According to the controversies, breastfeeding your child outside of the family setting is a total aberration. But when the baby is hungry, the mother’s milk does not wait. Breastfeeding in public therefore sounds obvious to mothers. But even in the greatest discretion they attract the wrath of strangers, they are scandalized. This hostile look has something to stick in their throats. A study reveals the impact of this unjust and oppressive fear of judgment.
Breastfeeding in public, constantly pointed out
Last January, in freezing weather, an Albigensian mother was refused entry to a restaurant on the grounds that breastfeeding did not go well there. Same story at Disney where a mother was asked to hide to breast feed her children. These controversies imbued with unwarranted modestyis recurring.
Molière’s famous line “hide this breast that I can’t see” has calluses. And more and more mothers are forgoing public breastfeeding beware of perverse glances or harsh remarks. A survey also reveals that 17% of them have already received criticism. Breastfeeding, mysteriously portrayed in Renaissance works, has always sparked the collective curiosity.
Today it is stands out on the web according to the posts of the actress Marion Cotillard or the singer Pink. And they are not the only ones who take the side of breastfeeding. In France, 88% of mothers have chosen to breastfeedprimarily to offer their baby a better health. Breast milk, specially made through the magic of anatomy, is no match for commercial powders.
To bare her breast for her child’s sake, shocking?
With its protein, carbohydrate, fat, vitamin and mineral content, it is ensures the proper development of the child. The WHO even recommends exclusive breastfeeding for up to six months and partial breastfeeding for up to two years. But this skill of the human body is not refined by all. Even worse, 69% of breastfeeding mothers do not feel supported by society.
With good reason, when they loosen their breasts to respond to their infant’s hunger in public, the drama is guaranteed. They are done regularly prosecution as if it were a criminal act. This right is all too often inhibited. The public space has become one place of uncertainty for nursing mothers.
In May 2021, a Bordeaux mother incurred the costs. While nursing her newborn in line at a pick-up point, she is slapped, gratuitously, by an “outraged” woman. This testimony published on the widely supported Doctissimo Instagram account is an extreme case, but it is far from isolated. While 68% of mothers think it is natural to breastfeed in public, 15% find the situation embarrassing.
Breastfeeding in public: an undervalued right
The phrases “not in front of the children”, “you are not ashamed” or “you risk offending the sensibilities of the young” cradle breastfeeding in the public space. Unsolicited interventions that could soon to be punished. Val-d’Oise’s deputy, Fiona Lazaar (formerly LREM), presented a bill on 15 June 2021 in the National Assembly to establish a the crime of obstructing breastfeeding is punishable by a fine of €1,500.
In order for the mothers to finally have free use of their bodies, they give birth to another baby that we could name anti-taboo activism. It takes the form of a hashtag like #NormalizeBreastfeeding, which aimed to general awareness. But despite these rewarding highlights, 92% of mothers believe that breastfeeding is not portrayed realistically enough in advertising. The campaign “The Uncover” intends to remedy this.
“The Uncover”, a cunning campaign to normalize breastfeeding in public
It’s about time cut the cord with taboos. At least that is what the campaign “The Uncover” proclaims, which is the result of a brilliant marriage between the association CoFam (French Coordination for Breastfeeding), the clothing brand specializing in breastfeeding FRIDA Etc, the parent media Magicmaman and the collective Les Allaitantes des bancs publics. Hand in hand they made one symbolic campaign, bursting with creativity, released on September 8.
The concept? Take up the codes of the paper press to demonize breastfeeding in public space. A blanket depicting a nursing mother acts as optical illusion. When unfolded, the person holds this smart paper also gives the illusion of breastfeeding. This magazine-like medium has a resonance force particularly powerful.
A far-reaching creation to put an end to injunctions
Inserted in the bend of a park, a café or a passage in the metro, it does not go unnoticed. And that is exactly the goal. It is a “redirected” path to further anchor breastfeeding in public space as a banal gesture. Finally, is it as common as flipping through a newspaper? Right now these blankets take place as positive relays in the large French cities, including Paris, Rouen, Strasbourg, Reims, Aix-en-Provence, Lyon and Marseille. The hashtag of the same name #TheUncover, already shows one hundred publicationsevidence of a new virality.
And in order not to leave the readers hungry, inside, we enrich ourselves information about breastfeeding, but also opinions from parents and health professionals. The icing on the cake: a QR code provides access to explanatory videos all important.
Ingenious, edifying, benevolent and above all necessary, the “Uncovering” campaign rewrites the history of public breastfeeding with a capital H. The critics, who are furious at the lower end of the chest that sticks out, are dressed for winter.
Breastfeeding is not new, but it is still sexualized. Some women have also revolutionized its image over the centuries. Queen Elizabeth II, for example, defied royal rules to breastfeed her brood, a role normally relegated to nannies. But the road to changing mentality is tortuous.