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Brother's fiance said breastfeeding inappropriate - Page 3

post #41 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meg Murry. View Post
Their house, their rules.
Which is one reason I suggested having them to YOUR house, where YOUR rules apply (like the one about FSIL being covered by a blanket in order to eat).

Only halfway joking. I'm still in an evil mood.
post #42 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astoria View Post
Forgiveness is a good thing. I think in your heart you can look at her with generosity and realize how wounded they both are from a culture that is anti-mother and anti-child. She is clearly a hurting person who can not relax and is holding a lot in, probably some self-hatred as well. Responding with fear and discomfort to loving mothering is a sign that something is deeply wrong.

BUT, at the same time, while forgiving, you should absolutely not go somewhere where mothers and children are not treated with respect. It is not good for your soul to be in that environment and it is not good for you child's soul. Responding not out of anger, but out of commitment to keeping yourself and you baby in a safe and loving space, I would actually just let them know that you need to not see them until you have their full love and support which includes not shaming or alienating you for feeding your baby.
ITA. Forgiving someone is not the same as excusing their behavior or sweeping it under the rug, nor is it giving them permission to hurt you further.

I wouldn't set foot in their house again while breastfeeding. If it is necessary to get into it with other family members, something along the lines of, I understand that sometimes people will disagree, but the way in which they handled our disagreement was unacceptable. Shouting at me, especially when I am holding my infant, is never, ever ok, and I will not expose my child to verbal abuse like that again. Remove the breastfeeding altogether from that conversation, because IMHO it only clouds things - yes, this was about bf'ing, but ultimately it's really about a lack of respect.
post #43 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meg Murry. View Post
Sorry, but I think you're in the wrong. Their house, their rules.

Now, it would be nice if they would have the courtesy not to make their guest feel embarrassed and unwelcome, of course -- but they have the right to set the rules of their own house, as we all do.
So if their guest was not a nursing baby but, say, a vegetarian, and they were serving meat, would they be right to insist that that person eat meat and then get mad when it is politely declined? Or refuse to let a diabetic give themselves their insulin because they don't want needles in their home? Because, you know, it's their house and so they get to set the rules. Unbelievable.
post #44 of 146
I think it's common courtesy to respect the rights of other people to say what will happen within their own house. Lactivism isn't All About Me, despite that being the attitude of some lactivists -- an attitude which has done a great deal to alienate many people from feeding their children naturally. It was the OP's choice to go over there -- and to leave, which I think was a good decision for everyone.
post #45 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by rupiezum View Post
ITA. Forgiving someone is not the same as excusing their behavior or sweeping it under the rug, nor is it giving them permission to hurt you further.

I wouldn't set foot in their house again while breastfeeding. If it is necessary to get into it with other family members, something along the lines of, I understand that sometimes people will disagree, but the way in which they handled our disagreement was unacceptable. Shouting at me, especially when I am holding my infant, is never, ever ok, and I will not expose my child to verbal abuse like that again. Remove the breastfeeding altogether from that conversation, because IMHO it only clouds things - yes, this was about bf'ing, but ultimately it's really about a lack of respect.
I like this idea. I certainly agree with the first sentence.
post #46 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by amitymama View Post
So if their guest was not a nursing baby but, say, a vegetarian, and they were serving meat, would they be right to insist that that person eat meat and then get mad when it is politely declined? Or refuse to let a diabetic give themselves their insulin because they don't want needles in their home? Because, you know, it's their house and so they get to set the rules. Unbelievable.
And yet, if you were a vegetarian and someone were coming over for dinner, I am fairly sure you would serve them vegetables. Similarly, if you were an orthodox Jew and someone were coming over for dinner, I'm fairly sure you would serve a kosher meal. Because, you know, it's your house and you get to set the rules.
post #47 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meg Murry. View Post
I think it's common courtesy to respect the rights of other people to say what will happen within their own house. Lactivism isn't All About Me, despite that being the attitude of some lactivists -- an attitude which has done a great deal to alienate many people from feeding their children naturally. It was the OP's choice to go over there -- and to leave, which I think was a good decision for everyone.
I dont think that Lactivism is all about me, I think that it IS all about my baby. I have the right to feed my child wherever I am and wherever I want to and if anyone even family believes that I dont well that is their problem and I have the right to not see them again. Feeding a child is never something that we should have to apologize for and covering up can be seen as doing exactly that. Many children dont like to be covered (mine would never do it) so it would be more of a big deal than to just let the child eat until it is done.
post #48 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by pumpkin View Post
Whatever you do, I would leave the dislike of the fiance out of the discussion. You really can't win on that issue.

