I don’t usually talk about current mayhem, but this one’s been killing me lately. I had to write something.
Going in from the top.
What am I talking about? Nursing. Public nursing.
Oh yeah. You know it. There are two ways to get to the boob:
1. Pull up your shirt.
- Advantages: Shirt covers top part of boob. Baby’s head covers bottom part of boob. People don’t see much of anything at all.
- Disadvantages: Bra must be removed, unclipped. Muffin-top exposure. Belly hanging out. Stretch-marks. Possibly drafty and cold. Potential ass-crack visibility.
2. Go in from the top. (Pull your boob out the top of your shirt and let the kid nurse.)
- Advantages: No belly fat or ass crack showing. Quick. Easy. Bra can stay in place (just pull the boob out of the bra and pop it back in when you’re done).
- Disadvantages: People see the top of your boob and this may make them afraid, uncomfortable, sexually frustrated, confused, appalled, disgusted and/or livid. You may end up on national news.
We’ll get back to this in a moment. But first, background.
I read about that professor who brought her sick baby to class and then – wait for it – nursed that baby while giving a lecture. And now, of course, it’s national news. Everybody keeps saying the “real” question is “why is she bringing a sick baby to work with her,” but let’s get real for one minute, please….
If she had bottle-fed her baby during that lecture, would we all be hearing about it?
Probably fucking not.
So the issue is that a grown woman decided to bring her baby to work so she didn’t miss the first lecture of the semester. Whatever, lady. Your call on that one.
(However, don’t you know that one of the beauties of having kids is that you get to get out of work when they’re sick? Whatever. That’s not the point.)
And during that class, the kid got hungry or restless or whatever, so she nursed her. And evidently, some dim-witted fucktard in the class crafted the following tweet: “Sex, gender, and culture professor, total feminist, walks in with her baby, midway through class breast feeding time #wtf”
And now, everybody’s talking about it. Because it’s newsworthy. Because feeding a baby while doing your job is newsworthy.
Because 40 college students can’t handle the image of a woman feeding her child?
NEWSFLASH, college kids: WOMEN HAVE BREASTS. Breasts serve the biological purpose of feeding a woman’s offspring. Oddly, their sole purpose is not to fascinate the senses and turn people on.
And now, kindly, remove your head from your ass and grow the hell up.
Is it that? Or is it that this society tells me that breast is best, but then dictates to me how and where and under what circumstances I may engage in this good, wholesome, nourishing act it allegedly supports…?
You should breastfeed, but not at work.
You should breastfeed, but only with a blanket.
You should breastfeed, but not in a way that exposes too much skin or (GASP) the nipple.
You should breastfeed, but privately, discretely, quietly…don’t draw attention to that womanly shit…it’s wonderful, but nobody wants to see it.
In other words, breastfeed, but do so in a way that doesn’t offend the sexually frustrated Puritan misogynists.
Yeah. I said it.
And I meant it.
You want to use a blanket? More power to you. You want to wrestle a 9-month old into one of those tent things? More power to you. You want to walk 15 minutes or 2 minutes to sit in a “quiet room” or car to nurse your baby, so nobody sees you? That is all good. I’m serious. If a woman has personal preferences of modesty, I hold that in the highest regard and respect that completely. Every woman has the choice to breastfeed how she feels comfortable.
And I happen to feel comfortable with my tits out.
Kidding. Sort of.
So don’t tell me, America, land of the fucking free, how I should be doing it. Don’t beam your lights of derision on me – calling me a slut, an exhibitionist, a radical rabid feminist – because I go in from the top, because I don’t mind 2 inches of breast flesh being shown to the world. (It’s okay in Playboy or Hustler or People or Victoria’s Secret, but not in public for life-sustaining purposes! NOT THERE!! It’s indecent! It’s wrong! Cover yourselves ladies!!!).
Check this out. I don’t give a rat’s ass if it makes you uncomfortable.
It’s how I enjoy nursing my baby. It’s what feels best to me.
And no, I will not use a blanket if I don’t feel like it.
No, I will not walk to a private hallway.
No, I will not feed my baby in a damn bathroom.
I will not accommodate your archaic arbitrary demands. You also once told me I couldn’t vote, and my life would probably be best spent pregnant at home serving my man – so forgive me, America, if my trust in you is a bit, um, unstable.
Am I making a production of my breastfeeding?
Why? Because it’s time.
Because the assault on women has been going on for years, and it’s only through “bad behavior” that anything, ever, changes.
Does seeing the top of my breast make you feel funny inside? Ah, honey. I’m sorry. But don’t worry about it, cause after you’ve seen it 50 or 200 or 1 million times, you’ll be okay with it. You’ll grow accustomed, I promise. Or maybe your kids will.
Until then, you’ll find me going in from the top, wherever the hell I feel like it, giving a milky “screw you” to your searing eyes and hateful gaze.
Trusting that someday, it won’t be national news.
[For the sake of accuracy, I’m not breastfeeding anymore, since Georgie weaned herself a few months ago, but I wrote this post in the present tense because I still feel like a breastfeeding mama, and it’s how I’ve breastfed all 3 of my kids…so it’s very “present” to me, still.]