Breastfeeding Pictures Are NOT Obscene

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We know lots of people have issues with seeing moms breastfeed. Facebook considers the pictures pornographic and others consider them sexual or can't imagine sharing something so "private."

But when you're living the life of a breastfeeding mom, it doesn't take long to realize that you really can't hide it if you ever want to leave the house. With so many arguments against it, it's likely moms are put on the defensive -- what other situation do people approach you to tell you they hate how you eat?

Moms nurse in many different ways, with many different comfort levels, often tailored to the company or location. But all of it is just a mom, taking and sharing pictures of an important part of her child's infancy and toddlerhood -- just like people take pictures of a father feeding a bottle.

And none of it is obscene, as these women display so wonderfully in their photos they've allowed me to share:

breastfeeding momTrust me when I say that breastfeeding advocates are tired of talking about breastfeeding. We really wish we didn't need to say, "Don't like it, don't look" all the time. But when story after story comes out of women being treated like they're being offensive merely for sitting down and feeding an infant, it becomes a social issue, and one that needs people being active champions of. Women need to know they're supported. They need to know that it's acceptable, no matter what they might run into. They need to know where to turn for support.

As Lara of Mama Pear Designs put it, "Please don't let me die a Lactivist." I hope that one day, sooner rather than later, I don't have to constantly defend nursing moms. Moms, all moms, need support of their decisions. And a lack of support can often stop a woman from reaching her goals, leaving many women with regrets.

And I hope that breastfeeding moms draw no more attention than the mom bottle-feeding her baby. As you can see from these pictures, breastfeeding moms are first and foremost just MOMS who are feeding their babies -- not trying to make statements until one has been made of their normal function. What next? We start banning bottle pictures because the nipple is intended to mimic a human nipple? Nah, we're smarter than that and don't need to read into pictures and find fault where there isn't any.

I'll say it again, nursing pictures are just moms feeding their babies, and taking a photo so they can remember special moments with their baby. Nothing more, nothing less.

Do these photos change your mind about breastfeeding in public? Do you think breastfeeding in public or seeing a photo of a woman breastfeeding is obscene?


Images via Candice Young; Meredith Coombs-Jones; Tiffany Reeves; Katie Newton; Katie Anderson Zuko; Janine Fowler; Melissa Hubbard; Karine Vaillancourt; Samantha Marquis; Anne of Dispelling Breastfeeding Myths; Marina Alonso; Michele Zipp

breastfeeding, natural parenting

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Phils... PhilsBabyMama

Great post, Christie!  Beautiful photos!  Thanks to all the mamas who shared these!  These photos don't change my mind about nursing in public because I've always thought it was a very normal thing, not indecent or crude.

starr... starrsitter

As a former high school teacher, I can tell you that I was unwillingly exposed to more breast (than is exposed in the overwhelming majority of these pictures) on a daily basis.  Perhaps if our culture wasn't obsessed with over-sexualizing the breasts (of young women especially) then people wouldn't be so uncomfortable with nursing mothers.

Roxie Mannen

cute article  i have to share it <3

Bree1984 Bree1984

It's. Illegal. You can't expose yourself for anyone. If you want to breastfeed in public you must cover up. The only place I know of in Canada that it is legal for a woman to go topless is Ontario so if you want to breastfeed uncovered in public, go there. What is so hard to understand about this? People complain if women wear too little to cover themselves properly so what makes you special? It's not the act that is complained about, it's the exposed tit. Just because the nipple is in somethings mouth doesn't make it better. Could I sit around in public with my nipple in my boyfriend's mouth? Or how about in my own mouth? It doesn't have to be sexual and by your logic it should be fine.

jalaz77 jalaz77

I think these pics are beautiful. Sorry, if you don't want to see it don't look people....I BF, I have a few pics of me doing it do I put it up for the public, family or friends to see? No but that is just me and I wouldn't judge if someone else wants to post it as a picture. Oh well, I guess I am weird because I love seeing a mommy feed her baby with the breast OR bottle, it is sweet no matter what. It is that quiet short precious moment you have with the baby. 

imlena imlena

I don't find it obscene but I do often wonder if people post them to make a statement and if that is the case why must you feel the need to always make a statement when all your doing is simply nursing your child. Changing diapers is a natural motherly instinct yet somehow we don't snap pictures of that and show the world.

Disco... DiscoHeaven

Bree, you are very wrong. Please take a look at some information and educate yourself.

"Your right to breastfeed anywhere, anytime is protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms."

"Breastfeeding in public IS legal in the United States. This means you can nurse your baby anywhere that you are allowed to be with the baby."

http://www.ncsl.org/default.aspx?tabid=14389

http://www.infactcanada.ca/Breastfeeding_Rights.htm

Jacqueline Griffin

@bree I'm not sure about Canada but i know in most of the US breastfeeding is exempt from indecency laws. and yes it would be different if you had your boob in your boyfriend's mouth that would be sexual you aren't feeding him.

Jackie Hopkins Klumper

Before breastfeeding I was 'weirded' out by pictures like these or seeing a mother breastfeed in public....but only because it was so foreign to me. I knew NO ONE who breastfed. Now that I've been through the experience and know so much more, pictures like these warm my heart.

Phils... PhilsBabyMama


  • Forty-four states, the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands have laws that specifically allow women to breastfeed in any public or private location. (Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.)




  • Twenty-eight states, the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands exempt breastfeeding from public indecency laws. (Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.)




  • http://www.ncsl.org/default.aspx?tabid=14389


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