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breastfeeding in public, share your story

(39 Posts)
syl1985 Wed 21-Aug-13 01:10:04

Hi ladies,

I haven't fed my 3 boys much in public, but that was because giving them breast milk never went very well.

I'm again, really going to try to make it work this time.

But when you're outdoors.
Where will you feed the baby?

If you feed them in a public place do you get any nasty comments?
I've been looking online for breast milk information.

I ended up on youtube on these "how to breast feed" instruction videos. What shocked me was that all of them had rude comments on them. From men who somehow think giving breast milk is a sexual thing.

Even people posting by the comments advertisement for porn websites.

I don't mind feeding my baby if he's hungry. But I'd feel horrible if a man would stare at me or something.
If someone would give me a rude comment. I really wouldn't have any idea on what to do. I'd be furious.
I'm then feeding my child. How can that be erotic to anyone?

And if it's, then keep it to yourself. Don't they understand that for most of us women it feels really uncomfortable that there're idiots around who do get hard by seeing us giving our baby our own milk.

With my 1st son I once posted a nice picture somewhere online for family to see. It was a picture not long after birth that I gave him my breast.

Some asshole, how he got there, I don't know.
Somehow thought it was ok to post there that he would love to suck my breasts too.

I immediately deleted that picture and I never posted anything like that ever again online.
After reading the comments on you tube I quickly learned that there're a lot of men who find it erotic to watch a lady giving her baby her breast.

Not only that but they totally don't get it that (to me) these comments felt so uncomfortable to read.

I really don't want any weirdo's to say those things to me face to face or stare at me when I'm feeding my baby.

Anyone who wants to share her feeding outdoors experiences with me?
Are there ladies who just wouldn't care what someone else thinks about them?

Maybe it's a personal thing. I just don't feel comfortable with walking around naked when other men can see me.
For example my partner likes going to sauna's. In Holland, where we come from those are usually nude.
He asked me to come too. I told him how I felt about it. But he wanted me to try it. So I did

I HATED every second of it!!!
Even worse was when someone tried to talk to me. A lady, no problem. With a man I felt like: 'What do you want of me? Just leave me alone'.

And I'll be honest. I didn't always have good experience with men. Maybe it's what has happened to me that makes it difficult for me to feel ok in the nude around men.

Difficult is a big word. If they leave me alone, no problem. It's when I get the feeling they want something of me. I feel very tense and angry. If they leave me alone and don't even look at me. I'm fine and happy.

CrispyFB Wed 21-Aug-13 10:23:36

I've been breastfeeding children for almost 7 years now, aside from a 4 month break during one pregnancy when I had to wean to protect my pregnancy with DD2 (incompetent cervix).

My youngest is 2. I don't tend to feed them in public past 18 months (and rarely past 12 months) but then they don't ask when we're out at that age anyway.

Regardless, I've never once had a negative comment with any of my three. I've fed them everywhere - parks, malls, restaurants, coffee shops, hospital beds, in the street, in the sling whilst shopping, trains, buses, mountains, Paralympic Games metres from Oscar Pistorious who gave me a smile (I don't think he knew what I was doing, mind!!) and even.. in front my FIL!

In the beginning I used to use a cover as I didn't feel confident, but I actually found out I drew far less attention if I just stick them up under my top. I am quite shy and always make sure there is nothing on display. Once you've got used to it, it is surprisingly easy to be discreet, and if you're confident I'm sure that deters a lot of the commenters. Most people are either completely fine with it or not brave enough to say anything. The sort of tosser who says something is the sort who would find something negative to say about anyone and can be treated with contempt.

ShoeWhore Wed 21-Aug-13 10:31:45

I was really nervous about this too OP - not so much that I was expecting negative comments but I just felt shy about getting my enormous boobs out in public.

But it was fine. I second the idea of practising in front of a mirror so you can reassure yourself that actually you aren't flashing acres of boob!

Ds was difficult to latch on when he was tiny so in the early days I found I preferred to find a quiet bench somewhere or sit in the front of the car but as I grew in confidence I fed my dcs everywhere and anywhere.

I only ever had one negative comment in over 3 years of public breastfeeding and that was from some stuck up middle aged woman who didn't even have the nerve to say it to my face, she just muttered under her breath as she walked off. Luckily for her I was too laden down with small children to run after her!

Good luck with it all!

