Our straight talking Lancashire lass takes a sideways look at the daily news.
Breastfeeding and biscuits
Some things in life that are guaranteed to cause strong reactions and frothy outrage. Breastfeeding in public is one of those things, and adverts featuring breastfeeding and biscuits is another!
A rather strange (and weirdly amusing) advert for Oreo biscuits allegedly from South Korea has gone viral. The advert shows a baby sucking on its mother’s nipple, holding an Oreo biscuit – with the caption 'Milk’s favourite cookie'. You know, cause Oreos are for dunking.
I must admit, I found the absurdity of a baby drinking breast milk then eating an Oreo cookie funny. And icky. So very, very icky. But really, the advert is cheeky, but quite innocent. The probable main issue is that you can clearly see the woman’s nipple, so it falls foul of censorship laws.
What’s even more amusing/contrived is that the advert was never intended to go public in the first place, which is either a massive clanger or incredibly clever marketing – because a lot of people are now talking about Oreos. And breast milk. Although the thought of dunking an Oreo in a cup of warm breast milk makes me feel a bit sick.
Do you remember the uproar with the ice cream shop owners in London who were forced to pull their Breast Milk ice cream over health and safety issues (and really, on the grounds of taste). It didn’t help that the ice cream parlour was designed to look like a sex shop. Now that caused a lot of people to freak out.
We tend to forget that breasts are there primarily for feeding babies. Their secondary function is to make men (and some women) happy. So anything that blurs those boundaries is considered gross. And rightly so.
Saying that, breast feeding in general is one of those topics that can bring out the militant side of some mothers.
When a friend of mine had her first baby, she turned into Mother Earth overnight, and would aggressively whip her bosoms out at any given opportunity for a public breast feeding frenzy. Anyone who objected would be subject to the evil eye and a shouty monologue on her right AS A MOTHER to feed her child wherever and whenever she wanted.
Me? I don’t have kids so I’m on the fence with this one. Breast feeding in public is fine, but it would be helpful for mothers to be provided with somewhere private in public places. It’s a mother’s right to breastfeed, but it’s also my right not to have to watch it. And I’m sure most women would prefer somewhere private anyway.
Incidentally, I’m currently writing this article from the Sharjah Emirate, on the outskirts of Dubai. This fascinating city is fairly strict in terms of women’s dress code and how to behave in public. Alcohol isn’t an option because nowhere sells it, and I’m currently not allowed to bare my upper arms in public. This isn’t a problem for me though!
My point is, it’s all relative. If a woman was to throw off her Abaya and start breast feeding in public, she would fall foul of the law. And if an Oreo cookie was involved I’m sure all Hell would break loose.
What do you think? Are adverts with breastfeeding icky or should get get over ourselves and embrace it?