REGISTRATION OPEN

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

New Law says Breastfeeding in Public is Nudity..

I never claim to know anything or everything about Breastfeeding.  I am just a well informed man, husband and father that supports his wife and children.  My wife T is the well studied and knowledgeable one about breastfeeding and the positive effects it has on a mother and a child.  She actually is the one that reads and learns about all of this.

Last night the local news, WSBtv and FOX5 ran stories about the City of Forest Park, Ga. passing a NEW LAW that will limit breastfeeding.


On Monday night, Forest Park passed a public indecency ordinance to prevent public nudity. Previously, the city only had a public indecency ordinance that covered adult entertainment businesses.

According to the law, no woman can breast feed anyone older than 2 years old in public. City manager John Parker called the law a proactive step.

“It sets up a process whereby we can try to control nudity throughout the entire city," Parker said.

T and I were so shocked and pissed lat night when we saw this. We couldn't believe it. So lets look at this statement and break it down.

Public indecency refers to conduct undertaken in a non-private or (in some jurisdictions) publicly-viewable location, which are deemed indecent in nature, such as indecent exposure and intercourse or m-word in public view. Such activity is often illegal. The legal definition in a given location may not specify all activities that would be covered.


They passed this new law to prevent public nudity.  Since when did breastfeeding become nudity?  A woman when breastfeeding is not showing anything more than a woman or a young adult might show when wearing a tank top, a low cut business shirt, blouse or whatever you want to call the tops that women wear.  Young women and older women show more chest when dressing to go to a club than women breastfeeding do.  I have seen plenty of women breastfeeding before and never have I once thought "WOW look at that boob!" So to the nudity point...Shot down!

Previously the City of Forest Park, Ga. only had a Indecency Ordinance that covered Adult Entertainment businesses. So lets just throw breastfeeding in the same category as Adult Entertainment.  Really, cause being entertained is the first thing that comes to mind when my wife or someone else is breastfeeding a child.  Right!

Lets skip to number 3 sentence and talk about City Manager John Parker says its a means of "Trying to control nudity throughout the entire city of Forest Park, Ga.". So by making a law that says you cant breastfeed in public you are controlling nudity?  Really Mr. Parker. What about the Hookers that walk your streets. What about the women that dress so skimpy that you can see panties and boobs hanging out of shirts?  Are they OK to walk around your city?

I did something that I have never done before this morning and I honestly am not sure if I stepped out of my boundaries or not, but I believe in this because of the great positive effects that I have seen on my children and how awesome my wife feels by doing this wonderful thing for our kids.

I called the Mayors office in Forest Park, Ga.  I got City Manager John Parker on the phone. Yes, I did. I told him I was outraged that this is being done and how could they and then he just started....Laughing at me. I promise he laughed at me.  Wondered why I was making a big deal about this and that it was the media making this a story when there are other things in the law.  No woman can breastfeed any child over the age of 2 in public. My son is almost 2 and still breastfeeds. So if we wanted to go to Forest Park, Ga. T wouldn't let him eat that way if he wanted. John Parkers words to me this morning were "We don't want children that can walk around to be breastfeeding in public." WOW. What a crazy thing to say.

I asked him what would I need to do to turn this thing around. He told me to do whatever I wanted to do, I was going to anyways.  In order to overturn the vote before the 30 days is up, letters need to be written to him so he can present them to the City Council. He just seemed to not care. I even asked him about what his wife thought and if she still breastfed would he see it differently and he told me "Its her decision and it doesn't matter to me."  I asked him if he would rather every woman just give the kids formula and he laughed and said "Whatever they decide".  Bet your wife is so proud of you today John Parker. Bet you wouldn't say this stuff to her that you are saying to me!

I also asked him about other problems like schools and drugs and crime and he just kept laughing at me wondering why people make such a big deal about this and they can go feed their babies or kids somewhere just not in public. My response to him was, why don't you make the other people go eat elsewhere.

These are just a bunch of IGNORANT people that are thinking that breastfeeding is nudity. I am going to do what I can to turn this into a positive thing instead of a negative.  Women breastfeeding is natural, it soothes the child. Not to mention all of the helpful things a mother is doing for the baby. I could go on and on and on, but I am going to leave it at this and I will continue to inform on twitter and I am sending letters to him and here is the address if you want to do the same....

City of Forest Park
c/o City Manager John Parker
745 Forest Parkway
Forest Park, Ga. 30297

If there is one thing I do know, I love the fact that my children are breastfed and I am happy that T made that choice. We are better off as a family for that reason. I will support breastfeeding in any way, shape or form that I have to or can. 
 
Breast is Best when done in Public 

Kiss the Baby after they eat in public

Photobucket

101 comments:

Lost.in.Idaho May 17, 2011 at 12:02 PM   Reply to

wait wait wait...

While I agree with your stance, you're missing something...

"According to the law, no woman can breast feed anyone older than 2 years old in public. City manager John Parker called the law a proactive step."

How many people do you know breastfeed their child after 24 months? Both my boys stopped before the year-mark, and most people I know stop around 6-12 months.

24 seems a bit... creepy. When the kid is old enough to go "mommy, I want some boob" it's too much.

If this was an all-out ban, I'd be livid. With this, it almost seems like a joke more than anything else.

Bureaucracy at its finest, folks.

Lost.in.Idaho May 17, 2011 at 12:04 PM   Reply to

But I guess this is all about choice. I just looked up the statistic, and 99.5% of children are weened off of breastfeeding by 18 months. If your child is still doing it, more power to ya.

I see this going before a court and getting shot down. Possibly even laughed at.

Julie May 17, 2011 at 12:11 PM   Reply to

This makes me so sad. I nursed my daughter until she was almost 3 and a half. When she was two, I sometimes felt uncomfortable.. even sometimes embarrassed to nurse her in certain situations. Sometimes I made her wait. And I've always known there were ignorant folks that found it inappropriate. But to think that doing it would have been ILLEGAL makes puts tears in my eyes. No one should be able to do anything to their children in private that they can't do in public (besides maybe checking a sore bottom or something like that). Children should not feel comfortable with secrets. This law turns something healthy and comforting and natural into something dirty. Same on them.

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 12:27 PM   Reply to

Julie, thanks for the comment and you know, Im sure mothers feel differently at times but you did a good thing by bf'ing your daughter for a good long time. Thanks for coming by.

Gucci Mama May 17, 2011 at 12:45 PM   Reply to

What makes me sad is that breastfeeding, which is not only a way to nourish your child but a special and private bonding experience, has become a matter of public policy.

I have seen women who breastfeed in public discreetly and I've seen women with WHOABOOBINTHEFACE. Once I literally saw a woman remove her entire shirt.

There IS a way to breastfeed in public that in no way curtails the right of the mother to feed her child but still respects the fact that a woman's breast need not be bared in public.

My kids were both preemies, fed first with tubes and then little tiny cups and finally bottles because they were unable to learn to breastfeed. Pumping breast milk is obviously not the same as breastfeeding, but I did it so my children could benefit from it. I pumped every two hours at first, and then every three. I made sure I was home when the time came.

I'm not saying that breastfeeding mothers must be confined to their homes in order to feed their children in secret, but I am saying that while we can stand up for our right to feed our kids the way we see fit, we can do so while being decent and discreet.

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 1:13 PM   Reply to

@GucciMama Thanks for your comment and while I dont think a woman should have to cover up or hide the fact she is breastfeeding, I do understand that people are freaked out by it at times. My wife has Bf'ed all four of our children and I have never seen a woman just WHIP IT OUT. Im sure it may happen though. But to me I noticed your best point you made was the bonding factor. That is so true. A mommy and the baby or young child bonding and feeling safe and secure. Thanks for coming by

Katy May 17, 2011 at 1:14 PM   Reply to

This is crazy. Yes, the majority of women wean their children before 24 months, but there are still plenty who let their child decide when they are done breastfeeding (or wean at a later age). We know that biologically children receive health benefits from breastfeeding through toddlerhood as well as emotional benefits of knowing mom is always there.

