An Open Letter to People Who Shame Breastfeeding Mothers
Do you even realize how much it takes to breastfeed a baby?
It takes a lot of work and commitment to nurse a child. If you have never breastfed a child, you have no idea what it is like. Let me help you understand. We deal with things like cracked and bleeding nipples, mastitis, engorgement, issues with latching, maintaining milk supply, watching everything we put into our body while we feed our little ones, and so much more. You may have this image in your head of what you think breastfeeding is like, but I assure you it is probably a romanticized version. It is tough, and it takes a lot of effort to get through this. The last thing we need is people bashing us the entire way.
Breasts were made to provide milk; not just to be a sex symbol
I am not sure when it became okay to wear shirts that your breasts hang out of or shirts that you can see your nipples through, and not to feed your child… Our breasts are biologically designed to make milk! Sure, they may be beautiful and fun to play with during sex, but that is not nor was it EVER their main purpose. The sexualization of breasts has gone way too far.
Why don’t you mind your own business?
People today take it upon themselves to insert themselves into everyone’s lives. Why can’t people just do what they are doing and focus on things that are affecting them personally! Do you think that breastfeeding mothers wake up in the morning and think “Hey, I am going to wait to feed my child until I get to the middle of the crowded mall, just so I can whip my boob out and piss some people off?!” No, we don’t get excited when our child is screaming, and everyone is staring at us. We do what we must do to keep our children healthy and fed. If you were hungry sitting somewhere with a sandwich in your hand would you wait to eat it for a couple of hours until you got home in private? I don’t think so. Our food is always available, and our children know that it is there. When they get hungry, they cry, and we feed them just like you would feed yourself.
If you don’t like what you see, then don’t look
Who exactly is making these people stare at breastfeeding women? Is there something that immobilizes their necks when a breastfeeding mother is in the room? Why can’t they look away and focus on what they are doing? Some people claim that it simply “makes them uncomfortable”. Let’s talk about why…Why does this make you uncomfortable? Everyone knows what breasts are. Heck, children are watching pornography in elementary school now in American culture. You can see women in almost nothing on the cover of magazines in line at the grocery store! If that is not enough, turn on your TV. Cable television will show you scantily dressed women on almost every channel. Even the shows designated for “children” and “teens” have girls that are anything but modest as characters. So…we are supposed to teach our children that it is completely okay to look at a naked woman in a movie or on tv, but it is not okay for a woman to breastfeed their child!
Most women use covers anyway!
I love the way that the media portrays breastfeeding women. They make us out to seem like some weird cult that loves to be nude. Majority of us do try to stay a little covered up because it is uncomfortable with all the creeps that stare at our boobs! It may be hard to believe, but some women do not like unwanted sexual attention.
Women spend so much time breaking each other down, no wonder women struggle with confidence
Why do women tear each other apart every time they get the chance? Women get so up in arms and defensive about women being objectified and mistreated when they are the ones that do the most damage! Could you imagine a world where we actually supported each other and had each other’s backs? Could you imagine if the response you got was “Awesome job breastfeeding that little cutie” instead of “You’re disgusting and need to cover yourself up!”. See, this world is so full of hate and breastfeeding has become a hot topic for people to rag on. I would love to see a shift towards love. Love and support each other because motherhood is hard. Whether you breastfeed or not. It is difficult doing all the things that we do and managing to keep these little humans alive and healthy. Let’s just be moms and stop putting so much emphasis on how we choose to feed our children.
Check out my other posts 18 Things I Wish I Knew Before Breastfeeding, Power Pumping, How To Increase Your Milk Supply and Breastfeeding Basics!