asked to cover at an up-coming wedding, wwyd? - Page 5 - Mothering Forums

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#121 of 157 Old 10-30-2008, 03:38 PM
 
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IMO, not going is the more compliant act. If you do go, at least you're exposing a wedding full of people to breastfeeding. However it's done.
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#122 of 157 Old 10-30-2008, 04:21 PM
 
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Originally Posted by AuntNi View Post
I'm asking this in the nicest way I can: why do we as members of this lactivism board get outraged and have nurse-ins when a server at Applebee's asks a nursing mom to use a blanket? But when it's a friend who asks a mom to use a blanket, we're supposed to be good little women and comply with the request? I honestly don't understand why we're supposed to act differently in these two situations. Is it because we're paying money to eat at Applebee's? Well, flying a family cross-country to take part in a wedding is a heck of a lot more expensive than a plate of Riblets.

No, it's because it's the difference between a public place where anyone can go and a private place or event. If I invite you to my house and you start breastfeeding and I don't like it, I can ask you to stop breastfeeding or leave, and you have to either stop breastfeeding or leave. Your right to breastfeed in public is not protected in my home.

While a wedding may be hosted at a hotel or reception hall, it is a private event and the rules aren't quite the same nor is the etiquette. Your invitation to my wedding can be revoked at any time, and if you show up and I want you to leave, I can have you removed. I don't have to have a reason and you don't have a right to breastfeed at my private wedding.

Many times, business owners use the same rules to eject nursing mothers, basically saying that their "invitation" to be on the property has been revoked. If the statute doesn't specifically provide a remedy, there's really no recourse except something like a nurse-in and public outrage to force a policy change. But there is no statute that would possibly protect your right to breastfeed in my private residence. Maybe a wedding is somewhere in the middle; maybe it isn't (I was married at my MIL's house). But I don't think you could enforce a legal right to not be kicked out of someone's wedding, no matter how stupid, ignorant, or awful the reason may be (including categories that are legally protected from discrimination, like race, religion or gender).

I wholeheartedly believe that we should educate, inform, and normalize breastfeeding. I think pretty much everyone here agrees on that; we just differ (often) on how, when, where, what, and to what extent.

I would not consider myself anything as demeaning as a "good little woman" for approaching this type of situation with tact, patience, respect, and choosing my battle (for example, this is an issue I would probably deal with after the wedding, maybe even six months later, rather than being confrontational about it on the wedding day or before).

I think the situation (and therefore the approach) is quite starkly different between being asked to leave a public place while nursing and being asked by the organizer of a private event to modify my behavior while nursing. It doesn't mean that I agree with either one of those requests, just that the manner of dealing with the situation is going to be different.
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#123 of 157 Old 10-30-2008, 06:59 PM
 
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I agree that ignorance needs education. I disagree that this needs to happen before someone's wedding. Like I said further upthread, weddings (especially big, family, weddings) can be extremely stressful. I still remember mine well. You are being pulled in 2000 different ways and sometimes you just feel caught in the middle. If I ever get married again, I will elope . I thing the education can take place later.
One could say the same about a server or manager in a restaurant -- trying to make all of the guests happy is not easy and they are being pulled in a hundred directions at once too. Does that mean we should have sympathy for them when they ask us to cover and educate them later when they're not so stressed? Sorry, I'm not buying it. Like Emmeline II said, the educating can be done gently and politely but sometimes backing down and 'complying' for the sake of not rocking the boat is not an option.

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#124 of 157 Old 10-30-2008, 08:58 PM
 
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One could say the same about a server or manager in a restaurant -- trying to make all of the guests happy is not easy and they are being pulled in a hundred directions at once too. Does that mean we should have sympathy for them when they ask us to cover and educate them later when they're not so stressed? Sorry, I'm not buying it. Like Emmeline II said, the educating can be done gently and politely but sometimes backing down and 'complying' for the sake of not rocking the boat is not an option.
But the server isn't your friend. I do expect my friends to have sympathy for me when I am acting out of ignorance and I do the same for them. That's what makes it a friendship.
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#125 of 157 Old 10-30-2008, 09:17 PM
 
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i believe compromise in friendship is when you go with your friend to the opera, and then he goes with you to a metallica concert.

