One mom was “at a loss for words” when she walked into her son’s California daycare to find two of the teachers talking about him. According to CafeMom, the incident occurred in July 2018.
As she walked into the school, Stephanie Hanna noticed two teachers down the hall talking. And that’s when Hanna allegedly heard one of the teachers say, “He’s obsessed with boobs!”
Hanna had a feeling they were talking about her 15-month-old son Westley and approached the teachers to ask for an explanation. After exchanging a laugh, CafeMom reports, they noticed Hanna walking towards them. Hanna said that’s when one of the teachers hesitated before explaining what happened.
“Okay, I was feeding [my baby] and he [Westley] was staring at me so I was like, ‘Well, just stick it in there and see what he does.’ He had some on his lip and was like [licked her bottom lip slowly], but he liked it!”
Hanna told CafeMom that she was stunned by the teacher’s actions and didn’t know to react at first. “They both looked at me, to which I tried to act as normal as possible because I was so shocked by what she had just told me.”
“So I continued signing Westley out and then looked up and said to them, ‘Well, he likes food … ‘”
Hanna said both of the teachers laughed at Hanna’s response and walked away saying, “He’s gonna grow up liking brown women and not know why!” As Hannah explained to CafeMom the teachers were women she had known for years, ever since her oldest daughter Josie started attending the daycare.
The worried mom says it’s not necessarily the breastfeeding part of the story that bothered her, as she breastfed both of her children. However, “the story the teachers were relaying was unsettling, to say the least. And something about the way in which they talked about it was especially jarring.”
“I felt violated and disturbed by the sexual comments made about the incident, and that this teacher told me she put her breast in my son’s mouth, he ingested her breast milk, and acted like it was totally fine.”
When she talked about the incident with her mom, she agreed that the way in which it happened was surprising, but also noted that breastmilk is food and there are ways to donate breastmilk to mothers in need.
However, Westley’s father wasn’t as calm about the whole situation, who reached out to the daycare director. The director told the worried father that they would handle the situation and call back later. Hanna said they never received that callback.
That’s when she took her concerns to the assistant director. The first excuse Hanna allegedly received was, “[the teacher] can’t speak English very well and probably mixed up her words and didn’t mean to say that to you.”
“I responded that this teacher could speak English perfectly fine and that I had been speaking to her the past few years.” Then while on the phone with the day care’s owner and director, she was told that the breast milk “accidentally squirted in his mouth!”
Unsatisfied with how the daycare was handling the situation, they unenrolled their son and made a complaint with the licensing board, who agreed that “our son’s personal rights had been absolutely violated and that they would be investigating the complaint.”
The parents also made a criminal complaint with law enforcement. The El Dorado County Sheriff’s office responded to the filing by telling the mom that “he had never heard of anything like this in his 19 years of law enforcement and neither had his senior partners,” CafeMom reported.
The complaint was then transferred to the sex crime detective who admitted his hands were unfortunately tied.
“The sheriff forwarded the report to the sex crimes detectives, who were also shocked and disgusted but determined there is no law against breastfeeding someone else’s child without consent. And because my son couldn’t testify against the day care worker and day care itself, it would be my word against hers.”
Now, Hanna is petitioning to get legislation passed that would make breastfeeding another parent’s child without their consent illegal.
Currently, the mom is halfway toward her goal of 5,000 signatures on Change.org. But the family is still waiting for justice and called the whole situation, which also includes an ongoing civil suit against the teacher and the daycare, “emotionally and financially draining.”
“We never want another family to have to go through what we have for almost two years now trying to get justice so we can start healing, so I am asking for your help to ensure that it does not,” the petition reads, per CafeMom, calling for the enforcement of the California Lactation Accommodate Law, Civil Code §§ 1030-1034.
Hanna admits she is still having trouble trusting someone she doesn’t know care for her son, “I will likely never trust anyone enough to place him, or any future children we may have, in a daycare or preschool ever again.”
Sara Vallone has been a writer and editor for the last four and a half years. A graduate of Ohio University, she enjoys celebrity news, sports, and articles that enhance people’s lives.
- 1 “So I continued signing Westley out and then looked up and said to them, ‘Well, he likes food … ‘”
- 2 The complaint was then transferred to the sex crime detective who admitted his hands were unfortunately tied.
- 3 Now, Hanna is petitioning to get legislation passed that would make breastfeeding another parent’s child without their consent illegal.
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