Breast Feeding On BART

SummerBabee's picture

Am I being politically incorrect? But I think there should be some kind of mystery to somethings. I'm sitting on the train this morning and this lady gets on with her baby. After she runs over my toes a couple times with her Jeep stroller, she starts nursing her baby 'on both sides' across from me. We're sitting in the seats facing sideways at the doors. Mind you, there are seats available that are a little less conspicuous.

I know that is REALLY the LAST THING I want to see on my way to work. GEES! Is it just me????

That's disgusting.

rammsack47's picture

Then don't look. That's what we'll tell you when you complain. If you don't like it and it really bothers you, move to another car. As a female, you shouldn't be too repulsed, you have the same equipment.

boopiejones's picture

i don't see anything wrong with the breastfeeding in public, so long as it meets the following conditions:

1) cover up. just because your baby is hungry doesn't mean you need to flash your tits. there are plenty of products available that allow you to feed your baby and keep everything covered up. i have many friends that are currently breastfeeding. i have never once seen any of their boobies, and hardly even notice them discreetly feeding their babies in the corner of a room.

2) breastfeeding is for babies. about six months ago i was at disneyland. this kid is playing on the same play structure as my child, running around, climbing ladders and sliding down the slide. then the kid runs up to the lady sitting on the bench next to me, says "mommy i want some milk," crawls up onto her lap, pulls up her shirt, national geographic looking tits tumble out of her bra and the kid latches on. guess what? yup, the time to stop breastfeeding was about 3 years ago.

running over your toes was out of line. doesn't matter if it is a bike, roller suitcase, wheelchair, stroller, etc.

rafa1215's picture

....national geographic looking tits tumble out of her bra. Dude you owe me a diet coke. Damn that was so f'n funny. I spit out my coke and couldn't drink it for a while after that.

I was at Outback yesterday and this lady had this special "cover my tits and baby" shirt. It looked like a giant bib to me. Her husband kept looking around like - Don't look at my wife's titties kind of look on his face.

pgoat's picture

I'd say you're being immature more than un-PC. It's a tit. Granted, maybe she should learn to breastfeed discretely in public -- it can be done. But if not, just don't look.

Of all the filthy/obnoxious things people do on BART they think are acceptable this is like the very, very bottom of the list for me. But whatever, it is BART RAGE!!! Rage away...

Bike2Bart's picture

You're not being politically incorrect, just uninformed. Perhaps you haven't had any kids yet. Babies need to eat, and you cannot always wait until you get home to feed them. I would much rather have the child latched on and happily feeding than screaming and crying because they are hungry.

I never did understand why people have such a hangup about breastfeeding. It's just a breast. I don't see how anybody can be made uncomfortable by that, the last thing I am thinking when I see a baby feeding is anything sexual or inappropriate.

TreoBART's picture

Unfortunately, there are people out there who would be thinking sexual or inappropriate thoughts in a situation like that. Yes, babies need to eat but I wouldn't want to be eye candy for the pervs that ride around on BART. Get yourself a pump and be prepared if you need to travel and have something against baby formula even in rare situations.

eye candy schmeye candy. she was eqeipped to feed the kid. the kid needed fed. you are unhappy, find another seat, car, universe. as to how much the woman should hide, that is exclusively her issue--her body y'know. and to whoever thinks there is some standard age past which..., think again.

boopiejones's picture

i know this isn't breastfeedrage, but you really think it is ok for a four year old to breastfeed?

I find it sad that anyone would be bothered by breastfeeding. No matter what you believe in (God, Science, Mother Nature or a mixture of those three) the fact remains the same that breasts are designed to feed a baby. Despite the fact that some individuals have chosen to make breasts sexual objects that does not change their original design or purpose. Lactation is for the sole purpose of nutrition. A baby needs to eat when they need to eat, without delay, without strict scheduling, and this need differs from baby to baby and even from day to day for the same baby. On a hot day a breastfed baby will require more feeds (longer and/or more frequently) to help quench thirst and avoid dehydration. If a baby is ill or experiencing normal "disturbances" such as growth spurts or teething they will need to feed for comfort and pain management. You cannot always schedule a baby's feeds around travel. Some breastfed babies feed every six hours and some every hour. It is unreasonable to expect a breastfed baby to stay at home so the mother can feed them without breastfeeding in public. A woman has to go out eventually.

