My mother once mentioned to me that all of her mother's friends breastfed until their children were about four or five as a birth control method. However, none of those women exposed their naked breasts in public and none of them did it with the intention of being an exhibitionist. My mother says that ladies either left the room if someone other than a family member was present or they covered themselves with a shawl. Discreetly feeding your baby is a long, long way from the freak show on this month's Time Magazine cover.
Someone may be thinking, 'Dymphna, what about all those paintings of Our Lady nursing?' Well, what about 'em? Those paintings show a private moment in Our Lady's life. There is nothing in the Bible or in archaeology that suggests that respectable, married Jewish matrons allowed their bare bosoms to be seen by strangers.