Try to appreciate breastfeeding mum's situation

It is eye-opening to see a woman denouncing breastfeeding in public (Baring the breasts for whatever reason is wrong; March 24) and a man supporting it (Support breastfeeding mothers rather than shame them; March 27).

Allow me to share my experience as a breastfeeding mother.

Babies cannot be trained to feed at a certain time.

So when my son wants milk because he is hungry or wants comfort, I have to brace myself against public displeasure to meet my baby's needs.

I have tried covering myself and my son, but he would always push away the cover.

Once, when I put my son's needs first, I was scolded by a woman in the MRT. I stopped defending myself after sensing her argumentative streak.

What if I win the argument but she hurts me or my baby?

So, she continued her abuse and no one spoke up on my behalf.

I struggled for a while before I regained the courage to breastfeed my son in public again without covering up.

I appeal to the public's understanding when breastfeeding mothers do not cover themselves up.

Not all babies accept the covering and the family car is not always available. For some mothers, public transport is the only affordable choice.

Why see us as "flashers" and subject us to so much stress when all we are doing is giving the best food to our babies in the way they prefer?

Ng Poh Leng (Madam)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 29, 2017, with the headline 'Try to appreciate breastfeeding mum's situation'. Print Edition | Subscribe