

Why some moms may not use a cover:
Some babies hate having anything over them, including a blanket, nursing cover, etc so it's not practical for a mother of a baby who is like that to use a cover if she can help it. Nursing gives a strong bond between the mother and baby, and while using a cover, it's hard to be able to look at baby in the eyes. I prefer to use a cover when out and about though and likely will remain that way to respect my and my husband's wishes when it comes to nursing while out.

Teach your kids that a mom feeding her child is normal:
There's nothing shameful about breastfeeding, and if you're one of *those moms* that are all concerned about your child or teenager seeing a mother nursing her baby, then either 1. teach them that nursing is a natural way to feed a baby or 2. distract the child and walk the other way to do something else if it's that important to you.

When and where babies eat and where they don't / shouldn't:
In general, if people think that a nursing mother should feed her baby in the bathroom, then they have issues. Would you want to eat in the bathroom? Very likely not, so why would you think that a loving mother would want her baby to eat in one? Not all moms have the time to find a spot to nurse, so they walk and feed baby. I agree that nursing covers are the way to go, for myself anyway and just because I'd prefer people not to see me, because nursing is to simply do 1 thing - feed your baby, nothing else. Some malls have nursing mothers lounges which is great for moms who would like the privacy. 

16 comments :

  1. When I was breastfeeding, I always made sure to cover up. I do not want anyone to see my breast. I think for everyone involved covering up it best!

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  2. I don't think a mother should have to go into the bathroom, but definitely a separate area. That's not something everyone wants to see.

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  3. I think there are not enough good places to nurse But I will never be comfortable without a cover in public.

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  4. It's been a LONG time since I've had a baby young enough to nurse but I was never a nurse in public person. I would like to see more spaces for nursing mothers as bathrooms can be nasty but I don't care to see people nursing without cover. If I see it, I walk the other direction.

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  5. I always used a cover, but I'm pretty modest as a general rule. I would be upset if I were told I couldn't use one (I don't know why anyone would say that…). My sister never uses one. Both ways get our babies fed and that's what matters.

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  6. I breastfed my second son and while I don't have a problem with anyone doing it in public, I was never comfortable with it. I would pump before we went out so he could have a bottle. I think if a mom is comfortable with it though, good for her!

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    1. I pump but only for night bottles. I exclusively nurse during the day til like 10 - 11pm most days. He tends to eat a lot, but to our advantage at the moment, we don't go out and about for long time frames.

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  7. Definitely covered up with a nursing cover. The breasts are for the baby only to see :)

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  8. I was one who usually went to the bathroom, but out of my own choice. My sons both HATED the covers and threw them off or wouldn't eat while I had them on, and I was not comfortable not using one. I personally chose to go to a private area {they focused better that way anyway} BUT I am all for the mother choosing what she is comfortable with. I would not be any more offended to see an uncovered mother feeding her baby than I would to see a man eating a steak- dinner is dinner.

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  9. I'm pretty modest so I'm not comfortable baring anything in public. I always went to the restroom to nurse too, and I would definitely use a cover.

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  10. I won't use a cover. My force is so strong that my daughter will pull off and i have to shield my spray before i continue. I would choke her or spray her in the face if I used a cover. I understand why ppl use covers and respect their decisions just like I respect those who formula feed. As lobg as the baby is being nurtured & loved... Nothing else matters.

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    1. I agree with you.

      I have that let down issue too on 1 side, so I just have to nurse on the other side unless at home, so it doesn't happen because I can't figure out how to get it to not be so strong.I always have to sit up when feeding him on that side, but it's nice in some ways because I get more in a bottle with a let down.

      I finally found 1 other mom locally aside from my friend that i met Saturday at a wedding reception for my husband's cousin, and I was sitting on the hallway steps to feed him w/ a cover and her little girl said hi baby, and the mom said that is how mommy fed you too and it was a nice conversation and she had issues w people being rude too.

      When I am at the park, there are moms that just give me a dirty look even when I usually am able to get him to eat before leaving home. I just tell them is there a issue, and they walk off. I don't understand why moms find it needed to be rude just because i choose not to use a bottle except at night, because it might be uncomfortable for them.a cover, you see nothing but baby feet anyway usually. I want to get a nursing tank top with a built in bra, but I can't find one that looks comfortable and will fit good.

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    2. I formula fed my first 2 kids, so I am all for formula or mom's milk equally as long as baby is loved / being fed. I just felt like I should give nursing a try and am going 5 weeks strong right now :)

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