Leave a comment
Ethical Shopping At Saks Fifth Avenue

Moses Robinson

Giving birth should be one of the best experiences in a woman’s life, not one that is riddled with racist assumptions and stereotypes about the new mother. Sadly, this is what happened to Keshia Knight Pulliam last month at an Atlanta hospital.

On her podcast, the 37-year-old actress shared that after giving birth to her daughter Ella Grace, the hospital staff sent in an “old little white lady … about 70-years-old” to speak with her about breastfeeding. While Pulliam didn’t tell the worker that she used to be on The Cosby Show, she said soon after the worker arrived, she started explaining all of the services the state provided for low-income mothers.

“We have some great programs that you may want to take advantage of that you may need … um, WIC is a great program.”

The nerve!


Pulliam, not missing a beat, let that woman know: Ma’am, I have excellent insurance but thank you.”

Also, she wasn’t afraid to call a spade a spade.

“So I guess she saw this little black girl with the little baby by herself and on the door, I didn’t realize that they’d put like a faux last name and the last name was Brown,” said Pulliam. “So I guess she saw ‘Miss Brown’ and was like, ‘She probably needs some WIC’ and insurance services.’”

The Emmy-nominated actress also noted that she was offended when the white hospital worker refused to physically show her how to breastfeed, which is what these specialists are supposed to do.

“She didn’t want to touch me…guide your boob, show you how to hold it, put it in the baby’s mouth, [but] this lady was not trying to touch my little brown boobie – not at all!”

Pulliam added that she knows that assistant services are important, she just didn’t like only being offered welfare

“This lady, she doesn’t know any better, because if she knew better, she’d do better! But yes, the old Trump lady tried to give me the number for WIC. My thing is this: I get it, it’s about showing the services that are offered, and I probably wouldn’t have been offended had she [listed] several of the services, [not just] WIC,” she concluded.

Luckily for Pulliam, her doula recommended a new lactation specialist. And for Pulliam, she says she’s always one to share stories like these.

“It wouldn’t be me without the funny stories,” she told the audience.

But given the drama around her pregnancy—i.e. Ed Hartwell, the baby’s father and her estranged husband—this is really the last thing that she or any other Black woman needs. Real talk: There should never be shame in needing public assistance, but when will the phrase “welfare queen” stop being equated to all Black women?

Listen to Pulliam’s podcast about giving birth here

 Like on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter.

Keshia Knight Pulliam: ‘Hospital Worker Thought I Was Poor” was originally published on

Also On Black America Web:
Find Out What Your Fav Celebs Did On Instagram This Week (02/02-02/08)
10 photos

14 thoughts on “Keshia Knight Pulliam: ‘Hospital Worker Thought I Was Poor”

  1. Dr. Larry on said:

    Over 80% of single black mothers are on some form of social services. In Atlanta, I’d bet it’s higher. The nurse was simply going off statistics. If we want to be treated better, we should do better

  2. Mrknowitall on said:

    It turns out, Keisha Knight Pullman stereotyped and racial profiled the European American Woman. That’s the story here, but you racists missed that. More racist black privilege at work.

  3. ResponsibilityInControl on said:

    No need to call the lady a Trump lady! Seems as though she is talking down about the WIC program ok she can afford not to use it but dont talk down about it when there are many mothers that NEED it! Sad that she was stereotypes though it happens all the time I have had my own instances of it, have to be quick and call them out for it! Never passive!

  4. specialt757 on said:

    My son was born (I was single) a preemie, and also with a low iron count, I did not breastfeed but someone, not sure who told me about WIC, nothing more (maybe they knew I had health care coverage) but only because they offered food items rich in iron or iron supplement.
    When I had the second baby (I was married), I breastfed, the hospital staff didn’t offer me anything in the way of public assistance, only a class for lactation information, how and where to buy products to assist with the process, not sure why, I wasn’t rich or poor but I was black.

    One more thing, the hospitals and doctors offices do a great job of disseminating all kinds of material and information to their patients, at least the ones I’ve gone to. That’s why prenatal exams and appointments are extremely important for a healthy and successful pregnancy and baby.

  5. specialt757 on said:

    I can imagine she did stereotype her, but not sure if it was “race or class”. If they think you are single then you are poor whether black or white, or whatever, if you are married they treat you differently. So in Keisha’s mind that old lady put her in a “box”.

    • You are exactly RIGHT Mac!! ALL new mothers, black white or poor ,whatever, get the same information from the lactation specialist. Sounds like Rudy is just being over dramatic!! I guess if I just had a baby and no baby daddy in site, I would be EXTRA too, but seriously, NOTHING TO SEE HEAR…MOVE ON!!

    • peaches on said:

      i believe her. i used to work of a mother and infant unit. and they do stereotype minorities. they lump us all in the same group.

Add Your Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s