Breastfeeding Pics – Why Take Them?

I was hanging out on Facebook last night (because I live there when I’m online) and came across an interesting question.  Why do people take breastfeeding pics and put them on Facebook?

Before anyone starts thinking that she’s anti-boob or what have you, she is breastfeeding her child.  However, the idea of having breastfeeding pics taken and splashed on the web was outside of her comfort zone.  And before anyone thinks that they need to come after her with a pitchfork or a boobie beanie… it was a very respectful conversation.

breastfeeding-pics

As someone who has not breastfed due to her own hangups, I feel like I offer a middle ground.  Five years ago, I would have quickly scrolled past breastfeeding pics.  I’d have been supremely uncomfortable.  I did tend to avert my eyes when someone in front of me was breastfeeding.  (Of course I’d never tell them that they shouldn’t breastfeed because it offended my delicate sensitivities.  There were other directions to look, but a crying baby?  You can hear that, no matter where you are.)

Now, five years later, those breastfeeding pics don’t faze me.  I’ve helped with organizing a nurse-in when a breastfeeding mom faced illegal discrimination in our local mall.  I’ve had friends sit on my couch and breastfeed their children.

Those breastfeeding pics helped.  They normalized breastfeeding enough for me to be fairly comfortable with other people doing so around me.

Breastfeeding controversies and discrimination will not stop in our society unless women are willing to be pioneers and share those breastfeeding pics.  This does not mean that anyone has a duty to breastfeed in public without a cover, nor does it mean that she has a duty to share intimate photos of herself and her baby.  It means that if sharing her breastfeeding pics or nursing in the mall without a cover is within her comfort zone, then she should feel free to do so.

After all, isn’t it all about caring for our babies in the way that’s most natural for each individual?

Have you ever shared breastfeeding pics on the web?  Why or why not?

 

About Suzi

Suzi is an American ex-pat living in British Columbia. She's a cloth diaper addict, wife, mom of three, and President of the Prince George chapter of Cloth for a Cause.

Comments

  1. I wonder if I saw that same conversation. I kind of agree with her. While I’m not offended by seeing these photos, it’s not something I would ever do. I understand normalizing breast feeding and all but I don’t really want to see it either. It is outside if my comfort zone but more power to the woman who are comfortable with it. I never even breast fed my son out in public because I was just too uncomfortable but that’s just me.

  2. Steph M says:

    I wouldn’t. I’m not a total prude–I’ll nurse in front of my friends in our homes after asking them if it’s okay with them–but I still think that, while breasts are for nourishing my baby, they are also inherently sexual parts of my body. I think there’s a middle ground between ‘breastfeeding belongs in the nursery, women!’ and ‘wooooo! I’m feeding my baby and everyone should see it and is not allowed to feel uncomfortable!’ (Yes, these are kind of exaggerations, but we both know these people exist.) I get the desire to share that happiness though. It’s a sweet moment in an otherwise crazy day and we always want to share pics of happy times. But at the end of the day, my breasts are for my baby to eat from and my husband to enjoy. Both of these. So no, you won’t be seeing me share nursing photos on fb. 🙂

  3. I was always very discreet in public and when family was around. I don’t mind seeing other nurse, and I nursed all four of my own, but I didn’t share a one (of the pics taken) on any social media. 😉
    Rosey recently posted…Saint Joseph, MichiganMy Profile

  4. I, myself, have not shared breastfeeding pics online and I don’t believe I would do so in the future. It’s just not me.
    Melissa recently posted…Always Late? What Kind of Late Are You and 5 Steps to Being on TimeMy Profile

  5. I have proudly shared professionally taken breastfeeding pictures and will continue to do so throughout my breastfeeding journies. As a big breastfeeding advocate and educator (in training) I think sharing and normalizing breastfeeding is extremely important. Obviously, not everyone is comfortable sharing photos that intimate, but I am, so I do.. And I do it with the intention that maybe one (or several) moms will see it and maybe go “hey, if she can do that, I can too” or “I know Skyla is a breastfeeding mom, maybe I could go to her for support in my journey”

    Sharing those photos is not for everyone- but I firmly believe that breastfeeding should be taken out of “the closet” and displayed for people to see so that they realize it is normal and healthy.

  6. Anastasia says:

    16 years ago breastfeeding in the circle of wives I had access too was “a nice thought” but no one really KNEW anything about it. No knowledge, support or anything meant a lot of people TRIED but ultimately FAILED as soon as they left the hospital.

