Makes You Wonder What Our Hangup Is, Really……..

No big message here, except that I found these images powerful, beautiful, and interesting.  I do not understand our cultural horror and disdain for something so natural.  I am a proud breastfeeding mama.  I certainly do not go out of my way to make a show of it, and indeed in 10 months have nursed outside my home less than 25% of the time.  I have, however, nursed in parked vehicles, restaurants, shopping centers, friend’s/family’s homes, waiting rooms, and wherever else he was hungry.  I do not cover up.  I do not need to.  He doesn’t like it, and if you don’t understand that, try eating your dinner with a blanket over your head and face.  He has not been forced to eat in a nasty stinky bathroom either.  EEEWWW.  I am not making him eat anywhere I wouldn’t.  I guarantee that when I feed him you see far less of me than you do on any random girl or woman in most adverts or, indeed, walking around on the streets any given day.  SO, once again, no big message here, except that I found these images to be beautiful, natural, and empowering for those of us struggling to use what nature gave us in the face of a society who has forgotten their purpose due to cultural conditioning and sexualization of our bodies.

breastfeeding in favela do marium brazil

A woman breastfeeding in the Favela do Maruim, Natal/RN, Brazil

The above picture was found here on Wikipedia and was listed under creative commons.

himba woman christopher rimmer

Breastfeeding Himba woman and child (Africa) taken by Christopher Rimmer. This was one of a series taken down from Facebook due to their ‘unsuitability’ for children.

The above picture was one of a series taken in Africa by Christopher Rimmer.  Original article here.

togo mother breastfeeding

Togo mother breastfeeding. Taken by Luca Gorgano. This one I particularly loved, because of the megawatt smile on mommy’s face. You see lots of nursing photos that seem peaceful, but not that many where it is so obvious that mom is happy and enjoying herself.

This pic I found here.  Worth reading, and has several very nice pics from around the world.

There is nothing quite like looking into those wide innocent eyes, peering up at you during a feeding.

public breastfeeding 619

Oh, I’ve been there. I particularly like informal shots like these. When you’re in the middle of something, you just gotta grow that extra arm and do what ya’ gotta do. Photos like this remind us that this is a natural process, and part of a busy day that doesn’t come screeching to a halt just because it’s nummy time.

public breastfeeding 613

Feeding in a parked vehicle is not super comfortable, even without the addition of the invariable looky-loo coming by to check it out.

The three preceding pics were taken from here.  Word of warning though, this gallery has some wonderful candid nursing shots but if you are offended easily you should probably skip it.  Then again, if you are offended easily, you probably stopped reading before you got this far.

twins nursing

You go, mom! One can be hard enough….

This pic was taken from an absolutely wonderful blog about these twins.  I had a great deal of difficulty with my first two children’s attempts at nursing.  My third has been a heavenly experience, so I have seen both sides of the fence.  Moms of multiples who successfully nurse impress the heck out of me.  Props to all of them.

I could have spent a lot more time sharing the pics I scanned through this morning………but I hear a little boy singing in the next room, which means that it’s nummy time here now. So here’s one last pic before I wrap up :

ton-ton march 22 2012

My Connor-boo back in March when he was 5 months old. This one is one of my favorites. He is still nummin’ right along at 10 months, too.

Nursing was a lot different at 5 months.  Less of a gymnastic effort, definitely.  Once he realized he could eat but still interact with his surroundings it became something of a challenge to keep him interested long enough for a feeding before he takes off to explore again.  It’s never dull, but always rewarding.  My 3 year old has certainly gotten into the act.  If Connor cries, Gracen comes and tugs at me saying “Brother cry.  Him hungry.  You feed him boo-bies?”  Yeah, I know, it probably loses a little of the cuteness factor when you don’t hear it.  What I love is that he takes the situation at face value.  Baby is hungry, baby needs to eat, feed him boo-bies mom.  So tell me why a 3 year old can relate and accept the situation but an adult cannot? I have been saying that folks with hangups about nursing should grow up, but maybe that isn’t right.  Maybe what they should do is forget some of  the misperceptions they learned growing up.


6 thoughts on “Makes You Wonder What Our Hangup Is, Really……..

  1. Glwrose says:

    I have been around a long time, no Spring Chicken, lost my only child, which would have been breast fed unless there wass some physical problem that couldn’t be remedied. I have read a lot to prove God knew what He was doing when He designed the breasts to produce milk when a baby is born. No one thinks it strange when a mother animal lets their young go to their breasts, udders, teats, etc. The only reason anyone thinks breastsfeeding is a problem is due to those idiots who have so sexualized the human breasts that to their tiny minds, that is all they are for and those who have stock in bottle and formula companies. God didn’t make any mistakes. Count yourself blessed if your mother breast fed you. My mother was only able to breastfeed one of her babies. I have three sisters and only one breastfed her children. I always thought that was sad because studies prove that breast milk has properties that help the child in so many ways. It makes me wonder how many of the current health issues were the result of the ‘un-natural’ formulas babies were fed. These pictures are beautiful, especially the last one…but, I am prejudice. He is related to me. : }

    • Actually I was a formula baby. The time period & region I was born did not encourage nursing and my mother has always been rather adversarial about my desire to nurse my own. She has always seemed to take it as an affront that I wanted to nurse, as if I was using my breastfeeding to tell her she did things wrong.

  2. goodpulp says:

    It’s just peoples insecurities projected onto others. Nothing wrong with it at all. No one criticizes fat people jamming Mcdonalds down their throats in public because they’re just trying to eat. And fat people eating McDs is disgusting – breast feeding isnt

  3. gkinnard says:

    Well said. Good for you!

  4. and so they should. 🙂

  5. Matthew says:

    There’s a lot of plain old discomfort with the human body. Plus, there’s a particular history of trying to control women’s bodies. It’s nice that more and more mothers feel comfortable breast-feeding in public.

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