From the World Health Organization website:

"Breastfeeding is an unequalled way of providing ideal food for the healthy growth and development of infants; it is also an integral part of the reproductive process with important implications for the health of mothers. A recent review of evidence has shown that, on a population basis, exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months is the optimal way of feeding infants. Thereafter infants should receive complementary foods with continued breastfeeding up to 2 years of age or beyond.

To enable mothers to establish and sustain exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months, WHO and UNICEF recommend:

* Initiation of breastfeeding within the first hour of life
* Exclusive breastfeeding – that is the infant only receives breastmilk without any additional food or drink, not even water
* Breastfeeding on demand – that is as often as the child wants, day and night
* No use of bottles, teats or pacifiers"

There are many medical benefits to breastfeeding (I've pasted an informational list below) and it is all natural. To those who say it is "disgusting" I have to ask what exactly do you find disgusting? The breast? Why? You have severe sexual issues if you are incapable of viewing a breast in a non-sexual way and should probably seek counseling for that. For those who want to impose conditions like the suggestion that a mother should only breastfeed in public if she covers up, I have to ask "Do you cover your head with a blanket when you eat?" Why should a baby have to? It is extrememly uncomfortable to use a nursing cover in the summer months when both mother and baby can overheat from adding extra layers. Breastfeeding is an important bonding tool between mother and baby and continued eye contact is essential (this is difficult with most types of nursing covers). If breastfeeding bothers you that much feel free to put a blanket over your own head, or just move to another seat, or simply look away. And for those people who are misinformed or uninformed about breastfeeding, here are many of the multiple benefits (and NO, there is no reccommended cut-off age despite what some people think...)

Health Benefits for Baby

Breast milk is more easily digested than ANY formula, resulting in less colic, gas, and spitting up

Breastfeeding reduces or even eliminates food allergies & eczema. Babies who are breastfed for less than six months have seven times the incidence of allergies as those who are breastfed longer than six months.

Breastfeeding is associated with a much lower incidence of wheezing, prolonged colds, diarrhea, and vomiting (Merrett, T.G., "Infant Feeding & Allergy: 12 Month Prospective Study of 500 Babies Born into Allergic Families". American Allergies, 1988.)

Eczema is less common and milder in babies who are breastfed. In one study, (Chandra R.K., "Influence of Maternal Diet During Lactation and the Use of Formula Feed and Development of Atopic Eczema in the High Risk Infants". Br Med J. 1989) it was found that of infants fed soy based formulas, 63% developed eczema. In those fed cows milk based formulas 70% developed eczema."

Formula fed children have a drastic increase in childhood cancers. "The risk of artificially fed children was 1-8 times that of long-term breastfed children, and the risk for short term feeders was 1-9 times that of long term breast feeders." Davis, M.K. Infant Feeding and Childhood Cancer. "Lancet 1988

Breastfed babies get protection from bronchitis, bronchiolitis, pneumonia, diabetes and asthma.

Formula fed babies suffer higher instances of cardiopulmonary disturbances. (Particularly preterm infants)

Breastfed babies have fewer diaper rashes .

Breastfed babies have 5-10 times fewer stomach infections than formula fed babies

Babies who are breastfed are 10 times less likely to be admitted to the hospital during the first year.

Breast milk contains endorphins, chemicals that suppress pain.

Breast milk contains at least 100 (some sources say up to 400) ingredients not found in formula including at least 4 unique proteins. There are unique and powerful immune building properties in breast milk, and it can enhance brain development

There is growing evidence that breastfeeding can raise your child's I.Q. and there are numerous studies pointing to higher developmental test scores in breastfed children.

Breast fed babies have up to 50% fewer ear infections than bottle fed babies

A recent study by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development indicated that breastfeeding was protective against SIDS. (Hoffman, H.J., "Risk Factors for SIDS: Results of the SIDS Cooperative Epidemiologic Study". Ann NY ACAD Sci, 1988.)

Another source states that "Breastfed babies are one-third less likely to die of SIDS."

Breastfeeding enhances the baby's development of oral muscles and facial bones.