With my first I was embarrassed and ashamed and didn't breastfeed her in public after 2. I had planned on a similar policy with my second. Of course, that doesn't work for her. So I do what I need to for my daughter. She needs me.

The fact that meeting my child's needs would be illegal is just ludicrous.

We need to support moms and babies if we want our breastfeeding rates to increase. Situations like this scare women away from breastfeeding. Telling someone that breastfeeding is considered public nudity will certainly scare off new moms from breastfeeding and again, we all know the health benefits of breastfeeding.....

Becca May 17, 2011 at 1:15 PM   Reply to

This law is ridiculous!!! to say that a women breastfeeding a child at ANY AGE is indecent is a slap in the face to breast feeding. Who are they to tell a women that she cannot breastfeed her child because he is over the age limit. A woman should be allowed to breastfeed for however long she wants to, no matter if anyone else find's it "creepy" (to you Lost, i have a couple choice words for you.) it is not your body or your child. I don't live in GA, but I feel if something like this is going on it is just furthering the struggle that breastfeeding women are dealing with today all around our nation.

Breastfeeding is never creepy, indecent, weird, ugly, or any other derogatory, negative word you can think of. You should be ashamed of yourselves!

you bet your bottom I'll be writing. I'd like the address for the mayor as well. something like this should never be allowed to pass.

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 1:25 PM   Reply to

@Katy You are right, women and moms need to support each other no matter when a mom or a child decides to ween. I told the guy he should not look down on this as it is better for our children. Thanks for commenting

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 1:28 PM   Reply to

@Becca I agree. The new law is crazy. Ga does have a law that says mothers can breastfeed and I am working on contact with the Mayor. Women dont need any more people or groups knocking back the progress they have made when it comes to this area. Thanks for your passionate comment.

rhiannon May 17, 2011 at 2:13 PM   Reply to

Thanks for writing this. This is the most asinine law I've heard of in a long time. I don't really care if other people don't think women should breastfeed past two years, it's not their choice. There are lots of things I'd rather not see people do in public, but I don't go trying to get laws made to stop them.

And for those of you who think it's weird to nurse after 24 months, that's your own hang up. I actually wrote a blog entry about it on a blog that I've never really done anything with. But maybe now I should.

http://hempmilkandovaltine.wordpress.com/2011/02/12/in-defense-of-extended-breastfeeding/

Gucci Mama May 17, 2011 at 2:18 PM   Reply to

Reading through these comments makes me feel it's necessary to add that it's also a mother's choice not to breastfeed. It would be wonderful if everyone who is so passionate about the choice to breastfeed and the choice to breastfeed toddlers and young children would keep that in mind.

I am so so tired of women vilifying one another for their parenting choices. Not saying anyone here is doing that, just saying it bears pointing out.

Erin May 17, 2011 at 3:02 PM   Reply to

The thing about this law that makes absolutely no sense at all is this: they are trying to prevent public nudity by banning breastfeeding after the child reaches a certain age. How is it seen as nudity once the child is over 2, but not before? Wouldn't a new mom breastfeeding a one month old be showing more skin because her baby covers less of her body, and perhaps she is still learning how to breastfeed well and may end up showing more than she intended. So... how do they see it as nudity once the child is older, but not before? Of course, it should never count as nudity regardless of how much skin a mother ends up showing in the process! But the basis of their law doesn't even make sense. It says that a woman is considered to be nude when nursing a 3 year old, even if covered with a beach towel, yet she is not considered to be nude when nursing an infant openly.

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 3:15 PM   Reply to

@Erin That makes alot of sense. I never thought of that but it sounds so right. How did you come up with this not even having any children. Have you been studying this all day. I do intend to use your argument when and if I get the Mayor on the phone. I will give you credit too. Thanks for being a awesome reader whether you always agree or not

The Trophy Wife May 17, 2011 at 3:21 PM   Reply to

Thank you for this post Daddy! Personally, I haven't been able to nurse my kids past 13 months yet. But just because I haven't, doesn't mean that others shouldn't have the choice to.

Here is Parker's email address. parker@forestparkga.org

I've called my followers to action and asked that they email him to let him know that this is unacceptable. http://obsessionsottw.blogspot.com/2011/05/breastfeeding-law.html

Thank you again! The world is a better place with Daddies like you!

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 3:30 PM   Reply to

@Erin Sorry, I thought you were a different Erin. But you know what. It still stands, you made a great point and I intend to use it. Thanks for that. And I see you do have kids and sorry for the confusion. lol

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 3:36 PM   Reply to

@thetrophywife You know after talking to John Parker on the phone today, im not sure I want to email him, too easy to get ugly in an email. And you know any good husband-father-MAN supports his wife and her action no matter what. Breastfeeding is a great thing

tejl May 17, 2011 at 4:07 PM   Reply to

Thanks for this blog post. Kellymom and Mothering on Facebook are all over this one, and I sent my email to the City Manager. I am PROUDLY nursing my 25 month old son. There is nothing creepy, gross, wrong, unnatural or disgusting about it. If MORE women were nursing past 1 year old in the US, as they do in Europe, Asia, Africa - pretty much the entire rest of the world - then nobody would think twice when seeing a 2 year old nurse in public. Instead, very very very few moms continue nursing their children past a year, and they force-wean them, and therefore it's considered abnormal to nurse past 1 year in the US. It's a shame.

I once asked my husband how old he thought was too old to keep nursing. He said 2nd grade. I am sure my son will self-wean long before then, but that response sure did make me smile :)

Crunch+Love May 17, 2011 at 4:16 PM   Reply to

@ Lost.in.Idaho: The WHO recommends breastfeeding until a minimum of 2, as have several surgeons general. Biologically and anthropologically speaking, 2 is the lower limit of normal. When left to their own devices, most children will wean themselves between the ages of 3 and 4. You've just insulted mothers everyone, including this one, by telling us that we're creepy for allowing our children to behave as mammals and nurse full-term.

bluedaisyma May 17, 2011 at 4:24 PM   Reply to

Thank you for supporting the right of babies AND toddlers (and preschoolers?) to breastfeed when and where they need to! It's not soley a woman's right, as so many people make it. It is also the little one's right to be nurtured and fed without restriction.
The City Manager's responses to you were disrespectful and arrogant. To say they didn't want to see children who can walk around, breastfeed? My 11 month old started walking at 10 months....wait, if I go to GA, do I need to bring my son's birth certificate to prove he isn't twenty-FOUR months....what if he's 23 months? What if he's big for his age? I wish I lived close and wish my son was at the "illegal" age for breastfeeding bc I would proudly nurse in this ignoramus' office and spend the night in jail for it!

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 4:33 PM   Reply to

@bluedaisyma You dont have to thank me for supporting this. This is something I feel so strong about and I am going to make a difference. Believe me. My children are better off for what my wife has done and for me to not support her in this would be so wrong. My wife last night also said "Guess I know where Im going tomorrow" I asked her to let me get the bond money first. lol Thanks for stopping and sharing your passion for this

Stephany May 17, 2011 at 4:34 PM   Reply to

I breastfed my last two children until they were both well over three years old.

Just for reference, I would say that I have 20 or so Moms whom I hang out with on a regular basis. We met at our local hospital's breastfeeding support group when our kiddos were newborns so I never belonged to LaLeche League or some group which encourages extended breastfeeding.

I would say all but 18 of the 20 breastfed past two. I currently have three friends breastfeeding and all plan to do so, as well. So I don't know where you are all from but rest assured around here it is pretty much "the norm". Maybe Iowa is more progressive than Idaho, who knew?

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 4:36 PM   Reply to

@Cruch+Love I love the strong women that are commenting here and I dont see anything creepy either nor do I see it being classified with the word NUDITY. Seriously. Never have and never will. Thanks for taking time to leave a comment

KittyKat May 17, 2011 at 4:37 PM   Reply to

Wait, they don't want children who are "walking around" to breastfeed n public?

