Have you noticed that we can’t let a couple of months go by in this country without breastfeeding making the news? Either a mom is super-irate that she’s been kicked out of an all-breasts-all-the-time-as-long-as-they-are-sexualized kind of retailer for the crime of feeding her child, or a mom is super-encouraged that a Starbucks employee has stood up for her right to breastfeed in a public space, or a mom is super-attacked from all sides for breastfeeding her older child on the cover of a national magazine in a divisive way that seems only to politicize the topic of motherhood.
Why is breastfeeding such a hot topic, so frequently misunderstood, and so readily manipulated for page views and click-bait?
Because we are broken.
Our culture has twisted the vocation of motherhood and claimed women’s bodies for sex and only sex. Breastfeeding flies in the face of the objectification of women and their breasts: Breasts cannot possibly be part of God’s plan for women’s bodies. Breasts cannot possibly be part of the way in which our physical selves manifest the truth about motherhood and every woman’s call to nurturing, beauty, generosity, and self-giving love. They are only for sexy sexy SEX! Anything else is gross.
Most moms I know do know better than this, and yet we and our children remain awash in a broken culture sending mixed messages about female bodies and God’s plan for motherhood.
I would love to hear your thoughts about nursing babies in our culture. What is your reaction to the breastfeeding stories and controversies that make the news on a regular basis? How do you talk with your children about breastfeeding? Do you always cover up or do you avoid nursing in public places? Do you have any horrifying or encouraging stories to share?