A coffee shop barista in the UK is being accused of “womb bothering” a pregnant woman by insisting she give back her caffeinated coffee.
News of the alleged incident was shared to Twitter over the weekend by Tiffany Stevenson, a UK comedian, who claims she watched it all go down at a Starbucks at a highway rest area in Northamptonshire. She later confirmed to a follower that the coffee shop was located at the Watford Gap rest area, though that particular location does not currently appear to include a Starbucks. A representative for Stevenson later clarified at the Starbucks was located in the London Gateway location of a Welcome Break rest area.
“Unbelievable bit of womb bothering in Starbucks at services,” wrote Stevenson, explaining that a barista at the Watford Gap rest area had asked a pregnant woman to give back her Caramel Macchiato over his fears that it would be “bad for the baby.”
Stevenson claims the man then continued to try to convince the mom-to-be to give up her coffee for five minutes while she watched, and at one point had even told him to stop.
“Are they also doing Ob/Gyn training at Starbucks these days?” she joked on Twitter.
In the days since Stevenson’s tweets, followers have been sharing their support for the woman, as well as sharing their own similar stories. Others simply wanted to let her know they were glad she had made them familiar with the term “womb bothering.”
Stevenson even defended her opinions from a commenter who felt she was only critical of the barista because he was a man, insisting that wasn’t the case.
“Because he is a man who a) works in Starbucks therefore is not a doctor b) has never been pregnant,” she wrote. “But you know this and still want to pretend that I’m saying men can never be right.”
A representative for Starbucks has confirmed the chain is investigating.
“We are investigating as a matter of priority,” a Starbucks spokesperson tells Fox News. “As a matter of policy, we trust our customers to make the decisions that are right for them. We’re concerned to hear about this experience, which isn’t reflective of the service we aim to provide our customers.”
As noted by Yahoo Style UK, who shared Stevenson’s story and coined the term “womb-shaming” to describe it, the UK’s National Health Service advises that pregnant women limit caffeine intake to 200 milligrams per day.
An ob/gym with the Mayo Clinic recommends the same guidelines. The National Institute of Health advises no more than 300 milligrams per day, as there is “conflicting data” on the consumption of more than 300 milligrams.
A caffeinated Caramel Macchiato from Starbucks contains approximately 150 milligrams of caffeine, according to nutritional information posted online.
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