Do Mormon girls, the future breast-feeders of tomorrow, want to see their Young Women leaders’ breasts?
Mormons are stereotyped as being baby-making-machines, so when our non-LDS friends started saying, “I thought y’all were all about kids, kids and some mo’ kids at your church, why are y’all trippin’ about women breastfeeding then?” Y’all know we had to find out what they were talking about. Last Saturday, Feminist Mormon Housewives posted a story about a woman they say was released from her calling as Young Women leader and is in jeopardy of losing her temple recommend for breastfeeding uncovered.
Although the woman has asked to remain anonymous the story has garnered media attention and folks everywhere are weighing in on the breasts of the LDS. The FMH post doesn’t give us many specifics and since her identity is being kept private it is hard to find out all the facts. What we gather is that that a complaint was made due to her breastfeeding uncovered during Young Women class in front of LDS girls and other leaders.
Based on our church going experiences trippin’ over breastfeeding is not the norm in the LDS community. We’ve seen it go down on the regular both covered and uncovered. Now the debate over public breastfeeding, uncovered breastfeeding, how old is too old to breastfeed and if Americans are too uptight about breastfeeding…don’t even try to front like that is particular to Mormonism. Just last May, Time Magazine was asking women, “Are you Mom enough?” and yeah Mormons were discussing it, but so was everybody else.
We think that sharing unique and even unpleasant Mormon experiences of our sisters in the Gospel is a good thing and necessary. Asking for support from people within your faith, that is great. Debating your breasts, somebody else’s breasts, ya mama’s breasts, well carry right on. The media acting like there is some church instituted anti-breastfeeding contingency running a muck in the LDS church, ain’t nobody got time for that!
We Sistas have heard plenty about what adult men and women have to say on the subject so we thought; let’s hear it for the girls in the LDS Young Women program. YW would be similar to girl’s youth group in other churches. It is made up of young ladies ages 12 to 17. Over the last few days we took the opportunity to speak to some Young Women and ask their thoughts on uncovered breastfeeding by a leader in front of them during their classes.
At first each of the girls said that they would not want their Young Women leaders to breastfeed uncovered in front of them. All of the girls said that they had seen a women breastfeeding before and the majority said that they planned on breastfeeding when they became mothers. The girls asked questions such as; Why not feed in the mother’s lounge? Why not feed covered? We discussed that some women prefer not to leave their meetings and that some mother’s say their babies’ dislike being covered while eating.
As we talked more some of the girls said that if the baby’s head was uncovered, but they couldn’t see any of the leader’s breast that they would be more comfortable with uncovered breastfeeding. For each of the girls that we spoke with there was no aversion to the act of breastfeeding, but they each did not want to see the naked breast of their leader.
When asked how they felt about the rights of breastfeeding mothers, one girl responded, “I want mom’s to have rights, but don’t women’s rights go for young women too? It’s our class, I think we should get a say too.”
We agree, y’all do have a say! So we want to hear from other young women too, what are your thoughts girls? Do you feel differently than the girls we spoke with? Adults tell us what the young women you’ve been talking to are saying on the subject.
Be Blessed and Highly Favored,
Sista Beehive & Sista Laurel