Breastfeeding Mom Points Out The Absurdity Of Being Shamed In A Place That Sells Bras

by Sarah Hosseini
Originally Published: 
Image via Wittney Hope/ Facebook

Breastfeeding mom told to move to restroom to breastfeed at Dillard’s

Boobs are fine to display, photograph, ogle and drool over — as long as they’re not feeding a baby. As long as breasts are shown in sexual ways, and not giving necessary sustenance to a newborn, it’s all good in the ‘hood.

Mmmkkayyy, we get it. Wait, no we don’t.

And neither do the thousands of mothers giving a Tennessee mom virtual high-fives across the internet for pointing out the absurdity of this double standard in the most perfect picture.

Wittney Hale (who goes by Wittney Hope on Facebook) posted this photo on Facebook of her breastfeeding her baby in front of a giant bra ad at Dillard’s on Monday, after she was allegedly told by an employee to nurse her baby in a bathroom.

“Why is it acceptable for a giant picture of BOOBS to be on the wall but I can not feed my child?” writes Hale.

Yes, we’re stumped too.

Hale explains in her post that her 18-month old became fussy, so she asked an employee if ‘it was okay for her to eat here.’ She says the employee in customer service nodded. Hale proceeded to nurse her baby, and the same female employee told her “she couldn’t ‘do that’ there.” The employee told Hale she needed to go to the restroom to breastfeed her baby.

Hale says she was “shocked.” Because of course she was. Who wouldn’t be?

The mom says she questioned what the employee was telling her, to make sure she was hearing her correctly. Apparently, that’s when the employee became frustrated — and again, pointed the mom to the restroom.

So this mom was expected to stop feeding her baby mid-feed, (oh, yeah, like it’s no friggin’ big deal to stop a fussy baby from feeding), gather her belongings and then exit to the nearest bathroom. Yes, a place that houses toilets. A place that people go to pee and poop. Sounds lovely. Sounds like the perfect place to feed a baby.

Dillard’s has since apologized and issued a statement on their Facebook page.

I don’t know if this particular Dillard’s had a designated nursing area, or even if they have them in all of their stores as they didn’t return my call. But just to be clear, no one is required to use a designated nursing area.

While the breastfeeding laws vary a bit state to state, Hale took the picture in Tennessee — where a mother has the right to breastfeed her child in any location, public or private.

The most bizarre part about this whole ordeal is the store sells friggin’ bras. Bras to simply hold up the girls, bras to look sexy, bras to give cleavage, bras to minimize. Lacy bras, stretchy bras, bras with no straps. It’s a bra buffet. The store even sells nursing bras. So let’s get this straight, it’s okay for an employee to look at a woman’s boobs, poke, prod and stuff and measure them for a proper fitting bra – but it’s not okay to see a woman’s boobs for breastfeeding.

The absurdity of it all is not lost on moms everywhere. Many of which have commented – pointing out other absurdities surrounding our society’s issue with breastfeeding mothers. Like, maybe we should get animals to cover up?

And maybe it’s high time to stop sexualizing breasts?

And while most of the comments seem overwhelmingly supportive, there are a few that think breastfeeding moms should be more discreet and cover up. I mean, gosh, the whole world doesn’t need to see your boob. *eye roll*

Seriously, society, let’s really get a handle on this. We’re looking like a bunch of boobs.

“I have read heartbreaking comments. Some even suggesting I am a bad mother or that I am abusing my daughter,” Hale tells Scary Mommy. “I even had one commenter say ‘she should be on cows milk instead.’ Why do people think milk made by an animal (for a baby animal) is better or more nutritional than human milk? Even if my daughter could eat more solid food, I would still want her to get the benefits of breastmilk.”

Hale adds, “We all have the same goal. Raise our babies with love and health. Some do it differently. And that is okay.”

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