You know you have all been waiting with baited breath for it, haven't you??
What's that, you ask?
WORLD BREAST FEEDING WEEK! Lots of skin coming to siggies near you this week.
What do you think? Does putting photos of you nursing your baby in your signature help "normalize" breast feeding? Does it help other women nurse or want to nurse? Do you think that it is great and wonderful advocacy to put pictures of your breasts at work on here or on Facebook or the like? Discuss.
I actually think it does.
When I started coming to PO, we weren't even TTC yet (although obviously I was starting to think a lot about it, or I wouldn't have sought out this kind of website.) I don't remember having strong feelings about breastfeeding vs. formula feeding - I don't think that I had really thought about it at all because babies and what they eat hadn't really been a part of my life up until then.
I think that some of the decisions that I have made as a parent probably *are* influenced by the overall culture on the PO, because when I had T most of my friends didn't have kids, so PO was where I came to talk about this stuff. I think that seeing that so many people are pro-breastfeeding probably did make an impact on me.
In any case, I don't think it hurts to put up the siggies. If nothing else, maybe it helps me desensitize to public breastfeeding. I am not opposed to public breastfeeding, but I'm also not used to it because you just never see it around here. Yesterday I was at the park with T and having a great convo with another mom I had just met, and all of the sudden she sat down on the ground, pulled up her shirt, and started bfing her 15 month old. Having never experienced this before, I was trying really hard to play it cool. You know, like, not stare, but also not look anywhere but her, just act normal. So, maybe seeing all of the pictures in the signatures will help me desensitize and not act like a weirdo next time that happens.
-Alissa, mom to Tristan (5) and Reid (the baby!)
Got an opinion? We've got a board! Come join us for some lively debate on the Face Off! Debate Arena board.
I am a decently private person, although I think that there is absolutely nothing wrong with other Mom's putting BF'ing pictures for the public to view, I don't feel comfortable enough to do that myself. In fact, I never took a picture of my daughter nursing.
As far as making it more normal, I think that if a person already thinks as BF'ing as being gross or a private matter, showing b00b isn't going to change their mind.
I think they are annoying and I would not put a picture of my boob on the internet to normalize anything. I think talking about BFing and getting the medical community to embrace it is what will help get more people to BF'ed. If me showing you my boob is what will help you to BF, then I don't get you and here's a coupon for formula.
I think Breastfeeding Awareness and education is great. You won't see any siggy of me bfing, because, personally I'm just not into posting pics online. I do breastfeed in public without hesitation.
Like Alissa said, I agree that pics can desensitize people to public bfing, especially if they are from an area where it really isn't common. People bf all over the place here, so there isn't anything can could shock me.
I admit, I find the boob photos a tad annoying. I don't need to see a pic of a baby nursing to accept BF and realize the benefits that go with it. Then again, when I nursed my daughter I considered that a VERY private moment and would never dream of posting photos of it on the internet. To each her own though.....
I'm not a fan, though I can't even put my finger on exactly why.
I nursed/am nursing all of my kids ~ yet for reasons I can't figure out I get a little gacked out when I see people posting (certain) pictures of themselves nursing in their siggy/on FB whatever. Some nursing photos are beautiful and subtle ~ Others are not. I also just remembered that I did post a picture of myself nursing on FB once last summer along with our other beach photos, though you could not tell in the slightest that my baby was actually nursing aka there was not a drop of actual breast involved. I also come from a place where nursing is really normal and common, so to me posting a picture of myself doing it just seems unnecessary or abnormal. Like, look at me look at me look at me I'm NURSING look at me! Nursing! I'd rather just nurse, I guess. It's like, I think that me eating or getting dressed is so normal that to post pictures of me with a mouth full of pasta like "LOOK AT ME EATING EATING IS NORMAL!! EAT!!!" or "Look at me putting on my belt! GETTING DRESSED IS NORMAL!!!" it would seem weird to me, too.
I wonder if my perspective is just off because I was BF'd, I always planned to BF, almost all of my friends BF, it just isn't that big of a deal. IRL none of my many friends who actually nurse have ever mentioned "WBF", it seems to be more of an internet phenom on sites like here or FB than other places, IMO.
I also think that it can be hard on any woman who really really wanted to nurse, but who nursing did not work out for. Like, I see how it could be construed as being very braggy, though I don't think that *most* people intend for it to be.
I nursed in public as needed or in front of family/friends, but I would never post a photo of me doing it. I took one photo of me with each baby, and never showed them to anyone. They are just for me.
Seeing boob does nothing for my breastfeeding awareness, I just find it annoying.
Laurie, mom to:
Nathaniel ( 10 ) and Juliet ( 6 )
Baking Adventures In A Messy Kitchen (blog)
I had a hard time nursing in public. I wasn't ever able to do it without a cover or some privacy because I felt uncomfortable with it. I think I might try with the next one to do less hiding and trying to keep people from seeing what I'm doing, but I'll never be the kind of person to put up pictures of it or make it a point to make sure people see that I'm breastfeeding. I don't think pictures on the internet or sit-ins do anything to normalize it. I think having people shove it down other's throats just pushes those that are on the fence over to the formula feeding side, but that's just my opinion.
I think they're fine, especially the more tastefully done ones. I see it as a way for that person to show their pride in their accomplishment. I don't feel the need to do it myself, but I am not put off by those that do. I don't however, think it does much to raise awareness or to normalize; especially on a bb where it is already rather normal. Maybe on FB it might.
DS - Kaelan April 2009
DD - Hailey September 2010 (my VBAC baby)
Expecting #3 forChristmas!!!