I’m writing this as a quick post in a local coffee shop because I’ve always wanted to get involved in one of those “breastfeeding in public” blogging debates, but I never felt qualified. I’m not a woman, and I rarely encounter women who I don’t know breastfeeding. But RIGHT NOW, at this very instance, as I type these words, there is a woman breastfeeding her baby in the coffee shop, no more than two feet from me. I am facing her. If I peer over the top of the laptop, this mother and child are right there… in my face. The mother is using some sort of paisley shawl covering her breast-feeding baby, but I think I got a teeny-tiny glimpse of something — not sure if it is her full breast or a white coffee mug.
Now, the question remains — as a full-blooded man — how am I dealing with this situation? Can I concentrate on my work? Am I distracted by this PDOBF (public display of breastfeeding)?
If I can be honest, I am finding this experience extremely unsettling, and I cannot look away. The problem is less the baby or the breast, but the bagel and cream cheese sitting on the woman’s table. Feeding the baby seems to require both of her hands — one to hold the baby and the other the shawl. Because breast-feeding is a two-hand operation, she is unable to eat her own bagel! So her bagel sits on a white plate, on the table, just waiting.
I stare at that bagel and cream cheese. I ogle it. Will she ever get a chance to eat it? She’s been feeding her baby for ten minutes already. How much does this baby need? The bagel is an “everything” bagel – the last one left at the front counter. I probably could swipe that bagel and run, and she would be unable to stop me, seeing that she is stuck with a baby at her breast. And hopefully, she would have postpartum depression, so she would be too depressed to chase me down the block.
This is all very uncomfortable. Please, women. If you ARE going to breastfeed in public, do not order your bagels with cream cheese until you’re FINISHED feeding your baby. I understand you have “rights” to do what you want, but when I think about those two round, juicy mounds of goodness, I can’t control myself. I want them in my mouth NOW! I’m sorry to sound crude, but bagels with cream cheese are meant to be eaten and enjoyed, not displayed for everyone to see, tempting the weak. Be considerate!
Now I’m stuck having to order a plain bagel.