The “Brelfie,” or breastfeeding selfie, is becoming increasingly popular after a young mother was banned from a Facebook group for posting a photo of her son while breastfeeding.
Kaya Wright posted the photo, which depicts her son breastfeeding while in the bath. It was reported on Facebook for nudity violations although nothing is shown. The photo had been shared in a closed Facebook group about breastfeeding titled “Liverpool Community BAMBIS.”
“At first I thought it was a joke,” Wright told the Liverpool Echo. “Facebook said the image had been reported for nudity but you really couldn’t see anything. Then I was a bit disappointed at the thought that someone in the group had reported the image.”
Wright went on to say that she does not think anything of posting brelfies to Facebook, and considers it simply sharing and preserving moments of her children as they grow.
This instance is just one of many to help increase the discussions surrounding whether breastfeeding selfies should be taken and shared or not. Another example found the Claridge Hotel asking one its customers to cover her baby’s head with a napkin, writes Natasha Hinde for The Huffington Post UK.
Netmums, one of the top parenting sites in the UK, is calling the trend one of the biggest parenting trends of 2015. The photographs are backed by 88% of moms, who argue that social media should not be deleting them.
According to one breastfeeding mom, Emma Taylor, “you can’t see a lot” in the photos because the baby’s head is typically in the way anything graphic. She went on to mention the half-naked women who are featured in magazines and ads every day. “If that’s acceptable,” she said “then why isn’t the top bit of my breast acceptable?”
However, not everyone shares Taylor’s view, including Angela Epstein, who does support breastfeeding, but not the brelfie.
“This whole brelfie cult smacks of naked exhibitionism,” she told ITV’s This Morning. “It’s an attention-seeking spectacle and it’s almost parading children as a commodity. It’s also rubbing it in the faces of those women who can’t breastfeed.”
In the meantime, the photo taken off Facebook has been reinstated. Wright said that recently she has noticed a change in attitudes concerning breastfeeding across her home country of England. She said that since her son was born, people have continually asked her when she will begin to bottle feed him.
“In the Western world breasts are sexualised, you see celebrities with their boobs out so people associate them with sex. But people need to remember that first and foremost, breasts are for feeding babies.”