Mom Publicly Shamed For Breastfeeding Her Baby

breastfeeding mom
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"Ok Moms out there, I know when a baby is Hungry they need fed. I want to know if this is appropriate or not as I'm trying to eat my Friday's. There are little kids around....I understand feeding in public but could you at least cover your boob up? Your input is needed!"

Such was the post seen `round the world that one man in Terre Haute, IN wrote and shared on his Facebook wall of a young mother breastfeeding her son, where it received many negative comments against the mother for feeding in public without a cover.

I've been the breastfeeding mom out in public with a fussy baby for about, oh, the last seven years of my life and can I just say that it's something an extremely uncomfortable spot to be in?

Instead of just focusing on my baby, who is hungry, I had to wonder if 1) I will offend anyone around me 2) if I will be asked to leave (which has happened more than once) and 3) if I need to cover up so as to not to make other uncomfortable, even though my baby hates being covered up.

I just don't understand this guy's reasoning at all. He was offended by her feeding her baby so "brazenly" and yet he saw no problem with taking her picture without her permission? Isn't that a bit more rude than a mom feeding her kid his meal? Plus, if he's really that grossed out by the sight, why is he taking a picture instead of looking elsewhere or even moving his seat? Not to mention, it's a restaurant, where people go to you know, eat, and the baby just was going along with the rest of the hungry people there.

The young mom who was shamed had one of the best responses that I have ever read, which she asked that people share:

"Dear Mr. (Name removed, because I'm not bashing like I was bashed),

I just wanted to let you know that I am the mother who was breastfeeding my son at TGI Fridays today. I am also the woman that you felt the need to take a picture of while I was doing so.

Then proceed to post said picture on social media in a shameful manner. As I was admiring how adorable your daughter was, you were posting pictures of me on Facebook and Instagram.

While I in no way, shape, or form owe you any explanation I would like to clarify a few things. I did nothing wrong, I turned away to latch my son and pulled my shirt back up when he was finished out of respect for others in the restaurant. I do not use a cover, because my son fights them, screams, and doesn't eat at all while under them. If he had been screaming because he was hungry then I would be a bad mom for not feeding my hungry child. I did not pump before leaving home, A-because my son does not like to take a bottle and B-because it is my right to feed him any way I see fit wherever I see fit.

I wanted to thank you for showing the public your ignorance and for shedding light on a topic that is near and dear to my heart. Through your violation of my and my child's privacy, you have done a few things. 

First, you've shown your true colors to many, and you've exposed others who are likewise simpleminded. While you meant to come across as exposing a violation of your rights and the rights of others, you fell into your own hypocrisy. You violated the rights of not only me, but my child. Did you know it is illegal to share the pictures of minors without the expressed permission of their legal guardian? I get that you felt uncomfortable looking at my breasts. Here is a novel idea, don't look at them.

Secondly, you have given me a platform and a drive to advocate breastfeeding ferociously. You've inspired me into a call of action. Rest assured, there will be action. Not only by me, the one you violated, but others like me who feel you violated them and their rights. Those that you are degrading by shaming the act of feeding their child. How I pity those who would actually belittle a mother for taking care of her child.

I am also intelligent, I know all the facts about breastfeeding and I know what I am doing is best for my child. I chose to do it not only because it's rewarding, but because it is what is best for them. I am resolved, not only in my choice to breastfeed my child, but to do it whenever and wherever I want.

I am backed up and supported, in my choice to breastfeed, by FEDERAL law. Wherever I am allowed to be, I am allowed to feed my child there also. While I appreciate you taking down my photo and backpedaling into a sort of apology...

Know this, I will not tolerate any sort of action like this again. If you post the picture of my child and me ever again I will seek legal action. I will publicly shame you as you have shamed me. I will be supported by a multitude of other moms, dads, and advocates of breastfeeding. We will be heard.

I strongly encourage you to educate yourself as well as your daughter about breastfeeding. Breasts are meant to be used to feed our young. It is society that has sexualized them. Children do not sexualize breasts until they are taught to do so. I pray that if in the future your daughter chooses to breastfeed that she is not shamed and does not have her picture plastered all over social media.

The AMAZING mommy you photographed nursing her beautiful child."

The main point is--the fact that this mom was feeding her baby in public had nothing to do with this man. She was focused on her baby and that's it, as it should be. Her baby comes first, not this guy's comfort level, which as is obvious by the fact he has no qualms about snapping stranger's pictures and blasting them on the Internet, is dubious at best.

I'm glad she stood up for herself, but at the same time, I wish we still weren't having this tired battle. Let the babies eat, shall we?

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