Why is discretion such a hot topic?--Update#127 (pg 7) - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#61 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 03:38 PM
 
the_lissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,838
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by purple_kangaroo View Post
For those who see no problem with a woman not attempting to avoid exposing her breast while nursing, would you also have no problem with a woman walking around topless while not nursing? I'm curious. Is there a difference? Why or why not?

If a restaurant has a "no shirt, no shoes, no service" policy, do they still have the right to not serve a woman with no shirt if she is breastfeeding? Or does the breastfeeding negate the "no shirt" rule? If she was more comfortable breastfeeding with her shoes off, would that negate the "no shoes" rule too?

I read once about a woman who sneaked a baby onto a ride at a theme park in a duffle bag, then once the ride got going she took the baby out of the bag and removed her shirt (yes, completely) to nurse the baby. When security guards informed her that babies were no allowed on the ride because it was too dangerous (this had nothing to do with her breastfeeding or being topless; it was a safety issue), she went ballistic.

She was escorted out of the theme park screaming that they would be hearing from her lawyer because they were breaking the law by interfering with her right to breastfeed her baby "anywhere the mother otherwise had a right to be", as the law stated. This story was shared by one of the theme park's employees.

Should her right to breastfeed her baby anywhere she wants force the theme park employees to violate safety rules and risk the baby's life by allowing her to bring the baby on the ride and breastfeed there?
NO i have no problem with toplessness. It is a breast.

Your examples are getting more and more ridiculous, and I highly doubt they are true.

The theme park story would be easy enough to verify because lots of people would have been talking about it. Not to mention, riders are not allowed to take duffel bags on rides either. It is clearly untrue.

Jam 7, Peanut Butter 5, and Bread 2.

the_lissa is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#62 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 03:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
purple_kangaroo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 547
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I guess I should clarify that I'm probably responding more to comments I've seen here in this forum than to anything else.

I have seen people pull out an entire breast over the top of their blouse, or make no effort to cover a breast until several minutes after the baby has stopped nursing. I've personally seen a few situations where it seemed like the woman nursing could care less about making any effort to be discreet and didn't seem to mind whether the left breast was exposed while their child nursed on the right breast or not, etc. But most people I know or have seen NIP try to be as discreet as possible.

Here, though, I've seen what seems to me like a lot of comments like "I'm not going to try to cover up or be 'discreet' for anyone", or "trying to hide the breast while nursing implies that the act of nursing is something shameful, so any effort to hide it is detrimental to the cause of lactivism" or "if I want to be able to take my shirt off to nurse my baby, I should be able to do that and nobody should be allowed to say anything about it," or "I have no problem with popping my entire breast out of my shirt and letting my child latch off and on every few minutes to look around and play while nursing", or "I should be able to nurse wherever and however I want no matter how extreme or offensive it is to someone else." I've even seen comments that if a woman wants to nurse her baby stark naked she should be able to do that if she wants to, and nobody should tell her otherwise. That's the attitude I don't understand. Some people would comment that people like that are the reason some folks are uncomfortable with NIP in general.

I think most people who would ask a woman to cover up are assuming that she would, if she knew someone was uncomfortable, WANT to either make some effort to accommodate their comfort or else explain why the requested accommodation wasn't acceptable to her and maybe work out a compromise if possible. But here on this board it seems that many feel asking someone to cover up or even expressing discomfort in any way is almost an unforgivable offense.

Maybe it's a cultural thing. When my DH was a young adult, he visited a relative in Africa. After one church service they went to, a woman came to shake my DH's hand and chat with him. She had a baby in a sling on her back, and literally had one breast slung over her shoulder to nurse the baby on her back. That was a normal thing in her culture, so DH just tried to ignore it, though he personally found it unsettling and distracting.

I've seen people saying that they feel the best way to change our culture to one where breasts are not seen as something that should be covered is to basically do what we can to uncover them in public while nursing as much as possible. I understand the desire to see our culture change in that area, but I don't really understand this particular approach to fostering change. I go back and forth about whether I think it would even work or not. I'm not sure a large enough number of women are willing to do this in order to change "normal" in our culture in the near future.

If the issue is that people need to be pushed out of their comfort zone to learn that breasts don't need to be hidden, would it be any different or less effective to insist that the whole party follow the nursing mom who wants to nurse in privacy? If she leaves the room to find a private place to nurse, wouldn't having everyone go along and sit there staring at her while she's nursing help her to get over her discomfort with nursing in front of people faster? My thought would be that it would be more likely to make her feel violated and traumatized than it would be likely to bring about any positive change.

I'd be interested to see some kind of a poll about how much of themselves women feel comfortable exposing while nursing vs. while not nursing, and their attitudes toward discretion or the lack thereof. Are there a lot of women who make no effort to cover as much as possible of their breasts while nursing, or just a few? How many women think it's actually wrong to try to keep others from having to see their breast while nursing? How many think it's completely unecessary?

