In their breastfeeding selfies, celebrities always look so joyful and serene. But the reality, as always, is more complicated. Many famous moms deal with the same issues as non-famous nursing moms, from the logistics of round-the-clock pumping to the judgmental stares of strangers. Here's what 14 stars have said about breastfeeding their little ones—the good, the bad, and the painful.
On nursing in public
“It took us a little back because people actually looked at us in a shameful [way], and we were like, ‘Oh my God,’ because it’s so not a sexual act. It didn’t matter to me what other people thought. That’s what I chose to do, but I think it’s unfortunate that people are so hard on women who choose to do it and do it in public. In the States and in our culture, we sexualize the breast so much that there’s an aspect of it that people just don’t know how to wrap their head around the idea of showing your breast in public. But I respect the opinions on both sides. If it’s not for you, don’t look.”
—Mila Kunis, Vanity Fair, July 2016
On not caring what anyone thinks
"The only time he cries is if he's hungry. We all have nipples. I don't care who I offend; my baby wants to eat. If I can't get a cover over me quick enough, so be it."
—Selma Blair, People, March 2012
On the joy of feeding your baby, however you do it
"#JamesKnight is now 8 months old! These are the moments a mother lives for. Breastfeeding should not be a taboo- and bottle feeding should not be judged-it's ALL fun for the whole family:)"
—Jaime King, Instagram, June 2014
On the fact that nursing is not always easy
"I'm breast-feeding now so thats a really wonderful experience—challenging, but wonderful."
—Hilary Duff, Us Weekly, April 2012
On the anxiety it can trigger
"Breastfeed if you can but don't worry, [formula milk] Aptamil's just as good. I mean, I loved it, all I wanted to do was breastfeed and then I couldn't and then I felt like, 'If I was in the jungle now back in the day, my kid would be dead because my milk's gone.' It's not funny that's how some of us think."
—Adele, at a concert in London, 2016
On getting bitten
"As a new mom, I was determined to ... nurse as long as possible, but when her teeth came in she started biting me. I talked to other moms, my doctor, and a lactation consultant in search of a solution, but nothing helped. I even tried hand-expressing my milk directly into her mouth, in a desperate hope that I could nurse without letting her little piranha teeth anywhere near me, but in the end, I decided it was time to wean."
—Ali Landry, People, 2012
On the unfair stigma
On the emotional aspect
"All I ever heard was everyone bitch about it—nobody ever said, ‘You are not going to believe how emotional this is.’"
—Jennifer Garner, Allure, 2007
On the realities of pumping
"My new backstage beauty routine: #pumpit #pumpumpitup"
—Kristen Bell, Twitter, June 2013
On the full-time commitment
"I'm, like, driving down the road, pumping."
—Blake Lively, Allure, April 2015
On how tough it is to stop
"I was breast-feeding my son 13 months, and I plan to do the same with my daughter. [Nursing] is addictive. It's hard when the day comes when you have to stop."
—Penélope Cruz, Allure, December 2013
On feeling pressure to stop
“I think I stopped early because my sisters were like ‘OK, it’s time, it’s time. I did 14 months.... I miss it, I loved it.”
—Kourtney Kardashian, Today, 2011
On not setting a deadline
"I breastfeed and I'll be breast-feeding until my son is finished and he weans."
—Alanis Morissette, The Billy Bush Show, May 2012
On how normal nursing can feel
"Breast-feeding is the most natural thing. I don't know, now it feels like Otis should always be on my breast."
—Olivia Wilde, Glamour, September 2014