Is there such a thing as too much exposure when it comes to NIP? - Page 4 - Mothering Forums

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#91 of 107 Old 05-28-2011, 04:36 PM
 
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Exactly! There is NOT ONE sexual thing about BFing or my breast while BFing (IMHO I don't even think breasts are sexual period). So me nursing in a nursing top that is a slide sling is me trying to get sexual attention? Absolutely not. First and foremost I am married and would never seek any attention other than my husbands and secondly I am a Christian. I try to be modest but what am I suppose to do sweat to death trying to cover up something I am made to do? Why is it my responsibility if a man looks at me when I am just trying to nurse my child? It's not like I have both breasts hanging out and I'm saying hey look at me! I am not flamboyant about it I just do it.

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#92 of 107 Old 05-28-2011, 05:01 PM
 
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I think she just meant skin exposure being for the sake of drawing attention. She likened exposing the nursing breast to draw the attention of others to short shorts drawing the attention of others. My point being, I did neither for the sake of attention, but for function. 

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#93 of 107 Old 05-28-2011, 05:48 PM
 
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I think she just meant skin exposure being for the sake of drawing attention. She likened exposing the nursing breast to draw the attention of others to short shorts drawing the attention of others. My point being, I did neither for the sake of attention, but for function. 


Well, that's my point too. But drawing a parallel between wanting sexual attention and wanting. . .uh, whatever kind of attention a breastfeeding mother might be seeking (and I'm still not clear on what that attention might be - kudos for breastfeeding?) equates the two in a way that I think is problematic. It reminds me of the whole "urinating is natural too, but I still don't want to see it" argument. People aren't saying breastfeeding is the same as urinating, exactly, but by drawing that parallel they are certainly making a negative association. I think talking about women wanting sexual attention in the same breath as talking about women not covering up while breastfeeding distracts from the point of the conversation. They aren't analogous in any meaningful way. (and I totally get your point, ftr. I'm not arguing, just clarifying my objection to the poster I was responding to bringing women wanting sexual attention into the discussion)
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#94 of 107 Old 05-28-2011, 05:59 PM
 
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I said none of those things like that.  I said some women wear short shorts for attention.  I did not say all.  I never said breastfeeding was sexual either.  Sosurreal, your last line says it all.  Why are you not being attacked for saying it?  People are saying if they want to act that way, then can.  I am saying that I don't want that for myself.

 

I wish we could have adult discussions and read twice and post once.  I don't like having mud slung at me for expressing a different point of view. 

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#95 of 107 Old 05-28-2011, 06:07 PM
 
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I said none of those things like that.  I said some women wear short shorts for attention.  I did not say all.  I never said breastfeeding was sexual either.  Sosurreal, your last line says it all.  Why are you not being attacked for saying it?  People are saying if they want to act that way, then can.  I am saying that I don't want that for myself.

 

I wish we could have adult discussions and read twice and post once.  I don't like having mud slung at me for expressing a different point of view. 


I'm not slinging mud. (But you did ask for flying tomatoes wink1.gif ) I'm just not sure what your point is about women wearing short shorts and what it has to do with breastfeeding. What does a woman wanting attention (for anything) have to do with breastfeeding? Maybe you can clarify that?

I also made it clear in my post that you choosing to keep somewhat covered is cool with me (not that my opinion on how you breastfeed really matters that much, or should matter that much to you). But when you said that you think there should be a compromise, it didn't sound like you were talking only about how you choose to breastfeed, but passing judgment on those who don't feel that any compromise is necessary or desirable.
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#96 of 107 Old 05-28-2011, 07:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Youngfrankenstein View Post

I said none of those things like that.  I said some women wear short shorts for attention.  I did not say all.  I never said breastfeeding was sexual either.  Sosurreal, your last line says it all.  Why are you not being attacked for saying it?  People are saying if they want to act that way, then can.  I am saying that I don't want that for myself.

 

I wish we could have adult discussions and read twice and post once.  I don't like having mud slung at me for expressing a different point of view. 




I'm not slinging mud. (But you did ask for flying tomatoes wink1.gif ) I'm just not sure what your point is about women wearing short shorts and what it has to do with breastfeeding. What does a woman wanting attention (for anything) have to do with breastfeeding? Maybe you can clarify that?

