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Tuesday, February 20, 2007(I'm feeling a little ranty today, so you're going to see two ranty posts in a row.)
I've been thinking a bit on this whole "I don't care if moms breastfeed in public, I just think they should be discreet" thing lately. I've heard this line several times both on TV interviews and in news stories, usually from someone responding to legislation moving through various states in an attempt to provide moms and babies a bit more protection when it comes to meal time.
Here's my issue with this topic. Who in the world gets to define what is and isn't "discreet."
The problem with writing "discreet" requirements into laws is that you also have to define the very meaning of discreet. My friend Judy pointed out that it would probably go something like this:
...not revealing more breast than is necessary to comfortably feed the child, yet not placing undue burden to completely conceal the breast/nipple.
(Note: it's not that Judy thinks this is how it should be, simply that this is how some legislator would probably write it.)
But think about it...even if you legally define "discreet" with a phrase like that, you're still left with so much grey area as to make it worthless. After all, how much breast is "necessary" to comfortably feed the child? An inch? Two inches? 20% of the surface area of the breast? Also, since I'm a DD cup, do I get to show more than my friend Cara who is, at best, a B cup? What qualifies as an "undue burden" in terms of concealing the breast or nipple?
Emmitt likes to grab hold of the edge of my shirt and then throw his fist in the air. (As in "hey world!!! Look!!! Mom's FEEDING ME!!!) Do I need to tie his hands to his legs to keep him from doing that? Personally, I'd say that would qualify as undue burden.
What if discreet means "put a blanket over that kid's head" to one person and "don't take your top off" to another? Which one wins? Because if the answer is "only a judge can decide" then we're right back where we started.
I'm really trying to understand where people are coming from on this one because again, I have never in my entire life seen any part of a woman's breast while she nursed in public. Even at the nurse-in I attended at Port Columbus, I didn't see ANY breast while the moms were nursing. Granted, I didn't spent a lot of time staring at their chests...but still. I just don't get it. I just don't get the need to say "sure you can nurse in public, but only if you do it MY way."
So my question to readers is this...
Do you support language that requires a mom to be discreet? If so, why? What do YOU personally define as discreet?
Labels: Nursing in Public