I guess a PP was right in that I'm probably pertly using this thread to explore my own feelings and figure out why I'm uncomfortable myself nursing in certain situations. I guess maybe some pert of me wonders if I really am doing other mothers and babies some kind of huge disservice because I'm more comfortable covering up with a blanket or otherwise trying to make sure my breasts are covered as much as possible when NIP. Am I somehow holding back the progress of society toward a culture more accepting of breastfeeding? I hope not.
purple_kangaroo is offline  
#63 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 03:47 PM
 
art_teachermommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 172
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by purple_kangaroo View Post
Maybe it's a cultural thing. When my DH was a young adult, he visited a relative in Africa. After one church service they went to, a woman came to shake my DH's hand and chat with him. She had a baby in a sling on her back, and literally had one breast slung over her shoulder to nurse the baby on her back. That was a normal thing in her culture, so DH just tried to ignore it, though he personally found it unsettling and distracting.
now that is a woman!!!!
art_teachermommy is offline  
#64 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 03:50 PM
 
elspethshimon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Columbus, OH
Posts: 995
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
1. The only person to whom a nursing mother owes ANY consideration with respect to comfort is her nursling. End. Of. Story.

2. Sometimes discomfort is deserved.

3. There is no three. I just like lists of threes.
elspethshimon is offline  
#65 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 03:55 PM
 
elspethshimon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Columbus, OH
Posts: 995
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
I guess a PP was right in that I'm probably pertly using this thread to explore my own feelings and figure out why I'm uncomfortable myself nursing in certain situations. I guess maybe some pert of me wonders if I really am doing other mothers and babies some kind of huge disservice because I'm more comfortable covering up with a blanket or otherwise trying to make sure my breasts are covered as much as possible when NIP. Am I somehow holding back the progress of society toward a culture more accepting of breastfeeding? I hope not.
The problem is not with individual women who cover up or move to a different location on their own, but with the insistence that breastfeeding mothers need to accommodate and manage other people's prejudices and issues.

It seems like you want some validation for the "concern" you have for other people's comfort. I don't really have a problem with individuals who make those accommodations, but I will not accept the idea that breastfeeding women (as a group) have any obligations to anyone other than their nursling.
elspethshimon is offline  
#66 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 03:56 PM
 
HybridVigor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 217
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Minoan women from ancient Crete wore nothing covering their breasts. Breasts were beautiful, sure, but there wasn't anything secret or shameful about them. They fed babies.

Now, SHOULDERS . . . those were erotic. Had to have something covering those shoulders!

Before there was formula and a bottle feeding culture, I doubt there was this huge cover-up conspiracy. Body modesty is HUGELY societal construct.

Don't let anyone shame you! It is up to you, as a powerful, life-giving Mother, to choose whether or not others may have the pleasure of your company as you miraculously make milk!

Let go of the shame. Let go of the fear. Let the negativity of others flow past you, never touching you. NEVER feed your precious child on the dirty bathroom floor.

If you want to cover up, and your baby doesn't pull the blanket off (like mine would), do so. If you don't want to, don't. Remain calm even in the face of adversity. You are doing what is right, what is natural, and what is best for your child . . . and ultimately the world. If others ask you to leave or to cover, do what YOU know is right . . . whether it is to grant the the ignorant or those who have body hang-ups some clemency or not . . .

Just keep in mind that a calm, assertive, and educational overtone work best in all situations.

If you're adding 2 plus 2 and someone says "That's 5!" you should be calm, continue by writing '4', and explain why. You wouldn't say, "Sure, it's five . . ." and you wouldn't stand up in FURY and yell, "IT'S 4! I KNOW I'M RIGHT!"

Does that make sense to you mamas? I hope it does.
HybridVigor is offline  
#67 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 03:56 PM
 
the_lissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,838
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Do you understand that many babies or toddlers will not nurse while being covered?


Do you understand that new mothers feel isolated enough without being told to go somewhere else or turn away to nurse? Or ridiculously hidden with a screen.


Do you understand that taking your breast out of your shirt may be the easiest or only way one can nurse their baby (that is how I have to nurse in a bathing suit)?

Why is it that you get to decide what is discreet and reasonable? As I said, you may think covering up is reasonable. Someone else may think a woman should pump milk or nurse in a bathroom. I think a woman should be able to nurse where and however is most comfortable for them and their children. Why is your view right?

I do not care in any way if someone is uncomfortable. That is absolutely their issue. Not mine and not my nursling's.

Some people are uncomfortable or offended if women work outside the home or if same sex couples hold hands in public? Would you tell these people to make reasonable attempts at easing other people's offense?

The reason why asking someone to cover up is an unforgivable offense to me is that it has been shown to cause women to stop nursing. It leads to women nursing on dirty bathroom floors like in mamajama's post.

I asked these questions earlier and didn't really get an answer.