Well, I myself was "walking around" by the ripe old age of nine months. Some of my littles didn't walk until 15 months, but some were walking before their first birthday.

You know I'm just so sick and tired of people thinking they are allowed to set limits on how long it is permissible for me to nurse my child.

"Once they have teeth, you just HAVE TO stop!" Except some babies start getting teeth at 3 months. What, they are only entitled to 3 months of mama milk because their genes set them up to teethe early?

"Once they can ask for it, you shouldn't let them have it!" Ok, let's examine this idea: You can have any condiments you wish for your meal, salt, pepper, ketchup, steak sauce, but if you ASK for them I cannot give them to you. You can walk into the deli and pick up some meats and cheeses, but if you ASK for something, you'll get thrown out. See? Makes no sense at all, besides which babies "ask for it" non-verbally from birth. They mouth their fists, root around, and make distinctive grunting noises.

"Once they're over age ___ (insert random number here) they have to be on table food and no more of that nursing stuff!"
The two aren't mutually exclusive, you know. Toddlers are legendary for being picky eaters. One day the only thing they eat is half a PB&J, the next day they eat two bites of scrambled egg and throw everything else on the floor... even on days where the kid will barely eat anything I can still be assured at least the breastmilk gave them balanced nutrition. Plus it's free, and doesn't have any weird preservatives and artificial flavors like those "pediasure" drinks marketed to picky toddlers.

If someone else doesn't want to BF, that's their choice, mine is to BF at least 2years if possible.

Stephany May 17, 2011 at 4:37 PM   Reply to

Crunch + Love, Thanks for sticking up for us "creepy moms" the world over and might I compliment you on your amazing grammar.

Surgeons General is a turn of phrase few people pluralize correctly. Just sayin"

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 4:45 PM   Reply to

@KittyKat WOW, all I can say is thanks for that well thought out response. You put some time into that and I appreciate that.

This Daddy May 17, 2011 at 4:49 PM   Reply to

@GucciMama The 2nd comment you left about moms choosing to or not to breastfeed. You know I have come to see on many blog and forums that moms do go at it over the formula vs breast feeding. I have even been guilty of bashing formula moms. I have come to just bite my tounge and stay out of that debate now. The wife does not like it when I bash other moms for any reason.

Jen May 17, 2011 at 5:01 PM   Reply to

If he thinks it's really not that big a deal, then why on earth did they pass a law about it? This is so stupid. I fully respect that some moms may not wish to breastfeed at all, much less past two years, but my two year old still nurses from time to time and I expect my right to that choice to be respected as well.

Jessie May 17, 2011 at 5:02 PM   Reply to

This is ridiculous. Apart from the fact that it goes against state law, and the fact that there is *nothing* indecent about breastfeeding, Georgia (along with other southern US states) has ABYSMAL breastfeeding rates. For the sake of the health of their own population, they should be doing every damn thing possible to *encourage* breastfeeding, NOT criminalize it.

http://www.cdc.gov/breastfeeding/data/reportcard.htm

Erin May 17, 2011 at 5:13 PM   Reply to

No problem about the confusion!

I called the city manager myself this afternoon, and they said he was gone for the day - so I left a voice mail; we'll see if I get a call back...

Missy Wombat May 17, 2011 at 5:21 PM   Reply to

My first child weaned at 2 3/4 years, my second at 3 1/2 years. The youngest is over 3 1/2 years old and while weaning, is not quite there yet. And that's fine. She rarely wants her 'booby' during the day unless she needs some serious comforting. And if she asks for it, I will not deny her.
My kids are happy, healthy, well-adjusted individuals and breastfeeding has definitely contributed to that.

I must say the mind boggles as to why Forest Park thinks it has a nudity problem. There is a story in that somewhere.

sandra May 17, 2011 at 5:40 PM   Reply to

I breastfed both of my boys past two years of age, and it was such a wonderful experience. I wouldn't have had it any other way.

Thanks for speaking out! :)

meghone May 17, 2011 at 5:49 PM   Reply to

Thank you so much for supporting breastfeeding mothers! I nursed my daughter to 30 months and I'm currently nursing a 10 month old son. The walking comment made my jaw drop open. My daughter was walking at 9 months - is he seriously suggesting that once a child is walking you should deprive them of breastmilk? (This is the same as people who say if a child can "ask for it" you should stop. Right. As soon as they learn communication skills to ask for what they want, nope, so sorry, no more for you!) I don't remember nursing my daughter in public very often after about 18 months but I reserve the legal right to do so! The "nudity" bit is a cop out - you aren't any more "nude" when you are nursing a 2 year old as you are when nursing a 2 month old. In fact the 2 year old likely is much more of a "polite" nurser and won't pull at your clothes!

Lisa May 17, 2011 at 6:08 PM   Reply to

Linked to your blog from a post on mothering.com - if anyone actually does get the good sir Parker on the phone, I'm *dying* to know how he's going to defend this decision against the fact that the state of Georgia has a law allowing mothers to nurse their babies wherever they're otherwise allowed to be, with no age restriction. Unless they're just not going to allow babies in Forest Park anymore...

Gucci Mama May 17, 2011 at 6:15 PM   Reply to

I think moms need to support each other and lift each other up REGARDLESS of their personal choices.

I'm sure everyone can generally agree that "breast is best" but what the militant breastfeeders need to understand is that sometimes it's literally NOT POSSIBLE. It was medically impossible for my children to latch to my breast. Does that make me a bad mother? Does that mean I love my children less than you and your wife love yours? Of course not.

But formula feeding moms are CONTINUALLY vilified by Le Leche Leaguers and the like and I find that absolutely sickening.

The fact is, there is no one right way to parent. There is only what's right for our individual families and children. We as parents make the best decisions we know how to make for our children and, quite frankly, it's no one's business what those decisions are as long as they're not neglectful or abusive.

I don't care if anyone breast feeds their twelve year old. It's not a choice I would make, but I certainly respect your right to make it.

I just think that we need to remember that our passions are not always the same passions of others and we can respectfully disagree rather than malign the opposition.

We also need to remember not to rush to judgment of other parents for ANY reason. You do not know the reasons behind a baby receiving a bottle or a disposable diaper vs. a cloth one. You don't know why one three year old is potty trained and another isn't unless you're that child's parent. I don't think you get to evaluate it unless you're the one living it.

I cannot tell you the ration of shit I've received from (probably) well intentioned parents regarding the fact that I had c-sections rather than "natural" births and that my kids were bottle fed first with breast milk and then with formula. And I find that pathetic. Those parents don't know the struggles I faced to keep those babies alive before their emergency c-sections. They don't know about the feeding tubes and the learning to cup feed and the car beds because my preemies couldn't breathe in a sitting position and therefore couldn't be in a regular car seat for months. So without knowing the motivation behind the choices, how can anyone dare judge them? How can anyone make a blanket statement about anything?

Just as it's wrong to say it's a form of nudity to breastfeed a child over two, isn't it also wrong to say that formula = bad and breast = good in each and every case?

I agree with the sentiment of your post that the government absolutely needs to stay out of our bras, so to speak, but I am also a strong advocate for women who cannot or choose not to breast feed because it is time they stop being made to feel guilty about their choices by those who choose differently.

There was talk about how this law sets back the women's rights movement. I thought the movement was about choice. Are you only a champion of choices you agree with?

Maureen May 17, 2011 at 6:36 PM   Reply to

I never intended to nurse my children past the age of one, but when my youngest just wasn't ready to wean at 2, or 3, it just seemed perfectly normal to let him continue. What might seem "creepy" or "weird" to other people was a perfectly normal experience for me, to my surprise. This law is ridiculous, discriminatory, and wrong. I will be sure to avoid shopping or visiting Forest Park as long as this law is in effect. I might even extend the boycott to the entire county.

