Okay, let me start this by saying that this is my own opinion. I am not judging anyone for their particular thoughts on this subject, but I think I may be in a small percentage of breastfeeders with this particular opinion, so I’d like to share.
I do not believe that I should breastfeed in public places with my bare breast out. I know that may sound crazy because breastfeeding is natural, but breasts, to me, are not something to be on display, no matter what they are doing. Unless maybe your shirt catches on fire and you have to get naked to save yourself from having burnt boobies. Otherwise, my breasts are staying in my shirt, or under an udder cover.
“But breastfeeding is not sexual!” you say.
Yes, I agree. Breastfeeding is not sexual, but come on, breasts totally are. From the moment you blossom, to the moment you die, your breasts are for sexy fun time, minus a couple years while they are being used for breastfeeding. Admit it, you have intentionally dressed with cleavage, or used your boobs to get free drinks, and during sexy fun time, they are go to fixtures. Breasts are GREAT, and as an added bonus, they can be used for breastfeeding! Way to go, boobs!
Now, if YOU want to breastfeed in public without a cover, go for it. I am not judging you, but I’d like for you to realize that there are women out there (even breastfeeding women – ahem) who are not comfortable with it. As much as you feel like you are being judged for bare-breastfeeding in public, women like me feel judged for not wanting to do that. Some people are uncomfortable with things even if they are natural. Although, I must say, being rude to people who are breastfeeding in public is not acceptable behavior. A friend of mine told me that she was breastfeeding in a restaurant and a woman told her kid to stay away from them because it was “dirty over there.” If you don’t want your kids to see it, request a different table, or explain to the mother that you would feel more comfortable if she could cover up. Any mother should be understanding of another mothers request for how they choose to raise their children. As for non-parent people, make your best judgement towards them. You may remember your non-baby having days and the thought of you and your husband having dinner across from a boob might make you go “ah, yea, I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed my husband checking out a boob over cheese fries.” You may look at that and think “breastfeeding is natural!” but your husband may be thinking “don’t look at it… don’t look at it. Oh god, I looked at it!”
There is a balance of keeping you and your baby comfortable, as well as those around you. Just saying, don’t be mad at others for being uncomfortable, try to be understanding, and hopefully others will be understanding of you! I personally don’t care if I see your breast, and neither does my husband (now that we have a baby), but you won’t be seeing mine, and that is okay because that is my choice!