I also made it clear in my post that you choosing to keep somewhat covered is cool with me (not that my opinion on how you breastfeed really matters that much, or should matter that much to you). But when you said that you think there should be a compromise, it didn't sound like you were talking only about how you choose to breastfeed, but passing judgment on those who don't feel that any compromise is necessary or desirable.


I realize my earlier post may have sounded confusing.  I understand that there should be compromise.  And I did ask for tomatoes!  At least I was prepared for them.  Maybe I always feel "attacked" for wanting to be covered.  I'm also not the person who's going to be topless on a beach.  That's just me.  I don't think mom's should have to think about this stuff at all.  It should just be. I know that many, many times it's other women who get upset by NIP and that is shameful.  I don't want to further divide the lactivist community.  I guess sometimes I feel the need to show that lactivists come in many "shapes and sizes" and that a woman shouldn't feel ashamed if she doesn't want to show the skin.

 


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#97 of 107 Old 05-28-2011, 07:30 PM
 
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Well, on that we agree. I'm all about bodily sovereignty smile.gif
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#98 of 107 Old 05-28-2011, 08:29 PM
 
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Well, that's great for you that you don't want people to see your breasts. You absolutely have the right to breastfeed in a way that makes you feel comfortable. Some of us don't care if people (male or female) see our breasts. I don't think those of us who don't think it's a big deal for other people to see our breasts should be expected to breastfeed using the same standards you do, or meeting the standards of random people who we happen to be near when we're out and about. It's not that I don't believe in "common courtesy" so much as I don't think common courtesy applies when it has anything to do with the exposure (or lack thereof) of my body. As in, the body that belongs to me, and no one else - I should be able to do with it as I please and not be held to different standards than other people simply because I have a vagina and not a penis.

I love how you worded the bit about common courtesy. I have been looking for those words every time I've heard someone make that argument against NIP.

 

 


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#99 of 107 Old 05-29-2011, 06:05 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Youngfrankenstein View Post

I said none of those things like that.  I said some women wear short shorts for attention.  I did not say all.  I never said breastfeeding was sexual either.  Sosurreal, your last line says it all.  Why are you not being attacked for saying it?  People are saying if they want to act that way, then can.  I am saying that I don't want that for myself.

 

I wish we could have adult discussions and read twice and post once.  I don't like having mud slung at me for expressing a different point of view. 


I am certainly not trying to attack you! I am just trying to understand I guess. I feel judged. I am all for modesty but it is hard with large breasts and I hate that people equate my "skin showing" with me trying to show skin KWIM? I am just wearing a regular nursing top and nursing my toddler in it. I feel judged a lot. I feel vulnerable while doing it, but I can't cover DD and I feel it sends the wrong message. I could sweat my bum off and wear layers, but why should I have to when woman walk around in bras practically, and men walk around topless? Why is it so threatening to see a few inches of my skin (if I'm not in layers) when we see feet of other people's skin? I think it is more about the act of BFing than it is about any skin showing. People are threatened by it. Don't forget not very long ago woman were seen as poor or dirty for BFing b/c they couldn't afford formula and of course that was far superior. Woman were given meds right after birth so that their milk wouldn't even come in! We still have formula companies pushing and pushing there product and it does effect how people think of BFing to this day. The severe negativity of it was passed down from mother to child and even though it made a comeback in the 70's the negativity still stuck for many people and even now it still lingers. Most people FF in the US so of course BFing is not widely accepted....

 

As for the whole urinating argument...Yes urinating is natural but it is illegal to urinate any and everywhere. It's not so much a BFing is natural argument but more a BFing is the NORMAL way to feed a baby. If I am BFing my child and there is a woman next to me bottle feeding I certainly don't attack her for making the less than ideal (b/c that is what it is, biologically) decision to bottle feed, so why should I be attacked for nursing my baby however I choose to do so?

 

I feel like there are a lot less (probably less than 1%) of woman want to "flaunt" the fact they are nursing (while in the act at least) in public surrounded by strangers. If you think of it in an animalistic sense that would probably go against our instincts b/c we want to protect our young and proudly exposing a nursling would endanger it in the wild. On top of that all the criticism and negativity about BFing in some countries makes you feel really uncomfortable and that's why woman have adapted the "I dare you to say something" look. It is out of necessity not pride.

 


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#100 of 107 Old 05-29-2011, 06:12 AM
 
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Also I fully support any mom who wants to cover, whatever you feel comfortable doing in order to nurse your child everyone should support.


