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GASP! A Breast!?! On a Parenting Magazine?! Oh the HORRORS!

Looking for The Lactivist? She's retired. But you CAN still find Jen blogging. These days, she's runs A Flexible Life. Join her for life, recipes, projects and the occasional rant.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Yeah, seriously... if you haven't already heard, the cover of BabyTalk magazine is causing quite a stir right now...

Here it is, in all it's highly "offensive" glory. Shield your children's eyes...prepare the shredder....and hold your breath!

Oh no! It's a breastfeeding baby! And you can actually see a little bit of boobie!


Is anyone else getting tired of this debate? I mean seriously...there's no nipple showing... I can see that much of a breast watching pretty much any Hollywood red carpet event. Heck, I can pretty much see that much breast on the teens walking around my local mall. ;)

If you find it hard to believe that the general public...especially the moms that make up the target audience for this magazine are up in arms over such a simple and beautiful picture, take a look at what's being reported by the Associated Press.

"I was SHOCKED to see a giant breast on the cover of your magazine," one person wrote. "I immediately turned the magazine face down," wrote another. "Gross," said a third.

These readers weren't complaining about a sexually explicit cover, but rather one of a baby nursing, on a wholesome parenting magazine β€” yet another sign that Americans are squeamish over the sight of a nursing breast, even as breast-feeding itself gains greater support from the government and medical community.


One mother who didn't like the cover explains she was concerned about her 13-year-old son seeing it.

"I shredded it," said Gayle Ash, of Belton, Texas, in a telephone interview. "A breast is a breast β€” it's a sexual thing. He didn't need to see that."

The editors of BabyTalk say that they've had more feedback about this cover (more than 700 comments so far) than about any other cover or article they've ever run. Susan Kane, BabyTalk's editor explained her surprise at the public's reaction to breastfeeding much the way I did in one of the earliest posts here on the Lactivist...

β€˜It's not like women are whipping them out with tassels on them!’

On the other hand, maybe we should be? People pay good money for that kind of stuff... ;)

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  1. Anonymous Jax | 10:29 AM |  

    Wonder if I can buy it over here? I'd buy it to support that picture. D'you think that's why they did it?

  2. Blogger Jennifer | 10:43 AM |  

    LOL, you don't even have to buy it! It's a FREE magazine that's given away at places like Babies R Us and OB offices. ;)

    Maybe that's the problem? If it was being given out by midwives and birth centers, I bet you'd hear less freaking out...

    I can't even fathom being so uptight that you'd go to the trouble of SHREDDING it...sheesh!

  3. Anonymous Jax | 10:44 AM |  

    hm, now been to read the article and realised it's a free mag, all the more power to them.

    and we go back to the fact that never when I breastfed in public did I sit there with my breast popped out.

  4. Blogger Jennifer | 10:49 AM |  

    Really? I always thought (from reading these articles) that all nursing in public moms simply whipped their shirts off and aimed one nipple at passersby while letting the babe nurse off the other one.


  5. Blogger Natural Mom | 1:05 PM |  

    Just goes to prove my theory. Most Americans suck. LOL

  6. Blogger Jennifer | 1:30 PM |  

    Heeeeeeeeeeeeyyyyyyyyyy! :-P

    In reality, if more Americans "sucked" we'd probably be a bit more used to breasts with a baby attached to them...

  7. Anonymous Anonymous | 3:29 PM |  

    jee looks like we have become to up tight to let what GOD intened our breasts to be used for feeding our children in the first place as only SEX objects for men to play with and oggle over.

  8. Anonymous Anonymous | 3:45 PM |  

    if ppl were more concerned about breastfeeding than porn this world would be a better place to live as for the woman who was concerned about her 13 yrold son hes probably seen more in playboy mags. than he noticed aboutr a baby feeding. how sad this world is to think breastfeeding is obscene yet all the websites that offer sex is right out there for anyone to get to.

  9. Blogger Gina | 6:46 AM |  

    I got that issue of the magazine in the mail last week and was THRILLED to see that cover but knew immediately it would cause a firestorm even though the "color" on the aerola had been airbrushed.

    And shredding it?! That's a little over the top.

  10. Blogger Natural Mom | 9:17 AM |  

    I know, I know.... and present company excluded of course!


    Dh grew up in Canada and he says it was no big deal to see a Mom at the bus stop nursing. He had friends growing up whose Moms were nursing toddlers and it was all good.

    Sigh. We have so far to go!

  11. Blogger My Baby and More | 11:16 PM |  

    We will get there though Natural Mom. Just think how much easier it will be for our children. Essentially, the more "exposure" through pictures, media, real life Mamas and babes breastfeeding etc. the better for our daughters and granddaughters. My 17 month old wears a t-shirt all the time that says, "Nursing Mama in Training". Sometimes the looks I get - Ouch! Like "Shame on you!" I just grin though. :) It is all worth it. And it melts my heart when I see her nursing her baby doll.

  12. Blogger nova147 | 8:23 AM |  

    I had to share this link. . . it shows some "acceptable" displays of the female breast, in contrast to "unacceptable" displays. LOL


    Crazy how our society views things.

  13. Anonymous kmcrn | 5:21 PM |  

    My first thought was "what a beautiful picture." The fact that people, especially women, are so infuriated over a natural event that nourishes our babies is the outrage!

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