What You Need to Know About Breastfeeding Your Baby in Public

Adesua Iyoyojie

Breastfeeding in public tends to be controversial in some parts of the world.

Breastfeeding can be done publicly or privately, but when done privately, it doesn’t generate as much controversy as when it’s done publicly.

The Nigerian society doesn’t have a problem with a woman breastfeeding in public, it is how she does it that sometimes matters.

As a woman with plans of breastfeeding in the public, there are some things that need to considered:

READ ALSO: Breastfeeding Mother Drags Male Colleague to Court for Secretly Filming Her When Doing This

  1. A Tolerant Attitude

Not everyone is going to be cool with it, so when you see people frown at you for bringing out your breast in public, you just have to be tolerant.
They have their opinions and everyone have moral standards.
As a mother, your biological instinct is telling you to feed your child, some people especially men see it as a deliberate act of seduction.
It is a serious question of morals to them.  Whatever opinion they hold about it is according to how they perceive it.
Having an opinion is not an insult or a crime.

2. Motives/Intentions

Perhaps the problem of breastfeeding in public or not would not be raised if there was wave on the media about the cases, when breastfeeding women were mistreated by the public .
The breast serves as a tool for feeding and sexual pleasure so there is this discomfort that comes when a breast or nipple is exposed.
We  could consider the interests of the others whenever we need to suckle our kid.

READ ALSO: 6 Things Every Mum Should Know About Breastfeeding

3. Place

Some women prefer to breastfeed their babies anywhere. Moreover, the way they go about it matters.
They are places that requires you to cover the breast instead of bringing everything out.

Once I was in church, and this ample busted woman brought out her breast to suckle her child. Her husband was uncomfortable and brought out his handkerchief to cover his wife’s breasts, much to her chagrin.

The Benefits of Breastfeeding though outweigh the opinion of society. And if it needs to be done in public then a mother has to do what she needs to do! Here are some benefits:

1. It relieves stress 
Calmness of nursing mother, her composure are very important for lactation. Stress and psychological disorders, in turn, can cause a reduction of volumes of milk or even its termination. Breastfeeding in a crowded place may distract the baby from the process. Though it’s a matter of habit, breastfeeding is an organized action, where both participators should have comfortable conditions.

2. Creates breast feeding awareness
The view of female breast is likely to be of interest not only for male passers-by but also for children. If driving attention to the act of breastfeeding is an act of promotion of breastfeeding itself  then you’re doing everything right, but you simultaneously demonstrate the bare breast in public, which is sexy, no matter what you have been told about the breast. So you have to be ready for the reactions, that are fairly predictable in the modern society. No matter whether you are feeding your baby  you are baring your breast at the same time.

READ ALSO: Breastfeeding: 4 Helpful Tips For Working Mums

3. It enhances intimacy between mother and child

“Breastfeeding is a sacred and intimate process, which is not supposed to involve spectators in order to be performed properly with a better efficiency.” The most arguments, however, come from the “no covers” issue. People don’t mind seeing a breastfeeding woman, but sometimes they mind the view of the partially naked breast, that is, as we’ve mentioned, a secondary sexual feature. Thus, if you want to get rid of those indignant sights you may use the cover. Some of them are designed the way that your baby is not disturbed while breastfeeding and you may fully control the process.

Africans really respect mothers with babies and when a child is crying it attracts others to ask why the mother doesn’t want to breastfeed it. So culturally, breastfeeding is encouraged

No matter how you choose to breastfeed your baby no one has the right to touch, shame or gape at you.

Women need to know their rights. Women have a right to breastfeed outside of their homes.

Employers need to  provide reasonable time for breaks for nursing mothers. If a woman is told otherwise, she should explain that in feeding her baby, she’s acting within her rights.

The part 2 of this article shall focus more on the do’s änd don’t of a breastfeeding mother.

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“What You Need to Know About Breastfeeding Your Baby in Public”

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