When a baby cries, which mother can bear those cries? And who among us can lecture a mother whether to feed her baby or not? I’m sure mothers know very well how to feed their babies in a decent manner, even in public places.
From Mr Majid Wani
It’s not about breastfeeding
What are these social norms and taboos that we are talking about? I respectfully disagree with the views of South Indian model Gilu Joseph, who has gotten flak for a picture of herself breastfeeding. Take it from a mother who has successfully breastfed her children in trains and restaurants overseas, as well as in Dubai, without even showing an inch of skin. Let us all remember that it is not breastfeeding that is the problem. The real issue is doing it openly. If you really want to encourage breastfeeding, then talk about giving support to mothers, talk about their nutrition, and educate people about the do’s and don’t’s of breastfeeding. Supporting breastfeeding does not necessarily mean to support doing it openly. It is a natural process, just like childbirth, but we don’t go around exposing ourselves in public when it’s time for delivery, right? These things just divert attention from the real issue, and that is support for mothers.
No one can dare ask a covered breastfeeding mother to stop feeding, since it does not bother anyone. The people who realise that she is feeding should just look away. I have personally never come across any such incident myself. The most important thing is to educate mothers and those around her adequately, and not to make it into an issue. All mothers have a regime of feeding, but if the need arises to feed in public, just cover up and go ahead.
From Ms Mahnaaz Shaikh
Nothing wrong with it
It’s a natural thing – mothers breastfeed their babies anywhere. I think they should just try to do it discreetly, especially in public areas, and people should be polite and not stare or gawk.
From Mr Rochdi Krid
Awkward for women
I don’t think it should be a norm to breastfeed in public. Even women would find it awkward. Parks, malls and hospitals must provide dedicated places for mothers. Due to the unavailability of such rooms in most public places, women are forced either to feed their babies in the restrooms or to start formula milk.
From Mr M. Shehzad Ali
Men, please remember
I am a mother and a pro-breastfeeding advocate, though I did not fully breastfeed my baby due to some personal issues. Anyway, there is nothing wrong in feeding a hungry little human being in public, but there is a room and a right place to do it. I salute almost all of the malls in the UAE, because they have a room for breastfeeding or a baby changing room, and you can go there and feed your baby. You do not need to expose your breasts to everyone, and of course, if a dedicated place is not available, there’s this thing called a nursing cover, nursing scarf or breastfeeding cover, which is also widely available in all stores. There is no need to expose your breast like the model did in the photoshoot for a women’s magazine in Kerala, India. If you are in your house then it’s okay! But let’s not forget that not everybody is broad-minded. I salute all breastfeeding mothers. To all the men, I would say, please remember you were once a baby and perhaps your mum also breastfed you, so if you see a mother breastfeeding in public, just lower your gaze and walk away.
From Ms Breeana Esihate
Centuries old practice
It’s a natural thing and there is no shame in breastfeeding in public. People have been doing it for centuries and the weirdest thing of all is that in a generation where we consider ourselves to be civilised, we find people frowning upon mothers who breastfeed in public! Can you imagine how things have changed in such a short time?
From Ms Momo Lairah V.
In public, of course women should be able to breastfeed, but only if they can cover up properly. Especially in an era where we are able to get fashionable feeding blankets and covers to help mothers feed everywhere. But the problem arises when you expose yourself in the task – it gets awkward. Apart from men who cast unwanted glances, there are small children in public places, too. So when you do not properly cover yourself, curious minds are always ready with tons of questions. No mother or parent would like their children gazing at feeding mothers, even if it is out of curiosity! So respect yourself and respect others. If you can cover up, you are always welcome. If not, better think twice!
From Ms Razana Parveen
Okay, I have seen many women discreetly breastfeeding their babies, and I respect that. You don’t have to flash half of your breast to the world for people to stare! If you have a baby, you should also know how to plan the whole feeding process. I found the controversy, about the breastfeeding photoshoot, silly. The photoshoot is not creating any positive change, in my opinion. Respect your body while you feed your baby.
From Ms Jaria Joy
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