working women who breastfed their children, how long was your journey?
This was our topic of discussion during lunch hours and I really got depressed hearing stories about not given enough time to pump or high stress level leading to wean off as the reasons for calling it off before 6 months. what are your experiences?
We have many friends that were pregnant around the same time. My wife is the only working mom that continued to breast feed beyond a few months.
Issues we heard from other women:
Many women don’t realize how little milk a newborn needs. They think they aren’t producing enough milk and so they switch to formula.
Many women have trouble with latching or find it painful (that’s a latching issue)
Those that were still breastfeeding when they returned to work, quit because pumping is a pain in the ass. You have to pump multiple times a day. If you’re actively nursing, you have to pump at least 3 times during the work day. Usually, 20-30 minutes each time. If you don’t get a chance to pump, it can be incredibly painful. Not pumping regularly can lead to mastitis.
It’s hard to overstate how difficult breastfeeding is. Again, most women we know stopped well before they returned to work. Take advantage of the breastfeeding classes/consultants your health care offers. There are also nonprofits and support groups that service new moms that can help.
For pumping at work...ideally you can block off consistent times during the day for pumping. If you have to work, try to leave busy work for those times (email, simple coding, paperwork). My wife bought a bra that could hold the pump in place so her hands were free. Ideally your company has nursing/pumping rooms that are private and quiet (the law in CA). Get a good support group in and out of work if you can.