Breastfeeding — Why Isn’t It Normalised And Why It Should Be

What the early days of nursing are like for most people? Was it so raw that it makes breastfeeding look scary and unappealing? Instead of portraying a realistic point of view, did it instead portray a point of view where new parents are under supported? We definitely have concerns, questions, and take issue with more than a few things in the commercial.

The world is making great strides in many ways. One thing that hasn’t made much progress is breastfeeding in public. This frustrates me. There are big movements about volunteering your time and giveback programs. There are also easier ways to contribute to charities just by purchasing every-day products. More and more car companies are pushing for hybrid models and there’s also a big push to reduce, reuse, and recycle.

This is all well and great. We all want to do better and do more to help our world run a little more smoothly. What I can’t seem to get past is the mass pushback that still circulates within our news outlets about breastfeeding in public.

Not everyone is a mom and can sympathise over a crying baby. After all, it’s our fault for bringing them out in public anyway, right? At least that’s what it feels like the public opinion is.

1. Breastfeeding — A Wider View

Breastfeeding moms are shamed and looked down on. I can’t help but ask why?

Believe it or not, in the year 2017 breastfeeding is still a polarising issue. Just as formula-feeding moms have to continually defend their choice and sometimes it’s not a choice, people, moms who choose to breastfeed are faced with harsh criticism and judgement. The sexualization of the female body and the way it’s portrayed in the media continues to make any breastfeeding attempt, especially one in public, difficult.

And regardless of whether or not you breastfeed, bottle-feed, or even have a child, rest assured, there are ways to help normalise breastfeeding that will support tired moms and hungry babies the world over.

2. The Reality Of Breastfeeding

Moms everywhere have empowered themselves by sharing their nursing journeys unapologetically, be it a social media post or a well-written blog post, and in doing so have slowly but surely changed the culture to be a tad more accepting of women using a highly sexualized part of their body for its intended purpose. So, by breastfeeding and/or pumping in public, you’re already helping to normalise something that’s previously been viewed as “taboo.”

According to Slate, the sexualization of the female breast began during the World War II era, when Marilyn Monroe glossed the cover of Playboy. Suddenly people forgot one of the reasons why women have breasts: to produce breast milk if and or when they choose to have children.

3. Remind Yourself Why Women Breastfeed Is Normal

There are a slew of reasons breastfeeding works for women and their families. March of Dimes lists just some of the ways breastfeeding promotes better baby development, while helping lower the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). The site also highlights how mothers benefit from breastfeeding, too.

If you’re a breastfeeding mother, you likely made the decision to use your body to feed your baby for a variety of personal reasons. And regardless of those reasons, normalising breastfeeding begins and ends with you. So if you’re feeling insecure or in doubt, remind yourself why you started nursing in the first place. Then ignore the damn haters.

4. It’s changing — Support Public Breastfeeding

Thankfully, public opinion surrounding the act of nursing is changing. According to one study, two-thirds of moms in the United States agree that breastfeeding is totally natural and, as a result, they refused to be shamed. But what about the rest of the country? If you’re feeling outraged by the shame and judgement breastfeeding moms face on a regular basis, here are some ways you can help normalise breastfeeding:

Moms, don’t relinquish your rights. Don’t give in just because someone isn’t comfortable with the boob. Don’t stay home for fear that your baby may get hungry when you’re out and need to be fed. When you give in to people shaming you, they win.

For those who disagree, I know how easy it is to see someone doing something you disagree with. You ask yourself why they think or act the way they do. We’ve all been in those situations. But, it may be better to ask yourself why you are triggered by this.

Aside from breastfeeding in public, next time you see a mom in public with her baby, stop and think of the way you view her. She might be comforting her little one after a fall in the park, or trying to get her groceries in the store, missing the fact that the baby dropped their pacifier two isles ago. The mom just might be trying to feed her baby in a natural way because that’s what her body was made to do.

This is all well and great. We all want to do better and do more to help our world run a little more smoothly. What I can’t seem to get past is the mass pushback that still circulates within our news outlets about breastfeeding in public.

Not everyone is a mom and can sympathise over a crying baby. After all, it’s our fault for bringing them out in public anyway, right? At least that’s what it feels like the public opinion is.

You can also check out our other blogs on creativity on the website.

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Fuzia stands for Fusion of different cultures & ideas. We are a global community of females that aims to promote creativity through guidance & help from experts

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Fuzia stands for Fusion of different cultures & ideas. We are a global community of females that aims to promote creativity through guidance & help from experts

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