Breastfeeding is not glamorous. It is not sexy. It is not always easy.
Not at all.
There’s grazed nipples, cracked nipples, leaking nipples, lumpy boobs, maternity bras that (mostly) only come in your choice of beige or black.
If you get past all of this, there’s another issue; NO FUCKING CLOTHES.
So, we’re told constantly that we should cover up, be modest about feeding, but no one wants to make any fucking clothes for us to do so?
Like, don’t get me wrong – I don’t really give a shit who might get a flash of nipple when I’m trying to put my fussy newborn on to latch – If that makes your day or turns you on, you really need to get out more and quite frankly, that’s not my problem. You can hear the baby crying, look away.
BUT I would like the option to be discreet if I so choose!
There’s this massive double standard in society at the moment where everywhere you look, you’re told Breast is Best (and I wholeheartedly agree in most circumstances) but then no one wants to accommodate this.
I went shopping yesterday to try and find a shirt that didn’t look like shit and was designed for breastfeeding. I went to Target, Kmart and Big W. The stores that sell the staple wardrobe items at affordable prices that are pretty much the go to for basics.
Target had ZERO (not counting the singlets you can find in the underwear department – they are comfortable but clip down so your whole boob is out).
Kmart had TWO – one hideous singlet and one shirt that you can unbutton and get a breast out over the top of (so your whole boob is still out)
Big W had ZERO of anything, including maternity wear in their clothing department which is interesting considering when I complained on their Facebook wall back in the middle of winter about the lack of maternity wear I was told it was a gross oversight by their purchasing department that would be remedied in the next season.
Apparently remedied means just done away with altogether.
It is probably something that seems a bit like a first world problem. And it probably is. But considering we live in a first world country I shouldn’t have to apologise for that.
It seems the options are get out a whole boob (and these things are massive, they do attract attention) or pay a shitload of money for a not that great item off the internet.
I would never ever tell anyone they have to cover up while feeding. I don’t always cover up either. But I would like the option to.
And I know people who have given up breastfeeding because it was too hard to do in public, it made them too anxious, too self conscious, which in turn made their baby fussy and nervous and it was easier to bottle feed.
We want mothers to give their babies this great start in life but don’t give them the tools to do so.
And yes, as humans I do consider clothing a tool.