KittyKat May 17, 2011 at 6:38 PM   Reply to

@Gucci Mama, while I do agree with you that no one can know why or the circumstances of various parenting decisions, that's not really what this article is about. It's about one city government trying to limit the rights of nursing mothers.

No one is making laws against bottle feeding. There haven't EVER been any laws against bottle feeding. No bottle feeding mothers have been escorted out of stores, or other public locations for bottle feeding. Women who bottle feed are not told they must cover up with a thick scratchy blanket or face being arrested by TSA agents on airplanes.

You can't really compare what happens to breastfeeding women to a few sidelong glances from insensitive people. Which believe me, as a breastfeeding mom I've gotten PLENTY of those too, I'm not defending the rudeness you've experienced believe me. Someone, somewhere is ALWAYS going to have a problem with your parenting choices, whether you BF or FF, babywear, use a pacifier, co-sleep, etc. etc. etc.

Breastfeeding is the most common of those choices to have gotten people arrested or thrown out of places in the past 30-40 years or so. Formula feeding, not so much.

In the state where this is happening, breastfeeding rates are still much lower than they could be. Ignorance about breastfeeding is common. Bad advice and false info is still given out by medical professionals. The LAST thing we need is some city government official on a power trip basically telling everyone breastfeeding = public nudity/indecency.

Christine May 17, 2011 at 6:45 PM   Reply to

Thanks so much for your blog post. I am a Georgia resident, attorney and mother of a 25-month old nursing toddler. I called the city attorney, Robert Mack, this afternoon to alert him to the fact that the city ordinance conflicted with the Georgia statute. He was not aware of the statute, so I am hoping he will counsel the City Council members to reverse their decision. Otherwise, my son and I will just have to head over to Forest Park to challenge the ordinance...

Gucci Mama May 17, 2011 at 6:55 PM   Reply to

@KittyKat - I absolutely agree that this law is ridiculous, which I stated more than once. I made the separate point that while everyone is virulently defending the right to breastfeed (and rightly so) it is important to remember that in that defense we not vilify those who make different choices which is something the whole breastfeeding "movement" is guilty of. Obviously not each and every individual breastfeeder, but you must admit that the "movement" stigmatizes formula/bottle feeding.

What I (and many bottle feeding, non co-sleeping, non Dr. Sears worshipping moms) have experienced cannot be marginalized as a "sidelong glance". It is just as destructive, hurtful, and unfounded as the awful way breastfeeding moms are sometimes treated. I find what breastfeeding mothers are subjected to with this law absolutely pathetic and I would never marginalize that.

This Daddy admitted to being guilty of making false assumptions and snap judgments about formula feeding moms, as I suspect have many of you. And I'll admit I've raised my eyebrows at a woman breastfeeding her four year old. What I am saying is that this needs to stop.

When we are asking people not to judge our personal choices, we must be extremely cautious that we are not guilty of the same thing. That's my point.

I don't know if you read my initial comments, but I said that while I think breastfeeding can and should be done publicly, it can also be done respectfully and discreetly. I would never advocate for the criminalization of such a natural experience.

A Sacred Path Doula and Birth services May 17, 2011 at 6:59 PM   Reply to

There is nothing creepy about breastfeeding a child post 24 months. That child is only 2 if they want to feed and mom is OK to do so it is far better than giving them milk full of hormones. Breast is best and if you are a mother that chooses to feed past 2 all power to you... and as for the law it is ridiculous. Tell me they don't have bigger fish to fry than mom's feeding 2 year olds in public.... why not worry about the child molesters and the abductors and spend money in returning the children home instead of wasting tax payers dollars on this crap.

Nicole May 17, 2011 at 6:59 PM   Reply to
This comment has been removed by the author.
3gees4me May 17, 2011 at 7:07 PM   Reply to

You sound so much like my husband!! Looking forward to supporting any actions geared to stopping this foolishness.

KittyKat May 17, 2011 at 7:15 PM   Reply to

@Gucci Mama
Thanks for your thoughtful words. I disagree with your statement that the entire breastfeeding movement stigmatizes bottle feeding. I believe some individuals do, but most of the breastfeeding advocates I know are sane people who are aware that formula is necessary. I believe most people can be reasonable about breastfeeding in public too.

In both cases, the extremist elements tend to be louder, and attract more attention. What makes a better news story? "Breastfeeding advocate offers support to all moms" or "Lactivist group seeks to prevent formula from being available without a prescription?" The extremists make for a catchier news story, sadly.

Among my friends, I count a foster-mom who by law must bottle-feed her foster kids, three adoptive moms who bottle fed their precious babies, one mother who breastfed all her babies, but had to supplement with formula due to severe blood loss after birthing one of them (she was right on the edge of needing a transfusion), and many more.

You and I are completely in agreement about the need to avoid harsh judgment of others and their decisions.

Sadly, those who are already wavering on the side of judging breastfeeding mothers as "weird" or the act of breastfeeding as "indecent" will see this law as confirmation of their judgment of breastfeeding mothers.

There literally are no comparable legislative actions regarding bottle feeding going on anywhere in the world, and never have been.

As for the whole "discreet" thing, I don't want to open another can of worms here, but discreet is entirely in the eye of the beholder. I've been breastfeeding my child while wearing a bulky sweatshirt, in a dark corner of a restaurant waiting area, where it was literally impossible to see any skin, and I still faced the ire of two nosy old biddies who felt it was their duty to "stand guard" in front of me and my kids while looking over their shoulders and muttering crass remarks to each other.

I've nursed my child in a restaurant under a sling used as a nursing cover, again zero skin visible. Someone at the next table made a nasty remark about just "whipping it out" anywhere. I was sorely tempted to show them what it would actually look like if I had "whipped it out" but my mama raised me to have better manners than that.

Like I said, some people will grasp at any opportunity to fuss about others, regardless of their level of "discretion."

Regardless of your parenting style, the best revenge is a life well-lived. Enjoy your kids, raise them to love others unconditionally as much as you can, and don't let the haters get you down. ;-)

Have a great night, and thanks again, I enjoy a thoughtful exchange of ideas, and I appreciate you sharing your thoughts and ideas.

Thank, Q May 17, 2011 at 7:17 PM   Reply to

The first time I saw someone breastfeeding a baby, I felt uncomfortable. I was 20 years old and waiting in a dentist's office. I remember the suckling sound the baby was making and I kept wondering to myself, "why can't she take him to a bathroom and do that?"

Now, I'm older and although still without kids, I have a different take. You can see grown men "breastfeeding" in the parks and nightclubs now! I would much rather see someone in the act of something natural than see the "Hanes" logo showing over the top of some guy's sagging pants. I wonder if they have a low-cut shirt / sagging pants law in Forest Park? I wouldn't freak out over a woman breastfeeding any more than I would someone giving themselves an insulin shot. When a baby needs to eat, he/she needs to eat, people. Period. How about putting efforts into balancing the city's budget rather than picking on someone's maternal instincts?

candice May 17, 2011 at 7:22 PM   Reply to

Wonder what he would say about my 3 year old nursing?
We need more dads on board with de-sexualizing the breast,kudos to you!

Gucci Mama May 17, 2011 at 7:22 PM   Reply to

@KittyKat I think we're essentially on the same page here. You are surely correct that the extreme voices are typically the loudest and I suppose it's difficult not to have a knee jerk reaction to something that's been the cause of strife in the past.

I realize formula feeding has never been legislated. The reason breastfeeding is legislated, I think, is because people can't get past the sexualization of the female breast. Perhaps if we could all agree not to be thirteen the problem would be solved.

Any way you slice the "debate" (and the fact that there is one in the first place is pretty ridiculous) I'm sure any reasonable person can agree that this law is asinine.

Erin May 17, 2011 at 8:51 PM   Reply to

@Gucci Mama,
This is not about formula feeding parents being stigmatized. Nobody made a comment in this post that insulted formula feeding. Defending breastfeeding does not automatically equal bashing formula, in any way. What is insulting is that you assume that La Leche League Leaders are all mean-spirited formula-bashers and that people who parent in a certain way "worship" Dr. Sears. This article and its comments have nothing to do with "militant breastfeeders." Sure, there are people out there who make thoughtless comments regarding formula, but they don't seem to be commenting here, so who is it that you are addressing this to?

