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Nursing a baby requires support from friends and family for success- particularly from the new mom’s partner. But what happens when a woman’s own husband is yelling at her for nursing in public- and at her own birthday party?
A recent online forum thread discussed a lot of the controversy around breastfeeding in public that is still evident- even though it should be.
One commenter talked about her friend that came to her upset and filled with anxiety because her husband had just gotten legitimately angry at her for nursing at a restaurant- at her own birthday party, nonetheless!
The forum user recalls being shocked that a mom’s partner could get mad at her for feeding their baby. She notes that she’s heard of these kinds of stories but has never actually witnessed one and couldn’t believe it was true.
I remember how shocked I was when my friend needed to breastfeed (at her birthday party, no less!) at a restaurant and was all anxious and upset because the baby’s father got angry when she did it in public. Imagine being angry that your partner fed your baby in public! She mentioned that she’d heard about this kinda thing, but actually witnessing it, she was literally paralyzed with shock.
Husband’s Outrageous Reaction to Nursing in Public
Recognizing that breastfeeding is a basic need for an infant, the husband’s reaction to his wife breastfeeding in public was unfortunate. As a parent of a newborn, you’d think he would have an understanding of the importance of breastfeeding.
Sadly, instead of offering her wife the support she needed to care for their little one- he left her feeling sad, ashamed, and anxious.
Why Are Some Men So Weird About Breastfeeding?
One supporter of the mom had a theory about her husband. She mentioned that some men are very possessive of their “women.” So he probably felt triggered by the fact that other people could see her breasts, which he perceived as “his.”
Other commentators noted that some men (and women) grew up in dysfunctional households that may have caused some trauma around normal bodily functions.
Finally, some people were quick to note that our culture’s need to objectify a body part that is literally meant for feeding is the real problem. Just look around on social media, new articles, and Hollywood, and it’s hard to miss.
What the Mom Really Needed on Her Birthday
Being a nursing mom is hard work and a full-time job. Whether bottle-fed or breastfed, moms caring for infants sacrifice their sleep, social life, bodies, and sanity to keep their babies nurtured and healthy.
This mom deserves to be supported and celebrated, whether it’s her birthday or not! And she should be able to nurse her baby in the presence of friends and family without having to hide shamefully in the bathroom.
Her partner should support her rather than second-guess and ridicule her. Perhaps, he needs to have a long discussion with her about expectations and unearth any unrealistic expectations he’s holding (and if he can’t do it on his own, maybe he needs some counseling too).
The Reality of Nursing in Public
Breastfeeding mothers should feel supported and encouraged in their decision to breastfeed. It’s time to create a welcoming and supportive environment for breastfeeding mothers in public spaces. This can include creating designated areas for breastfeeding (if it makes the mom feel more comfortable), ensuring that public spaces have comfortable seating, and providing educational resources for those who may not fully understand the benefits of breastfeeding.
In conclusion, it’s important to normalize breastfeeding in public spaces and provide a supportive environment for breastfeeding mothers. We should strive to create a society where mothers feel comfortable and confident in feeding their babies and where breastfeeding is viewed as a natural and necessary act.