Author Topic: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding  (Read 13429 times)

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Bluenomi

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #90 on: February 26, 2013, 09:30:22 PM »
One things to bear in mind generally:

When people like myself say "BF is great, wherever you want, but please be discreet", we should probably point out thatthe vast majority of feeding mothers ARE discreet.
Those  who aren't, are generally aware of that, and are either exhibitionists or running their own agenda.

I agree.

But part of the problem, as I said before, is everyone has a different idea on what is discreet. I always thought I was discreet but I have been informed otherwise by people. Considering I was always careful to wear clothing that meant as little of my skin as showing as possible and DD's big head covered most of the rest and I covered up ASAP when she finished I thought I was ok. But some people think discreet means you have to be in a completely different room and that is the attitude I object to. So many people use the term discreet to shame mothers into leaving because they deem the smallest hint of skin indecent. Yet woman can walk around showing for more breast than I ever did feeding and nobody objects?

citadelle

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #91 on: February 26, 2013, 09:58:05 PM »
I actually have been berated and lectured by more people (mostly strangers) because I bottle fed than all my friends who breast fed.  After the 5th time of trying to explain to some buttinsky who knew my child better than me about her medical condition, I finally gave up and would just nod and ignore...nod and ignore.  I have been at restaurants, malls, ect when friends were breast feeding and they didn't even get a second glance, so there are zealots on both sides of that personal decision.
It really doesn't have to be for medical reasons that a mother might choose a bottle. It might just be the right fit for that mother & baby. There should be no need to explain the medical condition, because it is the mother's prerogative to feed her baby in the way she chooses.

Sharnita

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #92 on: February 26, 2013, 10:07:41 PM »
Then there are mothers who have to bottle feed their babies breast milk for various reasons.  Premies in the hospital that can't nurse, for example.  Some of them never do get the nursing thing down really well.  I would not assume that a bottle had formula, just because it was a bottle.  I knew of a foster child whose foster parent was giving her donated milk because she was not thriving on any formula available.  The foster mom went to great lengths to find and maintain a network that would supply the baby with what she needed.  Imagine her getting yelled at because somebody saw her giving a bottle. (Or any foster/adoptive parent)

Katana_Geldar

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #93 on: February 26, 2013, 10:39:52 PM »
I've heard from my Mum that breast milk can be expressed, bottled and frozen. Which can be very hand if Mum isn't available to give a feed to baby on demand.

Firecat

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #94 on: February 26, 2013, 10:44:09 PM »
One things to bear in mind generally:

When people like myself say "BF is great, wherever you want, but please be discreet", we should probably point out thatthe vast majority of feeding mothers ARE discreet.
Those  who aren't, are generally aware of that, and are either exhibitionists or running their own agenda.

I agree.

But part of the problem, as I said before, is everyone has a different idea on what is discreet. I always thought I was discreet but I have been informed otherwise by people. Considering I was always careful to wear clothing that meant as little of my skin as showing as possible and DD's big head covered most of the rest and I covered up ASAP when she finished I thought I was ok. But some people think discreet means you have to be in a completely different room and that is the attitude I object to. So many people use the term discreet to shame mothers into leaving because they deem the smallest hint of skin indecent. Yet woman can walk around showing for more breast than I ever did feeding and nobody objects?

To me "discreet in public" means "an effort is made to minimize exposure and nipples are not on view." So for me: blankets or other draping covers, the big shirt, the shirt going up and nursing tank going down and baby is immediately latched on, baby is in a sling, those would all be perfectly fine with me. So it sounds to me, based on your description, that I probably wouldn't even blink at what you were doing. If someone feels the need to not even be in the same room with a breastfeeding mom, I think they're the ones with the issue.

In someone's home, I really don't care. I've had conversations with friends of mine who were basically topless while breastfeeding a child while visiting their homes. But at the home of a close friend is different than random person in a public setting. I've also got one friend who ended up expressing milk for at least one of her kids because the baby wouldn't go back and forth between nursing and drinking from the bottle. I really don't understand those who feel the need to lecture others in public on such issues.

Erich L-ster

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #95 on: February 26, 2013, 11:21:31 PM »



Yet woman can walk around showing for more breast than I ever did feeding and nobody objects?
I think you earlier made a comparison to bikini tops. If a woman wore a bikini top outside of a swimming area or sunbathing in a park or her own yard, I would consider that bizarre and rude. (not saying what you do is bizarre or rude, as I haven't seen it)

kareng57

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #96 on: February 26, 2013, 11:57:10 PM »
One things to bear in mind generally:

When people like myself say "BF is great, wherever you want, but please be discreet", we should probably point out thatthe vast majority of feeding mothers ARE discreet.
Those  who aren't, are generally aware of that, and are either exhibitionists or running their own agenda.

I agree.

But part of the problem, as I said before, is everyone has a different idea on what is discreet. I always thought I was discreet but I have been informed otherwise by people. Considering I was always careful to wear clothing that meant as little of my skin as showing as possible and DD's big head covered most of the rest and I covered up ASAP when she finished I thought I was ok. But some people think discreet means you have to be in a completely different room and that is the attitude I object to. So many people use the term discreet to shame mothers into leaving because they deem the smallest hint of skin indecent. Yet woman can walk around showing for more breast than I ever did feeding and nobody objects?

To me "discreet in public" means "an effort is made to minimize exposure and nipples are not on view." So for me: blankets or other draping covers, the big shirt, the shirt going up and nursing tank going down and baby is immediately latched on, baby is in a sling, those would all be perfectly fine with me. So it sounds to me, based on your description, that I probably wouldn't even blink at what you were doing. If someone feels the need to not even be in the same room with a breastfeeding mom, I think they're the ones with the issue.