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#101 of 107 Old 06-02-2011, 07:31 PM
 
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Personally, I nurse from the top of my shirt. There are various reasons for this. I've never thought anything of it until seeing it mentioned on a couple online forums as unnecessarily immodest. Honestly, I've always considered myself to be a fairly modest nurser (in spite of the fact that I never use a cover) because I'm only exposing a tiny bit of skin by pulling my breast out of the top of my (already low-cut) shirt, rather than exposing my whole mother-worn tummy area by pulling my shirt up to pull my breast from the bottom. I take care to cover my nipple until she latches. Once she is in place, her head covers my "exposed" breast area... and actually reveals less skin than before.


This, exactly. I don't wear a bra either, preferring snug camisoles under my shirts. In theory I could lift the top shirt and struggle to get my breast out over the top of the camisole, with the top shirt hiding my upper chest, but why? A screaming baby impatient for milk draws way more attention, IME, than a mother quickly and quietly pulling a breast out of the top of her shirt and latching the babe on.

 

I'm a shameless nurser and I don't care who sees. I don't go waving my breasts around, and if the baby is distracted and popping on and off a lot, I do take some care to keep my body sort of covered up, but I don't really worry about NIP exposure. My baby is hungry and that is my first priority as her mama. People who don't care to see (part of) my breasts don't have to look, but I'm not about to skulk around in shame or hide my poor babe's face under some stuffy blanket, not least of all because that's not the example I want to teach my children about breastfeeding.

 

There's nothing dirty, obscene, or sexual about breastfeeding and I refuse--refuse--to let other people's discomfort affect my nursing relationship with my babies. Yes, I think some women bare a little more than strictly necessary, but then again, it's not up to me to decide what's necessary and what isn't. My opinion means nothing compared to their child's need to eat. If mamas want to cover up or nurse topless, I don't really care. It's not my own cup of tea but again--my opinion doesn't matter! Baby needs to eat.

 

By the way, as open about it as I am and as many places as I've done it, I have only ever been shamed for nursing in public once--it was a 20-something guy, some distant relative, making a crude comment when I was (very discreetly) nursing DD at my grandmother's house after my grandfather's funeral. The guy's father shut him up right quick with some very harsh words, and then told me that there's nothing more beautiful than the sight of a mother nursing her baby. I will always love him for that.

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#102 of 107 Old 06-03-2011, 11:39 AM
 
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I love to see how many smart women post here. I just joined a few days ago. I dont know why I havent found this site before. I have zero breast feeding friends. Considering almost all of my friends have young children and/or babies, that's disappointing. Most of my friends have started, then quit after only a few weeks; only one friend nursed her 4yr old daughter for several months.  Because of my own modesty, I cover myself up when BFing in public or around anyone besides by boyfriend, mom, and sister. But I have a feeling that once summer weather really hits where I live, I'll be uncovering much more.

 

My son doesnt like to be covered, plus, it's hot under blankets as it is, summer will make that much worse. Also, just being a part of this forum and seeing how many of you are comfortable with nursing uncovered in public makes me feel like I could eventually get to that point also. I would like to, it's just hard to get over so many years of being uncomfortable with my body in general. Plus, I wear the side sling nursing camis someone mentioned before. When you unclip one side you really are letting the whole breast hang out, and mine are too big to be hidden very effectively by my son.

 I think what I may try to practice is just covering until he's latched. There will still be plenty for people to see, but hey, I guess it should be my pleasure to share such a beautiful sight as a nursing baby with everyone. Before getting pregnant and taking nursing classes and reading about it, I'd never seen a woman nurse a baby uncovered that I can remember. That's sad. I didnt know what the act of nursing really looked like.

I just wish some of my mommy friends nursed. But as I said before, I'm glad to have found a forum with other mothers who are as dedicated to it as I am.

 

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#103 of 107 Old 06-03-2011, 11:58 AM
 
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I can't help expressing my disappointment in how much this forum has changed since the last time I was here.  When I stopped posting here regularly, almost all of us in here agreed that mothers could expose as much skin as they chose to and that they should not be made to feel that they should be "discreet."  Every once in a while a mainstreamer would visit the forum and say something like "Well I'm uncomfortable seeing that much of a woman's breast and I think mothers should try to be discreet."  Then we would all defend against such a statement.

 

Now, just glancing through this thread, it seems like it's about 50/50.

