GMA: Professor Breast Feeds Baby in Anthropology Class
An anthropology teacher conducting a class on “Sex, Gender and Culture,” brought her baby to school and breast-fed her in the middle of class.
The one-year-old daughter of single mother Adrienne Pine, who teaches at American University, had a fever the first week of class. Taking her to daycare wasn’t an option, and she didn’t have any emergency babysitters so it was either cancel class or take or daughter to work, and she opted for the latter.
“It wasn’t the ideal option but the fact is there was no ideal option,” Pine said. “It was the best of the options available to me.”
Good Morning America: Teacher Breast-Fed Sick Baby
Her baby, Lee, was okay at first in class but then started to fuss. Pine then started what she does everywhere – at home, on busses, in restaurants – breast feeding. She continued to teach her class while she breast fed Lee.
“People seem largely charmed by the humanity that I think that children can bring to a workplace environment, without necessarily detracting from the seriousness,” Pine said.
GMA: Students React To Professor’s Breast Feeding
The campus newspaper, The Eagle, discovered a tweet from a student, Jake Edward Carlas:
“Sex, gender, and culture professor, total feminist, walks in with her baby, midway through class breast feeding time #wtf”
The Eagle published a story about Pine’s actions, which upset some students.
“I think what’s inappropriate is that she brought her child to class in the first place,” Student Sarah Miles said. “It’s very distracting to a lot of the students.”
Many students were supportive of Pine.
“She let us know that she was about to do it so I wasn’t too surprised,” Student Nia McCarthy said. “I think she handled it in the most professional way that she could.”
Good Morning America: Melissa Lawrence of Cloudmom
Co-founder of parenting website Cloudmom.com, Melissa Lawrence, shared her feelings on what Pine did.
“I think that in a situation like this, which is unique, and again she wasn’t making a habit of it, we really need to cut her some slack,” Lawrence said.
Finding Childcare for Sick Children isn’t Easy
Pine hopes that this situation will get people talking about how difficult dealing with the childcare system can be.
“Can we set up a sort of collective childcare system, so that not every single woman in the workplace is facing these issues as an individual, but rather, we’re discussing them together,” Pine said.
Good Morning America’s Claire Shipman said American University has not commented because they don’t talk about “personal matters.”
Do you think what Pine did was wrong? Have you had to bring your kids to work?