Benefits for Mothers

Breastfeeding mothers have lower rates of certain cancers (breast, ovarian, uterine, and endometrial) as well as a reduced risk of osteoporosis. Also, "Women who were breastfed as infants, even if only for a short time, showed an approximate 25% lower risk of developing premenopausal or postmenopausal breast cancer, compared to women who were bottle-fed as an infant." (Freudenheim, J. "Exposure to breast milk in infancy and the risk of breast cancer." Epidemiology 1994 5:324-331)

Breastfeeding "confirms a woman's power to control her own body, and challenges the male-dominated medical model and business interests that promote bottle feeding." from Breastfeeding-A Feminist Issue by Penny Van Esterik

Breastfeeding encourages uterine contractions after childbirth, returning the uterus to it's pre-pregnancy size much faster. It has been shown that the uteruses of formula feeding mothers sometimes never return to the pre-pregnancy state.

Breastfeeding also: Boosts prolactin (a hormone that enhances feelings of nurturing and contentment) levels, speeds up post-partum weight loss and helps child spacing.

Current research confirms that as long as a woman is fully or nearly fully breastfeeding, and has not resumed menstruation, she has a less than 2% risk of becoming pregnant. Family planners know this method as Lactational Amenorrhea Method (LAM). In areas of world where artificial contraception is unaffordable, unavailable or unacceptable, breastfeeding provides a woman with an effective means of family planning. Source: WABA World Breastfeeding Week Action folder 1995 "Breastfeeding: Empowering Women"

Breastfeeding boosts women's self-reliance and self esteem: by meeting the needs of their infants, they increase their confidence in their ability parent and nurture.

Breastfeeding reduces women's dependence on medical professionals and validates the tried and trusted knowledge that mothers and midwives have about infant care and feeding.Source: WABA World Breastfeeding Week Action folder 1995 "Breastfeeding: Empowering Women"

Breastfeeding is easier and less time consuming. There is no preparation involved, and you don't have to prepare, warm, or transport bottles.

Emotional Benefits

Breastfeeding stimulates a mothers body to produce prolactin and oxytocin, the "mothering hormones" (Prolactin helps you feel relaxed, loving, and calm. Prolactin levels can increase 10-20 fold within 30 minutes of beginning a nursing session)

Breastfeeding provides extra closeness that helps your baby bond and develop trust.

The skin-to-skin contact offered by breastfeeding reduces the stress babies experience when they enter the world from the warmth and safety of the womb.

Breastfeeding provides comfort during illness or pain.

Even the Environmental Benefits

Breastmilk is actually the most ecological food available to humans.

There is less consumption of natural resources and landfill space. The production and packaging of formula uses paper, glass, plastic, and metals, all of which need to be produced and disposed of.

"If every child in America were bottle-fed, almost 86,000 tons of tin would be needed to produce 550 million cans for one year's worth of formula. If every mother in the Great Britain breastfed, 3000 tons of paper (used for formula labels) would be saved in a year. But the formula is not the only problem. Bottles and nipples require plastic, glass, rubber, and silicon; production of these materials can be resource-intensive and often leads to end-products that are not-recyclable. All these products use natural resources, cause pollution in their manufacture and distribution, and create trash in their packaging, promotion, and disposal. "
-From Mother Nature Loves Breastmilk", by Dia Michels

These materials are rarely recycled and the two most common disposal methods, landfill and incineration, both contribute greatly to pollution. Plastic feeding bottles and nipples will take 200 to 450 years to break down and it is impossible to determine the amount of time it takes for glass feeding bottles to break down. Landfill sites are hard to come by in many countries and they can pollute groundwater. Incineration releases pollutants into the air. The fumes from burned plastic can contain dioxin and other toxic substances.

If all U.S. babies were artificially fed, the 550 million formula cans sold each year, stacked end to end would circle the earth one and a half times. In 1987, 4.5 million feeding bottles were sold in Pakistan alone. These feeding bottles stacked end to end would reach the top of Mount Everest. Source: WABA Breastfeeding...WBW 1997- Nature's Way

The industrial processes used to create artificial feeding products for babies use vast quantities of energy and natural resources (fuels) and create air pollution (acid rain and greenhouse gases)

If you consider the global or even national scope, even the water and energy used in homes to prepare formula and the bottles and nipples themselves (washing, boiling, etc) have a tremendous impact.

