Mom Who Breastfed Wrong Baby Sues Hospital


hospital nursery ward

Breastfeeding another woman's baby isn't a big deal to a lot of moms. Selma Hayek made headlines when she nursed a sick infant in the Sierra Leone last year, and an entire community banded together to breastfeed a motherless infant for six months. Wet nurses have existed for eons.

A new mom in the Chicago area thinks breastfeeding another woman's baby is a huge deal, so much so that she's suing her delivering hospital for accidentally giving her another baby to breastfeed, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

In January 2008, the nurse woke Jennifer Spiegel at 4 a.m. and handed her a baby to breastfeed, which she did. The little boy was swaddled and wearing a cap, so Spiegel could not see the baby's hair. Eventually the nurse realized she'd given Spiegel the wrong baby, returned both babies to their rightful mothers, and gave a tearful apology.

But it was not enough, according to the woman's husband Scott Spiegel, an attorney. The couple is suing Evanston Hospital in Illinois for at least $30,000 in damages.

"It was just an awful, internal feeling," Jennifer Spiegel, a teacher, told the Sun-Times.

She says she doesn't want this to happen to anyone else. How would you feel if this happened to you? -- take the poll.


How would you have reacted to the hospital giving you another mom's baby to breastfeed?

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Have you ever breastfed another mom's baby? How is it different from nursing your own child?


Other posts you'll like:

Boob or Bottle? It's Not Always Black and White

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NotVe... NotVeryClever

Ha it's nice that the nurse brought her the baby and woke her up. At the hospital I was at babies couldn't leave the nursery and you had to take it upon yourself to walk your self down there. Not so fun post c-section.

In any case I was terrified those dumbasses at the hospital would give me the wrong baby so I always inspected him when ever he was handed to me.

luna08 luna08

to me its no biggy bout bfing another infant, especially if the nurse aplogized, the thing that would have gotten me is "ok if i have this baby, im feeding thi baby.....where is MY baby and WHO is feeding him and WHAT!"

Freela Freela

I would have been far more upset about the 'mistake' than about the bf'ing itself... there is no excuse to mix up babies that way!  At the hospital where I delivered they compared ID bracelets with mom whenever they came in to check on the baby, and we had rooming in so with my second and third child they never even left the room without me.  Those kinds of precautions should be universal and that is just plain irresponsible on the part of the hospital!  As for the bf'ing specifically, I would be more upset if my baby had been nursed by another mom, simply because some illnesses, like HIV or hepatitis, can be passed through breastmilk.  I know I have been screened for those illnesses, but don't know if the other mom would have been.  I wouldn't be suing, but I would be definitely sending a strongly worded letter to the hospital's board about increasing their precautions around safety  with their newborns!

Go4 Go4

talk about your frivolous lawsuits. We can all thank the families like the Spegel's for making sure our health care costs continue to rise.

Had they gone home with the wrong baby, I may feel differently. But seriously, mistakes happen....and herr few minutes spent breastfeeding the wrong child are not worth anywhere NEAR 30 grand. I hope she gets laughed out of court.

grouc... grouchymama

I would be upset about where my baby was and what he was being fed. I wouldn't want my baby BF by a stranger. I would get over it if they had been bottle fed.

Last year my sister's baby was almost sent home with the wrong mom. Another mother signed his discharge papers and they took off his ID tags and everything. The nurses tried to cover it up by replacing all their ID bracelets. The doctor looked at the baby and confirmed that it was the one he delivered (yeah right). My BIL called the hospital president and they paid for the testing to make sure they had the right baby. My nephew's middle name was the same as the other babies last name.

maggi... maggiemom2000

Upset, yes, sue? No way!  How on earth was SHE damaged by breastfeeding someone else's baby?  Now if HER baby had been given formula w/o her consent, or if they gave HER baby to someone else to breastfeed, and the baby contracted a disease because of it (the chances if which are very slim), then she might have a case.

This is ridiculous!

Jenn8604 Jenn8604

Wow that is just plain dumb. Can you say sue happy? You can tell they want money to raise their kid. Of course she was so dumb she couldnt even tell the difference between her son and some one elses son. I would have been able to tell the difference right away and I had a c-section and was drugged and I only saw my son for not even a mintue right after he was born. I knew what he looked like the next time I saw him. Of course Im not dumb so I would reconize my own son.

Betha... Bethany2035

I would be furious, and terrified that someone else had fed MY baby.  It's emotionally stressful enough delivering and feeding a new baby, but then to deal with all that confusion would be awful.  What if she had been HIV positive or had another disease that could be passed through breastmilk?  I don't mind her suing.  I think both mothers should.  Maybe it'll teach the hospital to be more careful with something so precious.

TippyD TippyD

and this is why I dont put my baby in the nursery when I deliver! however, if I was the mom that bf the wrong baby I would not be NEARLY as mad as the mom that's baby got BF by the wrong woman.. BTW I delivered at that hospital and the nursery staff was PHENOMINAL!!! I hate that the hospital is getting a bad rep for one nurse's mistake! the only reason this is public is because the woman is suing..

Being... BeingHereNow

I have happily nursed other babies when they needed it - but it was always my (and the other Mama's) choice. It's not the who I am nursing that would piss me off, it's the whole hospital system. If the babies were where they are supposed to be (within Mama's arms or at least arm's reach) there wouldn't be mistakes like that.

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