Childrearing

Facebook Shuts Down Mother’s Account Over Photo of Her Breastfeeding a Stranger’s Baby

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Breastfeeding is not sexual. We shouldn’t have to keep saying that, because it’s obvious, but for some reason people insist on seeing breastfeeding as sexual, even though it is just how a lot of people feed their babies. But now one Missouri mom says she’s lost her Facebook privileges for posting a photo of herself breastfeeding on the site.

According to Cosmopolitan, Rebecca Wanosik has six kids, and in the photo she is breastfeeding two children at once. One baby is her son, and the other baby is the daughter of a stranger for whom Wanosik was doing a big favor.

The baby girl was stressed and hungry. Her mother was having surgery, and the little girl had been exclusively breastfed and was rejecting a bottle. She was angry and hungry and confused and wanted to nurse.

The mother had been prepared to use donor milk, but then the baby didn’t even want a bottle. Her mother, being a big fan of breastfeeding, decided to see if she could find a volunteer to feed her baby for her when she couldn’t. Then a mutual friend of the baby’s mother and Wanosik remembered that Wanosik was nursing her own baby, who was about the same age, so the friend texted Wanosik with an admittedly odd request: Would she be willing to nurse a stranger’s baby?

Wanosik said yes.

“I did what I hope any person would do for my child in a time of despair,” she said. “I fed a stranger’s baby.”

Nursing someone else’s baby is not the most common thing these days, but in this case it worked for everyone involved. The baby girl wanted it, the baby girl’s mother, and Wanosik was happy to be able to help.

Wanosik posted a photo of the two babies nursing at the same time, and it’s honestly really cute. The babies had just met, but they were holding hands together while they nursed. It’s pretty sweet, and I’m not normally one to squee over breastfeeding photos. (You’ve seen the back of one baby’s head, you’ve seen them all.) The other baby’s mother even gave permission for the photos to be taken and shared on Facebook.

Unfortunately, some people got very bent out of shape about Wanosik’s photo.

“Cover up!!!! Nobody wants to see your breast. This is Facebook not sexbook,” one person said.

Even if the sight of female nipples did turn people to stone like the gaze of Medusa, this photo would be perfectly safe. The only things visible are the tops of Wanosik’s breasts and the two babies and their adorably clasped hands.

Still, people reported the posts and Wanosik says her account was suspended, even though Facebook allows breastfeeding photos. Eventually Facebook did allow the account back.

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