If you're shopping in Istanbul's Grand Bazaar and your baby needs to feed, don't be surprised if you get a few looks as he's latching on. That's because one-fifth of women in Turkey think breastfeeding in public is "wrong."
That's according to a new survey conducted by Lansinoh, a breastfeeding supply company, which polled 13,169 moms and pregnant women around the world to find out how they really feel about nursing. The countries involved were Brazil, China, France, Germany, Hungary, Mexico, Turkey, the UK and the U.S., reports the Daily Mail.
Not surprisingly, different countries had different reactions to this lightning rod of a topic. Nowhere was that more apparent than with the topic of feeding an infant in public. More than half of women in the U.K., U.S., Brazil, and Mexico said it was "perfectly natural" to nurse al fresco, while 41 percent of moms in Hungary said it was "unavoidable." Mixed feelings about breastfeeding were apparent even in the same country: Roughly half of Chinese and French women said it was either natural or "unavoidable," but almost half also found it "embarrassing."
When it comes to nursing a two-year-old in public, the battle lines were more clearly drawn. Most respondents said 6-12 months is the ideal length of time to breastfeed. Small wonder then that the majority of women in Germany (58 percent) and Mexico (57 percent), and half of respondents in the U.K., thought a two-year-old was too old to nurse. Moms and moms-to-be in France, the U.S., Hungary and Turkey also shared that sentiment, though not by a majority. Chinese women were split down the middle, with 37 percent supporting breastfeeding that long and 35 percent saying the baby should be off the breast by that point. For its part, 44 percent of Brazilian women believed moms should try to nurse for that long.
But despite the differences, there are some things all of us moms can agree on. Everyone struggles with waking up at night to feed baby. Most of us grapple with "mom guilt" over not breastfeeding (well, except for Germany). And an overwhelming majority of women in all of the countries surveyed agreed that breastfeeding is best for baby.
Tell us: Do these findings surprise you?
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Image of breastfeeding baby courtesy of Shutterstock