Olivia Wilde Says Breastfeeding Photo Shoot with Son Was Not Planned: 'I Did Not Intend to Shame Women'
"There should be no pressure on women to breastfeed, or they are made to seem like they are terrible mothers," says the expectant actress
Olivia Wilde never imagined the backlash she’d receive after her son’s magazine debut when he was just 3 months old.
The new mom posed with her baby boy in a spread for Glamour in 2014, which featured the actress, dressed in a Roberto Cavalli dress and a full face of makeup, nursing son Otis Alexander while sitting in a diner-style restaurant booth.
“I’ve learned a lot about [the breastfeeding] debate since that [September 2014 Glamour] photo shoot and certainly since becoming a mother,” the expectant actress and mom to now 2-year-old Otis told Yahoo! Beauty. “One thing that is very clear to me is that it should be every individual woman’s choice what she wants to do.”
She continues, “It was an interesting experience because that photo shoot came out of a very organic moment of having to feed my son because it was just my choice to breastfeed. But I did not in any way intend to shame women who had chosen not to breastfeed for whatever reason. It’s a complex issue, but the one thing that’s not complex is that people should be allowed to breastfeed wherever they want, whenever they want.”
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In fact, the Vinyl actress and fiancée of Jason Sudeikis is 100 percent supportive of her fellow moms, and doesn’t think any woman should have to answer to anyone but herself and her own child when it comes to making sure the latter is fed.
Wilde, 32, continues, “But once she makes that choice, she should be publicly permitted to do that in whatever way she needs to. Certainly there should be no pressure on women to breastfeed, or they are made to seem like they are terrible mothers. I think that’s really unfair.”
It seems Otis is following in his mama’s footsteps in the sense of bringing the women around him up.
“I like to think [Otis is] already a little feminist. And he is. He’s a really good guy,” she says. “I want to promote the idea that the definition of feminism is equality and it’s something that’s not difficult to teach children because they are born with that sensibility.
“They are only taught to separate people and value them differently once they get older,” she adds. “Luckily, I’m just embracing the perspective he was born with.”
Aside from acting, parenting and humanitarian work, Wilde is also the current face of Revlon. When asked by Yahoo! Beauty how her makeup routine has changed since becoming a mother, she doesn’t sugarcoat the fact that she has to be quick and resourceful.
“I certainly have less time and I think I’ve just gotten a bit more efficient about getting ready, whereas before I would have a few more minutes to experiment with different looks,” the Tron: Legacy actress confesses. “Now I kind of know what I’m going to go for and I’m good about getting it done in five minutes.”
And though Wilde admits she’s been “pretty lazy” during this pregnancy compared to her first, she has adopted a mantra that has taken her far in terms of staying healthy.
“You have to be forgiving of yourself and realize you are doing something and working hard building a little human,” she advises. “Most of the time, I focus on eating well … I’m making baby steps towards a healthy lifestyle this time around.”
— Jen Juneau and Anya Leon