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Nursing and Step Kids

caremama0607's picture

I just had a baby about a month ago and am nursing. Whenever the step kids are over, I have to cover myself when I'm nursing, as though I'm out in public (which is hot and frustrating). The other option is to go to my room so I can comfortably nurse. I hate that I can't just pull out my boob and nurse where ever I am in my own home.

Do any of you have experience with this and advice or tips you can give me in this current situation?


Sparkl3s's picture

If the skids were all girls I'd continuing popping my boob out on demand. I try to be respectful of men that aren't my husband, I just pop it out discreetly but that gets harder as the little one gets bigger. Those nursing shirts are nice bc you can pop your boob out but not remove your shirt. 

caremama0607's picture

Yeah, I think that's what my SO is concerned about because his boys from his previous marriage are 15 and turning 12 in August. He's concerned that it's inappropriate because of what's on their minds at this age, but I would love for them to view me as a mother figure.

I do have a couple of nursing tank tops. They are great for the weekends, but it is inconvenient to cover my baby's head. I get frustrated when I can't see him to help him latch. I end up putting my head under the blanket too. Awkward.

justmakingthebest's picture

About 3 months into nursing I quit caring. I popped a boob out infront of my grandpa once. My daughter hated the cover, she would fight it and it just made things so much more complicated. 

They make great nursing tops now that show minimal boob, I would say get some of those and just nurse where and how you are comfortable. You are feeding your child. There is nothing wrong or shameful or concerning about it. 

caremama0607's picture

Thank you for the feedback. That is a good point. With my first, I was shy about it around my parents for a couple of months and then got over it. That's part of what's such a clash of methods right now. I don't cover up in front of any of my family, but I do in front of the step sons.

When I think about it, with the nursing tank top on, once the baby has latched, no one can see anything interesting anyway. I think I'll continue to be descrete before the baby latches and then not worry about it after that and see if that causes any concern.

lieutenant_dad's picture

Is someone telling you that you can't just pull your boob out, or is it your own discomfort that's causing this?

I would just tell the SKs (or anyone, really) to leave the room if I wasn't comfortable. Seems like an easy solution.

caremama0607's picture

Yes, my SO doesn't think it's appropriate for the older boys to see my boobs. He knows I get frustrated about it, but we haven't talked about it. Maybe that's step 1 to see if we can come to a compromise.

lieutenant_dad's picture

This is an easy solution. Tell the boys you're about to feed and tell them to leave the room. If your SO doesn't like that solution, then tell him they are going to watch you feed because you're not going to run off every time baby needs to feed.

If your SO doesn't find it appropriate, then HE needs to be the one to relay that to his kids and tell them that when you say you're feeding, they need to scram. His discomfort doesn't mean YOU should change something, especially when what you're doing isn't shameful.

Talk to him for sure, but this is one of those times where I don't think there needs to be compromise. The kids have two legs and can exit the vicinity, or close their eyes, or throw a blanket over their own heads.

GoingWicked's picture

I nursed in front of SD, and she even had a doll she would pretend to nurse as well, but she was a preschool girl.  I don't think I would have been as comfortable around a teen boy.

caremama0607's picture

That is so sweet! My SO's neice just turned 4 and it has never been an issue if I nurse openly in the same room as her. When I had my first, she was 2 and was very curious, so I let her get close to show her what I was doing and explaining.

It does seem that the concern is really just with the older boys, but as a previous poster said, I need to be a good example for them too.

--figureditout--'s picture

My SD was 5 when we had our first and 8 when we had our second. She lived with us full time.

I peeked at your profile to see ages/genders on your steps. Honestly, I'd pop that boob out. When a baby is hungry, he needs to eat. It's natural and not like you are flashing them. 

