It’s no secret that breastfeeding has gotten much more popular and socially accepted in recent years. It used to be that breastfeeding moms would stay home to feed, or even go into another room in the house to feed baby. With the advent of safe formula feeding, breastfeeding lost popularity – simply because bottle feeding gave women more freedom outside the home. However, advances in baby care have made it obvious that breastfeeding has enormous benefits. In today’s world, women have the option of pumping or breastfeeding in public, so we don’t have to sacrifice health and bonding time with baby for our careers and social lives!
However, not every mom is completely comfortable nursing in public. Not many women are super used to potentially flashing their chest when out at a restaurant, shopping center, or grocery store! Not to mention, it can be hard to maneuver a hungry baby to feed when you’re not at home with your comfy couch, nursing pillows, and soothing music.
So if you’re nervous about nursing in public, not to worry! We’ve got some great tips to get you feeling comfortable in no time!
1. Mindset is crucial
In the USA, breastfeeding in public is legal. It’s a mom’s and a baby’s right to feed when and where the baby needs. Remember that you’re not doing anything wrong – breastfeeding is NATURAL! It’s likely you won’t get any negative comments or weird looks, but if you do – kill em’ with kindness and smile as you explain that you’re nurturing your baby the way nature intended.
2. Practice in a friendly location
If you’re nervous about breastfeeding in public, don’t start out somewhere you’ve never been. Pick a place where you go often and feel comfortable, with a supportive community, such as your yoga studio, a favorite coffee shop, or the park. Being around people who see you often and know you will be much less intimidating.
3. Make it a team effort
Don’t go it alone for the first several times! Bring someone to support you. Either bring your partner or a good friend. Not only can the make you feel more comfortable and chat with you, but they can help you by getting things out of the diaper bag, holding water bottles, and other little odds and ends that are hard to do while breastfeeding.
4. Wear the right clothing
It’s pretty awkward to whip a boob out in a button down blouse and pencil skirt. Dress in loose, comfortable clothing that you can easily rearrange. Wear a bra that’s designed for breastfeeding so you won’t have a hard time rearranging things when the baby is crying to be fed.
5. Use a Nursing Cover
If you’re worried about accidental flashing, a nursing cover or nursing scarf is a great option to keep you covered while breastfeeding. Bebe Au Lait’s nursing covers are designed by a Mom, for Moms – they are the #1 best seller! Not only are they great for modesty - covering helps keep the baby focused on feeding, not distracted by bright lights and movement. Our nursing covers have a patented Rigiflex neckline that stands away from the body, helping Mom monitor baby’s latch. They are made of breathable, 100% cotton – perfect for keeping the sun off baby but not overheating. It’s so easy to slip one on, and then roll it up and stow it when you’re done breastfeeding!
You'll feel more comfortable nursing in public with practice - just remember, it's all about the baby! You know you're doing what's right for your little one and that's all that matters. Before you know it, you won't even think twice about it! And other women who see you breastfeeding in public will feel more confidant about doing it themselves too - we can be the change we want to see in the world!