Ready for a really weird one? A breastfeeding mom was shamed recently (no, that's not the weird part, it's coming, all right?) for trying to feed her daughter ... in a hospital waiting room! Yup, a hospital as in a medical establishment ... as in a place where everyone should understand just why it is that women breastfeed their babies!
This begs the question, doesn't it? If you can't find breastfeeding acceptance in a hospital, where CAN a nursing mother catch a break?
According to mom Gemma Murphy, she was at the hospital for a postnatal check-up about gestational diabetes she'd developed while pregnant. Naturally, she brought her 6-week-old daughter along, and as infants are bound to do, the little girl got hungry. But nurses told Gemma she'd have to take little Niamh into a private room to nurse lest she bother the other patients.
Really? Because seeing a little boob in a hospital would be that shocking? I've been in enough hospitals over the years to tell you that's far from the worst you're going to see. Ever seen an old man's shriveled hiney because his hospital gown didn't close in the back? I have! It wasn't a pleasant sight. Nor is the typical goings on in an active emergency room lobby.
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But I digress. The real issue here lies in a medical facility taking actions that actively discourage moms from breastfeeding. We tend to look at the folks in healthcare as experts on matters of health ... and if they don't see breastfeeding as something to value and encourage, then what kind of message are they sending to moms? That it isn't that important? Think about it!
This hospital owes Gemma Murphy an apology, but more than that, they owe it to all their patients to educate their staff on being more supportive of parents who are trying to make HEALTHY choices for their kids!
Have you ever been told you couldn't nurse in public? Where were you?
Image via Image Source/Corbis