Ok, so I am THIS excited to start this new series…In the News Tuesday! Each week (or when there is “major” news, ha) I will post about the event and give my take.
So as many of you might have heard, last week Adrienne Pine, an assistant professor at American College, decided to bring her slightly feverish child (age 1) into the classroom instead of staying home with her and canceling the first day of class. The daycare that her child attends has a fever policy, not allowing her to attend if she is sick. She breastfed, gasp, her baby in class for a few minutes at one point when she became fussy. A nursing baby is far from distracting, on the other hand a crying child is VERY distracting…I say, nurse away! Furthermore, had she gone the “more accepted” route by giving a bottle, she would have had to make and warm the bottle which would take way more time away from the class than it had to comfort quickly and feed her baby while teaching. It seems that she was comforting her child, rather than feeding, so at most this was probably three minutes of nursing.
Why exactly is this news? My only issue with the whole thing would be if the baby had been contagious, but I am pretty sure that a breastfed baby with a slight fever, who is most likely staying in a sling, carrier or playpen away from the students is not going to be very contagious. So, I do not see the issue. She was faced with canceling the first day of class or bringing her baby with her (she is a single mother if I am not mistaken and had no other arrangements available to her).
My take on why this is in the news is that our society has been so sensualized to the breast and it’s purpose in sustaining life has been replaced with sex. Many have not grown up around breastfeeding, children are being shielded from the sole reason we have mammary glands, and the stigma that is breastfeeding is growing by the day. When you see a nursing mother, that is all you should see…a feeding baby, just like when you watch the “cute little kittens nurse”. We love to show children the kittens, puppies, and cows nursing, but translate that to humans and “OH. MY. GOODNESS. she is exposing her breast and nursing in public, how dare she, how am I possibly going to explain this to my child?”! Hmm, you could start with “her baby is hungry, she is feeding him/her.” Sounds simple enough to me.
It is time to take back the breast ladies and gents! It is for nourishment, comfort, and developing a healthy baby. I do not feel that you must breastfeed your child, but I do feel that it must be respected and accepted as natural and not sexual. This means breastfeeding in public needs to be the norm, not something to make news!
What is your take? How do you feel about this situation? Should this be news?