My second son was a NICU baby. I pumped for when I couldn't be on the unit. As a result, he had issues latching. We were sent to a lactation consultant on base who was training a young airman. The look of horror on his face when I popped that boob out because the baby was hungry in the exam room was hilarious and infuriating at the same time. I never felt embarrassed again.

caremama0607's picture

Thanks for sharing your story and giving your feedback. The more I think about it, the one most concerned is my SO. We need to have a talk.

ESMOD's picture

I would also echo the "who says you "have" to cover yourself" question.  

I mean, I can understand not wanting to feel exposed in front of people and people do have different opinions on whether nursing should or should not be a full frontal experience no matter the audience or situation.  Yes, I understand that nursing is not sexual in nature.. but many people.. men and women view breasts as sexual in nature.. and I would not have been comfortable nursing openly in a public place... but I wouldn't be shaming someone who chose to do that.

But, I guess it depends somewhat on the age and house set up where you are.  I don't think it's super inconvenient to go to the nursery (if you have one) to nurse a child.. but if you truly don't want to have to get up.. then you could consider asking the stepkids to vacate where you are to give you time to do this without them in the room.

Two basic solutions if they "can't see you ".. are for them to leave the room.. or for you to leave the room.  Or you could nurse with some light cover.... beyond that.. I'm not sure there is a solution.. other than sending them back to mom permanently..(not realistic right?)

ndc's picture

For the first week to 10 days after my baby was born I went into her or my room to nurse and no one other than my husband was allowed in. It was a bit of a struggle at that point and I wasn't yet comfortable. After that, I stopped caring and I breastfed on demand wherever I was (I didn't go anywhere but my house or my parents' house, so it wasn't like I was out in public). So my parents, my siblings, my skids, my sister's boyfriend, a few friends - all of them have seen my boobs and it doesn't matter a bit to me.

My skids are young girls (5 and 7), and BM isn't the type to blow up DH's phone to complain her kids are getting boob shots, but it wouldn't matter to me - I will breastfeed wherever in my home that is convenient for ME.

NotThatTypical's picture

If a nursing mother wants to cover herself that's up to her and her alone. I don't care where they are and I'll fight anyone who says different. Let alone trying to say they have to cover in their own home. MAYBE I'd see an issue if you carried the baby up 3 flights of stairs into a stepchild privet bedroom to nurse anything less? Don't care.

advice.only2's picture

I never covered when I was nursing my BD and I did it in front of my BS and Spawn. But they also never really paid much attention. There was one time I caught Spawn staring at me and I asked her if she had any questions about it and she just shook her head no and left the room. Meh

Willow2010's picture

I think you are in your right to breast feed anywhere in your home.  Anytime and any cover or not.  

But I would have popped out my own eye with a fork before I would let SS see my boob.  I would have covered up or left the room if we were in a common room.  If in my room or baby room...SS would be asked to leave the room.  

Felicity0224's picture

If you're not uncomfortable with it, then I see no reason why you shouldn't feed your baby without a cover whenever you need to. If the SKs are uncomfortable, that's their problem. Honestly you'd probably be doing them a favor by showing them that breasts aren't always sexual and that they should be respectful of nursing mothers (actually of ALL mothers who are feeding their babies).

My DD is adopted and I was fortunate enough to be able to breastfeed her. It meant that I had to start pumping months before she was born, which I would do with a cover several times a day. When BM found out she LOST her shit about how it wasn't appropriate and I was harming my SDs by pumping in front of them. DH told her to take a hike and I continued pumping with the cover. Ultimately I nursed my DD in my bedroom when the SDs were there because DD hated the cover and I just didn't want to deal with BM's nastiness. But now I wish I'd stood my ground about it.

SteppedOut's picture

Wow! You really went the extra mile to breastfeed! BRAVO!! 

That is AWESOME!! 

It IS so important and benefits both child AND mom in so many ways.

OP: Do whatever you are comfortable with!!!

caremama0607's picture

Amazing story. So awesome that you were able to breast feed your adopted baby! Thank you for sharing your experience.