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Woman told to 'cover up' while breastfeeding has the best possible response

Indy 100 logo Indy 100 08/08/2018 Lowenna Waters
a woman reading a book © Provided by Independent Print Limited

It's no secret that women who breastfeed their children in public are often harassed, shamed and embarrassed by people that don't think it's appropriate. 

When this mum faced such bigotry, she had the best response possible. Melanie Dudley from Austin, Texas, was breastfeeding her four-month-old son in a restaurant in Cabo San Lucas, when a male stranger approached her and told her to 'cover up'. 

Frustrated, the 34-year-old mother simply took one of her baby blankets, and placed it over her own head, while leaving her breast and the baby exposed. 

Carol Lockwood, a friend of Dudley, posted the photograph on Facebook on 31 July, where it has since gone viral, with more than 195,000 shares. 

Accompanying the image, she wrote: 

A friend’s daughter-in-law was told to “cover up” while feeding her baby, so she did!

I’ve never met her, but I think she’s AWESOME!!! (Please share! With permission, I’ve made this post public — I’m SO over people shaming women for nursing!!!

She continued: 

To reduce speculation: it was a man who asked her to cover up, it was 90 degrees and extremely humid, and, no, she wasn’t in a Muslim country disrespecting traditions. 

Related Facebook post

Shared from Facebook

Speaking to Yahoo after the incident, Dudley said: 

I was on vacation in Cabo San Lucas with my entire family and a man asked me to cover myself.

I’m usually discreet but we were seated in the back of the restaurant.

Since the post went viral, many Facebook users have left messages of support for Melanie, and also vented their frustrations at the level of judgement breastfeeding women are often subjected to. One said: 

  Absolutely nothing wrong with this at all!!! Some people need to stop over reacting to something which is natural, carry on.... xx

Another said: 

The most natural thing since the dawn of time and this is what people want to argue about!?! Well I guess they will have to get over it because there are laws in place to protect what God intended for a mother to do for her child!

Provided by Shutterstock © Shutterstock Provided by Shutterstock

Others had more conservative ideas: 

To a baby, breasts are not sensual. To a man, they are, even when a woman is nursing. I nursed both my kids, and was always discreet. I think nursing is the most beautiful thing ever created, but not for public display!

This isn't the first time a woman has responded in a creative way to being told to cover up while breastfeeding. In September 2017, the Independent reported that new mum Nicolle Blackman was nursing her son in McDonalds in Seattle, Washington, when someone approached her and told her to 'cover up'. She responded in exactly the same way by throwing a blanket over her own head. 

Breastfeeding continues to be a contentious issue. Despite being legal in 50 states in America, just last week police were called on a breastfeeding mother Michelle Ayala because she was feeding her son in a public park. 

Despite the negative feedback, Dudley stands by her decision, telling Yahoo

Breastfeeding is hard enough. This is another layer we don’t need to deal with.

Related: Adorable baby ‘tap dances’ to drum beat (Provided by Newsflare)

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