asking a baby to eat hidden under a blanket because some people might be offended is terribly wrong IMO.
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#126 of 157 Old 10-31-2008, 07:37 AM
 
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But the server isn't your friend. I do expect my friends to have sympathy for me when I am acting out of ignorance and I do the same for them. That's what makes it a friendship.
You can be sympathetic and still educate someone at the same time. Like I said, it doesn't have to be pushy or rude. Her DH could say "I appreciate that this is your wedding and you want everyone to be comfortable and have a good time and I realise that you probably don't know a great deal about breastfeeding, but this is an issue we can't compromise on. It's not just a matter of etiquette, it's a matter of health for our child. If you can't take my word on it that my wife will feed our child discreetly, in the way we see fit and most appropriate (with the nursing dress and sling), then perhaps we need to have a discussion about my participation in and presence at the wedding."

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#127 of 157 Old 10-31-2008, 10:17 AM
 
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You can be sympathetic and still educate someone at the same time. Like I said, it doesn't have to be pushy or rude. Her DH could say "I appreciate that this is your wedding and you want everyone to be comfortable and have a good time and I realise that you probably don't know a great deal about breastfeeding, but this is an issue we can't compromise on. It's not just a matter of etiquette, it's a matter of health for our child. If you can't take my word on it that my wife will feed our child discreetly, in the way we see fit and most appropriate (with the nursing dress and sling), then perhaps we need to have a discussion about my participation in and presence at the wedding."
ITA. This is acting with sympathy. Being compassionate and understanding does not equal rolling over and capitulating. Some of the responses people are describing are hostile and combative -- not the way I would treat a friend.
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#128 of 157 Old 10-31-2008, 07:01 PM
 
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One could say the same about a server or manager in a restaurant -- trying to make all of the guests happy is not easy and they are being pulled in a hundred directions at once too. Does that mean we should have sympathy for them when they ask us to cover and educate them later when they're not so stressed? Sorry, I'm not buying it. Like Emmeline II said, the educating can be done gently and politely but sometimes backing down and 'complying' for the sake of not rocking the boat is not an option.




Resturant = public place

Wedding/Reception = not a public event.

Apples and swingsets .

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#129 of 157 Old 10-31-2008, 07:15 PM
 
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Is it the possible exposure of a breast or the act of breastfeeding itself that is (potentially) offensive to this groom?

If it's just the breast, then the accommodations that most nursing mothers make, including what the op will be doing (sling, nursing dress), should be more than sufficient.

If it's the act of breastfeeding itself (thus the covering of the entire infant's head with a blanket), then we've got an entirely different thing going on.

How about an ego-stroking statement like "don't worry, "Groomzilla", no one's going to pay attention to my wife and infant, everyone's eyes will be on you and your beautiful bride." Honestly, I bet this is what Bride- and Groom-zilla want to hear. It may be less about comfort of guests, but more about some drama-whoriness going on.
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#130 of 157 Old 10-31-2008, 07:58 PM
 
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I would say nothing. If he asks again, say its going to be OK. If pressed, I would say I was covering up. And then not. If some crazy Aunt flies at you on the day, well, thats going to make for a fun little wedding video, isnt it. And whats the groom going to do? Interrupt the service to come down and inform you to cover up? Honestly, I cant see any man having an issue with this, I would be 99% sure its coming from someone else and he is just the poor mouthpiece.

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#131 of 157 Old 10-31-2008, 08:27 PM
 
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I don't understand the suggestions that this friendship be nullified over this issue. IMO, that would create a stink about breastfeeding. Not the kinda press BF'ing needs in a new family that will most likely face the issue themselves someday.

I don't agree with every little thing my friends stand for but I can't see that this should be a deal breaker.


And *terribly wrong* to me would be saying that the baby can't breastfeed at this wedding, which isn't the case.
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#132 of 157 Old 10-31-2008, 09:12 PM
 
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Even though it's not something I usually do, if a friend asked me to cover at their wedding I would.

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#133 of 157 Old 10-31-2008, 09:18 PM
 
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the baby can only breastfeed if his head is hidden under a blanket.
this is not a little thing, the OP is willing to compromise, she will wear a nursing bra and a sling, but the groom is only happy if the head is covered. He is the one being ureasonable.

