“Since giving birth to her son, Roman, in April, Stephanie Buchanan has breast-fed whenever and wherever she needed — whether she was hanging at the park, shopping at Walmart or grabbing a bite at Wendy’s.
So when her baby started to fuss during a recent trip to a community pool in her hometown of Mora, Minn., the 27-year-old mom didn’t think twice about nursing as she watched her 4-year-old stepson and his young cousin splash around in the shallow water. Her sister-in-law, also mother to an infant, had done the same shortly before.
“We had brought our kids swimming and all of them are fairly young so we were all in the kiddie pool,” Buchanan says. “My son got hungry, and I was wearing a one piece so I slipped my strap down and fed him.”
But soon after, another pool-goer came over and asked the two moms to cover up, arguing that the scene wasn’t appropriate for her own young boys playing in the pool.
“Taken aback and shocked,” Buchanan says she declined.
A pool employee came and asked the pair to be more discreet or go to the locker room. Buchanan stood her ground, citing state law protecting a woman’s right to breast-feed in public. Eventually, an officer was called to the scene. Buchanan said while they were planning on leaving anyway by the time the police arrived, the situation ruined the outing for the mothers and the children.
“We did our walk of shame with our kids in front of the entire pool, completely humiliated,” Buchanan says.”
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