Author Topic: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding  (Read 15452 times)

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Katana_Geldar

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A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« on: February 25, 2013, 04:22:30 PM »
http://www.goodfood.com.au/good-food/food-news/cafe-chides-mother-for-offence-to-humanity-20130225-2f2b1.html

Saw this online this morning and I'd like to out it to the denizens of E-Hell, which I know includes mums who have breastfed.

Every time it comes up in the media here there's a big public outcry. But what are breast feeding mums meant to do? Not everywhere has a parents room, and sometimes babies just need to be fed.

Is it because breasts are so sexualised? They are primarily for feeding infants.we have flat faces compares to other primates which is why they protrude so much.

I haven't got kids, but DH and I want them and I'm interested in hearing your views!
« Last Edit: February 25, 2013, 05:26:10 PM by Katana_Geldar »

hobish

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2013, 04:34:01 PM »

Total minefield. Check past threads, most have been closed, and with good reason.
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fountainsoflettuce

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2013, 04:35:52 PM »
yes, this is a dangerous thread topic.

bloo

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2013, 04:38:25 PM »
Yeah I'd check past threads. This is a 'hot topic' because it seems to be difficult to calmly discuss. I'm both surprised and pleased the 'homeschooling' thread has been a calm discussion. Maybe this one can be, too.

But I doubt it! :-\

PurpleFrog

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2013, 04:45:42 PM »
I was a bf mum (up untill last friday  :'() and I bf'd both boys in public.

I have to say I never once had a problem when I fed, I tried to be as discreet as possible, and not flash anyone but I defiantly didn't hide in the toilets. Everyone I came across was more than supportive and complimentary about how 'nice' it was to see someone bfing.

I found out a few months ago that my friend had been vehemently against public breastfeeding until she'd been with me while I was doing it and later had her own child. We were chatting about it and she said the difference was 'look I breastfeeding in public' feeding vs 'my sons having his lunch and it happens to be coming out of my boob' feeding.

There is an attitude that breasts shouldn't be seen in public, but by investing in some breastfeeding tops and/or using a blanket I never had a problem, though I'm sure I unintentionally flashed one or two people! Like most things if the bfing mum doesn't make an effort to invite confrontation & tries not to show too much, most people are frogiving of the occasional accident.

However that's not to say incidents like the example in the article don't happen, there's always a few 'bad apples'. Hopefully 'polite' public breastfeeding will continue to help banish this attitude

Several replys as I typed
[img width=400 height=88]http://tickers.TickerFactory.com/ezt/d/4;10773;484/st/20120825/e/Our+Wedding/dt/-1/k/450f/eve

Katana_Geldar

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2013, 04:51:40 PM »
http://manners.quickanddirtytips.com/breast-feeding-manners.aspx

This article is good, I lie hi argument how 'You wouldn't eat here, why should a baby?' goes both ways.

EllenS

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2013, 05:10:00 PM »
Link broken, but here is my opinion and experience as a bf mom of 2.

Some people think BF'ing is ALWAYS horrible and offensive.  Other people think BFing turns every woman into Mother Mary and the savior of the world, and to accuse a BF'ing mom of rudeness, no matter what the circumstances, is evil.  I think both positions are distorted.

Breastfeeding is normal human behavior, like eating, driving or talking on the phone. All of these things can be done politely or rudely.  BF'ing moms are normal women, and like all other women, some are thoughtful and polite, some are self-absorbed and SS, and some mean well but get stuck in uncomfortable circumstances (like a baby who loves to play peekaboo).   BTW "thoughtful and polite" does not mean hiding in the bathroom.  It is perfectly possible to breastfeed in a completely public place without making a spectacle of yourself. I have bf'ed in church, on planes, in the doctor's waiting room, in all kinds of restaurants - you name it.  99% of the time there was nothing to see, and the other 1% nobody was looking. 

Some people are innocent bystanders who have been thrust into an untintentionally awkward situation; some people are busybodies who are looking to be the "proper police", and others are righfully offended victims of egregious behavior - but it's impossible to judge such situations unless you were really there.
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dawbs

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2013, 05:14:46 PM »
This can be contentious but I have to say...unless culture and news are dramatically different in ways I don't understand, I'm giving a hairy eyeball to the folks at the cafe not realizing this would be both contentious and handled badly.

(although the news article has disappeared.  The story is circulating elsewhere on the internet but links to the Sydney Herald are no longer working)

Firecat

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2013, 05:23:36 PM »
I know some people are deeply offended by the idea of breastfeeding in public. I personally think a bit of compromise on both sides is in order.

In other words: moms, please exercise what discretion you can, and if your baby is the sort who won't tolerate a blanket or drape, please find an area where you're as out of view as possible.

Non-moms: if you do happen to see a brief flash, please don't freak out about it. Chances are the woman in question would rather it hadn't happened as much as you'd rather it hadn't.

Personally, I'd rather a brief flash of more-than-I-really-wanted-to-see than a baby screaming because he/she is hungry. Happy, fairly quiet (except for maybe some slurping) baby is way better than ear-piercing-shrieking baby, so far as I'm concerned.

Katana_Geldar

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2013, 05:28:38 PM »
Fixed the link, for some reason it went to good food guide, which is odd.

Makes me what to open a breastfeeding cafe where women are welcome to come in and nurse.

Erich L-ster

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2013, 05:33:34 PM »
I thought of this topic when I saw that offensive (to me) new luvs diapers commercial.

BG: I am a woman who did breastfeed.

Commercial: mom breastfeeding at a table in a restaurant with no blanket, cloth or modesty telling waiter "hey eyes up here". The message is that second time moms don't care about such things.

In my opinion public breastfeeding should involve a baby blanket, towel or cloth of some kind. No, you don't need to smother the baby with it, just a drape.

Extra offensive: it's a table at a restaurant. In my experience, when the milk is flowing and the baby un-latches for a moment, there can be squirting. I have experienced squirting of at least 6 feet more than once. I do not want to sit at a table that has some other human's bodily fluids on it. I don't want to use those salt & pepper shakers. I don't want the chance of it squirting over to my table if I'm next to her.

Please just drape it. Please.

Katana_Geldar

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2013, 05:36:28 PM »
I've e heard of women walking along in shopping centres while breaks feeding. There's something wrong with that.

Erich L-ster

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*inviteseller

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2013, 05:43:45 PM »
I have no problems with breast feeding in public.  The problem is the zealots  on both sides of this issue are the ones who turn this topic so contentious.  The moral police who look for ways to be offended who berate a woman sitting on a park bench with a blanket or some sort of cover to afford herself and her child privacy ( have seen it)...the woman sitting in the audience of a mall kids pageant who just lifted her shirt in the front row and started BFing her 2 year old while the MC started the show and loudly said (altho no one had said a word to her) "oh, I guess everyone is gonna get mad because I do the right and natural thing" while glaring at me bottle feeding .   These people are the reason this is a contentious topic.  If everyone (general) mind their own business or not feel they have the right to be in people's faces to prove a point, no one would have this conversation and no one would blink an eye over public breast feeding.

 
I've e heard of women walking along in shopping centres while breaks feeding. There's something wrong with that.

Why? 

Mysticpizza

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2013, 05:46:39 PM »
Why is it not offensive to see kittens or puppies being suckled by their mothers? Many think that's cute. We are mammals too.  What's wrong with that?