7.08.2006

The Taboo of Breast Feeding

This morning I came across a blog entry on Challies.com that caught my attention. Apparently, Victoria's secret was recently the target of a "nurse-in" protest" because several women were prevented from breastfeeding their children while in the store. Does anyone else sense any twisted irony here? Near the end of his blog entry, Challies strikes at the heart of the issue:
It shows something about our society, I think, that we will gladly tolerate breasts when they are in the context of sexuality, but not when they are in the context of child-rearing. Somehow, over the past couple of decades, public breastfeeding has become taboo. Stores and restaurants routinely demand that breastfeeding moms take their babies to the bathrooms to nurse them there. More and more people seem to regard it as unnatural or disgusting. Victoria's Secret can plaster the store windows with huge posters of nearly-naked women with their breasts almost fully exposed, but when a woman sitting inside the store discreetly latches her child to a breast, it is regarded as exhibitionism.
This issue really strikes a nerve within me because while my wife was breast-feeding our daughter, people often treated her as though she was doing something wrong or inappropriate. Hogwash! If the baby's hungy, feed it! (And no, she will not do it in the bathroom. Why not? Well, would you like to feed your child in the same room where some lady just "emptied" herself? Need I say anymore?) Now, don't get me wrong. Women should be discreet when breastfeeding, but let's not treat them like they are commiting a crime. For those of us who are Christians, this Victoria's Secret breastfeeding incident should remind us that we live in a sinful world where people like to trade what is natural and good for something that is unnatural and dispeasing to the Lord. I guess the world is more content with feeding our sinful natures than with feeding our crying babies.

Challies full blog entry is available here.

4 comments:

rebecca said...

You make a very intresting point.Amy and I once had a conversation about this subject.I didnt really agree with her about public breast feeding,and Im still not entirely sure what I would do.I do find it really hypocritical though for Victoria Secret to ban women from breast feeding in their store.Its ridiculous how American society looks at issues like this one.The pictures they have hanging in their stores are displaying everything that their trying to hide from the public.

You also said that Amy didnt take Alora into public restrooms to feed her because it unsanitary,well you take her in there to change her dont you?how is feeding her any different?

Amy said...

Hey Rebecca,
I remember having that conversation with you. So you know where I stand on this issue. I'm glad you saw where Eric is coming from with posting this. I just want you to think about one thing. How often do you go to a restaurant or a store and sit in their bathroom to eat your meal or have a snack? I'm thinking your probably going to say never. But how often do you go to a bathroom wherever it may be and relieve yourself, well I bet all the time. My point is that bathrooms are nasty, disguisting places where women pee and poop and they only get cleaned maybe once a day. So here I am FEEDING my child, not changing her, and someone poos and pees, they then flush the commode and their feces and urine are sprayed into the air getting all over the area. It just saddens me to even have to write this, defending why I shouldn't have to feed my hungry child in a BATHROOM. I mean when you really think about it it is disgusting. Now please understand I am not one of those women that parade around when I'm feeding my child , breast exposed no modesty. Actually if there is a room around from spraying toilets where I can feed my child that's where I'll feed her but if not I am very resourceful. I know you can remember how many times I sat in Eric's office or sat in my car feeding Alora while all of you went inside a restaurant to eat. I realize that breast feeding really is a gift from the Lord, but I also realize I should be modest in all things I do as a lady of the Lord and I never want to make a man lust over me. So I hope that you can read this and understand where I am coming from and maybe take a look at your decision to or not breast feed, and where you will choose to breast feed.

rebecca said...

I by no means was saying that you were "parading around" while feeding Alora. I do know that you were being modest when you were going out to you car to feed her.Please dont take my comment as judging you for what you see best for your family.I understand that sometimes there is no other choice but to feed in public places.Im sorry if I offended you by my previous comment, I meant no harm.

I would really like to see you guys still.Maybe in Aug.

Eric said...

Maybe I can help sum up a few things:

1.Breastfeeding is good and natural. 2. Women should be modest when doing it. 3. Bathrooms are gross, so avoid eating in them if possible (unless you like eating Dorito's on the toilet, of course). 4. Amy loves Rebecca; Rebecca loves Amy. There are no hard feelings. 5. Victoria's Secret is hypocritical. 6. The world needs Jesus. 7. I need to go to bed.