A resource to inspire, inform and empower parents.

When Kids Ask About Breastfeeding

I get many comments on social media that breastfeeding in public makes you feel uncomfortable because you don’t want your kids to see it. You say that it makes your kids uncomfortable.

The truth is breastfeeding doesn’t make kids uncomfortable. It might makes you uncomfortable, but it doesn’t make your kids uncomfortable. Kids are genuinely curious and this why they look and ask questions. Breasts are sexualized in our culture and so the sight of them being used to feed children makes many adults uncomfortable (remember it’s you, not your kids, they don’t know that breasts have sexual attributes). Kids only know that they are interested in what’s going on around them. They ask like 50 million questions a day. Another question about what a mom is doing with her baby is only natural.

You might consider checking your own discomfort. Acknowledge that you are having feelings of discomfort. Be rational. Tell yourself that breastfeeding is not a common sight in our culture so it sits uneasy for you. Tell yourself that breasts are sexualized, but that this is not their natural function. Accept that breasts are naturally for feeding babies. Acknowledging feelings and being rational helps to keep your feelings from becoming irrational and out of control. Tell yourself that questions are normal. Use this as a teaching moment.

Kids need to know that breasts are a normal body part, nothing to be ashamed about. Kids need to know that breasts are for feeding babies. They have the rest of their lives to learn about the other fun things that breasts can do, but right now is the most spectacular moment for you to be able to educate your child about what breasts are actually for. You can hand your child this awesome piece of information that will stay with them for the rest of their lives. They will only be healthier for it. You have the opportunity to raise a child that sees breasts for what they are and not just something that sells products and attracts men.

You haven’t been around breastfeeding much and it’s understandable that the sight of it might make you queasy. We can change the world with how and what we teach your kids. Teaching our kids about breastfeeding and normal bodily functions will make the future stronger for them and everyone else.