There are two ways this can go.
1) this devolves into a fight between you and your brother about not respecting his choice in a spouse. This won't get you anywhere and may permanently damage your relationship with your brother.

2)you keep it simple, you will bf your child whenever necessary. If they don't want you doing that in their home, then you will not be visiting in their home. They are welcome in your house or on neutral territory.
Pumpkin makes extremely good points here.
Take your feelings about the fiancee out of the equation and focus on the real matter.

Her second point is absolutely one of the best ways to go about this. It gets your point across without cutting off ties with your family.

I hope you find some resolution with this...
post #49 of 146
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your replies. It is just what I needed... some good laughs, thoughtful advice, but mostly reassurance. I have been reading Mothering since I was pregnant and very quickly realized it was the only magazine worth my time. So part of me wondered if I was maybe taking it a little too personally, since I'm so absorbed in the whole Lactivism mindset. But, the more I read, the more I realize that this is such an important issue and I should not be made to feel like my decision to breastfeed is at the whim of every other person.

The thing about this whole situation that upsets me most is that, regardless of "their house, their rules" stuff, this is my family and they are completely unwilling to listen or try to understand my point of view. I guess my optimistic view of the world has me thinking that I can nicely explain the importance of BFing and everyone would listen.

I still need time to think and pray about how to respond in the best way without compromising my beliefs, which I guess is what we are all called to do on a daily basis.

For those that had questions about my brother...we were always close. I know that he would have never acted this way before. If he did have a problem with it, he certainly would'nt have said anything.
post #50 of 146
Thread Starter 
2)you keep it simple, you will bf your child whenever necessary. If they don't want you doing that in their home, then you will not be visiting in their home. They are welcome in your house or on neutral territory.[/QUOTE]

Ultimately, this is what I will be doing. The sad part for me is that I was really trying to like this woman for my brothers sake. I don't think I will be working so hard now.
post #51 of 146
Quote:
you keep it simple, you will bf your child whenever necessary.
I think this is all you need to let them know. Don't say you won't visit them. Put the ball in their court by simpy saying "We'll feed the baby whenever she needs to be fed, in the normal manner we always do." They can respond however they wish but it will not be on you - if they want to draw a line in the sand, they will have to come out and say it & take responsibility for being the ones who put up a barrier.

It used to be said that "Offense is taken not given: practice portion control" but people nowdays seem to think they are entitled to go through life blaming others for offending them if they've encountered something they don't personally like. You did your part by making an effort to be discreet (not that I think a mom is "supposed" to) and you are not obligated to take responsibility for thier issues!
post #52 of 146
I like that. Lob the ball back at them! I'm going to nurse when my child is hungry. I will not be hiding myself. Do with it as you will.
post #53 of 146
I totally agree. If you don't like being there, then don't go. It's obviously not a good environment to be in anyway. Why would you want to be there.

My dad was uncomfortable with all things baby related, including BFing. My parents were providing us with a place to stay in THEIR home to help us through some hard times. Out of respect, I nursed/pumped in my bedroom.
post #54 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ziggysmama View Post
I would of squirted her
LOL!!!!

It is so frustrating when family acts like nursing is so discusting and if they have to sit next to you while nursing they get offended! I am so sorry this happened to you, but I do have to say that I admire you for getting up and walking out.

