"I had no choice but to nurse on-the-go and change her diaper standing up in the room. I didn't dare to put her down!"
I strongly believe that every mother has the right to nurse her child wherever she sees fit, be it a bench in the playground or at the coffee shop down the street. That said, sometimes you just want a quiet place to feed your baby. Maybe you’re newly postpartum and still working on the mechanics of nursing. Or perhaps you just prefer to nurse in private. For times like these, a nursing room is a wonderful place.
Almost all of the major shopping hotspots in Singapore now have baby-friendly malls, featuring at least one nursing room. It is usually equipped with necessities like a changing table, nursing couch and hot/cold water dispenser.
It is a nice place where you can spend the needed time to make your baby feel more comfortable.
However, for one mum, trying to nurse her baby in a local mall turned into a nightmare! She tells us her story….
Elaine* is a Singaporean mum with a cute little baby girl who is turning 6 months old. She was having dinner at a local mall a few days ago, and needed to nurse her afterwards.
Upon walking around in search for a nursing room, Elaine* said there were none located in the mall’s 1st to 3rd levels, and that the diaper changing station inside the handicapped toilet was “super dirty”. Thinking that she had found the nursing room after seeing the signage on level 3, she got there only to realise that it was locked.
When Elaine* finally found an available nursing room on level 4, to her horror, she was greeted by many cockroaches running around the room! This whole wild goose chase got her so frustrated (and we can understand why), and she ended up having to feed and change her daughter’s diaper on-the-go.
Upon this unwelcoming incident, Elaine* dropped an email to the mall with her feedback, giving the details of what had happened and what she had to go through while in search of a place to feed and change her baby.
They apologised to her, and stated that they were conducting an internal investigation into the matter.
The management then responded saying that they arranged for Pest Control to be activated yesterday to treat the Level 4 nursing room, and were informed that no infestation source was found. They have also highlighted the cleaning issue to the team. As per the investigation, the team suspected that the Level 3 nursing room’s door was faulty that evening.
Elaine* shares: “I had no choice but to nurse on-the-go and change her diaper standing up in the room. I didn’t dare to put her down!”
Singapore is well-known for being a clean and green city. With so many cleaners being hired to keep our malls’ standard of cleanliness high, you wouldn’t have imagined a mummy having to go through this. Nursing mothers will attest to it that the availability and cleanliness of a nursing room is very important. Nobody wants to feed their baby in a filthy room.
As the number of breastfeeding mothers increase, Singapore’s accommodation to these needs should increase as well. Apart from having nursing rooms available for mums, the standard of hygiene should definitely be well-maintained too.
We hope that this incident raises awareness to other shopping centres, and any other public space in Singapore to up the standards and make it an enjoyable experience for both mummy (or daddy) and baby.
*Names have been changed to protect the identity of those involved
*theAsianparent obtained Elaine’s* permission to share her story, in attempt to raise awareness for other mums out there
How would you have reacted if you were in a similar situation? What are your thoughts on how we can better improve our nursing rooms in our local shopping centres? Please share below!