People who are offended by it can just look away, it is a natural way and the healthiest way for a baby to get their needed nutrients.
A breastfeeding mother should be expected to show a modicum of discretion in selecting where and when to feed her child, but should be allowed to do so in public. Actions such as sitting towards the rear of a room and covering the breast with a cloth should be considered perfectly acceptable.
We're humans. We're animals. We shouldn't, in my opinion, even be required to be clothed--so we most certainly shouldn't be required to hide while engaging in a fully natural act. Making women cover themselves or hide while breastfeeding teaches society that it's something to be ashamed of, and it's NOT. We need to show that it's natural, and that it's nothing to be ashamed of.
I think that our society needs to get over the strange stigma about breastfeeding being "gross." For years, the visual arts have presented us with images of beautiful women exposing their breasts. Advertising has used breasts to promote everything from the Wonderbra to motorcycles. Why should a breast be so shocking to us, really? When we are surrounded by images of sex and violence in the media, isn't it actually lovely to see a woman publicly nursing an infant -- a living demonstration of love, nurturing and peace?
Breastfeeding is one of the most natural and beautiful aspects of life. It's not only feeding, but its bonding. We shouldn't be forced to go to a dirty bathroom to feed our children. If they're bottlefed, should we make them eat in there? The bottle's top is suppose to look like a nipple. How scandalous! We live in a society where breasts are considered indecent and they're over-sexualized. My breasts are NOT indecent. They are like a guy's chest, but I have more fat on mine. No one can take away our right to feed our children or give men the right to go shirtless but not us. If this makes you uncomfortable, I suggest you stay at home, with no TV, no radio, no books or magazines, nothing. Just sit there because boobs are everywhere.
As I work in the childcare industry, I know how frustrating it can be when people are against one of the most natural things. When carrying a child around with you, you can't just think about yourself and if you are embarrassed by something, if your child needs feeding, you feed it! Those who argue it is disrespectful need to realise that this is a basic right that kept nearly everyone for the first six months of their lives ALIVE.
I don't see the problem in feeding my babies in public as long as I'm discreet about it. The only things you see when I'm breastfeeding is my babies' feet and hands sticking out from under a blanket. To be honest, I don't want people looking at my breasts either. So of course I'm going to cover up.
Its good for the baby, and as long as the mom covers up, I'm fine with it. However, covering up is important. Flashing people, even unintentionally, is not hard to prevent, a simple blanket is more than enough. So, yes, but only if it's covered up.
I definitely believe that public breastfeeding is appropriate. It is simply a mother meeting her child's most basic need.
I thinks it can be done modestly without "exposing" any body parts. Most mothers that I know that do breastfeed in public are able to do it without drawing any attention to themselves. A simple blanket or cover can be used and most observers do not even notice what is happening.
Breastfeeding is the best form of nutrition for an infant. To force mothers choosing to feed their children in this manner to hide or have to leave public places in order to care for their children is beyond ridiculous. As a society we are too uptight with regards to the human body and the natural functions it performs. There is nothing more natural than a mother breastfeeding a baby.
Although this is a totally natural function, that does not mean it should be done in public. Why don't we just go around having sex in public? There should be a certain sanctity to breastfeeding. It is a precious bond between two people (like sex) and doing it in public just takes away how special it is. Plus, I wouldn't want my kids to see that! Keep it classy, ladies. Some things should be kept private.. Of course, I wouldn't bash or shame a lady for feeding her kid. I would simply walk away because I don't enjoy seeing that.
Bare breasts in public should not be allowed. Just feed it from a bottle! Response to "It's natural" argument: Sure, many things are natural, but it does not mean we should be able to do it in public. Urinating is natural, that does not mean we should do it in front of everyone.
Public breastfeeding exposes everyone in the vicinity to a view of private areas of the mother's body. This is offensive to many people, and particularly inappropriate when the children of others are present. There are innumerable other ways to feed babies without breastfeeding in public. Often one hears that this is a natural function and so it should be acceptable in public. Sex and defecation are also natural functions, but no one is suggesting they take place in public.
There is a thing called decency. No one cares if you breastfeed in public but no one wants to see your saggy boobs either...Or maybe some people do! I am a women in my early 30's, I'm not going to prance around in a shirt with my breasts hanging out, nor will I expose myself in public. Next thing your going to ask is go topless, hell lets just walk around naked... Like come on people. What is the big deal with putting a blanket over you? Why make all this fuss. Yes, go breastfeed in public-NO ONE CARES, just cover up. Honestly, there are bigger issues in life then this. It's like telling a prostitute she should cover up... It's legal to wear whatever you want but should you? So get off your high horse and go solve some third world issues. This is ridiculous.
