Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Who doesn't love ta-tas?

There are certain topics that come up in the Mommy Club. Once you have a munchkin, you are automatically a member whether you are a Stay-at-Home Mom or a Working Mom. Since I have two friends who are about to give birth, I've been thinking back to my own pregnancy and early months, as well as all of the absurd things that went along with it. One of the issues that comes up a lot is breastfeeding, and the issues that come up when you have to do it in public or at work. I struggled with this part of parenting, and ended up doing some pumping and a little formula. But then I read articles like this woman's experience and it makes me crazy.

Let's be honest, anyone how picks up a pregnancy or baby magazine is bombarded with the Breast is Best message, which medically is true. My issue is that even though the Federal Government wants women to breastfeed for the first 3 months, they don't legislate that a woman can do it anywhere she chooses. The states can legislate, as New York has done in 2002 (that's right, only 6 years ago), but most states have not:

N.Y. Civil Rights Law § 79-e (McKinney 2002) guarantees a mother the right to breastfeed her baby any place she has the right to be, public or private, even if the nipple is exposed during or incidental to breastfeeding.

As a result of not having a Federal law, people feel that it is their right to criticize and harass a woman who is simply feeding her child. People can't separate the sexy boobies from the actual baby feeding machines they actually are. So, breastfeeding mamas run into situations where people feel it is completely acceptable to give their opinions, tell them to cover up, or better yet- just do it at home. For any woman who is breastfeeding, there is a limit to how much milk your ta-ta's can handle before you really need to feed someone. That's like asking someone to drink 4 gallons of water and hold it. Plus, is a woman really expected to stay at home for a full 3 months? Or longer if she chooses to continues to breastfeed? Why don't we just banish her from the real world for having a kid? We want women to have babies, we just don't want to watch women to actually feed them.

If you do have funny and sassy comebacks for this issue, feel free to comment or go over to one of my favorite blogs: Thingamababy. He's running a contest for the best sassy comeback for stupid people who feel they can tell a breastfeeding mommy what to do.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Field Notes and Observations by other Sassy Anthropologists...