As a mom. As a woman. As a human. This story really really bothered me.
A mother was enjoying an afternoon at Citymall last week – when her child began to cry because she was hungry.
As she was still breastfeeding – and noting the shame of breastfeeding in public, she asked the shop employee of an accessory store if she could use their changing room to breastfeed her child.
So as she began to feed her daughter in a closed quarter so that passers-by would not be “insulted” by this natural activity – a very angry store manager suddenly bursts into the store and starts yelling at her to leave.
Unlatching her crying child and leaving the store in shame, we are left to ask:
What could have been done? What should be done?
1- The store’s changing room is private property and is NOT the place for a mom to feed her child – but WHERE SHOULD A MOTHER BREASTFEED HER CHILD? what other options does she have? Very few malls, centers and shops have specialized areas that are easily accessible for mothers.
2- Where is the humanity and empathy that this manager should have felt before they chose to traumatize this child and mother? Noting that this store is a international franchise that caters to mothers and children… ironically…. So shouldn’t their managerial staff be better trained and know how to respond in these types of situations?
3- If a mother freely chooses to breastfeed her child – does that mean she must be confined under house arrest until they wean?
In reaction to this Super moms united for a peaceful demonstration in the store on Sunday 16hNovember at 17:00 in City Mall, Dora.
This nurse-in was organised by Lactica, a Lebanese Non-Governmental Organisation concerned with the protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding within the Lebanese society.
Until the writing of this post – no apology or regret has been expressed by the shop’s management or head office.
WHAT SHOULD BE DONE?
The World Health Organization and UNICEF recommendations on breastfeeding are as follows: initiation of breastfeeding within the first hour after the birth; exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months; and continued breastfeeding for two years or more, together with safe, nutritionally adequate, age appropriate, responsive complementary feeding starting in the sixth month.
BREASTFEEDING IS A PERSONAL CHOICE! Only you decide for how long or if you wish to breastfeed.
RESPECT OTHER MOTHER’S AND THEIR DECISIONS.
I am sharing with you a UNICEF announcement – that Making room for nursing mothers helps boost breastfeeding rates. Hoping that Major malls, stores and outlets may follow in suite in Lebanon someday…
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