A mom’s encounter with a stranger while breastfeeding in a restaurant is going viral, but not for the reason you might think. Briar Lusia Mcqueen went out with her 8-week-old son for their first solo breakfast, and of course as soon as her food arrived, her baby was suddenly ravenous. Mcqueen began breastfeeding her son Jaxon and was soon shocked to see an older woman approaching her table, presumably to chastise her to put her breast away. The new mother definitely didn’t expect what was coming next.
As Mcqueen described in her Facebook post, the woman picked up her knife and fork and began cutting up her breakfast for her saying, “What a good mama you are. We can’t have your food getting cold, can we?” Instead of the shaming scenario she had expected, Mcqueen was overcome by the woman’s kindness and solidarity, adding to her post that she could have cried.
To be honest, we’ve got tears in our eyes too. For a new mother, that first time breastfeeding in public can be such a nerve-wracking experience. There are so many stories of breastfeeding mothers who are publically shamed and discouraged from breastfeeding, even by employees (and even though it is against the law to prohibit a mother from breastfeeding in a public place).
The way this woman chose to support a new mother is exactly the way breastfeeding mothers should be treated when they are out in public. Breastfeeding is hard and relentless work. We shouldn’t add another layer of hardship by judging nursing mothers or making them feel uncomfortable when they are simply trying to feed their child.
Showing solidarity, helping a new mother, being part of the necessary “village” that supports women in the thick of raising their little ones — that is something we should all aspire to. This is exactly the sort of support every mother deserves while breastfeeding.
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