Random Rambling – breastfeeding in public

Before Reindeer was born we weren’t at all sure about the idea of breastfeeding. Questions around ability and whether I even wanted to were left unanswered until he arrived.

Fortunately he and I were able to establish breastfeeding immediately and had none of the difficulties I’d feared, although it was utterly exhausting generally and hellishly painful for a few days in week two.

My husband and I agreed that it’s worked out really well in that it is so convenient and easy but the downside is that he couldn’t take the strain off me by taking some night feeds.

Talking to some of the other mums at baby group I’ve realised that several of us still have the same problem: we can’t figure out how to use wrap covers when feeding in public!

Although breastfeeding in public places is protected in law, it doesn’t mean I’m insensitive to the fact that others are uncomfortable with the idea. Whilst quite a few stores now offer feeding rooms these are often combined with the changing facilities. In my experience they aren’t always clean environments and often smell strongly of poo – not ideal conditions for settling in to feed. As a result I generally don’t use them, choosing instead to use the car or the nearest convenient seating to wherever we are.

In the early days I tried really hard to use a large muslin cover, a gift from my sister for just this purpose, to provide Reindeer and I with more privacy (not that anything was on display anyway!). The result was a dismal failure. It would either fall on the floor or on his face. Sometimes I couldn’t see him at all. The real low point came when I ended up with it over my head too. I can’t think of an easier way to draw attention to yourself than covering your whole head in a huge wrap decorated in brightly coloured dinosaurs! If anyone hadn’t noticed us before that point they were very well aware afterwards.

I gave up after that.

I see other women serenely feeding whilst stylishly covering their baby in a beautifully positioned wrap and I wonder how on earth they manage. Discovering at baby group that I’m not the only one who can’t do this made me feel a lot better!

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