Tabloids, celebrities, La Leche League and other media outlets have really jumped on the recent breastfeeding in public trend. This comes and goes every year, but it started making news again once the article in Time magazine came out asking if You're Mom Enough.
The latest newsmaker comes from Mom2Mom Breastfeeding Support Group that started a breastfeeding awareness campaign featuring women breastfeeding their babies. Normally a little controversial. But Mom2Mom notched it up a bit by having the moms in military uniforms.
I don't have anything against breastfeeding. I don't have anything against Military Moms Breastfeeding. I've done the breast as well as the bottle with my kids, and I agree completely that it is in the best interest of the child.
My problem is, I don't want to see everyone's boobs everywhere. Maybe I'm a little traumatized by my first breastfeeding experience, but I just don't want to see them whipped out and on the cover of magazines.
My first baby was born in Southern California where the La Leche League is out of control. As I was still recovering from the 8 pound bowling ball that was just ripped out of me, they pounced and said I needed to go into the instruction room as soon as I was mobile with my baby. I was wheeled down and pushed into a room with 14 other women and their new offspring. While they all looked eager to learn, I was terrified.
We sat in a large circle, a woman walks in and her opening line was, "OK mommies, I need you to bare your breasts." What? I look around and all of a sudden everyone started ditching their shirts and it was like a horrifying porno. Remember, these women just gave birth. I've never seen such incredibly enormous boobs. I was completely surrounded by smiling faces and 28 orbs that were bigger than my head. It was like a bad accident. I just couldn't stop staring with my jaw dropped. I finally composed myself, stood up, started to push my baby back to our room and just said, "I'm sorry, but I'll need a lot more drugs to do this."
I'm completely okay with breastfeeding, but can we do it in private? Or at least discretely? I am not saying go hide in a closet, I'm just saying asking for a little more modesty.
I know the argument is that it's completely natural. But if you think about it, so is urinating and defecating, but I'm not going to do it in public, or put it on a magazine, right? But it is natural, so what's the big deal?
Passing Gas? Natural. Runny Nose? Natural. Menstruation? Natural. Belching? Natural.
Yet all those things are not really appropriate in public. All I'm asking is if you are going to breastfeed that's great, can you just do it discretely? Nobody even needs to leave the room like you do for those other natural occurrences. There's just no need to whip them out, or post pictures on facebook.
Maybe my first experience did traumatize me, but I can only hope that I traumatized my lactation coach a little bit too when she came back to my room and asked me to drop my top. I just said, "The last time someone asked me to do that, I ended up here, so can you just give me a little bit of a break?"
We're happy you all have boobs and babies, but do we have to see them all the time?