The thought of breastfeeding in public, or even just in front of visitors at home, may seem daunting but don’t let that hold you back. Being able to feed your baby whilst out and about will give you more freedom, and in time, it’ll become second nature.
Whilst the temptation in the early days might be to hide away indoors or feed in the car ‘out of the way’ of everyone, is that really sustainable in the long-run? In time, you may begin to feel resentful about missing out on social activities, and perhaps you may consider giving up on breastfeeding earlier than planned.
Of course many mamas breastfeed in public without a second thought and that’s great, but there are many more that don’t feel that way. Worries or concerns about breastfeeding out and about can hinge on what other people might think, and whether you are showing too much flesh. But, remember, the only thing that matters is that you are meeting the needs of your baby. Your baby has a right to eat as and when they want, and the wonderful thing about breastfeeding is that you can do it anywhere, anytime without much preparation! As for other people, in most cases, you’ll find they are too caught up in their own business to notice what you are doing
Worries or concerns about breastfeeding out and about can hinge on what other people might think, and whether you are showing too much flesh.
The good news is there’s no reason why breastfeeding should hold you back from getting out and about and enjoying life. You may find all you need are a few top tips to give you the confidence to breastfeed your little one outside the home. That’s why we asked breastfeeding mamas for their top tips on how to breastfeed in public with confidence. They’ve been there and done it and their experiences will help you.
Read on for 10 top tips from breastfeeding mamas about how to breastfeed in public with confidence.
Top 10 mama tips for how to breastfeed in public with confidence
- “Look for the Breastfeeding Welcome Here sign in the early days – that’s what I did because I was initially very hesitant about feeding in public. Knowing that a venue actively encouraged breastfeeding made me feel more confident.” Rachael Kelly
- “Take a friend if need be and fake the confidence ‘til you make it. I have fed for 36months in total and I have never had any negative comments from anyone.” Karen Nicholl
- “Focus on your baby rather than the people around you. The baby will feel your calm and relax as well.” Nadia Koch
- “Once you get the first time down you are fine. I tried a cover but it was awkward and I feel drew more attention to me. With the right clothing, it can look like your just cuddling your wee one.” Becka G.
- “I found the big muslins to be very good at the start when I was more self-conscious about feeding in public. I preferred to use muslins as they were nice and light so didn’t overheat baby but still covered me well.” Robyn Usher
- “Get a cover if it makes you feel better. I didn’t have any issues BFing in public but preferred to have the privacy of a cover.” Kallie Branciforte
- “I’m very large chested so found it difficult at the start to latch baby discreetly. Someone told me to roll up a muslin and put it under the breast to help position baby which really helped.” Lydia M
- “The Can I Breastfeed In It? group is a godsend. Thanks to the group I discovered the discreet one top over and one top under method and have been using it since.” Musha Enkhbayar
- “I found if people looked, I would just smile back, showing that I am comfortable, therefore there’s no reason they shouldn’t be.” Eve Brannon
- “Just do it! I was so self-conscious at first but the more I did it the more I stopped caring and I generally found most people I came into contact with were supportive of feeding in public.” Claire P.
It’s worth noting that these top tips are meant to be helpful but not every single one may work for you. Sometimes, in the early days of feeding outside of the home, it’s trial and error to see what works best for you and makes you feel most comfortable. As with most things, practice makes perfect.
And lastly, remember feeding your little in public is a perfectly normal and expected thing to do. By feeding out and about you’re more likely to breastfeed for longer. You’ll also help inspire other mamas to breastfeed in public too. What’s not to love about that?
By feeding out and about you’re more likely to breastfeed for longer.
Thank you to all the amazing mamas who shared their tips and their wonderful breastfeeding photos. If you’d like to share your breastfeeding photos with us on social media use #boobingit and tag us @boobingit.