Target staff defends woman breastfeeding when she is verbally assaulted

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Warning: some of the language and visuals in this post and the video below may be inappropriate for some viewers.

TORRINGTON, CT – A video of a woman who was verbally assaulted while breastfeeding her baby in a Target store in Torrington is going viral. In just eight hours it’s been viewed more than 1 million times and shared more than 20,000 times, our affiliate WTIC in Connecticut reports.

Jessie Maher, who lives in Canton, posted the video Monday morning after she says she was “verbally assaulted by an old man in Target for breastfeeding my baby.” Maher filmed the entire incident.

It all began around 11:30 a.m. Monday morning at the Torrington Target store. Jessie wrote that before she started filming, the man looked at her and angrily asked, “Can’t you do that somewhere else? That’s f****** disgusting.” He also called her a “whore.”

Jessie wrote on her Facebook page that after she responded that she had the right to breastfeed and that he should “walk the f*** away,” he complained to the store’s staff and asked for a refund. It turns out, the staff didn’t feel too sorry for the man.

About halfway through the video another patron comes over to Jessie and offers her support, saying she wasn’t doing anything wrong. “You shouldn’t be ashamed of feeding your baby, okay? He can go the other way. This is a beautiful moment right now, if he doesn’t like it he can go,” the woman can be heard saying.

The man says that Jessie was being disrespectful to him, to which the defender replied, “Then don’t look.”

Then, something truly amazing happens: a group of Target staff members comes and stands between the man and Jessie, defending her actions. You can see one of the employees gesturing for the man to walk away and leave.

Jessie wrote in a comment on her post that one of the male employees “was so sweet… He kept saying, ‘It’s your right to nurse where ever you want here.”

According to an article from the Huffington Post in 2015, Target’s employee handbook states that “guests may openly breastfeed in our stores,” and further adds that “Target’s policy supports breastfeeding in any area of our stores, including our fitting rooms, even if others are waiting.”

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  • Shiloh's Mom

    The man was obviously overreacting, and breastfeeding a baby is surely not disgusting. BUT the mom could be more discreet. She makes no attempt to conceal her breast with a blanket but has a free hand to film the whole thing, including her fully exposed breast. I think she went out of her way to call attention to herself.

    • 1bloginmillions

      SM – “fully exposed breast”? In the world of media a fully exposed breast is the nipple. I see no nipple here because there is a baby latched onto it. I don’t see the bottom or side of her breast because there is a baby laying across her. I see the top of a breast to the point where a child is latched on. She’s not in a picture window, she’s sitting in a cafe in the morning where there are obviously not a ton of people. AND she didn’t start recording until the man obviously confronted her. Recording these days is the best protection short of a gun, IMO.

  • Mom

    The Man over[reacted, but the Mother could have been a little discreet, she could of avoided all the attention and drama.

  • Roxie

    I breast fed all three of my children and even though there is certainly nothing wrong with feeding your child in public, I think some discretion should be followed. I know it’s natural, but men still are aroused by womens breasts, it too is natural and I just think discretion is the key. There is no reason while out in public a breast or breasts should be fully exposed. I know we all have different opinions, but that’s how I feel.

  • Nancy

    Really people??? When was the last time you ate under a blanket or while sitting on the toliet? Oh you don’t? Never have? Not good enough for you but you decided it is good enough for a baby. Breast were for FEEDING first and foremost before man decided they were a party to sex. Your SEX organ is down south people. Didn’t anyone pay attention in sex ed?!?!?!?!?!?