So the Main Salt Lake City Public Library has a new breastfeeding lounge sponsored by the Utah Breastfeeding Coalition. It's located in one of the storefronts that line the main entry hall of the library, complete with glass walls and open doors. (See lower left side of photograph.)
Having walked past several times, I've noticed the lounge looks an awful lot like one of those mostly-deserted Lovesac stores in the mall, complete with lots of couches and pillows, and one or two patrons who aren't actually looking to buy anything, but would just like a soft place to sit for awhile. And of course, there are babies suckling at the teet.
So anyway, I have a bit of a problem with the breastfeeding lounge being right in the middle of the library in full view of library patrons who sit at the tables on the other side of the entry hall or who walk by on their way to the checkout desk.
I mean, breastfeeding is fine and dandy, and yes, it's natural. Some people even consider it a beautiful act. I'm not one of those people, but hey, whatever brings a tear to your eye. I even support there being breastfeeding lounges available in public venues for women with infants. I just don't support the lounges being public themselves. Wouldn't a private room near the restrooms be more appropriate?
Public breastfeeding proponents say that breastfeeding is a natural and beautiful act that should not be relegated to the dungeons and closets and dirty restrooms. Women should be able to engage in this beautiful act out in the open. No more shame!
But here's how I see it: Sex is also a beautiful and natural act. But it is a beautiful and natural act that ought to be done in private. And though not beautiful acts, the things done in restrooms are also natural acts, but there's a reason public restrooms are themselves private. In general, I think any bodily function ought to be done in private. And to me, that includes breastfeeding.
But maybe I'm just being prudish. Or maybe I'm just a childless woman who doesn't understand because I've never been there.
What are your feelings on the matter? Where do you think an appropriate venue for breastfeeding is? What kind of limitations, if any, do you think breastfeeding venues ought to have?
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