School Tells Mom She Shouldn't Breastfeed in Front of Kids

It's not easy being a mommy to two or more children -- especially when you're trying to incorporate the demands of breastfeeding into a schedule that takes your older child's needs into account. Schools, of all places, should be advocates for parents and make it as accommodating as possible for them to fulfill their kids' physical, social, and emotional needs.

And that's why it's super shocking that a mom in Utah was instructed to put her breasts away -- I should say, to put her already covered breasts away -- and stop nursing her baby while attending an event at her older child's school.

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Andrea Scannell attended a school lunch program with her family at Mount Logan Middle School. Like all of us selfish moms who drop everything we're doing to feed our child from our breast because we are just dying to offend people, she took time out to nourish her baby.

And for her efforts, she was handed a letter written by the principal of the school that stated: "The concern is with the exposed breastfeeding of your baby. As a public school, we have children of all ages attending the lunch program. We also have numerous adults who share a wide variety of personal views and views on raising their own children."

By the sound of it, you'd think Scannell was publicly flogging her child as a form of discipline rather than providing her with the nutrients she needs to grow up and become a human being with more common sense than the people who complained about this mom nursing her child.

The school district explained that they just want to make sure everyone attending the program feels comfortable. And I'd be 100 percent behind them IF Scannell was actually exposing her breasts in front of middle school-aged children. But she, like so many of us, says she takes great care to cover up (don't even get me started on our society's infantile views on breasts, but you know, that's a topic for another day).

I'm disappointed that school administrators would risk losing a caring, dedicated parent -- those who can and agree to volunteer their time are rare -- because they fear a few parents don't want to deal with their sixth grader asking what Mrs. Scannell is doing with her baby underneath her shirt.

Answer #1: "She's breastfeeding her child." There. Was that so difficult to say?

Answer #2: "Oh, like you don't know?" Because, chances are, a child in middle school isn't going to be scandalized by the notion of nursing. They've probably heard about plenty of things the human body can do. Knowing a woman's breasts are so miraculous that they provide food might actually discourage little boys from sexualizing and evaluating every part of a girl's body when they grow up. It might even encourage young girls to think of their bodies and breasts as more than tools they can use to grab a guy's attention.

But I guess we should continue to be offended by breasts that are doing their job. Covered-up breasts that are doing their job.

Do you think the school was right or wrong for asking this mom to not breastfeed in the building?

 

Image ©iStock.com/manley099

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