Mum in ‘tandem breastfeeding’ images says she faces criticism but that it ‘connects’ her daughters

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  • Motherhood photographer Mae Burke has captured intimate images of a mum ‘tandem breastfeeding‘ her two children.

    The mother in the photograph is Chelsea Craig, from Texas, who had asked photographer Mae to capture her family ‘living life.’

    The stunning snaps give an insight into Chelsea’s world with her two little ones, Addie, three, and Emilynn, 16 months, while celebrating breastfeeding.

    Image by Mae Burke

    Speaking to Australian site Kidspot, Chelsea revealed her relationship with breastfeeding wasn’t always easy.

    ‘I realised early on in motherhood that my relationship with breastfeeding could not be planned,’ says Chelsea. ‘Instead, I allowed it to become a journey. Some days that journey is hard and I want to quit, but others that journey is beautiful. Breastfeeding allows me a time to be present with my girls where nothing else matters.’

    Image by Mae Burke

    Photographer Mae is renowned for her honest and authentic images of motherhood, and is a mother herself.

    Image by Mae Burke

    ‘Motherhood is one of my defining roles as a human,’ Mae tells Kidspot. ‘The six consecutive years I spent pregnant and/or nursing developed a deep desire within me to connect with other women.’

    Image by Mae Burke

    ‘I believe that adding worth to women in our society will be earth-shattering and having beautiful images available to be shared often is one way we can do that,’ she added.

    The reviews of Mae’s photographs aren’t always positive however, as she explains to the Daily Mail Online that ‘Tandem nursing is still taboo, it kind of freaks people out.’ But she says Chelsea ‘didn’t make a thing of it at all’ and it was simply the natural response of a mother with two hungry little ones. Chelsea also notes that when people learn that she feeds her two daughters at once she gets ‘their crazy eyes’.

    Image by Mae Burke

    Not put off though, Chelsea says, ‘This is how my girls feel nurtured and connected. I don’t nurse to prove a point and I don’t nurse to declare my superiority. I nurse for my girls.’

    In total, Mae has photographed more than 300 breastfeeding women.