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Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Breastfeeding in a Topless Tribe

I have had four babies and I breastfed all of them. 

I have nursed my babies in airplanes, canoes, kayaks, helicopters, during armed hold ups, in airports, malls, restaurants and movie theatres.  I've nursed them in coffee shops, hospitals, grocery stores, churches, 21 different states and seven different countries.  I've nursed them in huts, museums, resorts, at weddings and funerals, sitting on the beach and hiking down jungle trails. 

My favorite place to be breastfeeding though was in our tribe in the jungle.  Women are often found topless, and I didn't have to constantly wonder if I was offending someone by feeding my child.  I loved it.  Here are some interesting things I have noted in a culture that has breastfeeding down.

We always say "initiate breastfeeding as soon as possible,"  (which is good!).

They often (but not always) give the baby to a lactating sister or friend to nurse for the first 1-2 days after birth (and it turns out just fine!).

We have all sorts of rules on how to do it, and first time moms fear that they won't do it right or cannot breastfeed at all.

They don't have rules about the whole thing.  They just do it, they expect
to be able to do it

They are just really not stressed out about the whole thing....I think that is the biggest difference I see.

That's good too since it is supposed to be illegal here to buy a bottle without a doctor's prescription.

I wish I had known that kind of confidence in my body's ability to feed my child when I was just starting out!

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