 

When I was a breastfeeding mother, I exposed my entire breast.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.  There is nothing shameful or indecent about my breast.  There is no reason to keep any of it hidden.  It is not a genital.  If someone has sexual or uncomfortable associations with the sight of my breast, that is their problem.  I was glad to see someone in this discussion say that if we cater to people's hang-ups, we only perpetuate those hang-ups.  That is absolutely correct.  But I feel like we've already gone through all this and it was all in vain.  It's very discouraging.  I shouldn't be back at square one with this issue.  We should have moved passed it by this point.  WAY past it. Imagine being one of the women in the last century who were pioneers in their promotion of the idea that women could wear shorts.  They dealt with the negativity in the short term in order to meet the long term goal of acceptance through people getting used to it.   Imagine if they went away for 5 years and then returned only to see that the old attitudes had returned.  That's sort of how I feel right now.  I know we hadn't gotten it to the point where the breast was accepted by society at large, but at least it was almost universally accepted here in this forum.

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#104 of 107 Old 06-03-2011, 12:26 PM
 
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i'm just so glad to see another mama feeding her baby/toddler/child that i wouldn't care if she was wearing a pair of footie pajamas with the buttflap open.  seriously... let's have some sisterly support for just being one of the - what- 30 percent of mamas who breastfeed in the US at all.... 

it's so funny to me that so many people worry so much about what OTHER people do.  wowsers.  cover up yourself if it makes you feel better.  i for one make sure nobody sees my belly.  i live in a nursing tank.  but.. eh.  if somebody sees, more power to 'em.  if somebody doesn't like it.. LOOK AWAY. 

the person who dislikes seeing the boobie (or whatever you don't like that somebody else is freely enjoying/expressing/wearing/notwearing) cannot control the exposer.  they sure as heck can control where they put their eyeballs, though.  sheesh.


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#105 of 107 Old 06-03-2011, 03:26 PM
 
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i'm just so glad to see another mama feeding her baby/toddler/child that i wouldn't care if she was wearing a pair of footie pajamas with the buttflap open.  seriously... let's have some sisterly support for just being one of the - what- 30 percent of mamas who breastfeed in the US at all.... 

it's so funny to me that so many people worry so much about what OTHER people do.  wowsers.  cover up yourself if it makes you feel better. 


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#106 of 107 Old 06-03-2011, 03:43 PM
 
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Originally Posted by JudiAU View Post

Eh. I have seen what I consider to be “rude breastfeeding.” I don’t, really, think a mother has to bare her whole breast, leave the nipple exposed way before the baby is near it, do a wiggle thing in the air with said naked breast, not arrange herself or the baby at all so to minimize exposure after the latch, etc. (At four + months) If that is really the only way to nurse successfully, and I am not saying it is or isn’t, then purposefully choosing a café-facing chair at the bookstore across from about 15 men while wearing I dare you I DARE YOU to say anything and glaring at said men and Starbucks employees is maybe not the choice.


Was it too much exposure?  Or just a rotten attitude?  Maybe it was rude, but there are 5,000 ways people have the right to be rude.  It's generally legal to have a rotten attitude.  She could have been shaking her rear just as flauntingly with similar effect.  So she chose to be confrontational.  Some people do.  She has strong feelings for some reason and is being in-your-face.  Fine with me.  I certainly do not think it's anyone's business to say anyone else should "minimize exposure."  That's up to mom and no one else.   Maybe some people consider it a courtesy but some people don't and the ones that do shouldn't get to write laws for the rest of us.

 

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#107 of 107 Old 06-03-2011, 03:57 PM
 
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I think that if a woman wants to expose her entire breast, nobody should ever even think to call it indecent. Why can men walk around topless all the time but we cant? I think that women should have the right to be topless completely, regardless of whether they are breast feeding or not, honestly. I personally wouldnt walk around shirtless, but many women want to have the same rights as men in this area as well as all other areas (it's called Top Freedom).

 

I read the other day that only about 13% of babies are still exclusively breast fed by the age of 6 months. Mothers need all the encouragement we can get, especially from each other. We all need to remind others that breast feeding is the primary, most important use of the breast. Nobody nursing uncovered is trying to offend anyone. But if offending people is what it takes to gain accceptance, then more power to those women who have the self-confidence that I lack.

 

Nobody has any right whatsoever to go through life unoffended. Not the people nursing, not the people bothered by it. We all need to just do what works for us.

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