It's no secret that couples planning their weddings can get a bit... demanding. And, honestly, it's not at all outrageous that brides and grooms on the verge of experiencing what many consider to be one of the most important days of their lives end up pretty dead-set on ensuring that the centerpieces exude a captivating beauty and that the ceremony be an impossibly unique reflection of their relationship. But that aggressive eagerness to have the most perfect day ever crosses over into the realm of downright inappropriate when those preparing to say their vows start policing how their guests will — and won't — enjoy the big event. That's why this note attached to a wedding invite for breastfeeding moms will absolutely infuriate you.
It all started when a nursing mother of a 2-year-old and a 3-month-old received a wedding invitation in the mail — along with a little note requesting that anyone who needs to breastfeed at the nuptials do so privately, in a bathroom. Actually, the outrageously offensive saga kicked off even before that, as the mom shared with the Facebook page Breastfeeding Mama Talk. According to the page, she had clashed about breastfeeding in public with the couple before. And the groom, you see, is her husband's best friend.
The mom opted to remain anonymous in telling her blood-boiling story, but it's one that will resonate with any mom who just wants to feed her kids wherever she damn well pleases.
Here's what the note said:
To all our mommies who are breastfeeding, we are thinking of you; we are sensitive to the fact that you may need to breastfeed during our event, therefore we have designated an appropriate place for you to feed your baby so that you do not have to do so in public in front of our Family and Friends. For your convenience we are accommodating you with a comfortable and private area with chairs and baby blankets in the ladies room. We request that you use this area when you are breastfeeding. Thank you.
On the one hand, truly accommodating breastfeeding moms, of course, is the right thing to do. On the other hand, this couple did no such thing. Although they start out the note by insisting to the nursing ladies that "we are thinking of you," it quickly escalates to a much different tone from there. The almost menacing emphasis on refusing to burden their "Family and Friends" with the sight of a baby being fed, the revelation that the "comfortable and private area" is right across from the stalls in a public restroom, the "request" that it be used... none of it adds up to the normal, mostly reasonable (if over the top) wishes of soon-to-be newlyweds. It's rude, and it's the exact opposite of reasonable.
And commenters to the Facebook post were having none of it. "Why is breastfeeding still seen as such an obscene thing to do in 2017?" user Stephanie Tremblay asked. "Ugh!! No!! I'd be petty and feed my baby deliberately in front of them," Emily Sanders Williams chimed in.
And user Sabrina Williams had the mic-droppiest point:
Petty me would ask them to set up an extra table for me in the bathroom, all nicely decorated with centerpiece, since I'll be in there to feed the baby and don't want my food to get cold either. And then they say "why that's silly, why would you want to eat in the bathroom?" Well... Exactly.
Ultimately, the mom decided not to take her kids to the wedding. "I don't eat in the bathroom, I'm not feeding my child in there!" she wrote, as relayed in a post on the Breastfeeding Mama Talk Facebook page.
While it's a major bummer that the mom was intimidated into leaving her kids at home, good for her for refusing to budge in her conviction that mothers should not be relegated to private corners as they do what nature intended simply to protect others' fragile comfort. I sincerely hope that this debacle teaches the bride and groom in this situation an important lesson that it's never OK to shame a breastfeeding mom into going into hiding. I also hope that some other nursing mom decided to feed her baby right at her table at their reception.
Because until people start seeing breastfeeding as normal, it's likely that outrageous anti-nursing "requests" such as this one will keep on cropping up.
Watch Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:
Check out the entire Romper's Doula Diaries series and other videos on Facebook and the Bustle app across Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV.