I know that this is supposed to be a babywearing blog but since hardly anyone visits AND babywearers very often breastfeed (or have tried to breastfeed), I thought it would be appropriate to post this booby trap here.
What are booby traps? Booby traps are cultural and institutional barriers to successful breastfeeding. I don’t know who coined the term but the best run-down of booby traps is on the Best for Babes website. I bet that if you have tried and failed to breastfeed, you are very likely familiar with at least one of these scenario. Similarly, if you are breastfeeding against all odds, chances are you received the right support at the right time.
This so-called nursing top spurred a lively discussion in one of my online parenting group. Breastfeeding apparel is not generally seen as a booby trap but when we think about it, poorly designed nursing wear can definitely discourage a woman from nursing in public. This Thyme Maternity nursing top “has an off-set panel with snap closure that unzips to reveal an inner panel with nursing slits.”
Cute. But the snap closure is on the left side. To use your right breast, you will need to nurse with both nursing slits exposed. Uh, ok. I own 4 Thyme nursing tops – in addition to a stash of Boob and Momzelle tops that I credit for nursing the twins as long as I have, 16 months and counting. The Thyme nursing tops are by far the most annoying and difficult to use. One has a finicky button impossible to undo with one hand. If you have one baby, let alone 2, you know that everything is done with one hand. Heck, I can make a fully customized cappucino with one hand but I can’t unbutton my nursing shirt? Another shirt pulls down at the neck while the nursing slit pulls up, exposing, in theory, just the right amount of nipple. In practice, the pull down and pull up parts are both made on the small side, causing your breast to squeeze out of the shirt like toothpaste. Yummy. Because if you weren’t self-conscious about nursing in public, there’s nothing a boob stuck out of your shirt won’t solve!
I wonder if Thyme is in cahoots with a formula company or something…Oh wait… They are! (read the fine print, you need to opt out of receiving formula samples, which will otherwise conveniently show-up in your mailbox about 3 weeks after your baby is born, or right in the “getting worst before it gets better” part of breastfeeding).
Here’s my favorite. *Graphic content* (my nursing bra, it’s a Bella Materna, I mortgaged a kid to buy it, it was all worth it