SAMANTHA'S CHRONICLES

Breastfeed shamer

Funny how people fail to intervene until one person speaks up

In Summary

• Restaurant peace disturbed by a man irate at a woman breastfeeding

Breastfeeding
Breastfeeding
Image: COURTESY

“I have to go,” Alan says, looking over at his friend. “We will discuss more about this later.”

He kisses me again on the cheek and goes to join his friend. I stare at him for a little bit, trying to work out how I feel about seeing him after he ghosted me for so long. My phone buzzes. It’s the hyena again, Simon.

This guy actually sent me a harambee card. At first I thought it was a mistake. Which man in his right senses sends a woman he’s trying to get with a freaking harambee card? And then I figured he was trying to show me he had other commitments, hence his inability to pay for the gym, that he had rudely suggested I should join! Ha, ha! So I sent him a contribution for his fundraiser, knowing it would make him feel like less than a man. I wonder how that’s working out for him. I read the message he has sent.

 

It’s a long rant. He’s complaining that I have been ignoring his texts. He feels that’s not how we should operate. Blah blah blah. He sounds quite unhinged, honestly. I look back at Alan. He’s engrossed in conversation with his friend. On the table next to him, a woman is breastfeeding her baby. What a cutie pie he is. I signal to the waiter for my bill as a man shoves past me, hitting my outstretched hand. He heads straight to the woman.

“Do you have to subject us all to this? Why not breastfeed in the bathroom?” he asks her.

Oh, dear. The woman looks terrified. She doesn’t respond and looks cornered as the man continues giving her a hard time about feeding her baby in a restaurant, where everyone else is essentially doing the exact same thing — eating. I see Alan look over at them but he doesn’t say anything. A few other diners are staring as well but no one is speaking up for the poor lady. My waiter comes with my bill.

“Why are you allowing your customers to be harassed?” I ask him. He looks over at the man who is still giving the mom a lecture, but he doesn’t go over. This is ridiculous. I stand up and approach him.

“Hi, is there a problem?” I ask him.

“Yes,” he responds. “Look at what she is doing out here in the open. She should go to the bathroom!” he rasps.

“Sure,” I respond. “If you’ll eat your breakfast in the toilet, too.”

 

“What?” he asks.

“Exactly,” I say. “Use that same incredulity towards yourself for suggesting a baby should eat in a toilet but you shouldn’t.”

“But… but it’s disgusting!” he says.

“You think this is awkward?” I ask. “Wait until her husband gets hungry.”

“Why does she want strange men to see her breasts?” he asks, not getting my joke.

“If anyone in this room is aroused by children eating then they have a bigger problem than her breasts,” I say.

“Yeah!” someone shouts. “Leave the lady alone.”

A few other voices chime in and soon it’s a chorus. The man walks away, clearly embarrassed.

“Thank you for that,” the woman says, looking grateful.

“Yes, that was awesome,” Alan says.

“I didn’t hear you say anything,” I say, looking at him and his friend.

“You had everything under control, but we were ready with the punches if needed,” he says with a laugh.

The manager comes over and introduces herself.

“Breakfast for both of you is on the house,” she says to the mom and me. “Sorry about that, one of us should have interceded earlier.”