Jam 7, Peanut Butter 5, and Bread 2.

the_lissa is offline  
#68 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 03:56 PM
 
IdahoMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 274
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I personally think I'm doing more for the cause of lactivism when I'm willing to make some concessions to feed my baby. My family isn't comfortable with NIP, and "public" in this case includes their homes. The idea of nursing past about 3 months is different for most of them. But I'm respectful to them, too, while still meeting my baby's needs. I cover with a blanket, and I'm fine with that. In their homes, I ask where they'd like me to feed the baby. Since they know I'll be discreet (which in my case means covering my boobs totally LOL) they most often want me to stay in the living room. I find them getting more and more comfortable with it, because of my relaxed and cooperative attitude. Even my dad, who has been freaked out by nursing to the point of leaving the house when I'd nurse my first, is much more comfortable now.
IdahoMom is offline  
#69 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:06 PM
 
ktbug's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: NOVA
Posts: 2,368
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Can you imagine the impact on a mother-to-be's thought process if she believes she'll be socially ostracized, awkward, or isolated because she chose to breastfeed? I know many women like this, who would think like this : "well, I know bf is best for the baby, but I'll never get to go out without having to hide behind a screen, and I can't go to anyone's house without putting a blanket over my kid's head and making everyone feel uncomfortable, so I guess I'll formula feed."

The act of covering suggests to the onlooker that something needs to be hidden.

Not covering helps to normalize the act to the general public. The more they see it, the more used to it they'll get.

Some people will never, ever get it, and will be offended.
As has been stated over and over again, that is THEIR problem, not your baby's. Why should you make concessions that feed people's wrongheadedness?

I dunno, that's the "tough talk". Some people aren't willing to risk friction with their families or confrontations with the public, so they cover or hide out of what they perceive to be politeness.

Being a rather impolite person in general, I've never had that problem.
I do, however, nurse in another room when I'm at certain family members' houses, because there are usually 48 people in the house and it's too distracting for DS to stay latched if ten cousins are running around us while we're trying to nurse. It's my choice to do so, however, and I'm not doing it out of courtesy to anyone but MY BABY.
ktbug is offline  
#70 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:13 PM
 
IdahoMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 274
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by elspethshimon View Post
1. The only person to whom a nursing mother owes ANY consideration with respect to comfort is her nursling. End. Of. Story.

2. Sometimes discomfort is deserved.

3. There is no three. I just like lists of threes.


Okay, so you don't care about how the people around you feel. I do. Does that make me wrong? I've brought a whole, large family around to realizing that extended breastfeeding isn't "weird". . . even my GRANDMOTHER is supportive of it now (which is huge). My niece has gone over a year nursing her son, and she has told me that my example has had a lot to do with that. The way I have done things has WORKED in my circle of family and friends.

So how many people are brought around by being "in-your-face, screw you, I don't care how you feel"? I
IdahoMom is offline  
#71 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:15 PM
 
swimswamswum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Chasing my babe.
Posts: 3,855
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by art_teachermommy View Post
now that is a woman!!!!
I'm way too small for that, but wow!
swimswamswum is offline  
#72 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:20 PM
 
ktbug's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: NOVA
Posts: 2,368
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by IdahoMom View Post
Okay, so you don't care about how the people around you feel. I do. Does that make me wrong? I've brought a whole, large family around to realizing that extended breastfeeding isn't "weird". . . even my GRANDMOTHER is supportive of it now (which is huge). My niece has gone over a year nursing her son, and she has told me that my example has had a lot to do with that. The way I have done things has WORKED in my circle of family and friends.

So how many people are brought around by being "in-your-face, screw you, I don't care how you feel"? I
My job isn't to bring people around. My job is to make sure my baby is fed and comfortable. And I've never been "in-your-face, screw you", though I truly DON'T care how they feel about my baby suckling at my breast.

It's great that your way worked out for you.
Your characterization of women who NIP "indiscreetly" is telling, however.

The notion that women who NIP uncovered have a political agenda is kind of infuriating, frankly. I mean, should I suggest that you have a political agenda which is furthered by your covering up/being "discreet" around your family? It's a subjective personal comfort level, and I think all we're asking is that no one else's perception of what's discreet or comfortable be allowed to trump what my baby needs.
ktbug is offline  
#73 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:22 PM
 
the_lissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,838
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by IdahoMom View Post
Okay, so you don't care about how the people around you feel. I do. Does that make me wrong? I've brought a whole, large family around to realizing that extended breastfeeding isn't "weird". . . even my GRANDMOTHER is supportive of it now (which is huge). My niece has gone over a year nursing her son, and she has told me that my example has had a lot to do with that. The way I have done things has WORKED in my circle of family and friends.

So how many people are brought around by being "in-your-face, screw you, I don't care how you feel"? I
Well I don't take others into account because it never occurred to me. It is breastfeeding, not peeing in the middle of the room. It is certainly not "in-your-face, screw you, I don't care how you feel." And all my family and extended family are supportive. I've also been told by many people how I have inspired them.

What I care about most if mother and child's comfort, so if that means a blanket, then great.

If people are only exposed to nursing with a blanket, then they will think those who don't use a blanket are rude, ask them to go somewhere else, cover up, etc.

