Washington, April 17 (IANS) Breastfeeding may confer a number of health benefits on both mother and child, but it comes with a flip side - many consider such women as being less competent than their peers and hence less eligible for jobs, social researchers say.
Researchers conducted three studies to determine the views of others towards breastfeeding moms.
One study, for example, asked participants to measure the competence, math competence and likelihood that they would hire a breastfeeding mom as opposed to other groups, such as women, and mothers in general.
In all three studies, the results showed the breastfeeding woman was rated significantly less competent in general competence, in math and work specifically, and was less likely to be hired compared to others, reports the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.
Study leader Jessi L. Smith of Montana State University said: "What's surprising is that the results from the study showed that the breastfeeding mother was excluded from a potential job opportunity, even though none of the women were visibly breastfeeding."
"We can only speculate that the evidence for bias would be even greater if people were to rate an actual woman engaging in public nursing," Smith said, according to a Montana State statement.