A New Zealand mother received global attention after a photo of her breastfeeding her 5-month-old son in a grocery store went viral.
Jactina Moana, 18, was pushing a shopping cart with her twin boys when one of the babies started to cry.
“He started crying and I knew he was hungry,” recalls Moana, who had been in the store for two hours with her family. “I didn’t want him to be screaming and kicking around so I decided to feed him in public. I wasn’t going to let him starve and I didn’t really care what people thought.”
Ignoring the stares of passersby, Moana breastfed her child while pushing her shopping cart around the store and posted of a photo of it on social media, according to Daily Mail.
“Honestly mommy’s have no shame if your babies are hungry feed them don’t worry about what other a***holes think because I wouldn’t leave my babies starve that’s for sure,” the mother wrote in a Facebook post.
Moana said that she wanted to share a photo of what she did to empower other mothers.
“I posted the photo because I wanted mums to be proud to breastfeed in public and be proud to be a mum,” she said.
She added: “I wanted to tell mothers out there to have the confidence to do anything.”
The photo quickly went viral. Many commenters offered words of support and encouragement to the young mother.
“That’s what you call a REAL MUM, someone who can multitask, feed the her baby, push the trolley & look in the opposite direction,” one Facebook user wrote.
“Don’t be sorry and who cares if it offends anyone,” another user added. “It’s natural and we have breasts that produce milk for a reason!!”
Others, however, were bothered by the photo.
“Babies deserve better treatment than to be fed in the street by a mother distracted by shopping/phone/movie/mates etc etc etc,” one Daily Mail reader wrote. “Babies deserve total attention, quiet warm still places to feed, regular routines and time to coo and bond while feeding. That is my problem with noggin women these days who think it is all about them and their ‘rights’. They have such low standards of attention, decorum and organization – which they are modeling for their children.”
“Whilst I am all for natural breastfeeding and agree that women should NOT feel ashamed in public for a natural and needed act, I am also pretty sure he wasn’t going to starve to death, in the 20 minutes it would have taken to finish her shopping and find a more private location,” added another. “Time and a place for everything surely.”