|"We are all Habiba" Graphic Courtesy of Louma Sader Bujana|
This Morning, I read a startling article about a Moroccan mother: Habiba, a low income woman in a program ran by the Madrid Institute of Mothers Minors and families (IMMF), whose 15 month old daughter was taken away because of failure to comply with their wishes to wean her child, referring to this act as "chaotic" and "harmful".
The Article hit home because I have a 14 month old who still nurses, I cannot imagine someone trying to rip her from my arms and from her much needed "boo boo" I am horrified to think what this child must be feeling, surrounded by strangers, wondering where her mommy and where her milkies have gone.. no comfort in sight, feeling abandoned and this just brings me to tears to think of my daughter having to go through this.. to think of ANYONE'S daughter having to go through this.
As a mother I want to reach out to Habiba and let her know I am with her an mothers in the U.S are with her.. I am trying to find info in English but I can't so far so I will try my best to translate what I find..
Here is one of the MANY articles in Spanish talking about the case:
The Press Release Goes something like this: (roughly translated)
Four days ago, the Madrid Institute for Minors and Families (IMMF), decided to separate a little girl from her mother for not complying with the objectives of a psychotherapy program and "maternal abilities" that imply to abandon extended breastfeeding and breastfeeding on demand because it is considered "chaotic" and "harmful for every boy and girl". With these considerations all lacking scientific or legal facts, they force mothers to take medication to cease milk production.
According to the Spanish Association of Pediatricians, breastfeeding should be on demand and it can be extended as long as both child an mother wish. No legal action has been taken to separate mother and child, and the mother has not been allowed to say goodbye nor has she been told where her daughter will be taken causing a grave defenselessness on both. Habiba is engorged and on the brink of mastitis and with a broken heart with pain, with barely any sleep or bite to eat. This woman has been evaluated by a psychiatrist and she does not show any signs of mental illness, drug consumption or anything that would justify making her victim of such aggression.
They threw Habiba on the streets the same moment they took her daughter telling her she had no more
room there because the resources they offer are for mothers and children and she did not have a child anymore. A humanitarian foundation has decided to help this mother donating legal support as well as shelter . We are deeply concerned by Habiba's pain and it pains us to imagine the circumstances this 15 month old child might be in, separated from her mother in an abrupt fashion most likely with no one explaining anything to her.
.We consider Habiba and her child's case as a serious violation of human rights as well as children's rights. The damage is already done but if mother and child are reunited immediately it can be repaired because of this we urge you to write to write and protest to IMMF management, asking for the immediate return of the child to her mother
There is a group formed in Spanish
Que el IMMF permita que Habiba amamante a su niña YA with constant updates by people close to Habiba and those familiar with the case.
I am not but a mother who was moved by this story and my plea is for you to be moved as well.. Madrid is far away but the pain of a mother can be felt the same in any language. I created a group:
U.S mothers support Habiba! Hey IMMF Give her baby back! To show International support for this mother in her time of need.
If you have any articles in any language please email them to me tcast030406(at)gmail.com or share them on the wall. Lets show Habiba that American mothers feel her pain as well as other countries!
Breastfeeding is a human right!