Note: Please bear in mind that whilst this topic does canvass opinions, it is not a fight club. You may disagree with other posters but we do ask you please to stick to our Talk Guidelines and to be civil. We don't allow personal attacks or troll-hunting. Do please report any. Thanks, MNHQ.

To b/f in the early pregnancy unit at hospital?

(100 Posts)
happyfrogger Wed 30-Jan-13 19:31:34

I had an early scan today but finding childcare for my 9 month old was not possible (particularly at short notice), so I took her with me.

She needed a feed so I sat in the corner and fed her, as I would on any other occasion. One of the staff ladies came over to me and wafted a small sheet over my DD's head. I wasn't quite sure what she did and in my unsure shock I just said 'oh, thanks'.

As ever, bf is discrete and nobody can see anything, plus it keeps a hungry baby from making a lot of fuss and chaos in a place which ladies will do doubt prefer calm and quiet. On reflection I was quite annoyed at the implication that we weren't discrete or covered up, if I'd wanted to cover her head I would have done so myself. It was hardly 'being helpful/considerate' to me - nobody anywhere else has ever felt the need to 'help' me in this way.

I know the EPU is a sensitive place for ladies who perhaps don't want to be focusing on other people's babies, particularly if they are stressed about their personal situation, but AIBU taking her when I had no other options and AIBU feeding her in this environment?

happyfrogger Wed 30-Jan-13 19:32:28

FWIW I have on the few times I've been there with previous pregnancies seen other ladies' toddlers about half of the time.

TarkaTheOtter Wed 30-Jan-13 19:33:33

Of course YANBU.

Lexiesinclair Wed 30-Jan-13 19:35:07

Of course YANBU and the lady was rude and behaved strangely.

tametortie Wed 30-Jan-13 19:35:20

Yanbu. Was the scan ok? Xxx

CMOTDibbler Wed 30-Jan-13 19:35:54

Normally, I would fight for your right to bf however you like, anywhere you like, but having sat crying my heart out in EPAU far too many times, I would say this is one place I'd try see if they had a room to use, or cover up. Just because its so visceral seeing a baby feeding at a time when you are wondering if your baby will survive/you will ever have a live baby etc

No, you weren't being U to bf your baby, but... EPUs are very sensitive places. I spent 2 hours sitting in one waiting for my ERPC and it was mental torture. Toddlers don't have the same effect as a babe in arms.

But if there was no alternative then there was no alternative.

5madthings Wed 30-Jan-13 19:39:23

Yanbu the lady was very odd!

Fwiw i have bfed through a few pregnancies and coukdnt always get childcare and often bfed in the ante-natal units and epau etc and i had the odd comment about how i shoukdnt bfeed when preg and i politely corrected them but nobody told me to cover up and one lovely dr praised me and said how wonderful it was and she encouraged me to tandem feed smile

None of mine would have tolerated a sheet in their head whilst feeding.

Hope all was well with your scan xx

Floggingmolly Wed 30-Jan-13 19:39:42

The EPU is usually full of people for whom pregnancy is not going well; many will have just been given the worst news possible and to be then confronted by someone feeding their young baby is really the last thing they need.
Older children don't have quite the same impact, actually.

Floggingmolly Wed 30-Jan-13 19:40:57

x posted with Gwendoline

Cortana Wed 30-Jan-13 19:41:17

You had no other option, you needed to be there and I doubt a sheet would have hidden the fact you were feeding a baby unless she draped it over you both like a budgie. YANBU.

queenebay Wed 30-Jan-13 19:42:18

The EPAS was the place I found out my baby was dead but to be fair if your baby needed fed then you have any right to feed it. The person was wrong to waft the sheet near you.

blackeyedsusan Wed 30-Jan-13 19:43:19

the op was there presumably for difficult reasons too. we have been sent to the epu and took dd with us... it was an emergency.... can't rustle up child care at short notice, after all you don't plan to have miscarriage do you.

how are you hp?

nefertarii Wed 30-Jan-13 19:44:05

I can only assume it was for the benfit of any ladies that have perhaps recieved bad news while you were there.

Having lost a baby myself, i think I would have found it hard sat there while you bf whilst waiting for someone to confirm my baby had died.

TidyDancer Wed 30-Jan-13 19:44:06

I'm with CMOT on this one I think. I would defend anyone's right to breast feed wherever they wanted, but this is one of those places where absolute discretion is a must. It's difficult to tell from your OP how much could be seen but I think the ladies working in the EPU would have enough experience to know what upsets people in there.

I think actually saying something to you might've been better though.

thehappycat Wed 30-Jan-13 19:44:39

Of course YANBU. Would she have put a sheet over a bottle-feeding baby? I doubt it. and I say this as a person who has had the worst news from a scan before. Hope all went well for you today.

SirBoobAlot Wed 30-Jan-13 19:45:16

No, YWNBU. Like you say, you would have drawn more attention if she had been crying.

I'd contact them about it.

Hope your scan went okay.

McNewPants2013 Wed 30-Jan-13 19:45:45

If he needed feeding then he needed to be fed.

Sitting in the epau is an awful experience and me personally it didn't bother me seeing other people babies, it was a welcome distraction.

happyfrogger Wed 30-Jan-13 19:51:02

Fair points about toddlers not really being quite the same. And thank you for asking - delighted to get happy news on this occasion, a heartbeat after being here twice before for bad news. I appreciate that me feeding is exactly what some people there don't need to see. I guess 'next time' I would maybe be wiser to find somewhere else in the hospital to feed - but yes, unfortunately, short notice visits when you've had your own panic need to rush in don't leave many alternatives.

As an aside, I also arrived early and asked if appointments on time so I didn't need to linger in the waiting room with DD being fractious if things were running late. She said 'we're running early, stay put please' only to wait for an hour (30 mins past my appointment time)

Glad it was all ok. Congratulations smile

5madthings Wed 30-Jan-13 19:53:41

Glad things were ok for you and i hope all goes well for the rest of your pregnancy.

I doubt they would have covered up someone bottlefeeding. Its not ideal but a quiet feeding baby is better than a screaming one.

TidyDancer Wed 30-Jan-13 19:55:40

Lovely news that things are all okay. smile

NatashaBee Wed 30-Jan-13 19:56:03

Do you think she was covering up your modesty, or trying to shoo you away to breastfeed somewhere else? I can understand why it might not be the best place to feed, but you can't ignore your baby if she's hungry.

Those EPAUs are hideous places actually. I remember sitting in the waiting room too many times and the visceral feelings you experience in there. They're usually situated away from the ante/post natal areas IIRC? That's for a good reason and I wouldn't have felt comfortable bringing my young baby in there - I probably would have waited outside and asked the nurse to call me. I don't think you're being unreasonable but you were insensitive.

Theicingontop Wed 30-Jan-13 20:09:42

Forgive me, but is there something special about seeing a baby breastfeed as apposed to sat on your lap, that would make it more upsetting for the women there?

I remember when I was waiting for an appointment there, there was a lady with a six month old or thereabouts. She was entertaining her with a toy. No nurse came to cover the baby with a sheet. I'm not sure what would be more upsetting about you feeding your child confused

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now