Erin May 17, 2011 at 8:59 PM   Reply to

I did get a response via email from one of the city council members - unfortunately, I cannot make much sense of it! It sounds like maybe this member is fed up with the city government and John Parker in particular??? If anyone wants to take a stab at interpreting it, here it is:

"I share your concerns as well as other things that was presented in this ordinance, that is why I decided to Abstain from voting on this amendment. I often ask questions, not just for myself, but to hopefully empower the citizens in our city to also begin to make a stand for their rights to inquire, hold their elected officials accountable and to demand that their local government are open, transparent and fair. Eventhough it is not always easy to make the right decisions on everything, it is easy to listen and consider the opinions and facts from the citizens.
I am tired of the political attacks on people, businesses, etc and I feel that the war should focus on that area and not to bring others into it who will suffer or get isolated involuntarily! Too much tax payers dollars are being spent on lawsuits, because our government do not know how to communicate, rationalize, reason and mediate on issues, but they want to attack. This should not be!
This is what I have always tried to stand up against, but in voting, I am only one vote and 3 is the majority to pass anything in this city that the city manager John Parker and others in his 'political' network, want to happen.
Keep our city government in your prayers!"

Christine Emmick May 17, 2011 at 9:54 PM   Reply to

Good work Erin. Seems like we need to unload our rath on JP himself. Here is his FB page:

https://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/profile.php?id=1770447401

And here is his email:

John Parker, City Manager
Email address - jparker@forestparkga.org

We need to let him know (in a nice way ladies and gents) that he is wrong on this subject. Under no uncertian terms are we as free Americans going to relinquish our right to feed our babies the way nature intended!

PLEASE CONTACT HIM NOW!

Christine Emmick May 17, 2011 at 9:58 PM   Reply to

Blog owner, may I post a link to your post on my blog?

http://thatswhatbreastsarefor.blogspot.com/

Gucci Mama May 17, 2011 at 9:59 PM   Reply to

@Erin Clearly you did not read my first comments. I suggest you do so.

My experience with anyone associated with the Le Leche League or extended breastfeeding has been excessively unpleasant to say the least.

After my initial comment on the post, which again if you read you'd understand that I'm aware of exactly what the point of it was and agreed with the tone of the post, I was making the point that everyone, regardless of where they fall on a given issue, must be aware of the way they come across when stating their case.

I further responded to Daddy Files when he commented that he has been a part of the formula = evil crowd.

Again, perhaps read every comment I submitted and you'll see that we're not as far apart on this issue as you think.

I have no issue with breastfeeding; that would be ludicrous. What I take issue with is moms who breastfeed getting all up in arms about being judged for their choices (which is WRONG) while at the same time casting judgment on moms who either choose to or must bottle feed.

Gucci Mama May 17, 2011 at 10:04 PM   Reply to

*This Daddy. Not Daddy Files. Sorry.

Christine Emmick May 17, 2011 at 10:15 PM   Reply to

@Gucci Mama

I've been on both sides of the coin. I've done the research so I know what babies are missing out on if they don't get breastmilk. I however had to give my first daughter a 3 to 4 times daily supplement and it did end up being formula in a bottle.

I did not know it at the time but I had IGT to produce enough. Now baby #4 is exclusively BF at nearly 17 months of age (along with table foods and water) and I could not be more ecstatic.

It was a long journey that brought me there however, littered with folks harassing me for BF and folks chastising me for formula feeding. Let me tell you it was a tough place to be. I got it from all sides. I digress, I'm in the middle of telling my BF story on my blog (see link above). It doesn't need to be hashed out here. :)

To tell someone they CANNOT in a free country feed their infant, toddler, or child the way nature intended is at the very least ignorant. At the most it is tyrannical. Let's stop it now. Let’s NOT argue amongst ourselves about what age we should stop, what shirts we should be wearing or what arenas BF is acceptable. Let's fight together for the right of all mothers to feed their children the healthiest way available.

Erin May 17, 2011 at 10:26 PM   Reply to

Gucci Mama, I did read all your comments. Please don't make assumptions about me. What I do not understand is why you chose this article to state all these things, as if there must be breastfeeding mothers commenting here who wished to rudely attack formula feeding. Nobody here was getting up in arms over breastfeeding being respected while at the same time judging formula. What I heard in reading your comments was that some of us must be Dr. Sears worshipers, and that La Leche League Leaders are all ugly to formula-feeding parents. This is a hurtful accusation to make, particularly when it was unprovoked in this particular blog post/comment thread. Nobody here belittled you for using formula, yet you chose to belittle people who may like Dr. Sears and who may be involved in La Leche League. I know several LLL Leaders, and I can assure you I have never heard one being ugly to a mom who was using formula... in fact, they go through training in which they learn to respond to all mothers with sensitivity and respect.

If somebody here called you a "formula-worshiper," or if an LLL Leader wrote on here "shame on you for using that horrible formula substance!" then I would understand where your comments came from. But I didn't see anything along those lines at all. So I wish to see the same respect shown in return.

Erin May 17, 2011 at 10:36 PM   Reply to

Also, I am truly sorry if you have encountered people who have made rude, hurtful comments to you regarding formula. That is not right for anyone to do. Those people don't appear to be commenting here, thankfully. It is too bad that there are some people who will act in this way towards others.

karajane86 May 17, 2011 at 11:02 PM   Reply to

I agree, entirely. I guess I'm "creepy," Lost In Idaho (pretty accurate name), as I've decided to let my son self wean. He's 3 years and 5 months old...within the normal age of breastfeeding in the world...but not in Georgia. :/ This law is ridiculous.

Joy May 17, 2011 at 11:09 PM   Reply to

Parker is quoted as saying "We don't want children that can walk around to be breastfeeding in public." The prejudice, and snobbery involved is akin to saying "We don't want people who weigh over 300lbs eating in public." If it makes the City Manager uncomfortable in any way, just outlaw it and call it indecent.

Tammy May 18, 2011 at 12:38 AM   Reply to

What is the difference in breastfeeding at 6 months vs. 24 months in terms of nudity?? Is the baby naked?

This Daddy May 18, 2011 at 7:14 AM   Reply to

I am trying to thank each and everyone of you for reading and taking your own personal time to comment on something that is very important to my wife, children and myself, as well as a lot of you. I am back at it today as I am calling the Mayor of Forest Park as well as faxing comments and letters and emails to news stations and city personal. Hopes are that we can get this reversed and make breastfeeding a great positive experience for mothers and children and make sure that womens rights are not being abused.

Thanks, This Daddy (Scott)

This Daddy May 18, 2011 at 7:21 AM   Reply to

Gucci Mama and KittyKat,

You are both like my wife, very passionate about things and that is a great quality to have. I think we need to keep this in the direction of getting breastfeeding to be more of a positive thing and make the City of Forest Park, Ga. realize that what they are doing is wrong. WHile I did say that I have been quilty of bashing formula feeding moms in the past, lets make that a topic for another day and anyone and everyone can beat me up about it. lol. I am always honest and own my statements. With the education and information that my wife has provided me over the years, I am 100% pro breastfeeding and I see it the best way to feed your babies and small children. End of story. I will not back down from it but lets agree to move that discussion to another day.

You both are awesome by the way.

This Daddy May 18, 2011 at 7:24 AM   Reply to

@Christine Emmick, you may link this blog and post to anything you want. Thanks

madasaspoon May 18, 2011 at 7:25 AM   Reply to

The WHO recommend breastfeeding until the child is AT LEAST 2yrs old, with no upper age limit. 2yrs is a minimum, not a maximum.

If you find breastfeeding "creepy", it's because you are not used to seeing it, not because there is anything wrong with it. It's a knee jerk emotional response, not a logical, rational one.