Most artificial baby milks are made with cows milk, the production of which wastes land and resources and contributes to the pollution of the environment in numerous ways:

* Cows excretion and flatulance produce 100 million tons of methane every year, which equals 20% of the earths total emissions. (Methane is the second most problematic gaseous contribution to the greenhouse effect and global warming.)
* The fertilizers used to grow feed for dairy cows pollute rivers and groundwater.
* The ammonia from cow pastures and slurry tanks cause acid rain.
* The clearing of land for pasture means deforestation, an increase in greenhouse gases, the destruction of animal and plant species and erosion of the soil. For example, each kilogram of baby milk produced in Mexico "costs" 12.5 square meters of rainforest.

Even the production of soy based formulas are detrimental to the environment:

* Soy formulas require just as much natural resources and energy to produce and package.
* In Brazil, forests are cleared and burned to create soy plantations. The soya beans are then used to feed cattle and as the base for soy based formulas.
* The growing of soy beans requires a high input of fertilizers and irrigation.

Source: Breastmilk: A World Resource

Formula Just Doesn't Measure Up

Breast milk composition changes over time, as well as from feeding to feeding. From premature infants to young children, breast milk always has the right proportions of fat, carbohydrates, enzymes and protein as well as numerous other components.

Colostrum is the perfect first food for babies. It is produced during pregnancy and changes into mature milk a few days after baby's birth. Colostrum provides baby with an unequaled immunity against viruses and bacteria.

Breastmilk is a living substance. Each woman's milk is individually tailored for her own baby. What's more, her milk changes constantly - both during a feed and day by day - to meet her baby's evolving needs. When a mother is exposed to pathogens in the environment, she produces antibodies to combat them. The mother's antibodies are then passed on to her baby via her breastmilk. Source: WABA Breastfeeding...WBW 1997- Nature's Way

Breast milk is created by the human body to feed human babies. It is perfectly formulated for the nutritional needs of human babies.

Cow's milk is created by cows to feed calves. It is perfectly formulated for the nutritional needs of calves.

Formula is an industrially manufactured food. It contains chemicals, flavoring, vitamins, and proteins that attempt to replicate breast milk. The multiple processings, ingredients and alterations required to convert cows milk or soy beans to the finished product opens up numerous opportunities for contamination by harmful bacteria, chemicals, insects, and foreign bodies.

The following is a PARTIAL list of known contaminations of infant formulas:

* 1997 - UK : Milumil withdrawn from sale after being linked with salmonella infection.
* 1997 - USA: FDA recalled Nestle's Carnation follow-up formula because of adulteration and production under unsanitary conditions. Linked with mild gastrointestinal illness. 11,317 cases of 6 32 oz. cans to a case recalled.
* 1996 - USA: Carnation Alsoy Concentrate liquid in 32 oz. cans withdrawn because instructions on the top of the can state: Do not add water. Mislabeling could have led to infants consuming undiluted, concentrated formula. The side label indicated the addition of water.
* 1996 - USA: Heinz apple and prune juice for infants in 4 oz. bottles recalled because they contained quantities of lead in excess of 80 ppb.
* 1994 - Sri Lanka: Customs officers sent back a large consignment of Nestle's milk powder imported from Poland because it was contaminated with radioactive particles.
* 1993 - USA: Nutramigen formula recalled after it is found to contain broken glass.
* 1993 - USA: Soyalac formula withdrawn following discovery of salmonella contamination.
* 1992 - India: Live black insects and crawling worms found in a packet of Lactogen infant formula.

Source: WABA World Breastfeeding Week Action folder 1997 "Breastfeeding: Nature's Way"

In fact: There were twenty-two different recalls of infant formula in the United States because of health and safety problems between 1982 and 1994, . Seven of these recalls were classified as "Class I" (potentially life threatening) by the FDA. In random testing,a number of lab-tested infant formulas have been found to contain bacterial and elemental contaminants.

Breast milk is always safe, fresh, perfectly clean, just the right temperature, instantly available and it is the most nutritious feeding system for the lowest cost.

bikesonbart's picture

Thread winner! Well I only got through the first two sentences, but the post certainly made the poster look like an expert, if only by sheer volume.

where did you cut/paste that from?

