Boobs are for feeding your baby, so simple but so difficult for most to understand. It has been my mission since having Aria 20 months ago to normalize breastfeeding to my older kids, husband and most of all myself.
I have not always been pro-breastfeeding, even less so breastfeeding in public, and with no cover (oh my) and my worst past judgement was judging moms who breastfed past the one year mark.
My views have changed as I educated myself more, as I became aware of the rights women have worldwide and how they are being stifled, and most of all from deciding to try out breastfeeding my third child. What was supposed to be a few months maximum has stretched beyond my wildest expectations into 20 months of bonding and cuddling my little girl. Now we are happily doing tandem feedings with a newborn and toddler and a different adventure is taking place.
With my first two kids I pumped for them for the first three months of their lives because I had heard "breast is best" but I was never really into the whole idea of breastfeeding. At that point I thought formula was easier and I would just prop a bottle up with a pillow and let them eat themselves to sleep. (This is not safe and I don't recommend it at all as my son got a flat head on one side and a stiff neck over preferring the bottle on one side.)
This is what my 5-year-old Emma came up with when I asked her to write me a note about what boobs were for:
I am upset almost daily over hearing about a woman being told to move or cover up while feeding her child. With the help of social media these stories flood my feeds and I absolutely hate the fact that this is still an issue. Breastfeeding your child is a BASIC HUMAN RIGHT. Whenever, where ever and however a woman does it is LEGAL (in Canada). There is no opinion on whether it is right or wrong that matters because it is LEGAL.
A woman's boobs have a primary function, to feed their children. At some point in our lives they become sexualized. I, just like the next person, can appreciate a beautiful set of boobs but I am not being turned on when I see a woman feed her child. Neither are you, or your husband or your children no matter what you may be telling yourself (maybe your teenager -- but any boobs are exciting at that point).
It is up to us to change our mindsets and remember WHY woman have boobs. Teach your children from an early age that breast feeding is 100 per cent legal anywhere and everywhere. Breastfeeding is a way of giving your child the best meal that is a perfect temperature at all times. I want my kids to grow up unfazed when they see a woman feeding her child. I don't want my son being that employee at a restaurant telling a woman she has to cover up or even worse leave because others are uncomfortable. I want him to be the one to support her and protect her rights. It starts at home and it starts with parents teaching their kids. At 6-years-old, I think he is on the right path. His explanation of what boobs are for was, "Boobs are for feeding your baby milk. They are round, wide and beside."
It is never to late to change your mind and that of others. I was 28 when I first started realizing the issues surrounding breastfeeding. I am lucky that I have a great support system around me with my breastfeeding journey or I would have surely given up and missed out on all the health benefits and bonding breastfeeding has given me. For me I am on a #BoobsAre4FeedingBabies life mission now, even if these situations have not happened to me, I will not be the problem, I will be part of the solution.
All I ask is you rethink your stance on breastfeeding and not be judgmental. Stop feeding into the social stigma that boobs mean sex and remember #BoobsAre4FeedingBabies :)
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