Getting your boob out infront of in laws.(65 Posts)
im 33 weeks pregnant with our 2nd lg, i really want to breast feed, i couldnt with our 1st (loooong story)
So, im aware that we're going to have visitors when she's born, obviously.
And im really worried about feeding infront of my inlaws ..not so much my family (no idea why!?) and i couldnt careless about starngers.
How did you BF mummies get over it? What did you do? Shall i go upstairs with her? what about visiting people?
im abit self concious and kinda shy..so getting my boob out is a big thing haha..so just need abit of positive advice and tips
Can I just mention as well that when you look down on your breast you see far more lfesh than people sitting across from you. So as a pp suggested practising in front of a mirror is a good idea as you get a better perspective.
I was really worried about this too! I ended up just doing it in everyone politely averted their eyes
I did get a boob cape for when we were out and about but found it a faff. TBH people can't really see much when baby is feeding and you just end up not caring
People visiting us- with DS1 I used to go to the nursery to feed when we had people I was uncomfortable round. But with all my family, including my brother I'd just breastfeed in the lounge so I could still continue with the visit.
When I went to inlaws house though I used to go into their spare room to feed him. But I found i'd end up spending the majoritie of the time away from everyone which was nice when he was newborn as I just had him all to myself lol. I think I was so uncomfortable with them as no one in the family breastfed.
But when DS2 came along, I just do it infront of anyone anywhere. I use a muslin and wear cloths that help with discretion
I messed this up the first time and fed DS1 in a different room all the time as I wasn't used to bfing, this meant I was expected to. PIL like to eat out and were always asking for somewhere for me to feed in pubs etc.
For DS2 he was bf in front of anyone from day one, even MIL got used to it pretty quick.
My Mum was a bit antsy when I exceeded her comfort zone of 8/9 months with DS1, but today I fed nearly 14 month old DS2 to sleep for a nap when they visited and no one batted an eyelid. (even when his latch went all crap a he feel asleep and he made really loud sucking noises! )
So IMO, do your best to claim your own living room and get comfy. I found DS2 kind of tucked down inside my widgey pillow and I did the vest under top thing to minimise exposure of tummy, with a muslin tucked in at the side to save me having to west a cardigan or zip up top like I did all the time the first time round.
In the early days of visitors I would go to another room, I wanted to get the latch spot on and sometimes there could be a lot of fussing. Good excuse for a bit of peace and quiet from the rellies too!
When my latch was good, I did the strappy vest under baggy shirt trick others have mentioned (maternity tops are v good for this) but I did also drape a muslin over my shoulder, more as a cue to others that I was about to feed DD, so anyone who didn't feel comfortable about seeing my nips (BILs and bros) could avert their eyes.
Now everyone's used to it I do the vest down top up manoeuvre and feed anywhere and everywhere!
Have a go at feeding whilst looking in a mirror, you'll be surprised at how little can be seen once the baby is attached. Just looks like you're having a cuddle.
With DD1 we made a terrible mistake of having far too many visitors and being out and about far too much. She was always being held by someone else, it was little wonder then that BF was so difficult to establish and I ended up not being able to build up my supply and was soon supplementing with formula.
With DD2 I was in hospital for a week and refused all visitors. I had to be quite firm as DH family is a rather enthusiastic and lively bunch! The first weekend after we were home we had an 'open house' and got all the visiting over and done with that Saturday. It was chaotic but at least everyone was happy that they met the new baby and we didnt have the constant interruption of visitors for weeks (our family circle is quite large). BF was so much more relaxed and easier! It was absolutely the right thing to do and everyone was fine with it.
Women used to have a time of 'lying in' after birth and would be looked after by family, were expected to do nothing except recover and bond with their baby. How expectations have changed it would seem!
I would also encourage you NOT to leave the room when your need to feed.- with Ds1 in laws therefore after, installed a kitchen stool in a spare bedroom 'for my comfort' if I ever needed to feed at their house
With ds2 I had a comfy spot on the sofa which was mine, set up with feeding cushion, books and remotes and a stack of muslins. I bought those feeding vests with a clippy front and would drop that and stick a muslin behind my shoulder too which draped to cover upper shoulder and breast.
I was also a bit worried about this.
I tend to wear a strappy vest top under whatever else I'm wearing. The strappy top gets pulled down and the top layers goes up. I've found this to be pretty discrete. I couldn't get on with draping a muslin.
