What is the obsession with breastfeeding mothers?
Everywhere you look it seems someone’s banging on about whether women should cover up, be more discreet, or sit in a corner to feed their child.
How’s about we just don’t say anything.
Don’t cast judgement.
Don’t offer up alternatives, like covering a breastfeeding mother with what looks like a massive tablecloth as a waiter recently did to a mum feeding her 12-week-old baby in Claridge’s.
Don’t make stupid comparisons like the King of Neanderthals, Jeremy Clarkson, who likened breastfeeding in public to taking a piss in full view of the general public.
Just don’t. Say. Anything.
Anyone who’s breastfed a child knows it can be a nightmare.
You’re desperate for your baby to latch on, but the chances are that your nipples are blistered at best; bleeding and infected at worst.
Before you’ve even left the hospital, the breastfeeding police have been round to check you’re doing it right, and often won’t let you go home until you’ve ‘proved’ you’ve got the hang of it.
So there’s that.
There’s also the slight disadvantage that you can’t negotiate with a baby.
You can’t say, ‘hang on a minute mate, I know you’re hungry, but how’s about holding on for a minute until I can find an appropriate, inoffensive corner to sit in to feed you?’
It can be a messy, uncomfortable experience, punctuated with milk-soaked breast pads and cheesy smelling bras if you’ve stumbled in a knackered fug from day-to-night wearing the same nursing bra until you realise the bottom-of-the-fridge smell that’s been following you round is actually you.
And when you do get the hang of it, there’s no guarantee that your baby is going to stay feeding for any length of time once they’ve started.
I have, on more than one occasion, been feeding my son whilst messing about on my phone or reading a magazine in a café, only to realise that he’s nodded off and I’m sitting there, tits out.
The point is, and I know this is so painfully obvious it makes me want to shoot myself in my own face for even having to say it, but breastfeeding is natural.
It is feeding.
Feeding a baby that would otherwise be hungry.
Women are not getting their breasts out for the sexual gratification of men. I mean, seriously, who gets a boner over that?
Women are not doing it to offend other people. Or to make a statement.
They are simply feeding their children when they are hungry.
So, Jeremy Clarkson, Nigel Farage, Claridge’s staff and anyone else for that matter who wants to pass judgement on breastfeeding women.
Try saying nothing. This isn’t the 70’s. You’re not Benny Hill.
When the thought pops into your head to open your mouth or put pen to paper.