Saturday, March 14, 2009

I was told I couldn't nurse my baby in public today!

While attending the Tulsa Home and Garden show today (Sat. 3/14) my family was looking forward to attending a cooking demonstration by Kitchen Craft (http://www.cookforlife.com/). We actually own several thousand dollars worth of their product and I was hoping to get some new tips on cooking with their products. When we found their booth, they were at the end of a cooking demo, passing out food on a plate for attendees to sample. I sat in the very back row after removing my 4 month old baby from the stroller with the plan to quietly nurse her and watch the demonstration. BEFORE I EVEN STARTED to feed my baby, a very rude woman associated with Kitchen Craft approached me and immediately demanded that I leave if I was going to feed my baby. I calmly told her that I was going to watch and nurse at the same time and she informed me that it was against health code regulations...keeping in mind, that while she says this - a single plate of food is being passed around with people picking food off of it. My nursing baby nor my breast milk would be any where close to any food or food items. When I refused to leave, and informed her that the state of Oklahoma allows nursing mothers to breastfeed in any public location, she stormed off to get security. (see www.ok.gov/health/organizations for further info) Bonnie J. Polak, Special Events Director for the Home Builders Association of Greater Tulsa arrived shortly thereafter, offering me a private area in their lounge. While she was incredibly supportive, I replied that I didn't need a private location. However, I did choose to leave and visit her office in order get her business card and to file a formal complaint against the demonstrators of Kitchen Craft. I will also be writing to the president of their company with my extreme anger at being put in a very embarrassing and humiliating situation. The women there were incredibly rude, ignorant of state law, and made a huge scene about NOTHING. I left in tears and quite frankly, a very bad taste about the products they are selling.

5 comments:

Abigail (aka Mamatouille) said...

Oooh, that makes me SO angry for you. What a nightmare situation - and if someone quoted a STATE LAW to me I would definitely back off (not that I would ever tell someone they couldn't breastfeed!). Against health and safety regulations? Name the code. Which one is it? I bet nobody could name a code!!! It was just her personal preference that she didn't want you breastfeeding and she turned into such a bully about it. Sara - you go, girl! I'm so proud of you for telling her that you didn't agree with her. She actually called security? It's not like your boobs were a dangerous weapon or something. Oh my word. That is ridiculous. I used to read The Lactivist blog back when she wrote posts regularly, and so I've heard of this sort of thing happening in America, just never to someone I know. I've never had any problems over here in Japan - I get looks but nobody dares say anything to me! Oh my gosh. Poor Sara! I feel so bad that you had to go through such a humiliating situation. Keep up the good work of breastfeeding! Your baby's body thanks you!

Abigail (aka Mamatouille) said...

Sara, I just posted about this, too!
http://stephenandabigail.blogspot.com/2009/03/call-security-theres-baby-whos-eating.html

envoguephoto said...

Are we still living in the dark ages? I truly do not understand why this would offend anyone!

Jill said...

That's stupid! Shouldn't we all me more worried about whether or not the baby is being fed? That seems like the bigger concern to me. It's not like we are dealing with waterless cookware or something. It doesn't hurt anyone.

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