DISCLAIMER *I am NOT putting down mothers who chose to formula feed. I believe as long as your child is fed, that is great!*
Today, 77% of mothers breastfeed their babies in the USA which is a significant increase from the 55% in 1993 according to parenting.com.
I am a mother of an 8 month old daughter and if you can't already guess from the title, she's breastfed. I used to be scared of breastfeeding without a cover and especially in public. What would everyone think? Would people make fun of me for it?
My stepmother bought me a nursing cover because she believes you should cover yourself if you're breastfeeding your baby. The first time I gave that thing a try was also the first time I decided to breastfeed in public. I was at Red Robin's and I pulled that cover out of the diaper bag and attempted to pull it over me and situate it. I literally could not get it to cooperate and stay out of my daughter's way when she was eating. I'm sure I looked like a lunatic. So I looked around and finally said, "You know what? This would be a LOT easier if I just didn't use it." So I took it off and went on feeding my daughter. My stepmom made a comment saying I should use it and I got a couple nasty glares from people in the restaurant. That did not stop me, though.
The sole purpose for women having breasts is so that we can feed our babies. That is why we produce milk. So, why are people so opposed to breastfeeding? Why do so many people have a problem with us breastfeeding without a cover? What is the difference between the amount of boob shown in a low cut shirt, and the amount of boob shown while breastfeeding?
Breastfeeding can actually protect a baby from getting sick and can even prevent cancers! According to the La Leche Legue, "Breastfeeding has been shown to be protective against many illnesses, including painful ear infections, upper and lower respiratory ailments, allergies, intestinal disorders, colds, viruses, staph, strep and e coli infections, diabetes, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, many childhood cancers, meningitis, pneumonia, urinary tract infections, salmonella, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome(SIDS) as well as lifetime protection from Crohn's Disease, ulcerative colitis, some lymphomas, insulin dependent diabetes, and for girls, breast and ovarian cancer."
This is why I chose to breastfeed my daughter and why I feel no shame in it.
I have written this article in the hopes that I might have educated someone today. I do not discourage formula feeding; my goal here is simply to educate people on breastfeeding.