It's called a bottle, use it. There is also a great invention such as a breast pump and a whole industry devoted to creating clothes, blankets, bras, etc to easily cover yourself if you feel the need to whip it out in public. No one is saying you shouldn't be able to feed your baby, there is just no reason to have to expose yourself and make everyone uncomfortable to do so. If you can't have the common decency to cover up or the common sense to be prepared enough to bring a full bottle or 2 out with you... then don't expect people to gracious.
I don't have a problem when I'm not forced to notice another woman's private parts. The problem is...Everyone thinks its so "beautiful," "natural," "healthy," etc... It is all those and then some PRIVATELY! Although, mothers do not view their breasts as sexual, others do! If breasts weren't viewed as sexual there would not be strip clubs, Vegas shows, porn, sex wouldn't involve them! No matter how many times we debate this it always seems that everyone is taking it wrong. Breastfeeding itself isn't gross or disgusting...It's the fact that the breastfeeding mothers flaunt their breast and the fact that they are breastfeeding.. Breastfeeding infants that are solely reliant on the mothers nutrients is very very acceptable...But toddlers who can feed themselves crackers, fruits, candies, so on and so forth and who are able to drink out of a sippie cup or straw.. Now I find that extremely offensive and inappropriate .. They can wait until you are out of publics eye.. To me that's a time of bonding with your child and not for everyone else to see and have to put up with..Respect goes both ways.. No one ever said you have to take your child to a toilet to feed them.. Just don't pull your private part out in front of everyone to see...Cover yourself.. Use a napkin or blanket..Even your other hand to cover your breast and stomach hanging out... Or better yet.. Give your toddler a juice or water and feel welcome to feed your infant..Schedule your outings at times that aren't "feeding" times.. There are many things a breastfeeding parent can do to respect the rest of the world and then the rest of the world wouldn't have such a huge issue with this? I breastfeeding 2 children discretely and respectfully just fine. I know the rest of you can as well!.. Breastfeeding is natural, so is using the bathroom..Both shouldn't be shared with the world no matter what because they are personal and private.
No, it is not appropriate and it is DISRESPECTFUL. Just walk away to a more private area to be considerate to others (not saying you have to stay locked in your house!) The fact that this has recently become another over the top, "if you don't support this you don't support women's rights" debate is absurd to me. Yes, of course breastfeeding is a wonderful natural, experience. The entitled attitude is the problem here. It is another one of those things that is legal (& should be! I'm not for anymore laws stifling any of our RIGHTS) But the question is, Is it APPROPRIATE, no, you are disregarding how your actions make others uncomfortable, which is a very entitled, selfish view. Plenty of things are thought of as inappropriate in public, but many people still do these things because it is their "right".... Having a screaming match in the middle of the mall with your husband- not really appropriate, a man walking into a restaurant without a shirt on- not really appropriate,.. You could go on & on... Do what you may, but to judge those of us that are offended & taken aback by your entitled lifestyle as unsupportive of women's rights is just ridiculous... This written by a 26 year old woman.
Until this morning I was 1000% for public breastfeeding, you know where the breast is exposed and I'm nursing my little one without covering up. However, I really began to think about this in a real life scenario, I have fairly large breast, certainly larger than any of my girl friends and that already makes me self conscious around their husbands who constantly glance at my chest. What if I were to then breast feed in front of their husbands! Would that be appropriate? I don't care if I am feeding a baby on it- a breast is still a "boob" to all guys! I also have a son, I wouldn't want him seeing a grown woman nursing a baby, he is too young for that and as much of an inconvenience it is for me to cover my daughter while nursing or find a private place to feed her, I need to respect other peoples privacy and I have forever changed my mind on this topic and for the sake of respect, I hope everyone agrees. Btw, I have two kids a 3 year old and a 1 year old and I have successfully nursed each until the age of 1 but I choose to do it in private so that I don't offend anyone.
Breastfeeding is a natural occurrence, but so is using the bathroom and everyone does that in private. If you use the bathroom in public you could end up being arrested for indecent exposure. I don't want to see women whip out their nipples while I'm out in public. I breastfed my daughters, but never did it in public!
While it is fun to pretend that we are all intelligent and mature individuals, the reality is that it will encourage certain individuals to do stupid things. More so, with the fine line between right and wrong growing ever closer, it is very possible that people would push this boundary way further than breastfeeding women. It is not even very necessary for women to breast feed publicly. I'm certain they can find a place to breastfeed within 5 minutes, on average.