So Jamie Oliver has spoken out I noticed, breastfeeding is his right as well as anyone else’s to discuss in my opinion, speaking of which I guess I could call myself a breastfeeding pro although I wouldn’t really dare, ever…
I was brought up by a very private mother, the opposite of my household where we don’t even have a lock on the bathroom door (if it’s ajar bathroom is vacant, closed to, you knock and check, no biggie).
My father left at a young age and my mother remarried so in terms of male physique that too was hidden for reasons of appropriateness, around children that aren’t biologically yours I imagine the case to be.
I then became a teenage mum in a household of two brothers and said mother plus step parent and so bodies were private, to be shielded, making walking from bathroom to bedroom a speed walking exercise and regarding my baby, as a self conscious 17 year old, I chose to bottle feed him I am guessing for the above reasons and bore the brunt of the motherhood shaming brigade. The thing they don’t tell mothers, of any age is this… you are damned if you do, and damned if you don’t. If its not bad enough adults judging you just wait till your own offspring can feedback on your abilities! Accept this and run with it, you and they will survive!
By child number 4 life was my own and living on my own at a time when social media made breastfeeding pics cool and the finger up to society I vowed I would give it a shot.
I even proudly posted a fair few Instagram pro breaftfeeding pics as had become the done thing in the sisterhood of the boob. It was still all pretty novel to me.
By number 5 it was just natural, non eventful, no big deal.
I tandem fed alongside number 4 by instinct not passion.
However at times people would ask about my breastfeeding experiences and shrink back on the realisation of me feeding a 3 yr old alongside her newborn sister.
Instead of proudly displaying another breastfeeding selfie or arguing my right I would just shrug and change the subject.
You see I guess I am ‘pro breastfeeding’ but at the same time I am in no place to advise what’s right for you, when you should stop, how you should wean, how many babies one can feed at the same time!
I am just mothering my way and appreciate you leaving me to it, by all means if you want to reach out and ask for help I will try my best, but you know, we are all just winging it.
So instead of the middle finger response or a judgemental comment I’ll just be sat in the corner non eventfully breastfeeding because to me this indicates the normalisation of breastfeeding, a day when I don’t have to point it out nor argue my right to do so. Feel free to come sit at my table but please let us talk about something other than boobs, after over 4 years at this breast feeding lark, they are starting to bore me.
Note: above customary breastfeeding selfie. Non eventful facial expression. Totally normal, unglamourous, border line boring 😉