Ohio mom faces criticism for breastfeeding twins in a public space near school-aged kids

A mother of 4 was told to "cover up" when breastfeeding her twin babies.

Jennifer Mancuso, 38, was breastfeeding her twins at their nursery school when she was asked to remove herself to a private area.

The director of the facility informed her that she was "offending" other parents by breastfeeding her daughters Aria and Asher, 18-months-old.

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When is a child too old to nurse? Ive heard so many opinions over the years, I thought we could address some of them: . When the baby starts to cut a tooth? - My youngest tooth cutter was in her 4th month. Some babies are born with a tooth starting to pop through. Teeth have nothing to do with breastfeeding. . Breastfeeding will rot baby’s teeth? - No it won’t. End of story. . At six months, once they can start eating solid foods? - What does the introduction of other food have to do with breastfeeding? Nonetheless, breastmilk remains by far the best nutritional option and is perfect along with food. . When they turn one and can drink cow’s milk? Wait - why is this even a thing? When they turn one, it is better for them to drink milk from a COW rather than their own mothers milk? Gross. . When they can walk? When they can talk? - Each child develops at different rates. Only one of my four walked before one (Aria). I’ve seen some walking at 8 months! Some children don’t talk until well into their third year or later! Some as early as months! . In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding through six months and with appropriate complementing foods through two years old and beyond. . The AAP also recommends exclusive through six months with continued through one year and longer as mother and child mutually desire, with complementary foods. . My full answer is: it’s no one’s business how long YOU choose to breastfeed YOUR child. You do you, boo! 😘 . What is the wildest reason you’ve heard that a child is “too old” to breastfeed? . Nursing dress: @peekaboobshop 💞 Nursing necklace: @boobie_beads 💞

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"One morning I began nursing Asher on a chair before I left and the director said she needed me to nurse in the back, in the staff room, which is no bigger than a wardrobe."

NURSERY DEEMS BREASTFEEDING "INAPPROPRIATE"

Mancuso who is a passionate advocate for breastfeeding was told that she had to nurse her daughters "privately."

The reason for her removal "out of sight" was that the parents might be offended since some of the children were of school age. Seeing a mother breastfeeding, they explained, could be seen as "inappropriate."

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Wishing everyone the most beautiful and happy Christmas! From our family to yours! Our hearts are overflowed with joy and love and as you can see, my hands are certainly full with cute babies! . I’m curious: what time did your kiddos get up this morning??? And what special traditions do you have with your family? I’m especially interested because my community is made up of people from around the world which I think is spectacular! . My answers: 7:45am (normal time) and we opened stocking stuffers right away and then slowly let each kid open a present one at a time. We like to savor the moment and give each child their own attention. My parents came over around 10am with breakfast (so I didn’t have to cook -which was amazing!) and his parents stopped by shortly after to drop off and exchange gifts. Then I had ALL the kids take a nap at 1pm! They were not happy, but I said don’t worry, it’s just a very short sleep for 17 minutes. Not one complaint and they all fell for my trickery and slept 2 hours! Then we went to hubs family’s house for an amazing dinner! . #familylife #holidays2018 #merrychristmas2018 #momliferocks #twinmomlife

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Babies who are breastfed exclusively for the first 6 months suffer from fewer ear infections, respiratory illnesses, and colic.

FIGHTING FOR MOTHER'S RIGHTS

Mancuso pointed out that the Ohio Revised Code states that breastfeeding in places of public accommodation is allowed.

“A mother is entitled to breastfeed her baby in any location of a place of public accommodation wherein the mother otherwise is permitted.”

Mancuso, who breastfed her two older daughters, refused to back down.

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Tonight was a very proud moment for me!!! Part of my journey, my “Portraits of Motherhood,” was on display at a local art gallery. This was a juried exhibition, so my work had to be selected. There were over 150 entrants and only about 25 or so were selected. . It was so cool having people from all walks of life browsing by and viewing my portrait as an actual WORK OF ART. Tonight #normalizebreastfeeding was taken to a new level! 🤯💞 . Are you kidding me?! 🥰🥰🥰 It felt great and has definitely inspired me to do more. . Also so thankful that the girls were able to ride around in comfort and style with our new @nuna_usa TAVO strollers! They were so easy to maneuver in and out of the crowded room and the girls were completely comfortable and content the entire time! There was even enough storage room for their coats and a diaper bag! . 2019 FRESH Art Exhibition - Art Gallery: @summitartspace Juror: @mothersbaughamy Strollers: @nuna_usa TAVO (Aspen)

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THE BENEFITS OF BREASTFEEDING

Babies who are breastfed have hardier constitutions, doctors explain. Breast milk contains antibodies that help the infant fight off viruses and bacteria and lowers the baby's susceptibility to allergies.

Statistically, babies who are breastfed exclusively for the first 6 months suffer from fewer ear infections, respiratory illnesses, and colic.

AN APOLOGY AND A CHANGE IN POLICY

Mancuso stood her ground and demanded an apology from the nursery's directors - and she got it.

"By the end of September, I spoke with the director who accepted that she'd misunderstood the company policy regarding privacy. I told her that a misunderstanding like that is not acceptable."   

The nursery apologized to Mancuso, and has reformed their policy to comply with the State's Law and allows breastfeeding in their premises in public.

"I'm also very passionate about normalizing it because I want to help other mothers have the strength to see it through and not be afraid to breastfeed in public."

MOTHER SUES TEXAS ROADHOUSE OVER BREASTFEEDING INCIDENT

Like Jennifer Mancuso, Sadie Durbin had a run in with bigotry when breastfeeding her newborn daughter at a Texas Roadhouse restaurant in Louisville Kentucky.

The first-time mother was eating at the restaurant with her family when the restaurant manager tried to cover her with a napkin, placing it over the baby's face.

"She was nursing for maybe five minutes when I saw the manager coming around the corner, walking fast and shaking his head at me with a napkin in his hands.”

The manager told Durbin that he had had "a lot of complaints" and asked her to cover up or desist.

Eventually, Durbin and her family left the restaurant, but she is now suing Texas Roadhouse over the incident.

Breastfeeding in public is legal across the United States, and has been legal in Kentucky, with or without a cover, since 2006.

Like the Ohio Code, Kentucky state law forbids any city or person from restricting a mother from breastfeeding in a location where she is otherwise allowed to be.

In a related story, a mother attacked for breastfeeding her 7-year-old son fights back.

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