A few friends and I were discussing the female experience and found that we have different views.
I saw an IG pic of a mother and baby embraced in a moment of breastfeeding. Nothing shocking about that, it’s not new but the movement to accept breastfeeding via public consumption is trending right now. I’m not a fan. Not in regards to breastfeeding or doing so in public. I’m not a fan of making everything into a trend by forced acceptance. One of my friends says the picture is necessary because it brings awareness and acceptance.
Growing up I’ve witnessed breastfeeding. My initial reaction to a non household member breastfeeding was not disgust but more like a oops should I be here? Can I see? Aww baby. Should I approach? Most times the woman simply has a blanket over her chest whilst in public. At home she may or may not use cover up depending on who is present. However, something seemed to changed over the last 30 or so years, there’s a frenzy over feeding via boob.
A group of people feel that the general public should accept the boob, infant attached and all. We should, but my rebuttal is why is it such a big deal for mothers to use a blanket? Why are so many offended by that idea? Why the full frontal? If we take apart the argument I think most people support breastfeeding public or private, the issue is about the process, how it’s done.
So what happened?
Oversharing maybe? We’re in a time where we feel everything needs to be shared with those around us. And if you don’t accept or like everything I do or say you’re a hater. Some arguments and movements are honestly trivial. Acceptance is important but is the specific argument/thing/or act a matter of life vs. death; health vs. illness or just feelings vs. pride? There are people who simply feel entitled to getting their way and those who enjoy making other people uncomfortable. When you dig a little deeper the motivation over things like free the nipple is not always to benefit others nor because their mini-movement deeply impacts lives. This can be said about several mini-movements going on at the moment.
Yes, being a mother does make things different, yes the act of mothering does change things. I honestly do not believe using a towel is that harmful to ask. We could be just as courteous to the people who don’t want to see our lactating boob over coffee as we want them toward be to us. Let’s assume we already agree there are emergencies, so lets not carp.
Then there’s the idea of privacy and societal pressures. Do the people who feel uncomfortable about seeing the act of breastfeeding only feel that way because of society? Because society made nudity a perverted thing? The answer is forcing people to accept things wont make it any more digestible. The why is secondary to the how. At the end of the day things have changed since we humans first arrived, clothes have been the standard for at least 300,00 years or more. Therefore, any form of public nudity will be striking. Try as we may breasts serve two functions in this society; feeding and sexual consumption.
Let’s ask ourselves, what is the motivation for someone to expose their baby (and boob) to the elements? Why do you want the entire congregation of people to share that moment with you? Because they should? If so, why should they?
Also periods. What is the big deal? “We as women should not be ashamed! Accept my flow!” My friend says why do we have to hide that we’re on our periods? It’s because society made us to feel its a dirty thing. I for one am not ashamed, also I’m not excited to share that time of the month with others. It feels private to me. I don’t want people in my space during that time. Leaving a used, open pad is not liberating for me, it’s untidy. Also, my own body considers it a way of getting rid of waste and reproduce I don’t feel a burning desire to hold hands and share that experience with strangers.
FREE THE NIPPLE! The Revolution, Feminism
The point of this post is for people to consider all aspects of their proclamations. The purpose, goal, the how and the why. Are we being progressive or narcissistic? Does everything need to be shared or consumed? Do we need to take a stance on everything all the time. Is it about (quality of) life and death? Is the payoff worth the fight? Should we fight every rule or standard?
How badly do I want my nipples to see the world as I see it? On a scale of 1 to 5 (with 5 being I really want to) it’s a 0 for me. Equal pay and equity for women. Let’s revolutionize that.