    If no one knows anybody that’s going through what you are going through, it’s hard to get help & support. This goes for ANY part of parenting. People with special needs children or other topics of parenting are splashed everywhere in our virtual lives now. As a recent troll attack in that same group left people shaking their heads (the troll picked a disabled baby to trash talk about) It was the EASY target that gets chosen. Anything controversial is treated the same way. I’m from Miami you can walk around & sell coffee in pasties & thong but God FORBID you nurse in public & this was 20 years ago.

    Speaking of issues, yes I had my own as well…….watching the child I was unable to nurse continue to get sicker & sicker, all the while having the very key to his wellness literally within my arms, was definitely the catalyst to getting the help I needed to prevent any further children from that terrible roulette. That same issue allows me to help others………..

    16 years ago my husband almost got fired because the only person who’s wife knew anything about breastfeeding was the bosses wife & I was “going over heads & bothering her” (even though she insisted) it was the people who had no knowledge that were trying to call the shots.

    Now everyone knows…………..We’re literally changing our world. Hopefully to a more tolerate & kinder one.

  7. I really wish that I would have taken photos of me breastfeeding my baby. I miss breastfeeding. 🙁

  8. I nursed my son until he was 12 months old. It was nice to be able to do that for him.

  9. So grateful I was able to nurse my baby for six months before I had complications. it really is a wonderful thing for the baby!
    Danielle recently posted…I Am Not The Mom I Thought I Would Be – Facts About MomsMy Profile

  10. Leela R. says:

    It’s funny, I am still nursing my very large 15 month old and have no problems nursing him when we are out without a cover. Still, I have never taken any pictures of him breast feeding, and if I did, I don’t really the i wo would post them anywhere. Obviously I have no hangups with breast feeding in public, but posting pics online just seems a little strange to me. I guess I’m willing to do my part to help normalize breast feeding, but only so far.

  11. Megan Walker says:

    I have shared more than one breastfeeding photo online for the normalization aspect… and while I have no desire to make anyone feel bad about their feeding choices (or ability), I am also very proud that my body is able to sustain my baby without any supplementation. It’s also a huge part of both my life and my interactions with my baby, so it’s kind of my equivalent of a selfie (which I don’t really do). I don’t spam people’s feeds with them, but I also don’t worry about making people uncomfortable.
    My absolute favorite photo ever is of her breastfeeding right after she was born – literally the first time she ever nursed. Every time I see that photo I get so sappy 🙂 And I have shared that photo on Facebook more than once. I’m actually considering blowing it up on canvas for our wall, too.

  12. I also do not care that moms take and post breastfeeding photos. I do take some of me and my daughter, but those remain private and are not posted online. To each her own.
    Heather Johnson recently posted…Hummingbird Flip: Daily DiaperMy Profile

  13. Melissa says:

    I breastfed and never put a picture out there publicly. I am a modest girl. I always made sure I was covered because although I’m doing the natural thing feeding my baby, it isn’t natural for me to expose myself in public. I’m uncomfortable with it. I’m also uncomfortable with the fact that other women don’t mind NOT being discreet. Exposing a bottle and exposing a breast are not even close to a fair comparison. I’m really not saying this to be snarky toward anyone. It’s just how I feel. I don’t think a woman should be told to go feed her baby in a bathroom OR that she can’t breastfeed in public. That’s absolutely ridiculous! I just don’t want my husband or boys to see your nipples, and I don’t want to see them, either. You can breastfeed without flashing us those.

  14. I take them, but don’t post them to social media often because I’m tandem nursing and the girls are out! It has been such a happy and loving time with my children that I love to capture it, and I love seeing this natural embrace by others. I hope it does become normal. I think people forget that we’re mammals, just like other warm blooded animals who nurse their young, it’s totally normal and good for our babies.
    Jeanette E. recently posted…Chimparoo Woven Wrap ReviewMy Profile

  15. I would totally share them, if I knew I wasn’t going to be called out or banned from instagram for doing it. Even when I nurse my 9 month old in public with a cover, I get all sorts of stares. So many people think it’s not appropriate and are not afraid to say so, so I will continue to take pictures for myself and nurse with a cover, so not to offend, even though I think it’s ridiculous for people to be offended by such a natural thing.

  16. Bianca Munoz says:

    I share my breastfeeding pictures on the web.
    We need to #normalizesociety! 😀

  17. I personally have no problem with people posting pictures. It just isn’t something I would do. I did have pictures take breastfeeding by a photographer, but there just something that is for our family. I am just not someone who posts a lot anyway

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