11 Aug
I’m Not Flashing My Boobs at Mardi Gras, I’m Just Breastfeeding

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

In honor of international breastfeeding month, I am currently exclusively nursing my 7-week-old baby. We haven’t even given her a bottle yet. Unfortunately, this has started to cause some tension between me and my in-laws.

First of all, my mother-in-law is insistent that I give the baby a bottle so she can feed her. Secondly, I get banished to the bedroom whenever it is time for baby to eat because they don’t feel comfortable with breastfeeding. If I can nurse at an outdoor concert with 5,000 people, I have yet to figure out why I can’t nurse in front of family at my own house. How do I deal with my anti-breastfeeding mother-in-law?


Don’t Go Hatin’ the Breasts


Dear Don’t Go Hatin’ the Breasts,

Because I’m the only Mouthy Housewife currently breastfeeding (although I’ve suspected that Heather is an undercover wet nurse), I thought I should answer your question. It’s fabulous that you’re breastfeeding your child, but girl, pump a little milk and feed that kid a bottle. I don’t care about your MIL, but if you ever want to go see a movie, get a mani/pedi, take a yoga class, enjoy a dinner out, hit the rifle range, you’ll want your baby to take a bottle.

The reason being that some babies don’t like that rubber nipple, so the longer you wait, the harder it could get. Take my daughter Summer. When she was a baby, she just refused to take a bottle. I begged. I pleaded. I threatened. I told her that in two years when the American Academy of Pediatrics gave her the go ahead to watch television, I would deny her “CSI: Miami” unless she tried the bottle. But nothing worked. Stubborn little monster.   So please, start that bottle thing pronto so you can have some flexibility in your life.

As far as breastfeeding in your own home, you have a right to do it anywhere you want.   You can breastfeed on your dining room table if you like, just move that Nambé crystal fruit bowl first. Your MIL should not be able to dictate where you feed your child. But to try to smooth family relations, put one of those breastfeeding cover ups over you, so your MIL doesn’t pass out when she catches a glimpse of your sexy lactating nipple.

When you’re at her house, follow her rules and breastfeed privately. This can be a special time to bond with your child or in other words, catch up on what’s happening on your iPhone.

Good luck to you.


Kelcey, TMH

7 Responses to “I’m Not Flashing My Boobs at Mardi Gras, I’m Just Breastfeeding”


Comment by Cait.

I work on a NICU, and we’ve just had a huge nursing seminar. We recommend that our parents either breastfeed OR use a bottle, but to choose one and stick to it. I know this seems a little harsh for those moms who want to get out for a couple of hours without the baby. Then again, kids here start drinking from cups (and not the sippy kind!) at about 9 months with help so that by 1 year or so they can do it themselves. Scandinavians like independany babies.


Comment by Lisa.

Only breast or bottle? You want to give some kind of reasoning for that? Because it flies in the face of the experience of a bajillion working mothers. It just doesn’t make any dang sense.

As for Kelcey’s advice, I agree wholeheartedly! Introduce the bottle for your own sake, even though it will be a little traumatic to see someone else feed your child. My poor husband, I was hovering the whole time.

And yes, your MIL can go stick it. SHE can go in another room if she is uncomfortable or better yet, they can end their visit when it’s feeding time.

As far as her wanting to give the baby a bottle – while she is being an inconsiderate, overbearing bully – her motivation is that she loves your child and wants to care for her. Can you offer to let her bathe her or something else?


Comment by Mommy @ stark. raving. mad. mommy..

Agreed — Pump some milk and let MIL give a bottle. While you go take a nap. Or get a mani/pedi. Or whatever. However: if you just really don’t want to pump, and really don’t want the baby to have a bottle, then stand your ground. You’re the mom. Your MIL and Gisele Bundchen can both suck it. And by “it” I mean a bottle of Enfamil.


Comment by Karin.

I agree that you make (and enforce) the rules in your house but you do have to respect the rules of your MIL’s house if you are there for the former to work. If your MIL is at your house and tells you to go to your room while nursing, tell her that if it makes her uncomfortable, she can go to her room or outside.

I’m not a bottle advocate. It’s a big old headache to get your nursing baby to take a bottle and usually doesnt’ work very well for you (aka – the milkmaker). I had limited success with having someone else – a neighbor, my mom, my husband – give our younger 2 a bottle of formula (all 3 balked at being given a bottle of breastmilk) but my oldest is stubborn and refused to take a bottle even after 2 days of not really eating when I got blisters on my nipples.


Comment by Novel.

Good for you – breastfeeding is great for the baby when you can successfully and stressfreely manage it. Ignore MiL – your house, your rules. Breastfeed as long as you like and where you like and exclusively if you are happy to do that. Our children all moved straight from breast to sippy cup. No potties or bottles in this house – so it can be done 🙂


Comment by Erin I'm Gonna Kill Him.

In YOUR OWN home??? You can masturbate to photos of David Hasselhoff at Thanksgiving dinner in your own home! Do what you want when it comes to introducing bottles or boobs to the baby, but you need to introduce your MIL to some backbone now! She’ll step on you forever if you don’t.


Comment by Should I Breastfeed My Neighbor's Baby? | The Mouthy Housewives.

[…] personally would never breastfeed another woman’s baby.   I would feel like I was cheating on my own babies. Well, let me amend […]

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