Have you ever gotten kicked out of a store for breastfeeding? Gotten dirty looks while breastfeeding your newborn at a restaurant? Or maybe you were minding your business on an 18-hour flight and someone asked you to cover up your breasts while nursing your baby. What can you do but oblige your uncomfortable hosts? Well, many new moms are organizing and staging nurse-ins.
That's one way to get the public's attention.
When a restaurant manager says you can’t breastfeed in her establishment, go back the next day with 100 of your closest nursing friends and sit down and breastfeed your babies all at the same time. That'll show 'em. Right?
I'm not so sure.
I worry that with all those exposed breasts, people are missing the point.
Moms should be allowed to nurse their babies anywhere. You feed a baby when she's hungry -- and if we mothers are expected to run home every single time our child cries out to be fed, we'll be trapped in our homes for most of our babies' early years. That is not fair to the mothers. We are nourishing our babies not exposing our breasts.
But while I believe in the right to protest, I don’t agree that forcing patrons to watch you nurse to make your point is the way to go. It’s one thing for one mother to be nursing her child someplace; it’s quite another when there's an organized drove of nursing mothers descending upon an establishment.
I mean, if you need to feed your baby, by all means feed your baby. But purposely going in there to feed in protest is basically shoving your beliefs down anyone within eyeshot's throat.
Some people are a little more modest and don’t care if you breastfeed in public or even notice but once you are standing there saying look at me, my breast are exposed and I am feeding my baby, FUCK YOU, that's combative. And then the focus becomes about women being combative rather than doing what comes naturally. The victims of the discrimination become the aggressors.
Moms, in all honesty, I think it would be more productive to breastfeed when you need, wherever you need, stand your ground and if you really want to hurt the business, protest in front of the business and inform their customers that they are not breastfeeding friendly; boycott their stores. Hit them in their pocketbooks and they will pay attention.
Do you think nurse-ins are an effective way to get the public to become more accepting of breastfeeding in public?
Image via Flickr/ DailyCloudt