No one in my family and no one on my dh side has ever nursed!!! So, when I would nurse my dc at my parents or if we went on vacation to visit the in laws I was always told there was a room that was designated the "feeding room". I put up with it, because I didnt want to offend anyone or cause a scene, but I really dont care now. I was really upset when after my sisters dd was born she was able to sit downstairs with my parents, everyone laughing, "awe how cute, she is so hungry" bottle feeding her, while I am upstairs in a room by myself nursing ds. I dont go over there anymore except everyother month.

And as for the in-laws, I drove 1,000 miles to see them and when they wanted me to cover up, I didnt. I just kept nursing and they left the room.
post #55 of 146
While family visits my home, I feed my child in my living room, and have noticed my brothers-in-law leave the room politely and quietly. However, if I were in their house, knowing how they feel, I would ask my hostess if there were someplace quiet and comfortable that I could feed the baby, and if anyone wanted to join me to keep me company they would be welcome. Knowing that I have a breastfeeding baby, I would expect my hostess to have such a place already made up, preferably with a choice of cushions and magazines. I know this removes me from the action, but I find that my child eats better in the peace of privacy anyway, and this is a chance for some quiet conversation with those with whom I am closest.
Since you were unaware of how your brother and FSIL feel about your breastfeeding, it is understandable that such a falling out took place, though you handled it marvelously and she poorly. It is quite obvious that she has major issues, but it would be a shame to close your brother out of your life over it. They deserve your pity, not your contempt. I would hope that they apologize, but I doubt it will happen. Were I you, I would not compromise what is best for my baby, but I would find ways of avoiding confrontation and hope that they will maybe learn a little from your fine example and raise their future children in the loving and natural manner you have found.
post #56 of 146
You had your boob covered, (if they find breasts offensive) so I don't see what the issue is. BTW, if they are Christians, tell them Jesus was breastfed.
post #57 of 146
Quote:
Breastfeeding MOther: IF YOU PLAN ON SEXUALIZING MY BREASTS, YOU'D BETTER BE SHOVING DOLLAR BILLS IN MY WAISTBAND
I'd stop the slogan right there. Short and to the point.

There is a balancing point between "my house, my rules" and traditional guest law (that it is the hosts' responsibility to make their guests, not themselves, comfortable). Time was in some places, it was worth your life to care for your guests properly... I guess these SILs are very lucky that that standard is no longer applied, huh.
post #58 of 146
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeaGreen
See, that side always says its about "discretion" but when they get angry you see that its really about breastfeeding. The act itself is unacceptable to them and not the amount or lack of skin showing.
Definitely!
post #59 of 146
Yes a host is suppose to make a person comfortable but it doesn't mean the host has to give into all their rules.

Next invite, A simple I can't attned the advent.

I will say I would just wait until she has a baby. I would make her leave the room to give a baby a bottle. Haa!! Haa!! Haa!! She needs to fill the bottle in the bathroom also you don't want your kids seeing that as being normal or ok.
post #60 of 146
I'm sorry you were treated so rudely!

I can understand how it is such an injustice... you want to slap the ignorance out of her, yet you know you're called to take the higher ground.

Maybe something like this would work:

"Babies need to eat a lot, and they need to do so comfortably and safely. As a mother, my first responsibility is to my child. You will understand someday when you have children. For this reason, we can only go places where the whole family is welcome - including the littlest one. I am very sad to hear that we won't be welcome in your house, since nursing frequently is part of baby's daily life. I hope you will reconsider, as we will miss visiting with you. If you'd like to know more about why I can't nurse with a blanket covering us, I would be happy to explain it to you. I am not being a troublemaker or trying to make anyone uncomfortable - I am simply being a mother and feeding my baby. Some people are uncomfortable to see babies nurse - perhaps it's not something you have seen often, and sometimes new things can make us uncomfortable. It is ok to look away or leave the room if you want to, but please don't disturb my baby's meal. We look forward to seeing you at other family functions, and wanted to let you know you are welcome at our house any time."

I would put it back on her - respond with kindness and know that you have done nothing wrong, and owe her nothing. You are not the troublemaker here, she is.

Good luck, keep us updated!
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