Globally, biologically, historically.... the natural age of weaning is anywhere between 2.5 and 7yrs.

To date, there is NO proven harm to come from breastfeeding a child longer, either physically or psychologically, for the mother or the baby. The opposite is true: the longer the child nurses the lower the risk of obesity, allergies, cancers.... I could sit here for hours listing all the good reasons to keep breastfeeding as long as possible!

Susan May 18, 2011 at 9:05 AM   Reply to

Thanks for the heads up. I will send a letter. I nurse my kids as long as they like and the longest went almost to 3.
It looks like a 'foot in the door' policy for Forest Park. Today 2 year olds, tomorrow ANY nursing child.

madasaspoon May 18, 2011 at 9:12 AM   Reply to

The words "discreet" and "indecent" have no place in a discussion about breastfeeding. They are ugly, repressive, powerful words. A woman who is breastfeeding her child is ALREADY being "decent" and "discreet" by her own definition. Who are YOU (any of you) to dictate to someone else YOUR definition of "discreet"? Who are you to attempt to make her march to YOUR moral tune?

What harm comes from seeing a boob? NONE. Is it really that hard to use the neck and move on? NO!

What harm comes from asking the mother to "be discreet", offering her shame, asking her to move, telling her to cover up? LOTS! It feeds into the stigma around breastfeeding. It keeps it taboo and mysterious, instead of normal, accepted and obvious. Why do women struggle with breastfeeding so much? We never SEE it!!

A woman nursing in public is doing a good thing. She should be offered unbridled acceptance and encouragement and not curtailed in ANY WAY. Not by laws, not by other people judging her and telling her that she is doing it for too long, in the wrong place, in a way that is obscene/brazen/dirty/weird/creepy. When you tell a mother to "be discreet", you are telling her: "You are doing it wrong. You are not being discreet enough. You are being inconsiderate and immoral. It's more important to protect people from a sight that might upset them for a few seconds than it is for you and your baby to enjoy breastfeeding for as long as possible."

Mummies nummies May 18, 2011 at 9:16 AM   Reply to

Wow! I blogged about this yesterday, after I wrote mr parker an email....I never thought to call him. Boy am I glad I didn't! I am in complete shock at his comments to you! What kind of person is this city manager? To laugh at someone raising concern???? Really???? Wow!
My daughter is 18 months old and I do not see any chance of her stopping by 2 yrs old. She is still nursing 4 times a day......and will not allow me to skip one of those sessions!
Thank you for standing up to such an ignorant person....and for supporting your wife and fellow breastfeeding moms.

Mummies Nummies
www.mummiesnummies.com

Katherine May 18, 2011 at 9:25 AM   Reply to
This comment has been removed by the author.
Katherine May 18, 2011 at 9:27 AM   Reply to

Anthropologist Katherine Dettwyler wrote an interesting paper in which she discusses various factors that we can use to determine "A Biologically Appropriate Age of Weaning". Two years appears to be the minimum in terms of biological appropriateness:

http://www.kathydettwyler.org/detwean.html

Jen May 18, 2011 at 9:46 AM   Reply to

As others have pointed out, the most ridiculous thing about the law is the idea that the mother "becomes nude" somehow depending on the age of her nursling. If the law is about nudity, they need to decide if a mother nursing her child is nude, or not (hint: state and federal laws have decided that breastfeeding is NOT nudity or indecent exposure.) She is not "un-nude" while nursing her child who is one year and three hundred sixty-four days old, and then the very next day she is suddenly nude while nursing her two-year-old. This lack of logic makes it clear that the law is actually not about "nudity" at all. It is about the fact that some people feel uncomfortable around a nursing toddler. This is because they are not used to it, and because breasts in our culture are seen as sexual, and therefore an older child with a breast in his/her mouth is seen to be performing a sex act. The solution to this problem is not to ban toddlers from nursing, but to address the objectification of women and the sexualization of the breast. And, most toddlers are picky eaters and take in liquid nutrition to supplement their inadequate intake of solids; for some the supplement is Pediasure, for some it is Cow or Goat milk, and for some it is Human milk. None of these methods of ensuring the nutrient intake of one's toddler should be singled out for stigmatization and legal hassles!

kathymanelis May 18, 2011 at 10:30 AM   Reply to

I breastfed my son until he was 18 months and my daughter until she was 12 months. I stopped with my daughter because she weaned herself....she just was no longer interested. My son was another matter: I weaned him when he started giggling when he wanted to nurse. I decided that if it was that funny, we were done. Having said that, I know of moms who nurses when their babies were over the age of 2 and this law would certainly impact their childrearing practices.

If Forest Park enacts a law restricting breastfeeding after the age of 2, they can pass other restrictive laws as well. I'll pass on the quotation attributed to Pastor Martin Niemoller that is displayed at the Holocaust Museum in Washington and at Yad Vashem in Israel:

First they came for the communists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.

Elisabeth May 18, 2011 at 11:14 AM   Reply to

It seems that this law is just another way to take choice away from women. How to feed the children they bring into this world and WHAT to feed them. I've had three babies ranging from the bottle baby to the devoted nurser who carried on until toddlerdom. It was MY CHOICE (unless it was the baby's!). This law takes our right to choose. The war on women's bodies is a war that affects EVERYONE. Even if this battle is just about showing some skin... which (in Erin's point) would be covered nicely by a 3 year old's head! :)

Violet May 18, 2011 at 11:36 AM   Reply to

When I was younger I breastfed after the age of two. I dont remember of course, but my mom said that when my brother came along, I was wanting to nurse again so she just let me. I think that if she hadn't it might have endangered the bond that she had built with me and given me negativity towards my brother the new baby. Instead as a toddler I would have protected my baby brother with my life.

While it is true that many women do not breastfeed past 2 years, there are always those few babies that truely need to breast feed a little longer. I think that it should be up to each person and the knowing that they have of thier baby to decide this. There should not be a law making this illegal.

Alaina Simcoe Toadpipe May 18, 2011 at 12:58 PM   Reply to

I love the array of comments your blog has spawned. I just wanted to add a couple of things.

First, I understood Lost's comment to be more along the lines of "while most mothers stop nursing before two years, the law is still wrong". I may have misread though.

Second, a group of my friends in Georgia are staging a nurse in. I hope I am not overstepping my bounds by posting this here. But here is the basic info

Time:
Monday, May 23 · 10:00am - 12:00pm
Location:
City Hall 745 Forest Parkway Forest Park, Ga

Nurse as you would normally to prove the lack of indecency. I wish I could go, but I'm on the other side of the country. :/

Well wishes to all!

Erin May 18, 2011 at 1:03 PM   Reply to

I have been wondering, and should have asked when I left the city manager a voice mail yesterday, if this law means children over the age of two (which means 36 months and up) or children over 24 months? "Over age 2" sounds like it means the law won't impact anyone until they turn 3. Has anyone seen the exact wording of the rule?

Either way, it would be impossible to enforce, just like TN's law which only protects nursing in public until 12 months! Will it become law that all mothers carry their child's birth certificate around with them? ;)

I don't think this law really has anything to do with trying to take away choice or a war on women's bodies... rather, it is purely out of ignorance. I have lived in GA all my life, and ignorance regarding babies and toddlers in general is plentiful, unfortunately. The people who made the law just have no clue regarding breastfeeding or young children.

This Daddy May 18, 2011 at 1:16 PM   Reply to

Erin, I have had the hardest time being nice about this issue. I usually run the mouth andtalk so much trash and would call and call and talk about his mama and all that but you know, this is much larger than just me and my family. I was surprised that I kept my cool when he was laughing at me...Oh man.. But I chalked it up to ignorant people, plain and simple.

Christine Emmick May 18, 2011 at 1:25 PM   Reply to

@Erin, it's not just in GA. All up and down the east coast you'll find doctors heavily brewed in traditional medicine that says drugs are the answer for everything and society has the right to legislate everything, including how and when you'll feed your infant.

