Texas Mom Ordered To Stop Breastfeeding at the Mall

   By SheSpeaksTeam  Jan 04, 2013

Whether your infant is formula fed or breastfeeding, all moms know that when our little ones are hungry there’s not a lot of time before the dreaded baby meltdown happens. Babies can go from being perfectly happy and satisfied one minute to hungry and inconsolable the next. One Texas mom found herself in just this type of situation while at a shopping mall with family recently, but was soon ordered to stop breastfeeding when a store official spotted her on a mall bench.

Houston’s local KHOU reports about Brittany Warfield’s experience while breastfeeding her 7-month-old on a bench outside of one of the stores her family was shopping in. The mother of three claims she was accosted by the manager of Hollister while she was peacefully breastfeeding her baby under the cover of a jacket. Warfield reports to FoxNews that she was careful to cover up saying, “I laid her in my lap. I took her hooded jacket and draped it around her head and I covered myself. That way, no one could see me nursing.”

Warfield explains what happened next, “He came out and he was yelling. He said, ‘You can’t do this here. This is not where you do that. You can’t do that on Hollister property. We don’t allow that.’ I said, ‘It’s Texas. I can breastfeed anywhere I like.’ He said, ‘Not at Hollister. Your stroller is blocking the way. You have to go.’”

Though the topic of breastfeeding in public has always been a hot button issue for both those who oppose it and those who are for it, Warfield was right when she told the manager that according to Texas law she is entitled to breastfeed anywhere she is authorized to be. But there may be some loopholes in the law that allow private businesses to ask breastfeeding customers to leave due to dress code violations or conduct. Warfield says she feels she was humiliated and wants nothing more than an apology, but has not yet received one from any Hollister store officials.

What do you think of this mother’s ordeal while breastfeeding at her local shopping mall?

Do you think private businesses should be forced to comply with the law allowing mothers to breastfeed wherever they are authorized to be?

Make a Comment

Capinnc by Capinnc | NASHVILLE, NC
Jan 20, 2013

My daughter is almost two, and was breastfed almost exclusively for her first year. I found it difficult to breastfeed in public, and would pump and bring a bottle when I could. I happily shop in stores that cater to breastfeeding women. My mall actually has a breastfeeding room, lucky me! But all of that aside, why are people so threatened by breastfeeding? Is it jealousy? Maybe they weren't nurtured by their mothers. No one would kick a woman out for bottle feeding. It's not like she had her breast hanging out in the store. The time has come for people to grow up, and not be so threatened by boobies!

nothingnew by nothingnew | ATASCADERO, CA
Jan 16, 2013

If it's a private business then I think they should be able to enforce their rules. I for one do not want to see somebody breastfeeding their baby in public. "Discreet" is not parking yourself in front of a store and covering the baby with an infant hoodie, it's taking your baby someplace private where others aren't made uncomfortable by your choices. It's legal to pick your nose in public but it's not a great way to show respect to others in your community.

BabyLove2012 by BabyLove2012 | Lexington, NC
Jan 14, 2013

I think there should be restrictions/limitations on this as I myself find it offensive when a woman pulls it out in public and in no way sort or form is discreet about it! I have seen this happen many times in my local Wal-mart and it looks like they are begging for attention when they show all. In a place such as wal-mart they certainly get attention too!! Oogglers from every angel!!! I think this is over use/kill of the law! I mean please, who wants to see all that ! Dont spoil a good thing for everyone be discreet and it will be more accepted!! If you are nursing discreetly, than what's the issue

thriftysoul by thriftysoul | PERU, IN
Jan 14, 2013

If you are not showing nakedness, and this mother indicates she was discreetly covering the activity, then what is the problem? If she was hanging it all out like she was making some kind of statement, I might feel differently, but babies need to be fed and with discretion, no one should be offended. No one is being forced so see and nothing is horrible. Puh-lease! As long as people say, pump and carry, the controversy won't be resolved. When this beautiful and completely natural and requisite act - in fact, in this case, a legal one - is allowed to be treated in such a humiliating manner without recourse, things won't change and the uneducated will stay that way. Only when we stand up with confidence will things improve.

tuggerkat by tuggerkat | Rural Valley, PA
Jan 12, 2013

Some people cannot find good in anything. I wonder how many people that are complaining were breast fed. Wahat would they do with a hungry infant in a mall. McDonalds?????

