Tuesday, April 8, 2014

10 reasons why I do not nurse my son in public:

There is a long standing controversy about the act of breastfeeding in public; the argument has become so incredibly polarized, that it seems like it has lost all rationality within the spectrum of modern social culture. 

I understand why women breastfeed in public; I also understand that it's lawful, and I completely agree with the necessity for the law. I get that it's natural; I get that everyone is doing it, but the fanaticism that surrounds the subject is slightly jarring. 

To clarify: I breastfeed. I work five days a week, with no time to pump at work; I wake at 1:30a and 5a so I can pump twice a day, and I do it even more on weekends while Langston is sleeping, so I can stock frozen milk, but I never ever nurse in public.

I've read quite a few flawed reasons as to why women chose not to breastfeed in public; these reasons range from a lack of confidence to being anti feminist, and I think it's all ridiculous, so here are my top ten reasons:

10. Weening will be easier if Langston knows how to take a bottle.

9. It's not only important that Langston bonds with me, but that he also bonds with Tim in such early stages of development. We are both here to nurture and support our son, and Langston should know that.

8. I don't want to dress in a perpetual state of undress or ready to undress. That sounds sexy, but believe me, it's not. Most days it's sloppy, and if there is one thing a new mom does not need help feeling a certain way about, it's feeling sloppy.

7. I do not want Langston to become dependent on the idea that his needs can only be met one way. This is singular thinking. I know he's a baby, but it's most likely better to begin patterns early.

6. Breasts are sexual; yes, they have a functioning purpose, but so do other parts of our bodies. I would feel just as uncomfortable having to urinate in public, and that's more common than the ability to produce milk.

5. I want my breasts to be sexual. I am mother, yes, but I'm so much more than that. I kept my name when I got married too, so why wouldn't I want to do the same now? I want to develop as a person, I don't want to change.

4. I don't want strangers to see me topless. I know a baby's head covers the nipple and areola, but I don't walk around in pasties either. That kind of disguise isn't enough for me. Most strangers are creeps, and the last thing I want is a creep leering over Langston; I don't have the temperament for that. I'd hurt the creep.

3. I don't want to be looked at in any other way than the way I've presented myself. I can't imagine if one of my students or a friend's dad saw me breastfeeding in the cat food aisle at Target. 

2. Women get rooms at work to pump privately in, so why can't we have rooms to breastfeed privately in? Why are the two so disparate, and why am I anti-woman or insecure for asking the question?

1. I don't want to have another mom to have to explain to her kids what I am doing. I don't feel like it is my place to perpetuate a birds and bees discussion in someone else's family.

No comments: