My breasts are not toys says mother who shared breastfeeding pictures on Instagram
- Michelle Palmer, 40, gave birth to her daughter Alexandria in April 2018
- The mother from New York struggled to get her baby to latch for the first few weeks
- Michelle Palmer, who calls herself a ‘lactivist’, and wants to inspire other women to breastfeed in public
- Michelle says she also gets ‘creepy’ messages from men who sexualize her photos
A mother from New York City who posted pictures of herself breastfeeding is shocked at the filthy messages she has received on her Instagram account.
Michelle Palmer, 40, who has been bombarded with sexualised comments from men asking if she can breast feed them has said her breasts are not sexual toys.
The US ‘lactivist’ who said she struggled at first to breast feed when she gave birth in 2018, said she always knew she wanted to breast feed.
“I struggled to get Alexandria to latch on properly after her birth which meant I could not be sure how much milk she was consuming.”
Michelle who hopes other mothers will find comfort in her experience said it took a month to get comfortable breastfeeding in public, but she soon adjusted.
Now she posts pictures on Instagram using the ‘lactivist’ hashtag and considers herself a lactation activist and an advocate for breastfeeding. She wants other mothers to be proud of breastfeeding but is fed up with all the dirty messages she is receiving from men.
She said: “I was shocked at the response on social media. It was mostly positive, but there were a couple of men who made a few creepy comments like ‘my turn next’ and that kind of thing.
“That happens almost every time I post any breastfeeding picture and I see it all the time on other breastfeeding mums’ picture comments too.”
“I think that’s a huge reason that our western society is so uncomfortable with breastfeeding.”
“We sexualise the female body to such an extent that we can’t understand that a woman’s nipples are a source of nourishment for the next generation, not just playthings for men.”
She said: “The most important part [of being a breastfeeding advocate] is just doing it. Sharing pictures is fun but I just want other women to see me and maybe feel like, ‘if she’s doing it then I can too’.
“That means if I feel like I need to breastfeed my kid, I don’t hold back out of shame, self-consciousness, or fear of what someone else might think or say. I do it and let other people think what they will.”
Michelle has said she plans to continue breastfeeding her daughter who is 28-months old.
“I will stop breastfeeding her when she is two-and-a-half or three.”
Michelle who has received a lot of support and thanks for her pictures on Instagram said that some people believe if a baby has teeth or old enough to ask for milk then they should not be breastfed.
“This is completely untrue. How long a woman breastfeeds is up to her but there are tons of benefits for the baby and mum who keep breastfeeding until two or even longer.
“It’s a beautiful way of giving my child the most perfect food she can get anywhere, with a huge amount of emotional benefits too.”
Learn more about Michelle Palmer here