Jam 7, Peanut Butter 5, and Bread 2.

the_lissa is offline  
#74 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:24 PM
 
IdahoMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 274
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
So lactivism is just about feeding YOUR baby? That's never what I've understood. I thought it was about normalizing it (for lack of a better term) for everyone else, too. And I did specify that that was discretion FOR ME, based on the people I'm around and what I know they're open to.
IdahoMom is offline  
#75 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:25 PM
 
the_lissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,838
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yes lactivism is first and foremost about feeding your baby.

Jam 7, Peanut Butter 5, and Bread 2.

the_lissa is offline  
#76 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:31 PM
 
IdahoMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 274
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Sure, first and foremost. That goes without saying. But that's not all of it, is it?
IdahoMom is offline  
#77 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:37 PM
 
KirstenMary's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 1,382
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by IdahoMom View Post
Sure, first and foremost. That goes without saying. But that's not all of it, is it?
It's not, though, worrying about how everyone else feels about me as I nurse my child, and it's most certainly not about accommodating their issues with NIPing.

Kirsten - wife to Mark and co-sleeping, breastfeeding mother to , :, and
Photography, including Breastfeeding Photography, in my Homepage.
KirstenMary is offline  
#78 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
purple_kangaroo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 547
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by gini1313 View Post
lol, I am just hoping this is not related to the story that I posted about my FIL. If it is, then you definitely either did not read what I wrote very well, or are just hearing what you wanted to hear.
Nope, not at all . . . I thought what you described with your FIL was a great example of both of you being sensitive to each other's comfort and respectful of each other.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
:

My cousin who EP-ed for 6 months says she ended up nursing while driving a number of times and she says the only time it got to her was when traffic slowed down and she was next to a truck.
Oh, boy. I had to re-read this a few times before I realized you didn't actually really mean to say she was "nursing while driving." A while back there was a story in the news about a woman who was in trouble with the law and CPS for nursing her baby while driving . . . remember that? I've had people tell me that on a longdrive they will take the baby out of the car seat to nurse them, and to me that's just scary--having nothing to do with discretion and everything to do with safety.

Although I did nurse a baby in the car a couple times early on when I had a LO with reflux who screamed almost constantly unless she was nursing and we were on a long trip--she was in her car seat and I was buckled in next to her, attempting to lean over and nurse her that way. Talk about uncomfortable and awkward, and exposing a lot of breast! LOL. Obviously I was not driving at the time. I have also pumped in the car when my DH was driving, but I can pump with my shirt down over the pump.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharon, RN View Post
It's a nipple, people. I mean, seriously. . . .

I support NIP however it makes you comfortable. But I agree that the longer we feel the need to hide (be "discreet" for someone else's comfort, because that really means hiding), the longer it's going to take for everyone to see nursing as normal.
So, are you saying that the more women try to not expose their breasts (either by pulling their shirt down over it, or using a blanket, or whatever) that the more people will see nursing itself (covered or not) as something abnormal or shameful? I know that you also said women should feel free to nurse however they feel comfortable, but it almost sounds like you're saying "cover if you must, but if you do you're hurting the cause of nursing."

Quote:
Originally Posted by siobhang View Post
Most of the time, discreet is code for hidden. Many of the people who claim they only want women to be discreet really just don't want to see breastfeeding in their presence - in which case, advertising it with a big blanket or hooter hider is actually more "in your face" than a quick "lift and latch".

In addition, while we all may prefer to avoid showing flesh, circumstances intervene.
I understand and agree with this.


Quote:
Originally Posted by siobhang View Post
Also, while I never felt embarrassed nursing in front of others (especially when I got really comfortable with how much flesh I would show), I will not pump in front of anyone but my husband or kids (I did pump once in front of another mom who was pumping, too - that was actually pretty cool). So please do not equate pumping with nursing - for many women the experience is completely different.
This I don't understand. I mean, I understand that the comfort level and dynamics are different, and a pump doesn't care if it's covered up or not, etc. But pumping is, for some women, just as essential to feeding their baby as nursing is to others. Why should their rights or the acceptability of the action be any different?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathteach View Post
I have dealt with feelings of being ashamed and ugly when I nurse. Don't ask me why. I would be the woman who would rather nurse in the bathroom. I usually find a Nordstrom's and even there, where many women are supportive, I feel very insecure.

When I went to my cousin's son's birthday party, my aunt took me aside and told me to nurse in an empty room because she didn't want the kids to see "that." I nursed alone listening to them sing Happy Birthday and open presents. It was such a lonely, shaming feeling.
I'm sorry you experienced this. That is why, if possible, I will offer to keep a guest company if she feels a need to nurse in another room while at my home. I almost always just nurse my child in whatever room everyone else is in, and my guests usually do the same, but occasionally I will have someone who is uncomfortable nursing in front of men and I will accommodate that. Usually I'll mention to them that my DH is ok with it and they are welcome to nurse wherever they are most comfortable. But I'd never pressure anyone to nurse in front of the men if they were uncomfortable with it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post
Exactly. That is so sad and you are so right.