Lion5711 Wed 21-Aug-13 14:02:42

Never had a bad word only encouragement. I wouldn't feel uncomfortable feeding a bottle so why I'm earth not the most natural tools in the world if I feel comfortable!! Or it can be a good excuse to get some quiet time away from annoying intrusive relatives saying your going to feed in a quiet room!!

MyNameIsAnAnagram Wed 21-Aug-13 14:15:46

Only ever had positive and lovely comments from people, and I fed ds1 till 18m and 14 weeks onto feeding ds2. People either don't notice, ignore you or smile and occasionally say something nice.

princesscupcakemummyb Wed 21-Aug-13 15:07:51

hello syl1985 i never had issues breastfeeding in public never had any neg comments if i fed in a public place i used a blanket or a breastfeeding cover for my own sake i worked out where i could feed when i was in town for example many stores have breastfeeding areas for your privacy only thing is i wouldnt ever feed infront of visitors for example my husbands family i felt that was a no go area for me so if we where expecting visitors for a long visit i would express some milk especially ive breastfed 2 children still breastfeeding my younguest shes 2 in november and im planning on breastfeeding this baby due november 2nd

TruJay Wed 21-Aug-13 19:11:02

I fed my son until just before his first birthday and have never had any nasty comments. I've had a few stares but I don't think it was because I was feeding, I think they were just looking at my son as he was so tiny then once they realise they're attached to ur boob its funny to watch them get all flustered, I had a woman apologise for staring as she didn't realise I was feeding, I was like god don't worry about it!
My only off experience of feeding in public was in Ikea, they have a big fat comfy chair behind a screen in the restaurant area for breastfeeding so I was just there minding my own business when I heard my mum shouting, she's not one for mincing her words or being discreet lol there was a creepy older guy peering over the screen watching me and I just hadn't noticed, I think once my mum had finished and the whole restaurant was staring at him until he scurried away so don't think he will be doing it again!
I'm planning on breastfeeding again this time too and have no worries about it with a lovely experience last time.
princesscupcake I'm due same day as u!

Stripedmum Wed 21-Aug-13 23:14:00

Fed two in very public places at times (not intentionally, just if hungry). Never anyone showing slightest bit of interest. I just make sure I wear a loosish top and it just looks like I'm cuddling the baby.

syl1985 Wed 21-Aug-13 23:50:44

Thanks ladies for sharing all your stories.

I didn't know that while I was pregnant I could already go to a breast feeding club. There's one in my area. I thought to wait until the baby is born. But I'll contact them and tell them I'd love to breastfeed my baby. But I'm nerves, not feeling ok with doing it in public.
And I don't want to lock myself up in the house for the next coming months.... so HELP!

PinkPepper Wed 21-Aug-13 23:58:08

No negative comments here in 13 months. I feed him everywhere. And I just get my boob out and go. Too much faff using a cover and baby hides it all usually

There are a lot of weirdos who like to get into arguments and say controversial things on YouTube so please don't think that is representative of the general population.

From my experience, most people really don't pay any attention to you when you're bf. There will be a few people who have a problem with it (but who cares?) and a very small percentage of them might make a comment. On the whole, most people are more concerned with their own lives to bother you.

To be honest, I think men make crude comments like that more to make you uncomfortable than because they are actually aroused.

If you are most concerned about being exposed in public then you can get a cover so that no one could have a chance of seeing anything.

whyno Thu 22-Aug-13 08:48:46

Like others bf for 9 months and never once got a comment or look. Cover up with a big muslin to feel confident.

I probably wouldn't put a pic online though.

PurplePidjin Thu 22-Aug-13 09:02:05

My 9mo is still bf, i do so in public and have never had a comment! My mum tried to lend me a scarf the first time we went out, saw how stressed the extra faff made me and how little could be seen, and is now itching for someone to say something so she can bite back grin

Another one who's never had anyone bat an eyelid. I found latching on in front of the mirror a good confidence boost - it made it quite clear that you couldn't see anything at all...

Carole803 Thu 22-Aug-13 09:40:12

There is also a Public Health campaign to make public venues "breastfeeding welcome". The idea is to get public places from hotels to cafes to say to us mums "yes, you are more than welcome to bf here, and if you need, we can help you find somewhere more private" it also says to those who judge "yes, we welcome bf here, so if you have a problem with that, keep it to yourself of move on"

It is more about breaking down the stigma with people who do have a problem.

As a first time mum and newbie to it all, assuming I have no problems with BF, I will personally be feeding when and where I need to. Of course I will practice at home first smile I have enough boobage to share and don't want to "lose control" in public (lol). I don't think people around me would welcome that smile

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