There are so many advantages to breastfeeding, including the fact that everything you need is always ready at the right time, at the right temperature! While this is the most natural way to feed and nourish your baby, we understand that many moms feel anxious about feeding in public.
In a survey reported by The Guardian, it was found that up to one third of moms feel embarrassed or uncomfortable feeding outside their homes.
Whether you are confident or nervous, here are some tips to help you embrace the joy of breastfeeding wherever you are!
One of the simplest ways to successfully breastfeed in public is to wear bras and clothing that are designed for breastfeeding. There are many options available for nursing mothers like our personal favorite, the local brandMomsy! Their stunning range is locally designed and manufactured and their clothing is inspired by a love for fashion and a heart for helping mamas.
If you prefer not to buy specific breastfeeding clothing, you can layer your regular clothing. Wear a stretchy top that you can pull down under your breast and wear a looser top over it which you can pull up. The looser top covers above your breast and the stretchy top covers below. You can also wear tops with front buttons/zips or cowl necks for easy access!
When packing your nappy bag, make sure you include everything you need for breastfeeding. This may include wet wipes (to clean the area before you feed), burp cloths, feeding scarves/blanket (for extra coverage or to help baby focus), water and your Mrs Milk Oat Bars!
If you prefer a little privacy, or your baby prefers a quieter environment, keep an eye out for perfect spots. If you are in a restaurant, ask for a table in a corner, and choose your seat. If you are out shopping, look for breastfeeding rooms, seating areas or even the change room of a clothing store. Finding a place where you feel comfortable will help you feel more relaxed and worry free!
Practicing at home will help you feel more confident and comfortable when feeding your baby when out and about. If you are used to breastfeeding with the feeding pillow or other accessories, practice without them. Try breastfeeding in front of a mirror to see how much of your breast is visible and practice adjusting your clothing to provide as much coverage as you feel comfortable with. You could also practice using a nursing cover or scarf if you would like to use them.
Breastfeeding is a natural and essential part of motherhood, and it is important to remember that you have the right to breastfeed your baby wherever you need to. Be confident in your decision, and don't be afraid to assert your rights if someone questions you. Remember that breastfeeding is protected by law in many countries, including South Africa, so you have the right to breastfeed wherever you need to.
Unfortunately, not everyone is supportive of breastfeeding in public, and you may encounter negative comments or stares from others. It's important to remember that these negative reactions are only someone’s opinion, nothing more. You are doing what’s best for your baby and that’s all that matters! Try to ignore it, or better still - look at them and smile :)
We hope these tips help you feel more comfortable to feed your baby in public. Your confidence also helps to promote the wonder of breastfeeding, and may even inspire other moms to have confidence to feed their babies too!
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