Kristen Bell on Public Breastfeeding: “If Someone Is Uncomfortable, That’s Their Problem”

Image Source: Getty Images
Image Source: Getty Images

If you’ve ever been watching TV and suddenly felt compelled to buy a Samsung appliance you may not need (and probably can’t afford), then chances are you have fallen under the spell of Kristen Bell and her equally delightful hubby Dax Shepard, in their latest ad for the tech giant.

While they are both of course wildly talented, we personally adore the couple as much for their work as we do for their candor. Especially Bell — from mental-health issues to her marriage, Kristen Bell has always been an open book. She’s never trying to make her life look too perfect; she’s just trying to be real.

And that was never more clear than when we got the chance to speak with her for an exclusive interview this past September. Right away, Bell made it clear that nothing was off limits — including the always-controversial topic of public breastfeeding. A topic, she says, she has “very strong feelings about.” (And boy, does she!)

“When it comes to breastfeeding your baby, if you are too nervous to do it in public I think you are part of the problem,” Bell tells Babble. “Women should own the fact that we are superheroes for the first however many months of your child’s life. It is your opportunity and your duty to feed your baby should you choose to breastfeed and be proud of it.

“I’m not saying you need to shove your boobs in everybody’s face, but there are tons of cover cloths. Breastfeed your baby with pride. If somebody is uncomfortable, that’s their problem. If someone sees an inch of your boob or areola and they can’t control their disgust or shock or sexual desire that’s on them.”

While some are sure to take issue with the fact Bell places some of the blame on moms, she makes a fair point that in order for the world to feel comfortable with breastfeeding, moms need to feel comfortable breastfeeding first. (Change starts at home, people.)

When asked whether or not there should be more public spaces available for moms to breastfeed in private — aka lactation rooms — Bell argues that’s not the issue. Instead, she says, we should focus on normalizing breastfeeding to make the world breastfeeding-friendly.

“You know the place [where moms should breastfeed]?” Bell asks. “It’s called earth. Planet earth. That’s the place they should be allowed to breastfeed.”

It was a sentiment similarly expressed by Bell’s friend and fellow Hollywood mom, Mila Kunis, earlier this year. Kunis told Vanity Fair in July that she will breastfeed when and how she feels like it: “If it’s not for you, don’t look.”

“I literally breastfed everywhere,” Mila told Vanity Fair, “There were many times where I didn’t bring a cover with me, and so I just did it in a restaurant, in the subway, in the park, at airports, and in planes. Why did I do it in public? Because I had to feed my child. She’s hungry. I need to feed her whether it’s out of a bottle or out of my boob no matter where I was.”

Both Kunis and Bell really hit the nail on the head when it comes to the ridiculous stigmas that still surround public breastfeeding — stigmas that we so badly need to be done with, already. Because at the end of the day, how we choose to feed our babies is no one’s business but our own; and just as Bell says, if it makes anyone uncomfortable, that’s their problem.

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