If we keep covering to make other people feel comfortable...where is the lactivism? We are perpetrating the notion that a baby eating has to remain out of sight.

Maybe the groom can eat under a blanket, and see if it's comfortable.
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#134 of 157 Old 11-01-2008, 12:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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dh has had several conversations w/ bf about this issue I am pretty impressed w/ how dh is handling it. We decided not to send a pic of me nursing as we felt there just isn't anything to prove.
Today there conversation went something like this:
dh - you know bf my dw will be wearing a nursing dress and will most likely have the baby in a sling. Nothing will be showing and dw and I would never do anything at your wedding that would draw attention away from you and your bride. Dw and I have decided that I will attend and support you no matter what. Dw would like to come but it will be very uncomfortable for her and probably for the baby to have to use a blanket so she has decided that if you aren't comfortable w/ her nusing the baby w/ a nursing dress and in the sling then she will probably stay home.
bf- well does that cover up the baby
dh- no but it makes it so that the baby can nurse w/out any breast showing, most people don't even know the baby is nursing.
bf- that makes since can you send a pic.
dh- long silence
bf- just kidding, I will trust that this will be like using a blanket
dh- thanks, we both really want to be there to support you but we want to make sure to do what we feel comfortable w/ as well.
bf- no problem....

So I thought it went pretty well. I don't think he has any clue that someone can be covered w/out actually covering up the baby so we have had a chance to educate someone about NIP and will now NIP at the wedding. So I think it went well.
I appreciate all of the responses it helped me to kind of process the whole thing. DH handled it in a very reasonable manner. I got all worked up about it and if I had been the one that had to be dealing w/ bf about it I am sure that it wouldn't have gone well bcs I would have been snarky and pissed him off.
Thanks again for all of you response. I am completely amazed at how many responses there were. Can I just say I love MDC::

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#135 of 157 Old 11-01-2008, 10:28 AM
 
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that's great, crisis averted
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#136 of 157 Old 11-01-2008, 01:22 PM
 
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Great OP! I hope you all have a good time! Sounds like you've got a keeper there with your DH.
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#137 of 157 Old 11-01-2008, 03:32 PM
 
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That's great. Have a great time at the wedding. Oh, and BTW, your DH is a gem. Please tell him I said so.
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#138 of 157 Old 11-01-2008, 04:55 PM
 
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I'm glad this is taken care of! Awesome DH!
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#139 of 157 Old 11-02-2008, 02:09 PM
 
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That is great news, you should be so proud of your DH! I'm glad that you were able to work everything out.

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#140 of 157 Old 11-06-2008, 12:16 AM
 
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Oh, its all resolved now.

I just wanted to go on record to say I wouldn't cover. I'd willingly not go if they insisted.
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#141 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 12:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We went to the wedding and I was x-tra cautious to be discrete bcs it was there wedding and i knew that was important to them. I nursed mostly in the mei tai and was always wearing nursing clothes and not a mm of skin was showing ever. I did not cover with a blanket and did not excuse myself to nurse just as we had agreed upon.
The whole weekend went great, the wedding was beautiful, met some new people and had a great time. The groom told me how glad he was that i came and that he was glad we had worked everything out. (this was the day after the wedding just as we were leaving).

We got back sun. night and tues. morning dh gets a voicemail from his bff that he had just received a call from someone complaining about my nursing at the wedding. That he is upset at us and wants to talk. Dh is so upset and hurt by this. I am beyond frustrated. There is absolutely nothing i could have done diff. except cover w/ a blanket or excuse myself every time she nursed which i had already stated ahead of time that i was unwilling to do that but it would be ok for me not to come.

Who calls someone on their honeymoon to complain about their wedding? They were a guest.
I am so frustrated bcs i have been nursing strait through for almost 7 yrs and have never had a prob. now it is someone close to us that is doing this.
I am just letting dh deal w/ this but am saddened that his bff is doing this to us. I am really hoping that they can resolve it w/out ending the friendship.

Thanks for all of your wonderful support before the wedding. Any nice thoughts or prayers would be great.

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#142 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 12:42 AM
 
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Well that sucks.