I will admit that once or twice when we had a house full of visitors I would escape to the bedroom to feed, but to be honest this was more about getting some peace and quiet!
You can cuddle/read to your little one whilst feeding baby once you've got it sussed (can take a few weeks).
Don't worry about your MIL approving/disapproving - or anyone else for that matter - it's your baby, your body, your house and your decision. And it's a great start for your baby. Personally with DS1 I never felt comfortable feeding in front of anyone other than DH, my mum and my NCT group. I would just quietly excuse myself when PILs were there and vanish with a cuppa and a magazine (books tricky to read with 1 hand, kindle would be good tho) for up to 45 mins - it was a godsend!!! I loved having the excuse for the time out, MIL is v full on. They were good though and never said anything critical about me doing this. Good luck!
I would definitely limit length of visits, especially if family are close. Tell them they can pop by for an hour but no longer. You don't need people sat there all day. Try and stay in your pyjamas and don't put make up on, people will treat you more kindly than if you look like you're running about fine!
With my first for the first week or two I did go into another room to feed. There was a particular chair I liked to sit on and it did take me a while to latch on to start with. My family and in-laws all live a five hour drive away, nobody complained about me going off. And my in-laws visited for a little while one day, then took themselves off for the afternoon and asked very nicely if they could pop back in the next day for another quick visit before catching their train home. And checked again in the morning. That is how visitors should behave!
I told XP to tell his family we weren't having visitors for a couple of weeks and luckily they kept their distance. He was a bit pissed off about it at first but they had been a PITA after I had DC1 so he eventually agreed we could do with the peace.
My family were closer, and I did need mum on hand to help as I'd had a CS. But even then I e-mailed all of them in advance and said that at no point was I entertaining anyone and they could all make their own tea if they did come round.
TBH I don't care if they thought I was a cow. To this day I still find it unbelievable that people invade a new mums privacy when she is probaly shattered, in some pain and trying to establish bf.
Even wandering in and out of another room would have annoyed me, I liked having the sofa set up with my cushions, snacks, magazines and laptop and being able to watch what I wanted on the TV. I'm a bit of an introvert at the best of times, even worse when I've had a newborn.
How did people react to the 'stay away' method? I'd feel abit mean. did you mention it before hand? Or when your baby was born?
Or maybe limit time? Like say then can stop an hour or so? But if baby needs feeding then ive got to feed...i think once she latches on i could allways pop back into the room...
BF last time came to a big fat majour stop when we came from hospita..after about an hour or so hubby took our lg to his moms house..i couldnt go as i was in a bad way (stitches! Ouch! And we had a classic mini at the time!) so that really didnt help...no thought to me either and what i wanted.. so maybe i shouldnt feel mean about limiting visits..
I might just mention it to family and get hubby to mention it to his parents in conversation...not sure how yet. ha!
Im hoping when i tell my mom the plans she will soon let visitors know whats happening..no one argues with nanny!
I love the idea of it just being me and baby for a while, trying to feed and bonding. missed it with my 1st so maybe she can join in too on the bonding
I think sticking with it and establishing a good feeding realationship is what im going to focus on as thats where i lost it that time.
I second having as little visitors the first few weeks to give you a chance to recover and get bf established.
It's your home and your baby so prioritise that over your guests comforts. FIL used to vacate the room when I would nurse but by DD2, he'd gotten used to it and barely noticed if the baby was nursing. Everybody was polite and understanding about giving me space and time. A howling baby is not much fun to hold so it just made sense to leave her to be fed.
I kept guests away for the first 3 weeks with DD1 and two weeks with DD2.
I love the Boob brand nursing tops. Very discreet for nursing and easy to whip out a boob. The baby's head blocked any view of nipples.
TBH I'd refuse visitors for a couple of weeks. You needing time to recover and establish bf are more important than them wanting a cuddle.
With DC1 the visitors helped to kill my bf chances stone dead. I didn't need the distractions. But with DC2 I banned them and was able to loll around in my pj's and learn at our pace. It also meant I could keep my boobs totally uncovered and go topless to let them get some air.
Nursing vests are handy when you've got it established. They meant I could wear a normal top, lift it up to feed and keep my tummy warm.
I think have to do what feels right for you. I certainly don't think BF should be hidden away, but I also think you should be relaxed as possible when doing it, whihc you won't be if you feel self conscious. I also think it would be a real shame to limit / ban visitors in the first few weeks, as some have suggested - showing DD off was my favourite bit!!
