Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Nursing In Public: To Cover or Not to Cover

     There is an ongoing debate in the breastfeeding community about covering up while breastfeeding.  Many lactivists insist on nursing without a cover.  Others may even be rude to a nursing mother who is nursing in public.  A cover is a personal choice.  Nursing in public may be more comfortable to you while you are learning to latch on discreetly with a nursing cover.  Once you and your baby learn to latch well, a nursing top or other discreet top may work for you.  If you are in a group of women, it is actually helpful to nurse without a cover so that other women can learn from you.  One of the reasons our culture has a difficult time with the early days of breastfeeding is that we have never seen it done.  Although Spanish is my second language, in my 20 years of counseling nursing mothers I have had less Hispanic clients who needed help with latch due to the culture of women helping women. 
      If you choose to cover, the Bebe au Lait or Hooter Hider is an excellent nursing cover because they have a patented stay to keep the cover lifted out just enough for you and your baby to have eye to eye contact.  The LatchOn Nursing Strap is a great go-to item because it turns any blanket into a nursing cover making it very easy to carry with you even if you are only toting a purse, one diaper and wipe.
   So cover, don't cover.  It is up to you.  Do whatever makes you, not just others feel comfortable.  The more comfortable you are, the longer you will breastfeed!

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