Five reasons why it's perfectly okay to breastfeed in restaurants

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Annnnnnd Chick-Fil-A is in the news again...
In yet another demographic-alienating screw-up, an employee at a Tennessee Chick-Fil-A approached a woman who was breastfeeding in the store's play area and asked her to cover up. The woman said didn't want to throw a towel over her child because the hungry tot would just push it away -- and by law she didn't have to cover up, anyway, because breastfeeding is perfectly legal in Tennessee. With or without cover.

The Chick-fil-A employee apologized. Smart move, because Chick-fil-A is obsessed with reminding us how family-friendly it is. And that means it should be best friends with breast-feeding mothers. Here are five reasons why:

See also:
- Five Chick-Fil-A protest moves guaranteed to ruffle feathers
- Five good things about the Chick-Fil-A controversy
- Chick-Fil-A's new desserts are sweet -- but the chain's politics don't fly

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Give 'em a couple weeks before they are ready for chicken sammies.

5. Babies need food!

There is a stage between birth and Happy Meals in which an infant receives nourishment through either breast milk or formula. It's generally accepted among pediatricians and parents alike that except for certain circumstances, breast milk is better for babies. Breast milk is produced in and is expressed through...you guessed it!... breasts! The easiest and most convenient solution to the infant-feeding dilemma is to put a baby's mouth on a nipple, and let nature do the rest. Yes, a mother could use a breast pump and place the milk in a bottle for on-the-go feedings. She could also use formula for dining out.

But she gets to make those choices for herself and her child, and the possible mild discomfort of peeping bystanders -- especially in family restaurants -- shouldn't be a factor in her decision-making process.

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4. Boobies aren't just for oogling...no really, they aren't

Oogling boobies is a time-honored pastime in our culture, but it never hurts to remind both men and women that fun-bags are also milk-bags, and what is visually appealing in non-food-producing titties does not automatically become disgusting and abhorrent in breasts that are fulfilling biological functions.

If it's totally cool to dine at restaurants like Hooter's, Twin Peaks or Tilted Kilt where you get to see everything but nipple, then a little snippet of nipple should be okay, especially when the nipple is doing a job way more important than bringing you bad hot wings and pretending to like you.

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This is actually kind of adorable!
3. It's not indecent exposure -- unless you are an idiot

What is decent and appropriate with bare body parts is subjective, but there is a world of difference between a drunk girl flashing her mo-mos in a restaurant and a woman freeing up a milk nozzle for a hungry kid. Drunk girl is trying to get attention -- an effective method, to be sure -- and nursing mom is trying to discreetly make sure her infant gets dinner. Mom isn't trying to be indecent, and it's unlikely that she is going out of her way to expose her milkers to everyone within a ten-foot radius.

If you are someone who is offended by the sight of a breast, you could just utilize the age-old solution called "look away," eat your dinner -- and and everyone wins.



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35 comments
Tricia Hoke
Tricia Hoke

Ha ha- "come on Maw- put some shoes on those feet and call the sitter... Im gonna take you out for a real nice meal! You deserve it after birthin' all these damn kids."

Tricia Hoke
Tricia Hoke

Get a sitter to go to a fast food joint?

spmarx
spmarx

I think the biggest thing is this: Yes it's natural, it's essential, it's beautiful. So is making out, blowing your nose, and taking a long leak after a day in ski pants. But you don't do those in full view why? Because you acknowlege it might bother others and you aren't the center of the universe. Neither am I, much to my dismay. But it's part of the small print of the Social Contract. Feeding in public? I'm all for it. It is beatiful and natural and sweet. My wife did it for both children and we were never given the stink eye, ever. But covering up isn't too much to ask and it isn't oppressive, it's just thoughtful. And people who whip out, armed for confrontation (and then blog about it) aren't enlightened, they're passive aggressive. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to drink an Old Fashioned while I breast feed a $14 hamburger in a Trader Joe's.

Colton J Kuddes
Colton J Kuddes

I have kids...and i realize that their issues are my burden...hungry, crying, pooping...all my burden...not the rest of the world...not people who are paying money to eat a nice meal in peace and quiet. Don't take a 6 month old in public. they don't like it anyways... get a sitter or stay home

Jeff Raiter
Jeff Raiter

I hope and pray that people like you dont procreate. since you have no fucking clue what it is like when a 6 month old baby gets hungry at ther most inoportune moment and the only thing that will fix it is a feeding . Have some heart or are you afraid that you might get turned on by it . either way by your actions and mentality that you are part of the problem in a free society.

Chelsea Kimbrough
Chelsea Kimbrough

Absolutely. So put a blanket over your head and look away while I feed my child.

Mark Oinen
Mark Oinen

your kids and their feeding schedule is your burden, not the rest of society's

Colton J Kuddes
Colton J Kuddes

same reason you shouldn't have crying and screaming kids in public...it's a burden you must live with

Chelsea Kimbrough
Chelsea Kimbrough

Great article, Westword. Thank you for helping to normalize the most natural thing in the world!

Chelsea Kimbrough
Chelsea Kimbrough

"That thing" doesn't eat on a schedule. When my son is hungry, I feed him. Sometimes it happens to be at home. Sometimes at a restaurant. When he is hungry, he eats. Why should I have to be confined to my home and only be able to leave right after my child has been fed?

Damon Wood
Damon Wood

i stopped doing that because i kept getting milk in my shrimp.

Karen Erickson
Karen Erickson

No I haven't but I typically don't try to latch onto a mommy because I'm well past that stage. But thanks for asking.

Denver Critic
Denver Critic

If you hassle a mother for breastfeeding in a restaurant, you're officially a terrible person and need to reevaluate your life immediately.

mj_s
mj_s

I wish there was another Juggalo story I could read this week......this is close.

Shannon Fender
Shannon Fender

#1 reason: Because following Chick-Fil-A's example is just a bad idea. Ha!

GFTW
GFTW

I suck on Jenn's boobs all the time in restaurants.

Colton J Kuddes
Colton J Kuddes

Of course babies need to eat too...feed that thing before you go out

Michael Keyes
Michael Keyes

Breast feeding in restaurants=no problemo Changing diapers on a restaurant table=eww

spmarx
spmarx

Is it possible to get an article on any subject where people aren't labeled 'Idiots" or "douche-bags"? 

cocomontalto
cocomontalto

@spmarx  Since when is blowing one's nose "beautiful?" There is little comparison between these things. 

GFTW
GFTW

@Denver Critic Jef Otte feels the same way if you hassle him for masturbating while watching mothers breastfeeding in restaurants!

GFTW
GFTW

@spmarx Why, yes! Jenny recently expanded her vocabulary to include "Dickheads."

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