Why is it that we, as humans, are the ONLY mammals that feel the need (or pressure from society) to cover-up while feeding our young?
Last night I exhibited at the DSA (Doulas Services Association) Product Information Night/AGM. I met many fantastic women and made some great contacts. There were three of us talking about breastfeeding in public including the Mom (sorry Mom, I don’t remember your name) of Jen Casey – the owner of Dimpleskins Naturals – fantastic product line by the way! Jen’s Mom proceeded to tell us a story of an incident that she recently witnessed while shopping at Sears. A mother sat down on a couch in the furniture department to feed her very hungry baby. A female employee told her that she couldn’t do “that” here and would have to leave. The mother countered, stating that her baby was hungry and that she had to feed him/her. The Sears employee told her she would have to go to the bathroom. Jen’s Mom, overhearing the conversation, piped-up and said to the Sears employee, “Would you like to eat your dinner in the bathroom?” Brilliant, just brilliant!
Federally, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms affords publicly breastfeeding mothers “some” protection. Provincially, only British Columbia and Ontario’s Human Rights Codes specifically detail the rights of breastfeeding mothers. Believe it or not, in the USA, there are only 39 states that have laws with language specifically allowing women to breastfeed in any public location! I “thought” it was 2008….apparently I thought wrong?
The other woman that we were chatting with, a doula, added her two cents as well: “When I happen to drive by a field of cows and some are nursing their calves, I warn everyone in the car – Don’t look! You might get offended if you see an udder!”
If there is one thing that “gets my goat”, it is hypocrisy! I will never forget the cow analogy and will share it with everyone I meet that appears to be “misinformed” in this regard.