The most recent mum to be shamed for breastfeeding in public has spoken to motherandbaby.co.uk about just how those comments left her feeling. And we want to know if you’ve experienced anything similar.
Mum-of-one Elizabeth Kelly was called ‘disgusting’ when feeding her eight-month-old daughter Luella in Costa Coffee in Wimbledon on Monday. ‘It was a really hot day and my daughter needed feeding so I took her into the coffee shop for a feed,’ says Elizabeth, who appeared on Loose Women on Wednesday to tell her story. The coffee shop was empty expect for one another customer – who moved away to the other side of the café as soon as Elizabeth started to feed her baby.
'It shouldn’t matter if it comes from a breast or a bottle – no one should judge.’
‘Once I’d finished feeding my baby, I went over and asked the woman if she moved because I was breastfeeding,’ says Elizabeth. ‘She said she did and called me “disgusting”. Obviously I was incredibly offended but it won’t stop me from feeding my daughter in public.
‘I’m very comfortable with what I’m doing. I’m discreet. And it shouldn’t matter if it comes from a breast or a bottle – no one should judge.’
In a world where no one bats an eyelid when Rihanna turns up to the CFDA Awards practically naked, it’s odd that a mum breastfeeding her baby in public can cause such outrage. You’d think.
Public breastfeeding shaming seems to be more of a talking point now than ever, with countless mums speaking out about their bad experiences.
Actress Jamie King has taken a stand against people getting flak for breastfeeding in public and shared an Instagram snap of her breastfeeding her baby to show her support. The Hart of Dixie actress explained her decision, saying, ‘We all eat in public. I don't see why it should be frowned upon. Nothing about the way a mother feeds her baby should be frowned upon.’
And she’s not the only one – a number of high profile flash mobs have been organised in recent months to raise support for breastfeeding in public.
In just the last month, woman was branded a ‘slut’ for breastfeeding in a coffee shop and a graduating woman received a barrage of negative attention after posting a breastfeeding snap on Facebook. And we’re certain that you either have your own tale to tell or have heard of a friend’s bad experience.
What’s been your experience? Have you been shamed for breastfeeding in public? Let us know and take part in the poll below.