Any mom who’s ever tried it knows that breastfeeding a baby of ANY age can be tricky. I nursed all three of mine for over a year and there were snafus at every age. But, the bottom line is, baby’s gotta eat when baby’s gotta eat, and breastfeeding moms go the distance to make it happen anytime, anywhere their kiddo needs to be fed.
For one North Dakota mom, Macy Hornung, this meant in public at the opening of her local Chick-fil-a last week. Hornung was breastfeeding her infant when she says the female manager came over to her while she was nursing, “showing no more than the upper portion of my breast, barely more than what was visible in my shirt and asked me to cover.” She says she tried to explain that her baby refused to be covered while nursing (I had one that did that too, I have BEEN THERE!), but that the manager wasn’t having it and told her that she would have to ask her to leave.
BIG mistake in my book. I know everyone makes mistakes, but unless a mama takes her entire shirt off in the middle of the restaurant, let her feed her baby. Breastfeeding is NOT sexual, most states (including North Dakota) have laws specifically to protect and allow mothers to breastfeed in public, and if people don’t like it, they should, as Hornung states, “practice the art of looking away.”
After Hornung took to social media to express her displeasure at being kicked out of Chick-fil-a for breastfeeding her infant child who depends on her for nourishment, she DID receive an apology from the manager, which I appreciate! We all learn from experience and hopefully this manager will share her story with other employees and it won’t happen again.
For my part, I am sharing Hornung’s experience because breastfeeding is natural, important, not shameful, and perfectly acceptable to do in the open. Do I think moms should attempt to be modest about it? Sure, and most do. None of us REALLY want to flap our big nursing boobs at the fast food restaurant for all to see. We just want to take care of our kids. Whenever and wherever they need caring for. When my first child was a baby I would try to feed him in restaurants and it was SO awkward and horrible. Finally, I just GOT OVER IT and practiced my right to feed my child in public (after all, can’t everyone ELSE eat in public??) and I never looked back.
Have you ever been given a talking-to because of public breastfeeding? What was your response?