You’ll buy some extra time with a happy baby if you nurse in the car before you go into a mall or store. Once you’re inside, locate the lounges in your favorite shopping areas (fitting rooms are handy, too). Encourage stores to set up places for nursing; for instance, if there’s space for a chair, leave a note for the manager, or call with a suggestion.
Try nursing a younger baby in a baby carrier. Slings make it especially easy to position a baby to nurse while shopping. They’re very discreet, and the closeness is a bonus for both of you.
A table for two or more
There’s no reason you can’t enjoy a restaurant meal and feed your baby, too. Look for restaurants with private booths or tables. Choose a seat removed from the traffic flow and position yourself with your back to others.
When you want to nurse, turn away to position your baby, then turn back to face the table. Remember the importance of body language and attitude. A smile will convert many people from surprise or disapproval to sympathetic understanding if your baby is fussing or nursing. If someone complains, explain that you are doing the best thing for your baby. If you’re still uncomfortable, ask for a more private table.
Traveling by bus, train, or plane
Even with the benefit of anonymity in a bus station or an airport, the sheer number of passing strangers can fluster you and your baby. These are scenes far removed from the peaceful privacy of your home.
Larger airports often have lounges for breastfeeding and diaper changing, but train and bus stations might not. If you feel more comfortable with privacy in these places, seek the remote seats in the waiting areas. A traveling companion with a newspaper can offer cover when you’re latching on or switching breasts. A small blanket or a shawl will provide some privacy for you and keep your baby warm. The less modest among us can use this as an opportunity to educate.
Once you’re on-board, both your seat choice and your positioning can affect your comfort. Sitting beside a window keeps you away from the passing crowd and makes it less likely that your baby will be disturbed when nursing or sleeping.
At the beach or pool
In hot weather, nothing beats swimsuit with nursing openings. It makes discreet nursing simple. Alternatively, you can drape a beach towel, a light blanket, or a shirt over your shoulders for privacy. Take along a chair or a back rest to make long nursing sessions more comfortable.
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