I'm not a lactavist, I am a woman sick of breasts being seen primarily as sex objects, and looks of utter disgust when I breastfeed, covered up, in public. I have daughters, I want them to have it better than I did.

This Daddy May 18, 2011 at 1:30 PM   Reply to

Christine Emmick I have said I am always honest...I will not lie, I look at breast as sex objects, I am a man...but not when a child is feeding and eating and a mom is getting ready to breastfeed a baby. Seriously, guys are going to do that, but be a man an adult enough to know the difference of a time period. I love my wifes boobs but I know better than to try and mess with them at certain points. Hello, feeding baby or going to or just got finished.

And my wife said the same thing about our daughter as far as having it better when she is older

Mrs. Obie May 18, 2011 at 2:58 PM   Reply to

This law just makes me want to throw things. I tried to sit down and write the guy a damn email, but I couldn't find the words without lashing out...so I just closed it and am moving on. What is so disgusting about this is that mama's are being made to feel shame when there is no need.

I know that some women are staging a nurse-in on May 23rd, and I wish I could go. I don't have a 2 year old, my littlest lady is only 8 months, but regardless of how long I plan on breastfeeding, the fact that I wouldn't be able to in Georgia makes me want to never visit that area.

Thank you This Daddy for standing up and being a supportive husband and man about breastfeeding. we need more men like you on our side.

heather dawn May 18, 2011 at 3:15 PM   Reply to

ThisDaddy, thank you so much for posting this and calling the City Managers Office and proving us with the information to get in contact with them too! I work in the Breastfeeding field and seeing this law being proposed is outrageous. As well as calling breastfeeding nudity. I don't see how the two relate. Most times you can't even tell that women are breastfeeding their children.

I wanted to let you know, maybe you could even blog about this.. There is a scheduled "nurse-in" (where mothers take thei babies ad nurse them publicly in protest!!!) at city hall in Forest Park on May 23rd from 10am - 12noon.

So, these women who feel passionately against this should attend! I think even moms who have already weaned should attend too! Show this man how outrageous ang against public view this really is.

Khyraen May 18, 2011 at 3:54 PM   Reply to

Wow, Daddy, great post! This law is cr@p and I wish I lived there cause I'd so be doing a nurse-in at City Hall until they arrested me at which point I would get the ACLU to represent my preemie and I. You see, due to her disability, she still cannot eat many solids and, without breastfeeding, would be on a G-tube. She is in speech therapy to remedy her problem, but until then she bfs way more often than usual for a toddler her age and a law that prohibits me to nurse her in public would be effectively restricting me to staying at home until my daughter's disability can be overcome. Just yesterday I NIP in a mei tai on a hiking trail with my family where there was NO WHERE I could have gone privately to feed my child. According to this law and some of your more ignorant posters, I should just become a second class citizen unable to go hiking or many other places until this feeding problem is resolved.

Thanks for standing up for us women and supporting your wife and moms everywhere who make healthy choices. We need more dad's like you who understand that mammals make MILK TO FEED BABIES, yet adult men drink baby cow milk w/o a second thought while judging mom's for feeding baby human milk to their babies, toddlers, and preschoolers because they hold them to their breasts to do so. Ignorance isn't always bliss; sometimes it's annoying and even harmful.

This Daddy May 18, 2011 at 5:14 PM   Reply to

Erin are you able to tell what person sent that email back to you

AboutPediatrics May 18, 2011 at 6:09 PM   Reply to

The American Academy of Pediatrics doesn't put a limit on how long moms should breastfeed, why should the Forest Park City Council in Georgia? The AAP states that 'There is no upper limit to the duration of breastfeeding and no evidence of psychologic or developmental harm from breastfeeding into the third year of life or longer.'

City Puts Limits on Breastfeeding

Erin May 18, 2011 at 7:36 PM   Reply to

Yes, the person who responded to my email was Karen-Brandee Williams. Again, I don't know what to make of her response other than she is disgruntled with the others she works with?

I have sent it to all five council members along with John Parker, and she has been the only one to respond. If anyone wants all their email addresses, I'd be glad to share them.

I also got a response from the Dougherty Co. schools superintendent (they recently banned breastfeeding in all their schools), and it simply said, "Thank you Erin." At least it was an acknowledgment...

The Feminist Housewife May 18, 2011 at 8:13 PM   Reply to

To people who think it's creepy to breastfeed a child past 2: Do you think it's also creepy for a child to take a bottle past 2? I mean, come on, aren't they too old for a bottle? Maybe that should be illegal too...

sixpaq May 18, 2011 at 11:42 PM   Reply to

I am glad I live in Ontario & don't need to worry about it anymore! "The Ontario Court of Appeal ruled in Dec 1996, that women do have the right to go topless as long as they do not seek commercial gain or display overt sexuality."

Read more: http://www.faqs.org/abstracts/News-opinion-and-commentary/Topless-in-Ontario-women-exercise-the-right-to-expose-their-breasts.html#ixzz1Mllek5gp

My oldest will be 21 years old in a few days. I breast fed her for 19 mos, #2 for about the same , #3 was over 2 years old #4 still remembers nursing and being miffed that I told him I was having two babies in a month so it would be too difficult to make enough milk for them & him. He was over 3 yrs old. The twins nursed twice as long, through another pregnancy & with their new baby brother. My 4th was even more miffed to discover that I had fibbed because I could make enough milk for three! I am VERY small breasted but they seem to work! My seventh nursed for just as long as the twins so I actually breastfed for 10 years straight & for most of the 10 years before that. I should be well protected from female hormone based cancers! It was a day to be celebrated when it was "legal" to be bare breasted. So breastfeeding or not, it didn't matter! Still to this day people are asked to not breastfeed in public, but most know their rights. As a person involved in La Leche League in the past I am offended that I am being judged based upon someone else who was involved. That is unfair to me & anyone else that has helped to support women. I was not judged at meetings when I bottle fed my foster twins (most moms didn't know they were not mine at the time). We have had leaders who bottle fed previous babies, and later chose to breastfeed subsequent babies. They were even stronger proponents of the positives around breastfeeding. Ditto for me as it was a LOT more work to bottle & formula feed the foster twins then it was to breastfeed my twins! I know there are some bottle fed babies who could not receive breastmilk due to issues with baby or mom. However, I know many that chose to bottle feed, but not in their or their baby's best interest. Bottom line is that in most cases breast is best, breastmilk is second best but formula is a last resort, though one that is sometimes necessary. The current information based upon scientific information cannot be denied!

You are doing a great job "daddy" and are a great support for your wife and children. I hope that the bill doesn't go through...it is ridiculous!

Kerri, bio mom to 7, grandma to 1, fostering 4 and fostered many more in the past

Me May 19, 2011 at 10:41 AM   Reply to

It scares me that so many breastfeeding mothers can think it's disgusting to nurse a two year-old. If you don't want to nurse your child past a certain age, I respect that. But can you also respect my desire to breastfeed my son long-term? I think breastfeeding women need to all be on the same side here, it horrifies me to see what my son and I do being called "disgusting". We are not disgusting. And no, we can't just go home when it's time to nurse, our relationship stopped working like that a long time ago. If he falls at the playground, he sometimes wants a minute of nursing, to ease his trauma. When he's had to busy of a day and can't self-regulate, he needs a boob for a minute. I recently read of a country where though uncommon, some children are nursed until 9 years-old. And btw, if you think they shouldn't nurse once they are walking around...my son walked at 7 months, an age at which he was not even close to concluding his breastfeeding career. I plan to nurse him until he doesn't want to anymore and if he never quits, I'll wean him when he's headed to Kindergarten. Because that's what I feel is right for my child. It may not be right for yours or hers, or hers over there...but that's what I've decided to gift to my son while he is growing so much, so fast.