Even if I wanted to cover up, which I don,t and my children will not accept in any case, I wouldn't because seeing some skin will normalize it and hopefully that will mean even one less woman nursing on a bathroom floor.
I completely agree that nobody should feel that she has to nurse on a bedroom floor, ever. But I find it very interesting that you would say you wouldn't cover up even if you wanted to. If you wanted to cover up and didn't do it because you felt it was helping the cause of lactivism more to nurse uncovered, that would be exactly the type of thing I'm having a bit of trouble understanding. Do you think women who cover are helping to create an environment that makes other women feel that they have to nurse in the bathroom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arwyn View Post

And then there are some of us who just PREFER pulling our breasts out rather than lifting up, and don't particularly care how much flesh we show (I show more pulling up, anyway, albeit belly flesh not breast flesh). I don't like having that fabric between me and my baby, and in the early months, it was a major hindrance to getting a good latch. I want to be able to see his face, and I want him to see mine. Maybe it's just the shirts I wear, but if I have to pull up, and I try to have "hem to lip", it's just hard, especially if he needs to relatch. I much prefer to pull the shirt all the way up out of my way, or just pull my tanktop or shirt down.

Why do I care if someone asks me to be "more discreet"? Because that offends me. It is offensive to me as a woman, a nursing woman, a mother. By those rules my being offended means they should have consideration and not ask me. I mean, it's only polite.
Thanks for explaining your view.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KirstenMary View Post
She did it in a separate room, and she was pumping, not nursing. Pumping is both mental as well as physical, and I know many women who cannot pump with a shirt and bra on. I cannot, though, understand why you would want to keep her company while she pumped.
I offered to go with her because she needed someone to show her where the electrical outlet was in the room, etc. and because she and I had been in the middle of the conversation and it wouldn't result in any other guests being neglected. If I remember right, I offered to leave after I got her settled when she started getting ready to pump while I was still there after showing her to the room, and she indicated that she would enjoy my company.

I didn't want her to feel that she had to be isolated or alone, so I offered to keep her company. If I'd known she was going to take off her entire shirt and everything, I probably wouldn't have offered, but it was fine. I was slightly uncomfortable, but I didn't say anything and I got over it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rmzbm View Post
So WHAT if someone DOES disrobe to nurse? If I wanna strip from the waist up...people will have to learn to cope or leave. Their issue. Not mine.
Thanks for sharing your opinion. I'm glad to know there are people out there who feel this way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gini1313 View Post
I don't understand why making everyone feel comfortable isn't a two way street.
I liked your entire post, and thought you worded it well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chimpmandee View Post
I guess, OP, it sounds like you personally are uncomfortable with many aspects of nursing. It doesn't sound like that is going to be changed by anyone here. But I guarantee that your attitudes about nursing aren't doing any of us any favors. You are making it harder for women to feed their babies the way they were meant to be fed.

I am making it harder how? By discussing it on a message board? By covering when I nurse? Or by providing a place for any visitors in my home who want to take their shirt off to do it in private?

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post
NO i have no problem with toplessness. It is a breast.

Your examples are getting more and more ridiculous, and I highly doubt they are true.

The theme park story would be easy enough to verify because lots of people would have been talking about it. Not to mention, riders are not allowed to take duffel bags on rides either. It is clearly untrue.

I read it on a message board for theme park employees. It may or may not have been true. I'd link to it, but I don't think that's allowed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post
Do you understand that many babies or toddlers will not nurse while being covered?

Do you understand that new mothers feel isolated enough without being told to go somewhere else or turn away to nurse? Or ridiculously hidden with a screen.

Do you understand that taking your breast out of your shirt may be the easiest or only way one can nurse their baby (that is how I have to nurse in a bathing suit)?
Yes, I understand this. What I don't understand is the "I wouldn't cover up even if I wanted to, because covering hurts the cause of lactivism" attitude.

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post
The reason why asking someone to cover up is an unforgivable offense to me is that it has been shown to cause women to stop nursing. It leads to women nursing on dirty bathroom floors like in mamajama's post.
I guess I can sort of see this, but I guess I don't think it should be the case. I think there's such a huge variation in circumstances and behaviors that it's hard to say you can never, for instance, offer a woman a blanket or ask if she'd like to sit in the nursery, without it leading to her nursing in the bathroom

Quote:
Originally Posted by IdahoMom View Post
I personally think I'm doing more for the cause of lactivism when I'm willing to make some concessions to feed my baby. My family isn't comfortable with NIP, and "public" in this case includes their homes. The idea of nursing past about 3 months is different for most of them. But I'm respectful to them, too, while still meeting my baby's needs. I cover with a blanket, and I'm fine with that. In their homes, I ask where they'd like me to feed the baby. Since they know I'll be discreet (which in my case means covering my boobs totally LOL) they most often want me to stay in the living room. I find them getting more and more comfortable with it, because of my relaxed and cooperative attitude. Even my dad, who has been freaked out by nursing to the point of leaving the house when I'd nurse my first, is much more comfortable now.
That's kind of how I feel, too.
purple_kangaroo is offline  
#79 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:40 PM
 
annettemarie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: In the Restricted Section
Posts: 34,451
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by IdahoMom View Post
Sure, first and foremost. That goes without saying. But that's not all of it, is it?
This notion that women shouldn't be too "in your face" while breastfeeding and should be accommodating to the ridiculous prejudices of those around them is sadly reminiscent of the struggle for civil rights/equal rights, when women and minorities were told not to get too uppity and to set a good example so the people in power wouldn't think badly of them. And you know what? It didn't work. You don't normalize breastfeeding by doing it under a pup tent (or behind a "decorative screen") The best way to normalize breastfeeding is to do it in plain sight. And if someone doesn't like it, they can look away.

Flowers, fairies, gardens, and rainbows-- Seasons of Joy: 10 weeks of crafts, handwork, painting, coloring, circle time, fairy tales, and more!
Check out the blog for family fun, homeschooling, books, simple living, and 6 fabulous children, including twin toddlers

annettemarie is offline  
#80 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:47 PM
 
elspethshimon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Columbus, OH
Posts: 995
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by IdahoMom View Post
Okay, so you don't care about how the people around you feel. I do. Does that make me wrong? I've brought a whole, large family around to realizing that extended breastfeeding isn't "weird". . . even my GRANDMOTHER is supportive of it now (which is huge). My niece has gone over a year nursing her son, and she has told me that my example has had a lot to do with that. The way I have done things has WORKED in my circle of family and friends.

So how many people are brought around by being "in-your-face, screw you, I don't care how you feel"? I
I am more than willing to discuss the politics and practices of breastfeeding in a polite, non-confrontational manner but when it comes down to their discomfort vs. that of a nursing mother and her babe, no I really don't care how other people feel.
elspethshimon is offline  
#81 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:49 PM
 
IdahoMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 274
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If you're happy with how that's working out for you, super. Far be it for me to tell you otherwise. But don't tell me that my decision to make reasonable efforts to be considerate is hurting "the cause", because you'd be wrong. The opposite is actually true for me.
IdahoMom is offline  
#82 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
purple_kangaroo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 547
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ugh, so sorry for all the typos. I had a 2-year-old trying to climb on the keyboard because she wanted to nurse, and my DH hanging over me saying he needed me to hurry up and finish so he could use the laptop.
purple_kangaroo is offline  
#83 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:56 PM
 
the_lissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,838
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by purple_kangaroo View Post

I completely agree that nobody should feel that she has to nurse on a bedroom floor, ever. But I find it very interesting that you would say you wouldn't cover up even if you wanted to. If you wanted to cover up and didn't do it because you felt it was helping the cause of lactivism more to nurse uncovered, that would be exactly the type of thing I'm having a bit of trouble understanding. Do you think women who cover are helping to create an environment that makes other women feel that they have to nurse in the bathroom?
No I don't think women who cover are helping create this environment. This environment is already created, and if that is how they feel comfortable to nurse, then I support that 100%.

However, if no one nursed without a cover, then those who cannot nurse with a cover, like me, would be more harassed. "Why can't you cover up? All these other women are covering up."

I think that nursing without a cover helps, not that nursing with a cover hurts.

Jam 7, Peanut Butter 5, and Bread 2.

the_lissa is offline  
#84 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:58 PM
 
HelloKitty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Next door to the possums
Posts: 11,369
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by art_teachermommy View Post
Kangaroo -
I say this with as much love as possible...you really need to get yourself grounded to what is in the realm of normaily for NIP. I have yet to see, even the most confident, 'lactivist', nursing mother do any of the extreme things you are suggesting.
If a mother feels more comfortable herself to be seating in the back of a restaurant, facing away from the other patrons in order for her to feed her child...that's her own perogitive. However, I don't feel that this should expected or asked of her in anyway.
Really...this entire thread goes back to the fact that our society has pushed bf'ing so far away from anything normalized that women are unable to breastfeed even in front of those they consider 'loved ones'.
None of us are asking to dance on tables with a child attached to one breast while a tassel is attached to the other...we are just asking to do what is natural.
with much
Well said.

Yes it seems OP that you are pulling from outrageous examples to make some point without really taking into consideration a normal NIP situation. I have BF around people that are uncomfortable with nursing, I do not desire to make them uncomfortable but I don't think their comfort level somehow trumps mine either. They have the option to look away - I do not ask them to go to another room, I expect not to be asked to go to another room as well. We can peacefully co-exist.

I'm still trying to wrap my brain around the idea that a waitress dragging an 8 foot screen through a restaurant would be more discreet than a woman nursing her child.

Great for nature studies! http://www.pleinairkids.com
Plein Air Kids - Handmade wooden art boxes for Budding Artists.
HelloKitty is offline  
#85 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:59 PM
 
the_lissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,838
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by purple_kangaroo View Post

I guess I can sort of see this, but I guess I don't think it should be the case. I think there's such a huge variation in circumstances and behaviors that it's hard to say you can never, for instance, offer a woman a blanket or ask if she'd like to sit in the nursery, without it leading to her nursing in the bathroom
Of course it won't do that to every woman, but it has been shown to lower bf rates.

