As we continue through Breastfeeding awareness week, we think about how it can feel to feed in public and hints and tips to be able to do this discretely.
If you missed any of my previous posts you can find them here
When you first start breastfeeding your new baby it can be a bit daunting, you may feel all fingers and thumbs and probably think you will never be able to feed in public due to the amount of skin you are revealing.
I remember the first visit from the new grandparents I was made to feel I had to leave the room to breastfeed AND in my own home.
I was a new nervous mummy so I spent most of the day sat in babies bedroom feeding, I felt isolated and they saw nothing of me or their new grandson.
I actually think it did me some good as after some tears the following day when my parents came I decided no one would ever make me feel like that again.
Please don’t think that meant I suddenly sat with my breasts on full view wherever I was when I needed to feed, quite the opposite, but I was never going to let someone tell me I can’t feed my baby where I want, when HE wants.
The best advice I can offer is to take your time to workout how you get on best feeding before you go it alone in public, which positions, what clothes, do you need a cushion, scarf, wrap?
I chose to wear a vest top under a t-shirt so I can pull the shirt up and vest down without revealing more than the essentials that are covered by baby anyway. You can get shawls and scarfs to cover up with, great if they work for you, but I found by the time I had made myself look discrete I had pretty much announced to the world what I was doing anyway, and if I do it without then baby is latched on so quickly no one knows.
Get out to breastfeeding groups and cafes where people won’t mind if they can see a bit of breast and they can offer not only hints and tips on feeding discretely if you need help, but can probably also tell you about the most friendly local cafes, restaurants etc.
Not sure where your local groups are?
Ask your health visitor, contact Sure Start centres or try
Once you are practiced no one will know you are even feeding, on numerous occasions I have had people come to look at my baby, not realising until they are up-close what you are doing, then it will be them that is embarrassed and not you.
I think I must be a particularly public breastfeeder, not only do I feed when out at Breastfeeding cafes, I have no qualms about doing it in other cafes, restaurants, the local park. But I like to think I am also educating the next generation, as I have fed both my babies while running Brownies and Guides, it was a Guider from another unit who wondered what the girls would think to this, the girls as usual take everything in their stride and see it as completely normal now. And I have fed my youngest regularly in a year 5 class of boys and girls through the B.A.S.E babywatching
If you are participating in the Keep Britain Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt them please leave a comment below about anything else you think might be useful for people starting out feeding in public, you have and it will be counted towards your final hunt score to win the Grand Prize
Please also take a moment to look at some fellow bloggers and companies also taking part in the hunt