In someone's home, I really don't care. I've had conversations with friends of mine who were basically topless while breastfeeding a child while visiting their homes. But at the home of a close friend is different than random person in a public setting. I've also got one friend who ended up expressing milk for at least one of her kids because the baby wouldn't go back and forth between nursing and drinking from the bottle. I really don't understand those who feel the need to lecture others in public on such issues.


It depends.  For DS #1 I was so discreet that I nursed in host's bedroom the entire time (and he was a slow, fussy nurser) meaning that I would likely miss 2/3 of the party.  For DS #2, I went to a bedroom to "latch on" or switch breasts and others barely noticed anything.  Now, he was a much easier nurser anyway, so it's hard to compare.  And I truly I don't think that I was more relaxed simply because he was my second baby.  All babies are different.

While DS #1 got easier as time went on - when he was about 6 month+ one difficulty was that he detached suddenly.  And that's not unusual - babies of this age become so much more interested in the world around them, and Mom is getting pretty dull :D.  So I can see this getting pretty difficult for public nursing.  I'll admit that I never became skilled at "public" nursing.  For me, it consisted of a far-corner at a public park, or at the local parent-tot centre.  Overall, I'm a wimp. :)

Katana_Geldar

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #97 on: February 27, 2013, 02:28:21 AM »
And there's been an update...

http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/cafe-owner-asks-mother-to-call-off-mob-after-breastfeeding-backlash-20130227-2f5zv.html

Abusive calls are really uncalled for, no matter what context.

Sharnita

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #98 on: February 27, 2013, 04:27:04 AM »
There is no excuse for threats. The owner however sounds ridiculous. She owns a cyber cafe but thibks the nursing mother can stop complaints, protests and threats after a story has gone viral? And she sounds like a terrible boss frankly. There are a lot of angry people at her cafe so she doean't go in because she doesn't want to deal wirh thwn - her employees are stuck with that. Sge really doesn't sound like she has learned anything.

parrot_girl

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #99 on: February 27, 2013, 06:05:23 AM »
Interesting!

I am still BFing the Budgie, who is now 18 months, and I BFd Princess Parrot for three years. Not once did I receive any dirty looks or nasty remarks. As neither of my babies would tolerate wraps or blankies over their faces, I just used to untuck my shirt, or have my special breastfeeding tops on. They both have big heads and nobody could see anything anyway!

One incident I heard of- a friend of mine was part of a mothers' group which used to meet at a local café when their babies were still small. One day one of them was feeding her four month old when the baby pulled off, looked around and hopped back on (as they tend to do). This caused a spray of breastmilk that arced across the room and landed, with pin-point precision, in the cappuccino of a gentleman sitting opposite the group. The entire café was in a horrified hush! The mother then beckoned the waitress over and said, "Please get that man another cappuccino and I'll come and pay as soon as the baby's finished," and everyone continued about their business. It was, and is, no more than an amusing anecdote.
(the mother did say that she'd strongly considered fleeing, but would have had to lug the nappy bag, detach the baby, and she rather liked the café and wanted to go back again).

I must say that I am astounded that a café owner in Australia would ask a mother to stop breastfeeding! It's not exactly a new law, the right to breastfeed whereever! That owner was just making trouble for herself, really.
 

hobish

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #100 on: February 27, 2013, 02:29:45 PM »
I'm starting to think that the number of people who actually take issue with public breast feeding is small. Small and really really loud.
You know, that's the case with a lot of 'contentious' issues - the group of truly offended people is very small, and very disproportionately loud.

Empty vessels make the loudest sounds.
My mum used to breastfeed my youngest sister when we were in the room with her. I must have been round six and knew then that was what boobies were for.

That is really uncalled for. This has been quite the polite discussion. Please don't ruin it by maligning those who don't agree with you.

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DottyG

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #101 on: February 27, 2013, 02:32:54 PM »
I didn't get the feeling she was malinging those who didn't agree with her.  Rather, it was directed at the people who are going over-the-top in being rude who really don't have a leg to stand on in the issue.  I think she was actually agreeing with the discussion here.


hobish

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #102 on: February 27, 2013, 02:48:49 PM »
I didn't get the feeling she was malinging those who didn't agree with her.  Rather, it was directed at the people who are going over-the-top in being rude who really don't have a leg to stand on in the issue.  I think she was actually agreeing with the discussion here.

 The full quote is, "As empty vessels make the loudest sound, so they that have the least wit are the greatest blabbers." i.e. those who are against breast feeding in public are empty-headed. It is offensive no matter where you stand.


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ClaireC79

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #103 on: February 27, 2013, 03:45:13 PM »
but the same could be said about the militant breastfeeders - ie the ones that talk the most are the ones who don't think

Twirly

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Re: A minefield of etiquette and/or decency? Public breast feeding
« Reply #104 on: February 27, 2013, 03:56:46 PM »
I didn't get the feeling she was malinging those who didn't agree with her.  Rather, it was directed at the people who are going over-the-top in being rude who really don't have a leg to stand on in the issue.  I think she was actually agreeing with the discussion here.

 The full quote is, "As empty vessels make the loudest sound, so they that have the least wit are the greatest blabbers." i.e. those who are against breast feeding in public are empty-headed. It is offensive no matter where you stand.

I actually read it as those who the most vocal and enjoy causing drama on either side of the issue are empty headed...which makes sense to me!

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