Are you worried about the day that you'll have to perform breastfeeding in public? Do you fear that you will become a victim of the public breastfeeding debate?
If so, then you need to learn how to breastfeed in public comfortably, and in a way that's respectful to others. It doesn't have to be as awkward or uncomfortable as it may seem.
At the end of the day, people understand that your baby needs to be fed regularly, and sometimes that's while you're out and about.
See below for an in-depth guide explaining how to perform public breastfeeding in a way that will give you more confidence.
Find a Great Nursing Cover
Maybe you're out at a restaurant with your family when, suddenly, your newborn baby wakes up hungry. Perhaps you're looking for a way to keep your baby docile in a quiet environment (such as church sermons, funerals, etc.).
Whatever the case might be, there's hardly ever a private nursing room handy. You could use the bathroom, but that makes for an uncomfortable and impractical situation as well.
That's why it's important to invest in high-quality nursing covers. These are quickly becoming one of the hottest gifts on baby registries because they will keep you and your baby completely covered while they breastfeed.
Better yet, these come in all different shapes and sizes. There are options such as:
- Nursing hoodies
- Nursing scarfs
- Nursing shawls
- Nursing wraps & more
We recommend that you buy one of each and see which one you prefer. Some, like the nursing hoodie, even make for cute and comfortable attire while you're out and about!
With the right nursing cover on hand, you'll have much more confidence feeding your baby whenever they need it.
No matter where you are, it will be as easy as putting the cover on, fitting your baby comfortably inside, and letting them eat as they please!
Not to mention, nursing covers can also help you use a portable breast pump in public to ease any discomfort you might feel.
Practice Makes Perfect
As silly as it might seem, doing anything for the first time can be an uncomfortable situation. Even though most people aren't, you might feel as if the entire world is watching.
Don't set yourself up for failure. Waiting to use your nursing cover for the first time in public could be setting yourself up for failure.
The baby will be crying, you'll have to pull out all the necessary accessories, find a comfortable position to feed them in, and more; it's best to get some familiarity with the process.
For that reason, we recommend practicing at home. The next time that your newborn is hungry, try to place the cover on and find the "sweet spot" for them to nurse comfortably.
Remember, this isn't just new for you; it's new for your little one, too. It's best for both of you to get a feel for the process before the real test comes!
Also, you might want to practice this in different types of chairs around the house. Unfortunately, your favorite sofa at home won't be an option to sit in when you're out in public.
Understand Your Legal Rights
One of the biggest questions surrounding the public breastfeeding debate is, "Is it legal?"
Even then, most new or expecting moms never take the time to look into it. As a result, they're forced to feed their baby, uncertain of whether it's actually allowed. This can cause unnecessary stress.
Here's what you need to know: public breastfeeding is legal in all fifty states. In fact, 31 states exempt breastfeeding from their public indecency laws.
Not only is it legal, but states are encouraging everyone to learn more about the importance of it. Currently, four states have a breastfeeding awareness education campaign!
The legal system understands the timely need to breastfeed and care for your child. No matter where you are, no one can ask you to stop. Know that ahead of time.
Wear the Right Bras
Contrary to popular belief, other people won't be the main obstacle you'll have to overcome when you try to breastfeed in public.
The top enemy of an efficient public breastfeeding session is one particular piece of clothing: your bra.
Make sure that you stock up on easy access bras and wear them everywhere that you go. Even when you aren't taking your child with you, you'll want to wear one just in case your breasts get uncomfortable.
Just like the nursing cover, be sure to practice this at home to find the right process.
Have Tunnel Vision
It's easy to worry about breastfeeding in public before you've ever had to do it.
However, as any mother will tell you, the rest of the world seems to shut off when you're nursing your baby in public.
Your maternal instincts kick in; your brain and body focus on providing the necessary nutrients for your child. You'll be surprised how little you notice while your baby is eating.
Once your little one latches, remember to take a deep breath and smile. These moments are good memories that will last you a lifetime!
Perform Public Breastfeeding Comfortably With RepetitionNow that you have seen an in-depth guide on public breastfeeding comfortably, be sure to use this information to your advantage.
Make sure that you always have a manual breast pump and portable breast pump with you whenever you go out. These will ensure that you remain comfortable and pain-free.
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