What a crazy few days this has been. It all started with a simple Tweet about what happened to my wife at American Girl Place in New York City on Friday, July 15. And now, I feel like I’ve made her practically famous! I want to say, first of all, that I had no idea that my Tweet would garner this much attention, and that I know a lot of you have been withholding judgment about what happened because I didn’t provide much information on my Twitter account.
To be honest, I had no idea anyone would even want any additional information. I am completely blown away by all of the positive feedback and support my wife and I have received from the tight-knit community of women who breastfeed. With that being said, I want to give you her account (she doesn’t blog) of what actually happened at American Girl Place (609 Fifth Avenue at 49th Street, New York, NY 10017). This is what she posted on her Facebook account immediately after it happened…
So, we were at American Girl today and Lainey was really needing to be nursed. She was way overstimulated and inconsolable. So, Sundi found a place with comfy chairs in a semi-private area. Well, this rude woman comes over to me and says, "You need to do that somewhere else. Try the fitting rooms," and walked away.
Well, I went downstairs to the fitting room and asked the woman there, “Can I nurse her here,” referring to my screaming-bloody-murder child at this point. She says, “I need to find out.” She comes back a few minutes later and says, “Go ahead, whatever.” She then continued to talk about me to another worker just outside the fitting room door I was in.
I was crying. I have heard of this happening to other women but have never experienced it myself. How awful…
I’ve read some comments about this story and I have to say that, while I understand some of the skepticism, I feel pretty offended that some people would say that she was probably being “obnoxious,” or that she was being an “exhibitionist.” My daughter was hungry and needed to be soothed. This woman at the store told her that she needed to “do that somewhere else.”
I’ve also read comments about how women need to “get some spine” and stand up for themselves. I don’t know that it would be as easy to do it as it is to say it. Unfortunately for me, I was home because I had to work this weekend, so I wasn’t capable of defending her and her right to breastfeed wherever she decided, and I’m not sure that she knew that it was illegal to force her to feed somewhere else. I didn’t know the law either!
So, while I am disappointed at some of the undue criticism toward my wife, I can understand due to the fact that the whole story really wasn’t made public. I’m hoping that by posting this, some of the more pertinent details have been made clear.
I also, again, want to say thank you to everyone who responded with encouraging words, support and all of the positive feedback. It was really inspiring seeing so many people come together for my wife.
If you’re interested, you can follow my wife on Twitter. She doesn’t use her account that often, but she has been using it lately to read all of the feedback about this. Her account is @jotography. Mine is @XepticalAtheist.
Again… Thank You!