Author Topic: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts! Update #76, p.6  (Read 11977 times)

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Nemesis

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I have a friend who is very progressive, or so she keeps telling me. She has visited me a few times since Baby was born. When I need to nurse the baby and there are guests around, I always use a nursing scarf.

Now, I know there are women who feel that because breastfeeding is a natural thing, exposing their breast is no big deal. I respect that and would never stare at a breastfeeding mother. But I will also never be comfortable with that level of exposure. I like to keep my breasts for private viewing only, and if you're not the one needing to drink from it then I do not want you to see it.

The problem is that she keeps saying "Oh you don't have to use that around me" or "I am sure Baby will be more comfortable feeding without the scarf!" She has even tried to LIFT my scarf because she "wanted to see how Baby is drinking"!!

To the first, i replied "Yes I do". To the second, I replied, "Yes that's true, so excuse me while I feed her in the next room". To the third, I exclaimed, "What are you doing? Please don't" and hastily moved away. It is a good thing that I can breastfeed with a nursing scarf while carrying Baby and walking, because that seems to be what I need to do to get away from her.

I have explained that I am personally not comfortable with breasts exposure, but she keeps brushing me off by saying what a natural thing breastfeeding is, and that I shouldn't worry about what people might say or think. She doesn't seem to understand that I DO NOT WANT TO EXPOSE MY BREASTS (yes, I have said this to her repeatedly) no matter how explicitly I tell her. When I tried to use stronger words, she thought that I was being judgemental towards women who breastfeed without a cover.

Do I need to lose a friend? How else can I remain polite to this person who thinks that she is doing me a huge favour by liberating my breasts? She is a very nice person, but she doesn't seem to get this.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2013, 11:27:34 PM by Nemesis »

aussie_chick

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2013, 07:52:27 PM »
I feel for you. I'm not a mum yet but I can imagine that not only hearing others' opinions on what you should do must be irritating but also trying to MAKE you do it must be even worse.
Just a couple of suggestions
"I am sure baby will be more comfortable feeding without the scarf" - firmly say "I won't be" then bean dip
I think if she continues or tries to lift the scarf again you look at her straight in the eye and firmly say "drop this now"
If she continues rabbiting on about it you need to tell her it's time to go home when it's time for you to feed.
Or perhaps when baby is asleep and she's visiting sit her down and say to her "your constant advice/insistence about my feeding is not only making me uncomfortable, it's rude. Please stop. I've heard your point of view and whilst other women are free to do as they please, this is what makes ME comfortable."

You shouldn't have to go into another room to feed. This is your (and your baby's) home!

I thought she may have been just trying to make you comfortable but the fact that she hasn't picked up on your subtle and not so subtle cues suggests to me she's now trying to push her viewpoint onto you. It's unwelcome and unfair.

I'm not sure that you need to remain "polite" when it's an issue she's not being polite over.

Best of luck and congratulations on the arrival of your baby!

greencat

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2013, 08:14:53 PM »
I think that a "friend" trying to strip me of clothing I wanted to keep on, whatever it might be, would rapidly cease being my friend.

Nikko-chan

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2013, 08:30:31 PM »
I think that a "friend" trying to strip me of clothing I wanted to keep on, whatever it might be, would rapidly cease being my friend.

That.

doodlemor

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2013, 08:32:23 PM »
"If this is all so natural, why are you making such a big deal about it?"

Emmy

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2013, 08:43:25 PM »
I am also a breastfeeding woman who does not feel comfortable exposing my breasts to anybody but the baby and DH.  Like you, I also don't have anything against those who choose not to cover up (as long as they aren't making a scene about it).

