A question for extended breastfeeders...(20 Posts)
...do you feed in public?
I'm still feeding my 18mo and hope to be doing it for a long time yet. I've always been very comfortable feeding anywhere at all but I find more and more recently I'm refusing when he asks when we're out somewhere.
It's all about worrying about what other people might think. Which is silly because I've never encountered any negativity at all (I know ok very lucky). But I think, as he gets bigger, I'm almost expecting comments and looks now.
So I just wondered whether people feed in public or keep it just for at home? If you feed in public do you get any negativity? And if so, what do you do/say?
Not for some time now (ds2 is 17mo) but thats because he has only fed early morning and before bed since about 13 months.
DD is 20 months. I try to avoid feeding in public and am generally quite secretive about it outside of family and very close friends but sometimes I do feed her when we are out and about and the alternative is a full on tantrum.
I have never encountered any negativity. The only comments have come from other mums who see her pulling at my top and ask if I'm still breastfeeding. It usually transpires that they breastfed for longer too.
I fed ds2 15 mo in sainsburys cafe just this morning. Two older ladies on table next to us looked across and smiled saying oh how lovely. At my slimming world group all the ladies comment on how nice is it to see a baby being breastfed. Yes I've had "funny" looks sometimes but the majority of the time people don't seem to notice or make no comment. You must do what feels right for you and your baby and don't worry about what others think.
I do sometimes in certain situations where it's easier to keep him quiet instead of roaring for milk at the top of his voice like in a church service, but once mine have got to about 18m + I think they can get used to waiting until they get home, but I will always try to have a drink and snack available as a replacement. So far having fed 3 DC to over 24 months I've only ever had positive comments - apart from my GP and health visitor who are both a bit as to why we carry on so long.
Thanks everyone. He still feeds loads but I'm making sure I always have a drink and snack with us as an alternative. At the moment he has no words but signs 'milk' and if I refuse and can't distract him he pulls my top and has a complete meltdown.
Hopefully I won't get any negativity because I'd rather feed him than have a tantruming toddler on my hands!
I found it hard to avoid between 1 year and probably about his age? Because he didn't really understand about waiting and wasn't always distractable. When he got older he understood it was just for at home. So I fed a handful of times between 13-18 months. I didn't have any negative comments although I felt self conscious. Actually I had two separate people come up to me and say "I fed my child until they were older too, I didn't know anybody else did!" which was nice. I think I fed him twice ever in public after that age, once at 2 and once at 3. Again, nobody noticed. He fed until he was four.
If you have a La Leche League group near you that can be a good place to go, was the only place I felt totally relaxed feeding him (but it does become a bit of a "thing" as they see all the other babies feeding and insist on having a go even if they're normally down to morning and night!)
I fed dd till almost 2, when she self-weaned (which I was sad about at the time but in retrospect was probably right for me, too). After about 18 months I didn't really talk to people about it unless I knew they were pro extended bf, and I don't remember feeding in public after this time. But I think this was wrong really - I wish I had had the courage of my convictions, in order to do my little bit to help normalise something that in my opinion is normal, natural and healthy (when it works for mother and child ).
Sorry, not a very helpful post, just my musings really. You should only feed where you feel comfy doing so. The chances of anyone challenging you are hopefully slight, and if they did you could console yourself with the fact that they were an utter knobber!
Yes, also still find it kind of unavoidable with DS2 (also 18 months), though it only happens occasionally at weekends. Better a quick feed than an irate toddler pointing in outrage at my chest shouting "Miiiiuk? MIIIIIIUK? Mama? Dis? Miiiiiiuk?". That said, it's my second time round (fed DS1 til he was 2.5) so I think I've lost most of my self-consciousness at this stage. YES I AM FEEDING A TODDLER, WHAT OF IT?
I think I stopped feeding mine at 18mths in public (fed them for years at home) To be honest they stopped asking for it much. On occasion there was top pulling and hands down top but I was usually able to distract with a snack until we got home.
The last time I remember feeding DD2 in public she was 16 months old and trying to interrupt DD1's starting primary school meeting.
I'm sure she fed during swimming lessons after that, once or twice and she feed at friends house to about 3.
Basically as others say she tended to feed night and morning rather than lunch time and more and more have grown up food and drink.
She stopped feeding during swimming lessons because she could walk and mess about with the other bored siblings.
Also she simply got to tall. You needed two chairs, a sofa or a bed. She didn't like folding up on my lap and was libel to stretch out and destroy 1/2 of Costa Coffee.
I don't feed in public now as a rule (ds 24 months) but I did a couple of weeks ago as we were out for the day and he was just miserable and tantrummy - eventually fed him on a bench at the seaside and he drifted off to sleep.
I don't want to do it much as he doesn't feed in a nice straightforward way anymore - he jumps from one side to another, and likes to stand on one leg while doing it.
I'm going to keep going till he stops (of course I may change this if he keeps going at 10!)
Yes I feed my 22mo in public, only occasionally as normally just feeds at bed or nap time. I never had any bad comments or looks, and sometimes smiles/sweet comments. As other people said his habits are less than ideal as he will cup/fiddle with my other boob and pull my clothes about!
Thanks for all your replies ladies. I've been thinking about this a lot. Then this morning I had to have some blood tests and while we were in a packed waiting room he started signing for milk. Tried drink and snack and distraction but he was having none of it. The waiting room was small and packed and I figured that is was better for everyone if I fed him rather than letting him have a meltdown. So I did. It was fine and I made up my mind that I won't worry about it anymore. He wants to feed, I want to feed him and sod anyone who has a problem with that
I fed my son until he was 3.3 years. I think I stopped doing it in public just before he was 2. I felt self conscious, but I never received a negative comment. If I had a second child I wouldn't give a crap.
I don't at nearly 2 years but through ds choice not mine as he completely associates it with sleep and only asks at nap or bedtime which we are usually at home for. If not at home I can get him to sleep in the car or he just won't sleep as he's too interested in stuff going on around him/playing. If he really wanted it I would probably find somewhere to go out of view from others as he is a very mobile feeder!
I fed ds 2.5 in public the other day after he fell at the park, I didn't think anything of it but I noticed an older lady looking at me in a very disapproving way. I was ready for her though if she'd dared to comment. She didn't.
But usually I don't. If someone says to you "Isn't he/she a bit big for that?" Just reply 'No. But you're definitely too big to be offering up your unwanted opinions to strangers'. That should shut them up.
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