A lot of women don't want to breastfeed because they are worried what people will say. Many women get discouraged by these kinds of comments.

It most definitely hurts bf rates.

There is a fundamental difference in philosophy here. Those who have no problem with nursing wherever, uncovered do not see anything wrong with nursing a child, a naked breast, etc.

Jam 7, Peanut Butter 5, and Bread 2.

the_lissa is offline  
#86 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 04:59 PM
 
artgoddess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Suburban hell
Posts: 12,661
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by IdahoMom View Post
Okay, so you don't care about how the people around you feel. I do. Does that make me wrong? I've brought a whole, large family around to realizing that extended breastfeeding isn't "weird". . . even my GRANDMOTHER is supportive of it now (which is huge). My niece has gone over a year nursing her son, and she has told me that my example has had a lot to do with that. The way I have done things has WORKED in my circle of family and friends.

So how many people are brought around by being "in-your-face, screw you, I don't care how you feel"? I
Jumping in this thread to say I have never asked anyone or felt I should ask anyone where they would like me to nurse. And that has nothing to do with me teaching anyone or me trying to bring anyone around. I am not making a statement or taking a stand by feeding my baby or toddler. I'm just feeding them, no more taking a stand than taking an apple out of my bag and handing it to my son for a snack is.

I think that drawing attention to your feeding your babe or the fact that it could make someone else uncomfortable is doing more damage than good. If nursing your little one is just something that is normal people will treat it as normal. I have no issue if YOU feel awkward and want to hide yourself.
artgoddess is offline  
#87 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 05:02 PM
 
the_lissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,838
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post

Why is it that you get to decide what is discreet and reasonable? As I said, you may think covering up is reasonable. Someone else may think a woman should pump milk or nurse in a bathroom. I think a woman should be able to nurse where and however is most comfortable for them and their children. Why is your view right?



Some people are uncomfortable or offended if women work outside the home or if same sex couples hold hands in public? Would you tell these people to make reasonable attempts at easing other people's offense?

.
I wish someone would answer these questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by elspethshimon View Post
I am more than willing to discuss the politics and practices of breastfeeding in a polite, non-confrontational manner but when it comes down to their discomfort vs. that of a nursing mother and her babe, no I really don't care how other people feel.
Exactly.

Jam 7, Peanut Butter 5, and Bread 2.

the_lissa is offline  
#88 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 05:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
purple_kangaroo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 547
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by HelloKitty View Post
Well said.

Yes it seems OP that you are pulling from outrageous examples to make some point without really taking into consideration a normal NIP situation. . . .

I'm still trying to wrap my brain around the idea that a waitress dragging an 8 foot screen through a restaurant would be more discreet than a woman nursing her child.
It might be more discreet if the woman had taken her shirt off to nurse.

About the outrageous examples: I guess I'm trying to look at it from a "follow the argument through to its logical end" perspective.

If it's really true that every woman should always be able to nurse whenever and however she wants with absolutely no limits and absolutely no requirement for discretion or modesty, then the logical conclusion to that argument would be that she should be able to nurse topless in public if she so chooses. If it's always wrong to ever ask a woman to be more discreet no matter how much breast she is showing or where she is, then it would be wrong to ask a woman not to take off her shirt to nurse in my living room.

See what I mean?

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post
No I don't think women who cover are helping create this environment. This environment is already created, and if that is how they feel comfortable to nurse, then I support that 100%.

However, if no one nursed without a cover, then those who cannot nurse with a cover, like me, would be more harassed. "Why can't you cover up? All these other women are covering up."

I think that nursing without a cover helps, not that nursing with a cover hurts.
Thanks for explaining this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HybridVigor View Post
Body modesty is HUGELY societal construct.

Don't let anyone shame you! It is up to you, as a powerful, life-giving Mother, to choose whether or not others may have the pleasure of your company as you miraculously make milk!

Let go of the shame. Let go of the fear. Let the negativity of others flow past you, never touching you. NEVER feed your precious child on the dirty bathroom floor.

If you want to cover up, and your baby doesn't pull the blanket off (like mine would), do so. If you don't want to, don't. Remain calm even in the face of adversity. You are doing what is right, what is natural, and what is best for your child . . . and ultimately the world. If others ask you to leave or to cover, do what YOU know is right . . . whether it is to grant the the ignorant or those who have body hang-ups some clemency or not . . .

Just keep in mind that a calm, assertive, and educational overtone work best in all situations.
Lovely post.

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post
Some people are uncomfortable or offended if women work outside the home or if same sex couples hold hands in public? Would you tell these people to make reasonable attempts at easing other people's offense?
See, I don't think this is a good comparison at all. Women working outside the home isn't even in the same universe as a comparison, because there are no laws against women working outside the home being seen in public and it doesn't violate any widely accepted societal standards.

In our culture (and yes, it is a totally subjective, cultural thing rather than an absolute right or wrong) we have certain standards of decency. It is considered indecent to expose certain body parts or engage in certain acts in public. We have laws and widely-accepted societal standards about this.

So, same sex couple holding hands in public--not really a problem, because in general anybody can hold hands with anyone in public in our society, anyway. Besides, it's a moot point what sex they are anyway. Just because someone is holding hands doesn't mean they're romantically involved. Holding hands is not inappropriate and can be completely non-sexual.

However, if that same-sex couple was making out to an extent that they were getting inappropriately sexual in public, I would say they should be held to the same standards as any other couple. Getting it on in public just isn't okay in our society, no matter what the gender combination is. Being a same-sex couple should NOT give them extra protection or rights that no other couple has.

In our society, exposing the breasts is considered inappropriate. In most parts of the country, a woman walking around topless would be asked to leave or cover up. Why, then, should a woman be allowed to go topless just because she is nursing, when no other woman is allowed to do the same? Isn't that discrimination, when one group of people is treated differently than the rest?

A woman coming into a mainstream restaurant with her nipples showing is unlikely to be served and may be asked to cover up or leave. Asking a nursing mother to, for instance, make a reasonable effort to cover her other nipple (the one the baby isn't actually attached to) if it's exposed while nursing doesn't seem much different to me. The nursing mother isn't really being discriminated against if she's being expected to adhere to the same standards as everyone else, is she?

Incidental or accidental exposure is in our culture generally not considered offensive in the same way that purposefully choosing to be exposed would be. This is where I think breastfeeding generally falls. Nobody should be offended at accidentally seeing a woman's nipple for a moment while she is nursing, any more than anyone would be offended at noticing a button had come undone on someone's shirt, or if a woman had a spider in her shirt and ended up exposing her breasts trying to get it out. It's not like they're showing it on purpose, or like they're making a habit of exposing their nipples because they like to.

To use a comparison that's not really equivalent but is the best I can think of at the moment, think of unzipped pants revealing a man's equipment peeking out of his boxer shorts.

If he just went to the bathroom and forgot to fasten his pants afterward, people will generally respond by either trying not to look, or by discreetly telling the person to "XYZ". People might be embarrassed or uncomfortable, but most people wouldn't be offended.

However, if a person was in a crowd and just decided to unzip their pants because he wanted to and leave them that way even after being asked to "cover up", most people in our culture would have a problem with that. If he walked around with his pants unzipped just because he liked exposing himself or felt it was more comfortable that way, it would be a huge issue. It would be considered indecent exposure.

That's the best I can explain as to why I think many people see a difference between incidental exposure that happens inadvertently while feeding a baby, versus the woman who chooses to just take her shirt off or expose the entire breast while nursing. Being uncomfortable with the latter does not necessarily mean they are against breastfeeding.
purple_kangaroo is offline  
#89 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 06:07 PM
 
HelloKitty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Next door to the possums
Posts: 11,369
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by purple_kangaroo View Post
I
About the outrageous examples: I guess I'm trying to look at it from a "follow the argument through to its logical end" perspective.

If it's really true that every woman should always be able to nurse whenever and however she wants with absolutely no limits and absolutely no requirement for discretion or modesty, then the logical conclusion to that argument would be that she should be able to nurse topless in public if she so chooses. If it's always wrong to ever ask a woman to be more discreet no matter how much breast she is showing or where she is, then it would be wrong to ask a woman not to take off her shirt to nurse in my living room.

See what I mean?
No I don't. It's logical end is not women taking off their shirts in restaurants everywhere, waving their tatas and hoping people will look at them. The logical end is acceptance for average NIP behavior. Just like I think it's extreme for a women to choose to bottle feed in public because she might feel uncomfortable getting use to NIP, I also think it's extreme for a woman to take off her entire shirt to nurse in someone's living room.

ETA that does not mean I think people should not advocate for a woman's right to nurse in public wherever and however she sees fit, I think people should advocate for that and accept that in some cases things will be taken to extremes because hey that's life.

Great for nature studies! http://www.pleinairkids.com
Plein Air Kids - Handmade wooden art boxes for Budding Artists.
HelloKitty is offline  
#90 of 145 Old 01-21-2008, 06:18 PM
 
ruhbehka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 503
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm just curious to know if anyone who NIP with a cover actually nurses on demand beyond the age of 9 or 10 months.

I can't imagine nursing my toddler or 3 year old under a blanket. Heck, my 17 month old sits next to me, in a restaurant booth, with his head tucked in my armpit, to nurse. If I threw a blanket over him, it would be like nursing a little ghost-ling.

I have known only one woman who was uncomfortable NIP and also practiced extended nursing... but she wouldn't even nurse in front of other nursing mom friends, and by 18 months, she only allowed her LO to nurse at bedtime and naptime, at home. Not my ideal nursing relationship.

Rebecca, mama to M (08/06) and E (04/09)
ruhbehka is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off