From personal experience, I found BF quite hard, as DD would thrash about a lot, have difficulty latching on, suddenly pull away leaving me sputing milk everywere etc! It got easier after first few weeks, then harder again at 3-4 months, when she seemed morre distracted and needed a quiet space to do it - that was when I stopped!
I did feed out and about / in front of people, with aid of a scarf, but didn't like doing it because it was hard to be subtle with issues above, and for some reason felt particularly uncomfortalbe in front of my FIL (and to a lesser extent MIL) and my own dad (same as Chunky Pickle said really) - not because of their reaction, but just me. So I wasn't afraid to leave the room if that was the case (although as some have said you do miss out on a lot that way, but also a nice chance for peace and quiet / to sit on the bed reading a book!) No one seemed to mind that, although I did try and get people who I wouldn't want to feed in front of to visit when DH was there to socialise with them where possible. I guess having the older child there will help with that in your case. once she started getting distracted, I even found myself sitting in the car when out and about a couple of times.
In reality it didn't arise with in laws much, as sadly FIL was being diagnosed with terminal cancer when DD was a month or two old, and they don't live near by, so we didn't get to spend as much time with them as we would have liked in the early days, and then I stopped BF (partly because it was difficult and partly due to retunr to work) at 4 months anyway. Maybe I'd have got more used to it if had to do it more (and got sick of leaving room!)
One friend said her tactic with visitors was to ask them to go to the kitchen and make a cuppa whilst she got latched on, then she was happy for them to come back in once got going!
I'm the same op. Im dreading it and hated it first time round. This time I will restrict visiting. I will feed baby where i am comfortable in my house, in laws can come here to see us until I'm ready. The problem I've got with going there is if bil is staying which they will be as its over summer there is nowhere to escape to feed as all rooms are taken.
I also plan to use Muslins/ scarves to maintain some dignity. The real problem is going to come with nieces and nephews who are already overly fascinated by my body and full of questions. I know their only little 5-9 yrs old but I'm not keen on my boobs being stared at and commented on when I'm already self conscious!
My bestfriend breastfed her son and she had a breast feeding buddy..i had no clue they exsisted. she had also been given numbers and went to breast feeding classes! No idea. My midwife (all 10+ of them!) or HV never mentioned anything like that to me.
I know what you mean - for some reason I have no problem feeding in front of strangers (plonked on a garden chair in the middle of Costco for instance), and after a deep breath, was fine doing it in front of friends, but
I do feel nervous about the idea of feeding in front of family (wasn't a problem with the first as was away from family). I'm going to head off to the bedroom I think - both because I'll probably want the break from visitors, and because with my first, learning to feed lying down was one of the best ideas anyone ever gave me.
From your last post - make sure you know the contact details for as many peer supporters/la leche league reps/local feeding groups/other mums who have done it as you possibly can before you give birth.
I was really lucky that my friend who had BFed 4 children was around and at my beck and call for the first week after giving birth
I know someone now who hasn't been so lucky with support (not having anyone to turn to who knew what they were talking about)
In the early days, I was really quiteshy of doing it (it's still a bit awkward)
not so much in front of my inlaws, but especially in front of people at church.
One of the older choir members (male) who's had 2 children and a few grandchildren said to me "just feed her- we've all been there. She's hungry, just don't worry about what other people think"
and since then, I thought about that whenever I was worried about feeding her in public.
Just use a big scarf, don't waste money on "capes" and go upstairs if you want to.
Latching on was the reason i stopped with my 1st lg, i was a young mum and my labour was just so long, i'd never felt so exhausted, she latched on fab in the hospital and had her feed, it was amazing!..
And then we came home! I couldnt hold her, i couldnt walk or anything as i was aching from head to toe it was awful..i was a sobbing mess..she wouldnt latch on right, my nips ended up bleeding, my HV didnt show up, it was awful, i just gave in and bottled fed so my hubby and mom could help me...which resulted in more sobbing!
Nobody said it was so complicated or explained anything to me, i just assumed it was easy. ha! How wrong was i!?
2nd time round im doing my research, i feel alot more confident being a 2nd time mum and feel ok to tell people (mainly inlaws, not a fab relationship, a whole other thread! :')) what i want/need and whats happening regarding OUR baby.
Im hoping that its going to be alot more relaxed (and me too!) so i can just take our lg to fed in another room or get my boob feeding on..without feeling like im taking her away from from eveyone. my needs and my baby are coming 1st this time.
"Sit down and shut up or sod off" is my attitude this time! Haha.
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