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Nursing in swimming pool - article

post #1 of 272
Thread Starter 
This is shameful!

Mother fights for the right to nurse in pool
post #2 of 272
Our local pool has a no food policy in the pool and surrounding area. This includes breastfeeding and bottle feeding. That seems reasonable to me.

Anywhere else in the building it's fine, if I'm in the cafe I have usually been offered a glass of water.
post #3 of 272
I have definitely been bummed before at having to leave a fun conversation to go nurse, so I get that this mama wanted to stay where she was to nurse. I also think people get a little nutty about seeing some skin or that "breastmilk in the pool would foul the water" as the one comment said

That being said, I wouldn't have nursed on the pool steps because I have large breasts and pulling one out of my swimsuit would have been too much (pun intended) even for me! I do NIP all the time though...

The security detail to guard the pool was over the top IMO. The pool manager could have avoided that by just having a conversation with the other woman I would hope. But maybe all the parties involved were just too worked up by that point :
post #4 of 272
Quote:
"I believe in breastfeeding, just not in the pool," says pool owner Karkouti, 39, who is 17 weeks pregnant with her first child.
If she breast feeds I bet she sings a different tune later,.. Just about nursing mama rights in general.

Though I dont think having to be out of the pool was a huge deal. Nursing on the side seems okay.
post #5 of 272
For some reason, I can stay reasonable, calm and write coherently about these things when they happen in other places, but when they happen in MY CITY it makes me
post #6 of 272
Here's my general litmus test for whether or not it's OK to nurse somewhere: Would it be OK to bottlefeed in the same exact situation? I don't have a problem restricting breastfeeding in a "no foods or beverages" zone.

I wouldn't breastfeed in court because I wouldn't bring a child there anyway (though I would and have breastfed in the court building; just not while facing the judge.) I wouldn't breastfeed in a men's room as I would have no reason to go in there. And I woudn't breastfeed IN a pool because I wouldn't feed a baby or toddler in there, even if it was from a bottle or sippy cup. I'd get out and sit on a chair next to the pool watching my older kids swim, or cross-legged style on the pool deck right by the edge of the pool. I don't see why she couldn't have done that and still chatted with her friends in the water.
post #7 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
I'd get out and sit on a chair next to the pool watching my older kids swim, or cross-legged style on the pool deck right by the edge of the pool. I don't see why she couldn't have done that and still chatted with her friends in the water.
She COULD have, but the question is, should she be forced to? I COULD always go out to my car or in to a bathroom or use a cover to nurse my child, but I don't want to, and no one should have the right to make me.

Sitting on the steps of a pool, with her torso out of the water, I really don't see the problem, whether or not it's the choice I would have made.
post #8 of 272
I was discussing this somewhere else and it just got NASTY.

I think this wasn't about no food or drink, we got a little background and first she was told to "do that" in the changeroom....then of course, the policies get trotted out rather conveniently. This is why they're considering taking it to the human rights tribunal. It was about her BF in public and the complainant's discomfort with it.

I just left my final thought on it somewhere else and expect to get flamed for it.

For me though, I'd never nurse in a pool because I think pools are yucky. And I make sure to rinse off the girls REALLY well before I nurse again.
post #9 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaughingHyena View Post
Our local pool has a no food policy in the pool and surrounding area. This includes breastfeeding and bottle feeding. That seems reasonable to me.

Anywhere else in the building it's fine, if I'm in the cafe I have usually been offered a glass of water.
This is the policy here as well and it seems fair.
post #10 of 272
I nurse in the pool all the time. My lil one falls asleep on the breast in the pool all the time. what's the big deal. I had her nursing and sleeping in the pool at a disney resort, right in front of all of the life guards. I had her in a wrap, nursing, completely asleep floating in the water. She used to take her nap in the pool with me while DD#1 was having her swimming lesson. Kids put swimming pool water in their mouths all the time, a few drops of swimming pool water while getting latched on isn't going to hurt anyone.
post #11 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by MommyJoia View Post
I nurse in the pool all the time. My lil one falls asleep on the breast in the pool all the time. what's the big deal. I had her nursing and sleeping in the pool at a disney resort, right in front of all of the life guards. I had her in a wrap, nursing, completely asleep floating in the water. She used to take her nap in the pool with me while DD#1 was having her swimming lesson. Kids put swimming pool water in their mouths all the time, a few drops of swimming pool water while getting latched on isn't going to hurt anyone.
Good point! My DD leaves the pool burping!!! So I guess she might be getting a drink or two from the pool.

