Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Not Just for Sex

It’s something that makes most people squeamish. And I’m not talking about zombie films.

It’s something that fascinates and disturbs men and can appall older women beyond their childbearing years. It can be embarrassing and humiliating for young mothers who receive cold and disgusted stares while performing this very necessary duty in public. It is often looked down on by “progressive” mothers who utilize modern conveniences to feed their babies.  

Yup, you guessed it. I’m talking about breastfeeding. Run away screaming if you’d like.

First, let me say this: women’s bodies are beautiful. Duh. That’s why they’re everywhere: on TV, in advertising, billboards, beer commercials, car rental agencies, you name it. You don’t see guys going to clubs to look at renaissance paintings or swapping pictures of sunsets and waterfalls. Some people have even called the female body the most beautiful thing on earth.

The sad part is, we’ve ditched the true meaning of the female body for how it can perform and arouse sexually. We focus on what the body can do and not what it is. It’s a wonder woman today don’t walk into shopping malls or drive down the highway without becoming violently ill from being bombarded with enormous breasts, bare thighs, flat stomachs, and non-existent waists.

If you’ve been paying attention to instagram (shame on you if you are…), you might have seen the sudden flurry of celebrity breastfeeding photos. Some of these photos are tasteful and cute, such as Gwen Stefani’s, and others are just plain erotic, with the baby only used as an excuse to perform an otherwise nude photo op. The poor kid has no idea his mommy is posing for porn; he’s just having lunch. What a twisted society we live in.

Another recent story involves a young mom who asked if she could breastfeed her baby in an empty dressing room of a Victoria’s Secret store. She was promptly kicked out and forced to nurse her child in a bathroom stall. Apparently, the folks at Victoria’s don’t want people to get the wrong impression about what breasts are for. As a wise lady once said, "Everybody wants to see your breasts until your baby needs them."

It’s a truth that most people don’t want to admit, but I’ll be blunt: God designed the female body to nourish and comfort children. There’s simply no denying it, even from an evolutionary standpoint. A child who has scraped his knee or gotten teased at school runs to his mom. A little girl who needs someone to cry on goes to her mom. Hungry babies don’t stop crying until mom gets there, unless Dad has been given the duty of bottle-feeding formula while Mom attends private yoga classes.

In the midst of our cultures “boob frenzy,” so to speak, we’ve forgotten the real purpose of the female body and its parts. God didn’t design the female breast to be a sexual symbol as much as He designed it for feeding babies. But our society has turned so completely inside out that women can’t use their breasts for anything but sexual stimulation. The true and natural function of the female body has been pushed out the back door, and quite frankly, we’re all suffering from it.

I’m amused at all the ballyhoo concerning these instagram photos. All of the celebrity moms who post them claim that “breastfeeding isn’t a big deal—it’s normal.” Hmm…if it’s normal, why ARE we making such a big deal about it? Does it shock us that breasts actually have a function besides being attention-grabbers for everything from soap to CDs?

You see, once we deviate from the way God intended things to be, all hell breaks loose. We lose our purpose. We forget what we were made for. And we abuse what He has given us until we can barely recognize ourselves under all the makeup, lingerie, and digital alterations.

And, as a final kick in the teeth, these celebrity mothers look fabulous while breastfeeding, with makeup, glamorous clothes, and perfect hair. So…if you aren’t a celebrity mom with lots of money, you can’t be sexy while taking care of your baby? I don’t know about you, but most breastfeeding moms I’ve seen do NOT look like movie stars. They might look happy, yes, but certainly not stunning. Leave it to the media to set some more unattainable standards.

Photos like Gwen’s are subtle and yet powerful statements that women can have children and careers, too; that they can be mothers and still be their own person. But when you start using babies as props for Playboy shoots, the waters become murky. 

Let’s look beyond the sex symbols to the wisdom of God’s design.


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