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For most of the world, breastfeeding is a natural event and is commonplace in public. This controversy is really a US perception problem which is not shared by most of the world. What is sad is that there was a time when breastfeeding in public was common place in the United States as well. I just turned 50 and am the oldest child. I distinctly remember my mother, and other women as well, breastfeeding publically at church no less! Mother (and the other ladies) always wore a blouse or dress which buttoned down the front so that there was easy "access" and carried a light weight blanket which was thrown over the shoulder during the feeding. Everyone knew they were breastfeeding but no one every saw a thing. More importantly, in that day and time, no one thought it was "dirty" and certainly no one made any of the mothers feel uncomfortable for taking care of their child. If anything, they were more likely to be chastized for not feeding the baby! Somewhere along the way, in midst of the Bay Watch Beach Babes and their Bouncing Boobs phenomena, America's ideas shifted from this being a natural part of life to an OMG-she-showed-her-breast-in-public-and-some-man-might-see-them!!! Our society today would certainly be considered a lot more liberal today in terms of what is considered acceptable behavior in public than when I was a girl. I find it fascinating that there is such a reversal on this one issue and that we even have this debate. I think it is such a shame that in our "liberated" society, young women today are made to feel uncomfortable about a freedom that our mothers and grandmothers enjoyed. It's too bad. Ultimately, every woman has to do what she is comfortable with doing on a personal level. Hopefully, society will respect that.

May 8, 2009 - 6:28pm


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