Never mind, Google told me.

Seems most of it was plagiarized from :

Plagiarized? I didn't publish it in a a periodical or turn it in as a school assignment as my own, I said I was providing information and usually information is gathered by other sources. Kudos to you for learning how to use google though! You should expand that knowledge and look further on google and see why breastfeeding is best. Though that seems too difficult for a lot of people on here, in fact, I am surprised many of the ignoramuses posting on this website even know how to use a computer but lesser miracles have happened.

Why do you assume I do not know that breast milk is best for infants ?

And Why do you assume I do not agree that breast milk is best for infants ?

Being I have a 8 month old, I encourage breastfeeding as much as possible.

I already know it is best, that is why whenever I leave the house with Jr. I carry a bottle of freshly pumped mommy-milk.

Many of the people you trying to argue with here are Dads ( & moms ) also.

What was being said here is that 3 year olds should not be on BART whipping moms top off every time s/he needs a shot of booby juice.

And a mother feeding a child in a public place should be aware of her public surroundings.

If you actually read what people were saying instead of cut/pasting pages and pages of stuff you would not sound like a Blog Troll
( and next time just include the URL like everyone else ).

boopiejones's picture

i don't care what you and the world organization for advancement of people that breastfeed their highschool aged children says, a four year old SHOULD NOT be sucking tits. end of story. four year olds should be saying "more ovaltine please" not "i wanna sippy from the nippy"

Well said, Boopie!

More Ovaltine, please!

Actually it is the World Health Organization I referred to but I guess if you don't read anything more than the comics section of the newspaper (or in your case you probably just look at the "pretty pictures") then you wouldn't know what that was. Maybe your problem stems from the fact that you yourself consumed too much Ovaltine when you were little. But then again how long ago was that? Do people actually drink Ovaltine anymore? That stuff is nasty!

boopiejones's picture

the world health organization? you mean the people that state "Between 12–23 months of age, 3–4 meals should be given. In addition, depending on the child's appetite, 1–2 nutritious snacks can be offered between meals. These foods should be adequate, meaning that they provide sufficient energy, protein and micronutrients to meet a growing child's nutritional needs."

to paraphrase: "stop fucking breastfeeding your kid some time before they are two."

and remember two things:

1) i am very much for breastfeeding and feel that it is totally acceptable behavior on bart. i just feel that it is wrong for a 4 year old.
2) i have never even tried ovaltine

3) don't feed the trolls (not even with titty juice)

rafa1215's picture

haha "sippy from the nippy" - now that's funny. I agree 4 years old is way too old to be breastfeeding. Maybe it's that "emotional bond" that moms love to feel when a baby latches on.

I have a few friends of friends that breastfeed into the that age.

It was clearly a attachment issue and inability to let go.

Mikokat's picture

All right. To all breastfeeding parents: I'm okay with the fact that you have to feed your baby. It's natural. However, as common courtesy, please COVER UP WITH SOMETHING! Be it a blanket, a shirt, whatever! Not everyone wants to see your breast. It's just common courtesy. Plus, some parents will be offended if someone moves because she is breastfeeding. I had a similar situation with a "proud parent" once before. Anyway, please just cover up! Is that too much to ask?

nope! i'm one of the ones who finds it digusting absolutely disgusting to see this in public and would appreciate any effort to cover themselves up. it is not appropriate on public transportation.

Not every baby will nurse while covered with a blanket. Once mine got past the newborn stage, they'd pull a blanket off.

I did nurse discreetly even without a blanket. Never showed any bare breasts... or at least nothing that would be noticed unless you were 6 inches away from them.

Mikokat's picture

Well, at least thanks for attempting :).

It's perfectly legal for her to do so. Doesn't violate any BART rules, and breastfeeding in public is protected by state law here in CA.

Get over it.

One thing about BF. Its fine and all, but do not get all huffy when I am watching. It IS a public place and I CAN watch you. If you don't like, just up and move. Cheers!

It IS a public place and I CAN watch you.

Creep alert!!!

Actually, that's the *first* thing that I would like to see on my way to work in the morning! Sorry if the Yay Area isn't puritanical enough for ya!