Alyssa Milano copped plenty of backlash (and support, I hasten to add) when she posted this breastfeeding selfie on Instagram in October. But she doesn’t regret it one little bit.
The 41-year-old mum of two says she wasn’t surprised by the attention the photo of her nursing baby Elizabella Dylan received, and that she wanted to make a statement.
“I just think it’s important for women to feel comfortable feeding their babies wherever,” she told E! News at a red carpet event this week. “If we’re in public, we shouldn’t have to go in the bathroom. I don’t want to eat in a public bathroom. Why should I feed my baby in a public bathroom?”
About a week after the selfie, she thumbed her nose at critics by sharing another photo showing her breastfeeding Elizabella while having her make-up done.
She tells E! News she thinks her photos have stirred such strong debate because “it has a lot to do with the sexualisation of women’s bodies”. “I think it’s almost more shocking if you show a picture of the body doing what it’s supposed to be doing than a sexy picture of yourself in a bathing suit or something like that. It’s just a weird double standard I think,” she says.
Milano hit the headlines for a third time when she questioned why she her breastfeeding photos had been criticised at the same time Kim Kardashian was being praised for her naked, oiled-up Paper magazine shoot.
Wait! I don't get it. No disrespect to Kim but… people are offended by my breastfeeding selfies & are fine with her (amazing) booty cover?
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) November 12, 2014
Whether you breastfeed or bottle feed, I think it’s awful for mums to feel they have to hide or justify the choice they make for their baby and family. Just last week we reported on a new mum who was told to cover up while feeding her 12-week-old daughter in London’s exclusive Claridge’s Hotel – it’s hard to believe these conversations are still happening.
Is Alyssa right? Is society more accepting of female nudity than of mums feeding a baby? Tell us your experiences below.