Now that you mention it, having them fall asleep while floating actually sounds really nice. Kind of like lunch and spa at the same time!
post #12 of 272
The no food or drink policy is reasonable...provided they apply that to bottlefeeding also. However, in reality....if the mother is nursing her child, less milk is going to end up in the pool anyway. We leak, after all.
post #13 of 272
I've removed several posts discussing the comments. Please keep in mind that while discussing the article is fine, discussing the comments crosses the line in regards to MDC's User Agreement:
Quote:
Do not post to invite MDC members to other boards for adversarial purposes or post inflammatory information about MDC discussions at other boards, or about communities and discussions elsewhere, regardless of whether or not you link to that discussion or community. This is to maintain and respect the integrity of our own and other communities.
I'll PM those with deleted posts for edits.
post #14 of 272
:
That was my thought as well. I'm sure numerous lactating women have let-down in pools across the lands.
I get the no food/drink rule when it comes to things like crumbs, juice, etc. But, as we know, breastmilk has antibacterial properties! Very weak arguement to use that policy as a reason to ask a nursing mum to leave the pool.
post #15 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by OwensMa View Post
I get the no food/drink rule when it comes to things like crumbs, juice, etc. But, as we know, breastmilk has antibacterial properties! Very weak arguement to use that policy as a reason to ask a nursing mum to leave the pool.

So if you allow breastfeeding moms to feed their babies in the pool what about those who feed with bottles, whether it be formula or pumped breastmilk (since there would be no way to tell when already in a bottle) - if you allow one you have to allow the other.
post #16 of 272
In Canada, moms have the right to breastfeed anywhere they are allowed to be.
post #17 of 272
I'm not really sure you would have to. My point was that breastmilk gets in pool water. Breastfeeding a child in the pool, and the chances that a little will get in the pool, should not be that big a deal.
post #18 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by syd'smom View Post
In Canada, moms have the right to breastfeed anywhere they are allowed to be.
Yes, thankfully. However, this incident happened in Ontario. It didn't seem to help her when she needed it.
post #19 of 272
Thread Starter 
a couple things:

1) Kids/babies will drink the pool water regardless, so I don't think it's a big deal if there is a bit on the breast. I was swimming with DS last night and he tried to lick the water, so I really didn't mind feeding him before I was showered and dried off! (I didn't in the actual pool though, he wasn't hungry until he came out.)

2) Unlike other food and drinks, bm won't leave crumbs and there is no risk of the container breaking or disintegrating in the water, which would be a health risk.
post #20 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by TCMoulton View Post
So if you allow breastfeeding moms to feed their babies in the pool what about those who feed with bottles, whether it be formula or pumped breastmilk (since there would be no way to tell when already in a bottle) - if you allow one you have to allow the other.
I disagree. The point behind banning drinks and foods in pools is that if they spill into the water, it could be an inconvenience/costly cleanup. It is possible (although unlikely) that bottled formula or breastmilk could be spilled into the pool, so that makes it similar to other beverages. It is NOT possible that breastmilk could be spilled into the pool, as it's not in a cup of any sort.

The point has been made that it is possible a miniscule amount of breastmilk (ie. a couple of drops) could mix into the pool water. However, the antibacterial properties of breastmilk combined with the pool treatment chemicals make it exceedingly unlikely that this type of bodily fluid could ever pose any harm to any pool-goer. Furthermore, if that was the issue, government officials would have to ban all lactating women from all pools (baby along or not) as some women leak when thinking about their babies, when in warm water, or just any ol' time!

The pool owner's comments about protecting the baby from dirty pool water were foolish. She clearly hasn't read any public health research on swimming pools and breastfeeding (there was excellent information from an Edmonton, Alberta study a few years ago). Just because she wouldn't feel it's clean enough to breastfeed a child in a pool doesn't mean she has any place ordering the mother out of the pool on the pretense of the best interests of the child.

That the pool owner suggested the mother use the change room as one alternate location shows that underneath it all, she was uncomfortable with the situation, paranoid about what other patrons might think, and trying to hide the nursing mother. If it was simply a food in pool public health issue, she wouldn't have needed to suggest the change room. If a kid had been on the deck with a bag of chips, she wouldn't have said, "You may go eat those in the change room". She simply would have instructed that the food consumption was not allowed around the pool and left it up to the munching kid (& accompanying parent) to choose a suitable alternate location.

I hope the Ontario Human Rights Commission reprimands the pool owner in a resounding manner. To read all the ridiculous comments on other blogs and newsites, it's clear there is still a lot of public education to do about breastfeeding! :
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