I would tell this friend, "I don't have anything against women who choose to feed without a cover, but I personally don't feel comfortable doing it.  Please respect my choice."  I do find it ironic that she expresses that women shouldn't feel the need to cover if that makes them more comfortable, yet feels there is something wrong with your choice of covering up although that is what makes you comfortable.  If you told her your feelings repeatedly and she doesn't listen, she is putting her personal opinion ahead of your feelings.  Maybe the best thing you can do is agree to disagree about the topic and tell her not to bring it up again.  If she does, end the conversation or visit.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2013, 08:49:25 PM »
I'm afraid I'd be tempted to be very blunt and ask "Why are you so intent on viewing my breasts?"

Snarky pirate wants to say "If we're not married and you're not the one getting nutritional benefits from this, it's $200 an hour."
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

Idlewildstudios

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2013, 08:51:10 PM »
I would find a photo of a nice set of breasts and the next time you nurse around her I would simply hand her photo and say " since you seem to obsess over my breasts whenever I nurse, here's a set for you to look at ."

Not ehell approved, but it may get your point across.

alis

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2013, 09:03:04 PM »
I'm quite happy to have mine out in front of female friends but I have one girlfriend who prefers to remove herself from the room completely.

It shocks me that this woman does not respect your decision as a nursing mother to do whatever makes YOU the most comfortable. It boggles my mind. Anyone who feels the promotion of nursing is of utmost importance should know that the basic principle of mother's comfort is critical.

TootsNYC

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2013, 09:13:28 PM »
Maybe make it be about her instead.

"You are being very disrespectful."
"You are invading my personal space."
"You need to keep your hands to yourself."

"Surely you understand that, since *I* am the one doing the nursing, *my* comfort is most important. So leave me alone."

You've done all the other, polite things. It's time to go on the attack.


But yeah, how rude.

I would say that the other option is to always remove yourself from her presence--or ask her to leave, since you aren't comfortable with her being present.

Raintree

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2013, 09:26:51 PM »
I admit I kind of like some of the snarky replies above. "Why are you so intent on viewing my breasts?" "Here's a picture for you to look at while I go nurse."

I'm with you, OP, I'm not a mom and never have been, but I find it intensely irritating, in general, when people try to make me feel bad for not being as relaxed, liberated, comfortable, free, etc. etc. as them. As in I must be incredibly stifled not to want to go to a nude beach, or a male stripper act, or, (in my teens) dye my hair a weird colour. (After taking some flak from a friend with naturally mousy hair who liked to dye her hair bright orange, or black, or blue, when I didn't want to dye mine, I got her to quit nagging me by saying, "Some of us actually don't hate our natural colour.")

In your shoes, I would probably go with something like, "This is the way I choose to nurse and will continue to choose to nurse. I respect other women's choices, including yours, so please respect mine and stop pestering me about it."
« Last Edit: November 08, 2013, 09:29:37 PM by Raintree »

cabbagegirl28

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2013, 09:47:28 PM »
If someone had tried to show part of my naked body by taking a nursing cover off, I would have grabbed their wrist (not enough to hurt), and said, "Do not ever touch me again." With the other stuff, I would have said, "You may not mind your chest showing, but I do. Don't shove your beliefs onto me."

If someone told me I was judgmental, I would have said, "Oh. I'm the judgmental one for wanting privacy. That makes so much sense..not! Look, this BF difference harms neither one of us. I don't care about your personal decisions, so stay out of mine."


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LEMon

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #12 on: November 08, 2013, 09:51:35 PM »
Have you had a conversation with her at a non-nursing time?  Because I think it may be easier when it wasn't happening. 

I agree with those who suggest to make it personal applicable to you.  "Why are you disrespecting me?"  Sit still, wait and make her answer the question why your wishes don't matter.  Keep repeating the core question till she hears it.  She seems to have her view point and defense of it so in mind she can't hear you.

glacio

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #13 on: November 08, 2013, 10:22:13 PM »
I would ask her why she is being so judgmental towards your beliefs and comforts. Judging goes both ways.

Erich L-ster

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Re: Yes, thank you but I DON'T want to show my breasts!
« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2013, 10:25:18 PM »
She wants to see how a baby nurses? Try youtube.