Charlenerea by Charlenerea | Jacksonville, FL
Jan 08, 2013

I am a mother and I do not believe that you should just be allowed to breastfeed wherever you are when the situation arises. I believe that there are alternatives there for individuals so that while I am in public, I am not forced to see or my family isn't forced to see. I have been in some horrible situations with friends that breastfeed that have molded and affected my decision. I think that if a company says that they don't want someone breastfeeding in their store, then don't breastfeed.

RheaWhite by RheaWhite | PORT HUENEME, CA
Jan 07, 2013

Hollister should apologize to the mother for humiliating her in public.Breast feeding is a beautiful and natural act which should not be punished and should not be frowned upon. In a perfect world I would be able to breast feed in public without getting disgusted looks from passers by. But, this is not a perfect world and I do believe that since this is such a controversial issue, mothers who feed their children breast milk should use a breast pump to extract milk and store it in bottles when planning on taking their children out in public in order to protect themselves from being humiliated in public or having to feel insecure about feeding their child. Meanwhile, those same mothers should write to their representatives and get involved in government to fight for their right to breast feed anywhere they please as long as they are covered.

msfriendly by msfriendly | MONROE, WI
Jan 07, 2013

If you are nursing discreetly, than what's the issue? And, it wasn't even inside the store! I think this is a reason to boycott Hollister!

ToyaFab by ToyaFab | ELKINS PARK, PA
Jan 06, 2013

This is so awful. I have a child and he is still being breast fed, And when I say he gets inconsolable when he doesn't get breast fed on time I mean he totally melt down so I understand her feelings. I have breast fed in public before here in Pennsylvania where I live and even though am completely covered and no one can see my breast people still seem so offended by what am doing and go out of there way to show there displeasure. People will be mean no matter where you are whether its at Hollister or not. Let him keep his apology and just prayer for him because Its obvious he is sick!

stefaniek99 by stefaniek99 | SILVER SPRING, MD
Jan 06, 2013

Yet another reason never to go near a Hollister store. It's not exactly a couture boutique, but the manager made it seem like this responsible mother was turning away high-end clientele. If they're worried about nudity, they should take a look at some of the ads of half naked people inside the store.

MamaTutu by MamaTutu | Waterbury, CT
Jan 05, 2013

The more I think about this, the more frustrated I get. I have been places where people have had conversations with me because they could not tell I was nursing and once they realize, they politely excuse themselves or apologize for the "interruption". Most women that I know, nurse so discreetly that you would not be able to tell just by glancing over.

MorningGloryGiGi by MorningGloryGiGi | Arlington, TX
Jan 05, 2013

I cannot see how there would be a loophole in the law for breastfeeding in public, since the law clearly states that anywhere the mother is allow to be she can breastfeed. I suppose if hey posted a sign saying no breastfeeding the same as no shirt, no shoes, no service, they might be able to legally prohibit it. However, I can only imagine how many mothers that might drive away from their business. It is totally crazy that folks are offended by women using their breast to do what they were designed to do, but have no trouble seeing women expose their breasts almost completely by the clothes they wear. This store deserves in a nurse in.

mixedlex by mixedlex | Whitye Hall, MD
Jan 05, 2013

I breastfeed my son and I am not comfortable feeding him in public, but sometimes I have to. Our public feedings have pretty much been restricted to restaurants. Most of the time I feed him in the car, but if anyone ever asked me to stop or leave it would break my heart. It's like the image of your establishment is more important than sustaining my child's life.

MamaTutu by MamaTutu | Waterbury, CT
Jan 05, 2013

I am horrified for this woman. She did what was right for her child and all the manager did was behave like a close-minded piece of ....work! At the very least, this manager owes her an apology. He should be embarrassed by his behavior.

thebeverlyhillsmom by thebeverlyhillsmom | BEVERLY HILLS, CA
Jan 04, 2013

I did not nurse much and would never do it in public but that is me, I think a nursing mom should be able to do it wherever and whenever she needs too. Food is a basic human need and babies do not wait. I think the guy was 100% wrong and I think Hollister at very minimum owes her a formal apology. It sounds like it was probably a younger guy who really just doesn't have a clue but that is no excuse.I don't think some businesses should be exempt from the rules at all, thats like saying some places should be allowed to discriminate its never okay. Shame on Hollister.