Me May 19, 2011 at 10:46 AM   Reply to

Also, thank you for your support, TheDaddy! I <3 Breastfeeding Dads :-D

rhonda May 19, 2011 at 11:09 AM   Reply to

My oldest selfweaned at 11 months 17 days, 14 days before his baby brother was born. He never asked but when holding him would "lunge" with him got a lot of comments about the fact was nursing while obviously pregnant, I would typically smile and say both babies are growing quite well thank you for your concern.

My youngest, for now (expecting again) is still nursing (almost 16 months) he started walking at 8 months and 1 week and says most of the words big brother can. When he wants to nurse he says "up and ni ni ease"
I have always said "nursing baby" to my oldest, not sure where ni ni comes from as he rarely nurses to sleep.

As he is walking as well as he is and very big I get a lot of ignorant comments when out in public, made worse I am sure by the fact I refuse to sit in restrooms (nursing areas) to nurse my son if we are out in public. (no WHIPPING IT OUT) and to those who make comments I generally reply "you also seem a bit big to be eating in public"

alisha May 20, 2011 at 1:08 PM   Reply to

Thank you this daddy for posting about this.
I find it really annoying and stupid how much breastfeeding has become something to be controlled by the politicians.
I have three children, The first self weaned right before his second birthday. The second nursed till about 3 1/2. The third was forced to wean at 2 1/2 when I miscarried. The average for people that I hang out with to have their children wean is about 3-4 years old.

Dari May 20, 2011 at 5:17 PM   Reply to

You rock Scott! Thank you for bringing this to my attention and for your passion fighting against an asinine law. You know my thoughts from my post http://www.mominmanagement.com/3332/new-law-bans-breastfeeding/ which have been amplified in your comments too.

You and Tracy are such a great team!

Renai May 20, 2011 at 11:06 PM   Reply to

Thanks for posting- I shared this on FB. I was telling my 11 year old daughter about this. First, she exclaimed how ridiculous it was and it's the mom's right to feed their child something healthy. Then, when I mentioned how this law was being categorized with other indecency laws aimed at the adult entertainment businesses, she was like, what? Is the mom going to hang on a stripping pole while feeding their kid breastmilk?!

She's hilarious. I like her a lot!

s May 31, 2011 at 3:35 PM   Reply to

I am disappointed to hear the Mr Parker thought that your concern over this matter was a joke. I breastfed our third and fourth children to almost 6 and 4. Six years ago we took a trip to Co when they were just 2 and 7 mos old and I had to tandem nurse them in many public places including Seven falls, the train to Pike's Peak, and not to mention several rest stops, and I never received anything other that curious and then supportive looks. I believe this is probably in part due to the face that hardly anyone likes to see or hear upset/wailing children! I have thought about visiting the state of Georgia lately as my children have never seen much of the south, but even though my children have given up nursing, I do not desire to go somewhere where I would not have been welcome 6 years ago. I hope they see the public response that you helping to generate and realize that restricting how a child eats is not only ridiculous, but hopefully damaging to tourism to their city as well. Thank you so much for your support and voice.

Sarah June 2, 2011 at 1:09 PM   Reply to

"Lost In Idaho" - Breastfeeding after the age of two is "creepy?" Really? It is? A comparison of world cultures shows that in societies where children self-wean rather than being pushed into weaning early, the vast majority give up the breast between the ages of two and a half to four. And funny, the brain does ninety percent of its growth and formation not in the first six weeks after birth, not in the first six or twelve months after birth, but in the first three years after birth. "Extended" nursing through toddlerhood, then, must be the biological norm.

Why then is it so "creepy?" Let's see. Many industrialized cultures that have easy access to bottles, breast pumps, formula, refrigeration, etc (including ours) consider breasts to be primarily sexual. Mothers who nurse past the point where a baby has cut teeth, learned to crawl/walk, learned to beg for milk with words, etc are pressured to wean the baby and separate. I don't think this is just about the convenience of the men who want to ogle/fondle her and have sexual relations without being interrupted by a crying, hungry baby. I think it also has to do with a fear that because breasts are supposed to be primarily sexual, breastfeeding must perforce be sexual too, so any mother who nurses her baby beyond the age of "absolute necessity" must be doing something incestuous or autoerotic... something creepy.

Yeah. Whatever. The only thing I find "creepy" is the prurient interest in sexualized breastfeeding. It says more about the creeped-out person than it does about the mother feeding her child, in my opinion.

I'm glad I don't live in Georgia. Or, I guess, in Idaho.

Katrina Marie June 6, 2011 at 9:59 PM   Reply to

I am not surprised to read that John Parker laughed at you when you called. At tonight's council meeting, he openly laughed while we were speaking out against the ordinance. And he took personal offense to me calling him on the carpet about his "everyone else is doing it" excuse for including the age limit in the ordinance because other jurisdictions had it in theirs.

maggieorganizingchaos June 9, 2011 at 12:25 AM   Reply to

I probably shouldn't waste my time with Lost in Idaho for the rude comment, but perhaps she just doesn't know.... obviously she never breastfed very long or she would understand that there is no point in the bfeeding relationship where it is creepy. And just where does she get this attitude? Her own cultural conditioning/fears. The fact is, the average age of weaning for child led weaners is 4.2 years - and if she does her homework on Google, she will find scores of such kids, and most of the moms doing it have above average education. It's not creepy...it's SMART. My son is turning 4 in 3 months and he still breastfeeds on demand 24-7. He ASKS for it. He is am amazingly bright child loved by everyone he meets - and hardly anyone he meets would even guess he is even breastfed bc he is a NORMAL kid and I am a devoted LOVING mom. It is "creepy" to Lost in Idaho because she doesn't realize the travesty wrought on our Society since the formula industry entered the stage and since breasts are oversexualized. They were created for this job. Child led weaning is natural and healty. Kids nurse for nutrition AND comfort. I really hope she will do some serious investigation. http://maggieorganizingchaos.blogspot.com

Rae June 20, 2011 at 8:12 PM   Reply to

I'm late to the game here, but I'm curious what happened to the ordinance.

The sexualization of breasts is what is creepy; not a toddler breastfeeding.

Christine Emmick November 6, 2011 at 2:57 PM   Reply to

Hey Rae... Here is the happy news:

http://thatswhatbreastsarefor.blogspot.com/2011/06/babies-are-able-to-eat-again-in-ga.html

There is also a video that was a pro-breastfeeding public service announcement.

Anonymous,  February 3, 2012 at 12:10 PM   Reply to

I nursed my daughter until she was 32 months old. Generally yes, a 2 yr old is down to few feedings in a day. However, right before nap time, bed time, when hurt, stressed, scared or sick (or about to get sick), they tend to pick up the pace. Any of those things can be during a visit to a park. I fed my daughter every/anywhere. My son weaned at 14 months, but I didn't have any problems feeding him while we were out, either.

Unless someone is staring- which is rude btw- the likelihood of being able to tell if someone in nursing or not is negligible. Unless you have the type of kid that likes to pop off to look at strangers that wander up to stare...

Anonymous,  February 4, 2012 at 3:47 PM   Reply to

I am curious to know how this turned out. I hope that it was overturned. I frequently see comments about women who "whip it out" as a reason not to allow breastfeeding in public, and that women don't "whip it out" as a reason its a non-issue. I firmly believe that women should be allowed to expose as much breast and skin as necessary to feed her child while causing her the most minimum of discomfort. Seeing breasts is only the traumatic thing it seems to be if allow our culture to make it such a thing and train our children that it is traumatic. I for one support all breastfeeding mothers from infant to tot, to discreet to yes, the mother who took off her shirt. There is no good excuse for putting restrictions on what is actually (rather than perceived due to cultural training) a harmless practice that produces so many benefits in so many spheres. I appreciate this article and that the author is one of many who stand up for this right in a country full of people who seem to devalue it, shame it and attempt to criminalize it.

Anonymous,  September 9, 2012 at 8:57 PM   Reply to

Thank you for providing these details on the internet.
Look into my web-site :: counselling melbourne

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Google+ Followers

  © Blogger templates Newspaper III by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP