SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Megan Doudney says she always wanted to be a mother.
But postings on Facebook of her plight as a homeless mother on the streets of San Francisco have thrust her into the middle of a social media controversy — a controversy that she doesn’t want.
Olya Levtushenko has been posting photos of Doudney and her child on Facebook, expressing concern about whether the mother is capable of taking care of her weeks-old baby.
“She’s using this child to make money,” Levtushenko told KPIX 5. “I think situations like this should be taken as seriously as human trafficking and prostitution.”
Megan Doudney calls the attention bought by Levtushenko ”harassment.”
“I’ve asked them several times, please don’t film me, don’t film my baby,” Doudney said. ”I am a human being. There is a way to approach somebody.”
However, someone who saw the Facebook photos noticed the baby looked discolored. Paramedics tracked Doudney down and the baby was given treatment for low blood sugar.
“It may have been a blessing in disguise,” Doudney told KIX 5. “Because I don’t know how low her blood sugar would have gotten. I would never want anything bad to happen to her. “
Doudney said she is just trying to survive. She moved to the Bay Area from Nebraska five years ago and has been homeless ever since.
”I’m doing the best I can,” she said. “I live on a fixed income … and that income only lasts so long…Once that’s gone, yeah, I’m going to do what I need to do to support my child. Even if that means, you know, having to deal with stuff like this.”
Currently, she resides at the Hamilton Families emergency family shelter. The shelter provides housing, three meals a day, medical care and parenting classes.
“What we’ve seen change from last year to this year is the amount of families that are unsheltered,” said Devra Edelman of the Hamilton Families shelter. “Families that stay in cars, tents … say that they’re in an uninhabitable living situation. The number of unsheltered families has increased from 10 percent last year to almost 30 percent in the first six months of 2017.”