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Myleene Klass has hit back against shamers who have criticised her decision to breastfeed her son, calling for people to “support and respect, not critique” mothers.
The 42-year-old radio host headed to Instagram to share a collection of snapshots of her breastfeeding her 11-month-old son, Apollo alongside a powerful defence of breastfeeding.
In the accompanying caption, the musician opened up about her thoughts on breastfeeding in public and expressed her confusion about why some seem to find it so offensive.
“Uh oh. Some of us mums are being chastised for pumping,” she began her powerful post. “No one bats an eyelid prepping their own breakfast, why choose to get flustered over my baby having his? Boobs were designed to feed.
“How funny that some fat, cells and glands could so deeply offend so many. Being a mum is hard enough. You can't do right for doing wrong. Seemingly, everyone knows how to raise YOUR baby except you.”
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The mum-of-three went on to highlight the various judgements mothers often face about the method they choose to feed their baby.
“If you feed with formula, you're supposedly the devil, if you breastfeed, you’re offending those that don’t or can’t and worse yet, the patriarchy won't be able to control themselves...stop titillating the men folk!” she wrote.
“My body, my baby, my choice. I've been exclusively breastfeeding Apollo for 11 months. He's my miracle baby. It's a part of our bond. I love, LOVE doing it for him.”
She also defended sharing breastfeeding images, believing it helps to “normalise” the feeding process.
“The photos of other women breastfeeding, pumping, normalise things for me and if mine, in turn, do the same for other mothers who feel embarrassed, judged or that they should need to stifle their baby under a muslin lest they offend some wallflower with their life giving, breastfeeding skills, I'll continue posting.”
Klass concluded her post by urging people to respect and support breastfeeding mothers rather than critique them, before going on to list a series of struggles many face in trying to feed their children.
“The leaking, the boulder sized bras cutting up your shoulders, the extra weight your body clings onto, trying not to spill a drop as you decant at work, timing your feeds so you don't explode, watching what you eat and drink, these mums deserve support and respect, not critique,” she wrote.
“What a bunch of babies,” she added.
Since sharing her passionate post, the radio presenter was praised by her followers for shining a light on the subject.
“It’s so deeply ingrained in the patriarchy it’s going to take a long time to dismantle,” one user wrote. “But this is why pictures like yours are SO important and I shared some when I was feeding too. Keep going!”
“Absolutely love this,” another agreed. “As a doctor and breastfeeding mother I see the shame all too often. I do my best to empower patients but often the words of family and friends mean they don’t feel encouraged to continue through the challenges especially in the early days. We need to normalise the conversation. It’s not easy but it is so worth it.”
Others shared their own experiences about being judged when feeding in public.
“Well said Mylene [sic]! I used to hide in toilets to feed my daughter purely to stop other people feeling uncomfortable!” another commented.
“This was me today with my daughter under a muslin in public getting super sweating and nervous having a awful feed due to the fact someone was going to say something as my daughter was kicking and trying pulling it off! The fear of the looks from people was a real thing,” one mum shared.
Klass later headed to Instagram stories to thank her followers for their support and for sharing their own experiences.
“Completely blown away by all your messages since my BF post. From men and woman alike. OMG. The guilt, the sadness, the regret, the lack of confidence that women have been made to feel,” she wrote.
“The looks you get and the judgement are the projection of that person’s insecurities or wishes, and ultimately, it’s no one’s business but yours and your baby’s. Keep up the good work mamas and don’t feed in the loos. You and your baby belong on a pedestal.”
Since welcoming baby Apollo last August, Klass who is also a mum to daughters Ava, 12, and nine-year-old Harper, has been documenting her motherhood journey, including her decision to breastfeed her son.
It isn’t the first time Klass has spoken about her mission to help “normalise” breastfeeding either.
“It's important to normalise breastfeeding, it’s more in this country because I think when you're abroad there's a different feel to it,” she told Daily Mail. “I just want to normalise it so it makes it easier for everyone.”