As the time approaches for our new little one to come into the world something has been on my mind. No, it's not another moaning blog about single mommy-hood, or the woes of being a stay at home mom. I actually think that if I can get my act together this won't be so hard (although with Nathaniel's contrite attitude the last two days I could very well lose my mind).
The topic that has been on my mind has been breast feeding.
Now, I'm not one of those "granola" moms who lectures people on the benefits of breast feeding or who sits topless in the mall nursing my child while glaring at anyone who glances my way. I understand that some people aren't able to nurse their children, and some people simply don't have the patience. I am an advocate of breast feeding because I know it's good for my kid, it's a whole lot cheaper than formula (trust me on this, formula is almost 25 dollars a can, which lasts about a week), and because in the middle of the night it's easier to nurse than to fix and warm a bottle. Plus, it makes packing for an outing a whole lot easier.
I'm even the mom who will pump and freeze my milk so that I don't have to buy formula in case something happens or I want to leave the kid with a sitter.
However, I found that when I was nursing Nathaniel I heard so much, well, to be honest, crap, from people around me. The thing is, of course it wasn't from other moms, it was from single women, or married without children women. These women would talk in front of me about how "disgusting" nursing was and how women should not nurse in public. I was even told that I should sit in the bathroom and nurse.
I'm sorry, but it's hard enough for me to be a "single" mom (sure, I have a hubby, but he's been overseas now for the baby stages of both of our children) and miss out on adult conversation much of the time. How can someone expect me to go eat my dinner in a bathroom? How can someone expect me to nurse my child while sitting on a toilet? To me, that's what is disgusting!
What bothers me is that people are uncomfortable with someone discreetly nursing their child (even if you really look closely you can't see anything!) yet there are pictures of half naked women all over the place and no one bats an eye. I can't drive to work without passing a billboard of a woman with cleavage all over the place, but that's considered "natural" and "normal". Yet for me to do what is natural and normal, to feed and nurture my child is considered disgusting and inappropriate.
So, that's my rant. I think that this time around I will be less tolerant of those who are intolerant with my feeding my child.
What do you think? If you are a mom who breast feeds or who has breast fed your child in the past how have you dealt with those who have opposed you?
(For the record, I try not to nurse in public, but if I'm out I will find a corner and cover up completely, I really don't sit there with anything flopped out. Plus, I stopped nursing Nathaniel when he was 7 months old, not when he was three or anything like that.)