Social media is up in arms because a recent graduate is proudly displaying both her cap and gown and a partial breast to feed her infant. Predictably there are two camps–those who think it’s in horrible bad taste, and that nursing mothers should cover themselves or go hide in a corner until the dirty business is done, and the other breast feeding advocates who accuse everyone with a complaint as lactating-shamers.
As a mother with four kids who breast fed every one of her children, I have to speak up for this young lady. I had my first child around the same age as she was, and I was busily taking 18 units, working a part time job, and caring for my little one. Oh, and did I mention I was interning at a major public relations firm too? I remember the shame I felt, having to hide in the bathroom with my noisy, hand-held breast pump making loud bumping sounds and causing the entire office to contemplate just what the heck was going on in stall Number Two. And then there were the subtle hints of discomfort, like my own mother looking away when I breastfed, and seemed a little put off that she wasn’t able to take part in feeding my daughter unless I’d pumped the nourishment that came from my body. During the 1960’s-1980’s formula companies were in the pockets of doctors everywhere and convince them that synthetic breast milk was superior to something God made. What utter crap. What’s more, it’s almost SUMMER! Have you guys thought about how hot it is for a baby under a breast-feeding cover cloth in these conditions? Is your comfort MORE important than the baby’s discomfort?!
But let’s be real here. Take a look at this photo. I’ve seen women in bikinis showing more skin.
I wonder, is the real problem the exposure of this woman’s breast, of the idea that it’s being used in a non-sexual manner that is causing so much discomfort.
I mean, not to many of us seem to have a problem with this..
I think it’s time to be honest about what might really be bothering people–could it be that the critics are balking because they have to see a woman’s breast in a non-sexual way, and feel icky about seeing a woman’s boobs suckled during something that isn’t foreplay?
Exposing breasts for sex appeal = OKAY
Exposing breasts to feed a baby = offensive and indiscreet
I wonder, would anyone be less offended if the mother was on the beach in a string bikini while simultaneously breast feeding?