Your Reaction to this Picture says more about You than it does about Me. {Nudity}

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This week was World Breastfeeding Week and you may have come across magical pictures like this on your social feeds.

Because Instagram and Facebook now allow photos like this as well as uncensored birth photos.

How pictures like this make you feel can help lead you to your next actions:

Are you disgusted?

Educate yourself. Educate yourself about birth and about women’s bodies. Ask yourself why you feel that way. Now take all that information and use it to empower yourself—to be an advocate, an ally, to teach others, to add empathy into the world about something that touches us all.

Feeling embarrassed?

Don’t be! I’m not. I did have fear posting this photo. But my fear is breakable, my community strong. I remember that it just takes one drop to ripple an entire pond.

Sexualizing my body?

Know that you can’t—only I can, and I’m not giving up that power. Those thoughts say more about you than they do about me. Think of the females in your life—how you would feel if someone dictated what their body meant and acted on it? Change your thinking and make the world a safer place for women to celebrate their bodies.

Feeling like you could never?

You could. You may have lain vulnerable and open, raw and powerful, bringing life into this world. You may have roared as contractions rocked your body, bearing down. You may have given in to a space where shame doesn’t exist, just unbridled strength.

You could never? Mama, you already did. Remember your strength, your beauty, and never forget that those things live inside you—are you—and you can draw on them when you need to empower yourself.

Feeling pride for this community, the birth community that you are a part of because you were born once too?

You see the magic, you get the movement. You’re tickled pink by that drop of mama’s milk, you understand the history it holds, and you honor those roots. Take hold of them, plant them in others, and watch them span generations.

Your actions matter. Your words matter. Make them count.

Happy World Breastfeeding Week!

author: Lauren Archer

Image: Author's own

Editor: Khara-Jade Warren

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Lauren Archer

Lauren Archer is a 30 something Postpartum Doula with a passion for empowering women. She is an advocate for educating people on the importance of postpartum care and for helping them to realize that parenting is not a singular journey but rather a group effort. She lives in Los Angeles and happily drinks coffee every morning with her husband, son, and 2 pups. She will never turn down a donut. Lauren believes newborns are yummy and mamas are stronger than they give themselves credit for! Connect with her on Instagram or her website.

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Sharon Humphreys Aug 20, 2018 2:07am

Gorgeous!🙏💕

Joyce Elaine Dauby Aug 16, 2018 5:25am

Lauren Archer , oh of course! I went back and looked and yes, I remember those days, milk lets down on both sides, baby's nursing on one side and brrast leaks on the other side, while waiting it's turn♡♡♡♡

Lauren Archer Aug 16, 2018 5:16am

It is milk leaking! It is not recommended to ever feed a baby with a pierced nipple since it is a choking hazard.

Lauren Archer Aug 16, 2018 5:16am

It is milk leaking! It is not recommended to ever feed a baby with a pierced nipple since it is a choking hazard.

R Rafael Cade Aug 15, 2018 3:54am

Nothing wrong with

R Rafael Cade Aug 15, 2018 3:54am

Beautiful

Graham Hooper Aug 8, 2018 7:35am

..First of All. and the Breast Leaking Milk is not a Problem. How many Peple are Offended by Cows being Milked bu Hand or Machine ? Why Worry about Humans do it. I Tried Breast Milk when my "Ex" has beenLeaking and was surprised by How Sweet it was. Beautiful Photo..

Art Haberland Aug 8, 2018 1:07am

lovely vision of pure love. Love your hair too, I am envious that people can colour their hair anyway they want these days and nobody seems to care.

Pat Cochran Baker Aug 7, 2018 10:31pm

Does anyone consider the “boastfulness”of this image and its affect on mothers who chose not to or cannot breastfeed? It is merely a choice not an award.

Payton Jett Aug 7, 2018 10:28pm

It shocked and delighted me to see her other nipple expressing milk at the same time. No idea why. But I found the whole image beautiful and educational.

Robyn Stone Aug 7, 2018 8:04pm

Beautiful! Makes me miss the days when my babies were babies.

