Length of time to breastfeed?

  • I am going to be returning to work soon. I am currently pumping breastmilk at home and initially decided to stop before I go back to work. I feel a little guilty about not providing my son with something so special. I have pumped for almost 3 months. Should I be happy that I was able to at least provide him what I could and stop because it will make the adjustment for me easier or should I suck it up and pump at work for as long as I could?

    I am nervous about having to pump at work. Has anyone ever done it that could lend me some advise?

  • I think you should do what feels right for you.  I was also nervous about going back to work with my first child and wondered how I was going to make it work.  My co-workers were very supportive, which I think helped me to continue.  It really doesn't take very much time if you have a good breastpump and a room with some privacy!  I tried to plan my pumping time so that I only had to do it once in the morning and once in the afternoon; each time took only about 10-15 minutes (and half of that was getting the pump ready!)  Once I got into a good routine, I didn't really worry about it much.  It is a little more work to remember to get the pump ready and bring it with you each day, but it became a habit just like packing my lunch. I don't want to pressure you into thinking that you have to breastfeed if you don't want to; just encourage you to give it a try if you are thinking about it.  Good luck whatever you decide to do! 

  • Whether you pump at work is a choice that you have to make...based upon several factors.

    I don't know the details of the new healthcare bill, but in most cases employers have to allow you to pump.  Many employers have a lactation room.  My building has a lactation room with two pumps and a refrigerator.  There is a federal publication called "The Business Case for  Breastfeeding" that you maby be able to share with your manager.  It's here:  http://www.womenshealth.gov/breastfeeding/government-programs/business-case-for-breastfeeding/index.cfm It has language in it that helps bosses to understand that breastfeeding moms take off work less often for illness, etc.  Also, most human resources departments are supportive of breastfeeding.  I would call HR and ask them what support they offer for working moms.

    I pumped at work and didn't have any issues. In fact, my daughter never had any formula.  When I had to go to a different building for a meetings or for classes, I took my pump with me.  I'd call ahead and ask for accomodations for pumping.  I'd also let the instructor know my situation ahead of time.

    Good luck.  Please check back and let us know how it works out for you!

  • I am a teacher & pumped & nursed for a full year. It was a wonderful experience that I am missing out on with my 2nd child. She is not able to nurse because of milk allergy. I suggest nursing as long as possible because this may be your only chance. Just FYI Enjoy it! :)

  • Thank you for your imput. I think I probably could handle it. I guess what I am a little nervous about is how to discuss it with my employer. I know that law states that I have the right to pump at work but I just get nervous about bringing it up to my employer. I had a rough time during my pregnancy, was put on light duty, and even had to take off for three weeks. I just hate to have to ask for one more thing.

  • I am still currently pumping at work and it has not been a problem for me. I think you will be surprised at how supportive and accepting your co-workers and boss will be of your situation. Most everyone has a friend, wife, sister, etc...who has been right where you are now. The decision to continue to pump at work is definitely a commitment and it's completely normal be nervous about it. My milk supply went down a little the first week I pumped at work because I was nervous about pumping in new surroundings with other people around, but it came back once I got comfortable with it. In most workplaces the employers are allowed two 15 minute breaks a day, so you may be able to use that time to pump. Just make sure that wherever you choose to do it you put up a sign for privacy. I have one that I put on my office door that simply sayd "BUSY-please come back in 20 minutes" and I have never had an issue. And if you decide not to pump at work, then you can always just continue to do what you are doing when you are at home in the evenings and on the weekends. Just because you cut back doesn't mean you have to quit completely. I wish you the best of luck with your decision whichever way you choose to go!