5 tips for breastfeeding in public
The beauty of breastfeeding is that everything you need is always at your fingertips: you can feed your baby wherever you are, and the temperature of the milk will always be as it should. But although there is nothing more natural than breastfeeding, the very idea of doing this in front of everyone, especially for the first time, can cause some concern. It doesn’t matter if you worry about what others will think or not, our tips will help you prepare for this event.
If you are confused by the prospect of breastfeeding for the first time in a public place, practice at home in front of the mirror to imagine how you will look from the outside. You will probably notice that the chest is not so open: it is blocked by the baby’s head.
For starters, you should try breastfeeding in public in a friendly environment. In the company of other mothers or in a cafe with a girlfriend, it will be clearly more comfortable for you than being alone in an electric train or in a noisy shopping center.
2: Dress comfortably
As for comfortable clothes for breastfeeding in general and in public places in particular, there are many options. If breastfeeding is going well and you intend to continue, it is worth picking up several items of clothing for feeding, in which it will be easier to feed.
“I had a very comfortable shirt for feeding. In it, it was possible to quietly feed a child even in winter, since there was no need to remove anything. Just attach the baby to the cut in the shirt – and you’re done. You can feed anywhere, anytime! ”Says Carolyn, mother of two children from France.
However, buying special clothes for feeding is not necessary at all – you can just put on two regular T-shirts. “I solved the problem with an elastic blouse that I wore under a loose top. When it was necessary to feed the child, I pulled the jacket under my chest and raised the top. He covered my chest, and the jacket – my stomach. It was possible to feed unnoticed anywhere, without freezing and not showing anyone your belly sagging after giving birth, ”recalls Susanne, mother of two children from the UK.
Another convenient option is tops and dresses with buttons or with a zipper in front, clothes with straps or with side slits. You can also try styles with odor, collar “collar” or shawl collar.
“Cardigans with a smell turned out to be a real salvation when I needed to feed in public,” admits Natalie, a mother from the UK. – I just untied one floor and covered it with the head of my baby during feeding or when she cried. And there was no need to carry anything to disguise. ”
3: Explore the decor
Before going somewhere with your baby, make a list of places convenient for feeding in advance so as not to rush about in search of the last moment. In shopping centers, department stores and children’s clothing stores, there are often rooms for mother and child, where you can feed your baby in silence and tranquility, sitting in a comfortable chair, or use a changing table. Many cafes and hotel restaurants also try to create comfortable conditions for nursing mothers.
“If you are worried, look in advance for places where breastfeeding is friendly, in order to know where to go if necessary. At first it is not easy to feed in public places, but over time it turns out better and better. And then you do it so quickly and quietly that people around you don’t even understand that you are breast-feeding a baby, ”says Rachel, a mother from the Maldives.
4: Try a breastfeeding cape
Some mothers when breastfeeding in public places prefer to cover themselves and the baby with a cloak. The choice is huge – from simple shawls and ponchos to special wraps and aprons with a rigid semicircular hole on top, which allows you to observe the baby during feeding. There is a solution for every taste. And you can feed your baby in a sling or carry – this is convenient and protects you from prying eyes.
“I advise you to buy a carrying bag,” says Caroline, the mother of two children from the United States. “A little practice – and you can feed right on the go, without interrupting other things.”
5: Know your rights
In many countries, breastfeeding in any public places is permitted by law. Moreover, laws exist to protect nursing mothers. If you are not sure if such laws exist in your country, look for information on the Internet. It is best to start with the websites of government agencies and healthcare facilities. Or try asking your doctor. And you can ask friends of mothers, friends and relatives about their own experience. The answers may surprise you.
“In Australia, breastfeeding is widely welcomed, and it’s normal to sit open-chested in a cafe while a handsome waiter takes your order for low-fat latte!” Says Amy, a mother of two children from Australia.