Khara-Jade Warren Aug 7, 2018 6:56pm

I actually thought that was milk leaking on the right, but perhaps I am wrong. She is actually a post partum doula and a lactation consultant so I'm pretty sure she's got it covered. ;-)

Lydia Fedos Aug 7, 2018 5:02pm

Beautiful! At a former job that focused on babies, we always celebrated Breastfeeding Month in August. I've never understood people who were "offended" by someone breastfeeding her child. Be offended by violence and poverty - not someone nourishing her own baby.

Phyllis Miller Aug 7, 2018 4:29pm

I LOVE this picture. The best and happiest time of my life we're the nursing years and I miss them. It's about time we stopped censoring the natural process of women's bodies. Beautiful picture, beautiful mama, happy baby. Enjoy every second ❤️

Scott Follett Jr. Aug 7, 2018 4:13pm

Wonderful article and I wholeheartedly agree with its message. However, there is one aspect that concerns me and I don't think takes into account what we fundamentally are as human creatures. We are sexual. We are ying and yang. When we try to ignore or oppress the very natural sexual responses that our bodies experience, involuntarily, before conscious thought has even been able to define and create a context for it we do ourselves a disservice. You are a young, beautiful, vibrant woman and will ignite sexual responses constantly. And these responses are normal and healthy and powerful and make us feel alive. They don't dictate what your body means, only another's perception of it. And they surely don't give anyone permission to act on it any more than being overcome by a beautiful painting in a gallery would give one permission to take it home with them. But it seems to me that attacking something as natural as our sexual perceptions of each other, as though we shouldn't be having these entirely natural and healthy reactions (you know, ones that are merely responsible for the continuation of our species), seems counter-productive and Sisyphean in nature. These responses are never going away. They are us. What we should be talking about, especially to teenage boys and girls, is that our feelings do not have to dictate our behavior. It's ok to lust. It's such an innate and natural emotion. But it's not ok to let that lust drive you to do things to anyone else without their permission. And we should also be teaching them that anyone else's perception of you in any realm, be it intellect, appearance, sexuality, or any of the myriad categories we use to think about and evaluate each other, dictates nothing about you. It is their opinion, their experience, and one they are entitled to as long as they don't cross any physical boundaries or harass you. That's a very long way of saying that I find no shame in seeing both motherly innocence and a vibrant sexuality in the photo above.

Dana Park Aug 7, 2018 2:42pm

It is a natural and a beautiful part of a mother and baby's life and very immune building for her child.I do hope that the breast nipple he is suckling is not pierced like her right one or discharge of milk might be difficult.

Rosalinda Much Aug 7, 2018 12:34pm

Perhaps it's because I'm European not American, but it's hard to see how this even bears comment, never mind an article! Breast feeding is the most natural thing in the world. For most of us, it's how we first got fed.

Joyce Elaine Dauby Aug 7, 2018 5:37am

One beautiful picture! Looks like maybe a pierced nipple? Does that make nursing more challenging or does it make no difference?

Shannon Elhart Aug 6, 2018 7:09pm

PRIDE, pure pride... in womanhood, in the very sweet memories of breastfeeding my own two babes, heartache at my one baby who I couldn't breastfeed bc his life was too brief, joy at this movement in our world for the feminine energy and the beauty of being a woman without sexualizing her, hope that change comes quickly, and motivation to use my voice more. That is how this image makes me feel <3

Ezben Gerardo Aug 6, 2018 5:04pm

Maybe it was being around breastfeeding women a lot, or something else. But my 1st thought was that her hair was pretty, my second was that she was risking losing that necklace. All 3 of my kids would've ended up yanking on it.

Anand Aug 6, 2018 11:59am

It says a lot about you as well. That you are an attention seeking exhibitionist whore who won't hestiate to even use her own child to seek more attention and expose her body for all to see. Why don't you just burn all of your clothes and live like the animal that you are. You make me sick. I hope your son doesn't suffer too much because of having such a terrible and sick mother. Do you also expose yourself in front of other young children? I hope you rot in hell pedo

Jennifer Evangelista Aug 6, 2018 11:43am

Love this- how could something that illustrates something so natural, so life-giving, so nourishing be considered anything but beautiful? Good for you for posting this.