I'm sorry this has upset you. Of course you did nothing wrong. It sounds like the guy was going to find fault with whatever you did from the get-go.

Maybe he will feel differently when he has children.
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#143 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 12:44 AM
 
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:

I'm so sorry. I was hoping for a happy update, what a weird turn of events.

This kind of comes back to the point I made before, about whether this issue is truly about the possibility of skin showing vs. the act of breastfeeding itself.

It sounds like it wouldn't have mattered how discreet you were, they were bothered by the fact that you were nursing, period. That kind of ignorance and backwardness is hard to counter, it might be best to just let it go, if possible. At this point it seems like the only "right" thing that you could have done was not to go at all, to have spared them all from having to even think about how a baby is eating.

Moot point now, of course.

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#144 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 01:34 AM
 
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We got back sun. night and tues. morning dh gets a voicemail from his bff that he had just received a call from someone complaining about my nursing at the wedding. That he is upset at us and wants to talk.
To what end? The wedding is O-V-E-R . Discussing it can only end badly; what does he expect you to say "my wife is heartily ashamed that someone realized she was bfing under a Mei Tai and nursing shirt"?

I would leave a voice mail back saying, "' "Jim" the wedding is over; enjoy your honeymoon".

If he call back again, "Dude, it's in the past; I'm not getting into it with you. Hey, did you have any bean dip on your honeymoon? Our resort had great bean dip!"

My BIL called us on our honeymoon to tell me that a friend of my parents died (someone I probably met, but was in no way close enough to to merit that type of interruption). This was a follow-up call to the "did you make it there" phone call the morning after we left (9 a.m. seemingly on behalf of my dad) though the weather was sunny/clear and I normally lived in Germany and I no longer regularly informed my parents of my movements.

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#145 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 03:01 AM
 
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As crazy as it sounds, I would really try not to stress about it. You came to the decision that you were comfortable, you had fun, the wedding weekend is over. the end. If someone really took the time to call and complain to someone about ANYTHING that happened at their wedding it seems like they have issues.

I really hope this doesn't ruin a long friendship. Just seems like life is too short... Hope it all works out, but really, you know what is important to you, let him say what he needs to and don't fret it. I agree with Emilinne II

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#146 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 11:11 AM
 
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Brutal, this was definitely not about covering.

I hope your DH listens to his friend and then reminds him of the agreement you had going in.

Who complained? Could this possibly have been a cultural thing as well (where in some cultures/religions modesty is a much bigger deal?). I just don't get it.
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#147 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 11:16 AM
 
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To what end? The wedding is O-V-E-R . Discussing it can only end badly; what does he expect you to say "my wife is heartily ashamed that someone realized she was bfing under a Mei Tai and nursing shirt"?

I would leave a voice mail back saying, "' "Jim" the wedding is over; enjoy your honeymoon".

If he call back again, "Dude, it's in the past; I'm not getting into it with you. Hey, did you have any bean dip on your honeymoon? Our resort had great bean dip!"
:

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#148 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 12:44 PM
 
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Yes, what kind of twisted person calls a groom on their honeymoon to complain about something that happened at the wedding?
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#149 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 04:40 PM
 
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Who calls someone on their honeymoon to complain about their wedding?
: !!!

I don't get people. Even if someone was offended by BFing (which just ... whatever), why can't they just keep it to themselves, or complain about it privately to their spouse or something? Who actually CALLS somebody to complain, as though someone should Do Something About It??? It's so confusing and infuriating. I mean, what exactly does this person want to have happen? And why is the groom taking even more time away from his honeymoon to pass the message along to you? Argh. I'm sorry you're dealing with this, OP -- I think the pps are right that you should just ignore it -- it's too inane to even spend time on.

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#150 of 157 Old 04-23-2009, 06:23 PM
 
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Yes, what kind of twisted person calls a groom on their honeymoon to complain about something that happened at the wedding?

I wonder if it was the bride? I don't know a single person verbose enough to contact someone days after their wedding and complaining about a boobie that they didn't see, but may have seen.

I'd tell him to drop it, move on, and not discuss this with him again. Weddings are for celebrating love, not for telling people what to do and how to live.

Yikes.
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