Military Moms Spark Controversy When They Breastfeed In Public

by Emerald Pellot
Emerald Pellot graduated summa cum laude from New York University with a degree in Writing & Popular Culture. She worked as Senior Editor of College Candy for 2 years, covering feminism, popular culture, and college life before joining LittleThings in 2015. Based in New York City, Emerald covers a wide range of topics from human interest pieces to celebrity news.

A Navy mom, Amanda Langendoerfer from San Diego, posted a few photographs of her and her son on Facebook.

The photos quickly caused public outcry. The photographer, Vanessa Simmons, commended the mother, but commenters were quick to judge for one shocking reason. The mother was breastfeeding in uniform. A few weeks later, another group of military moms posted a similar photo causing the same outrage. What’s peculiar is that the pictures are anything but revealing. The mothers are completely covered up, and yet the public took issue with the act of breastfeeding itself.

Bullies told her, “duty comes before family,” and that she — a woman who fights for our country — was unprofessional. But Amanda’s command came to her defense. While breastfeeding policies vary base to base, recently the U.S. Army base in Hawaii changed their policy, saying that “Nursing mothers will not be subject to harassment, ridicule or intimidation.”

“It turned a really positive thing for me, into a really negative thing,” Amanda says. “After the picture came out, it made me feel like I was doing something wrong by breastfeeding my son and being in the military.”

If the U.S. Army can get behind breastfeeding mothers, then do you think the rest of us should?

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