Any book recommendations or advice?

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eliann's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 2441
Any book recommendations or advice?

ALL of my my friends breastfeed, but none of them work. Well my ex co-worker/friend used to work but she struggled with breastfeeding. Anyway, my question is...do you know of a good breastfeeding book for working moms? I know its early, but I'm home sick today and I'm bored.

I'm also interested in personal experience if you'd like to share. Timing is my main concern. When do you transition from on demand breastfeeding to pumping? Which bottles were your favorite? And how often do you pump and how often do you nurse? How long can you freeze breast milk for? How much pumped milk do you give to the daycare provider? This may sound like a dumb question, but how do you give the daycare the breastmilk? Do you make bottles? Do you give them freezer bags and they keep a supply there?

I think I will go to some LLL meetings here later in my pregnancy. But this has been on my mind lately, so I thought I would bring it up.

I'm sure a lot of this I will figure out as I go.

Joined: 07/26/04
Posts: 1595

No sorry...no help here. I think the only book I bought with DD was What to Expect... I basically just googled everything. I think sometimes its better to just get real peoples opinions on things.

I only was able to BF for a couple of weeks, had barely any milk whatsoever and was told to stop due to very high blood pressure and had to be put on meds.

eliann's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 2441

Yeah unfortunately like I said I don't really know anyone who works and breastfeeds. All my SAHM friends have their own schedules and some of them don't even use bottles/pumps whatsoever. All boob! I wish.

Sorry about your blood pressure last time, that must have been super scary.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

The Milk Memos is a good one. Not really a "how to" book, but definitely a good read about working/bfing moms. Actually, I was just going through my books and was planning on donating that and a couple of other bf'ing books to Goodwill, but I will send them to you if you would like.

I went back to work when T was 12 weeks old, and I bf'ed him until he was almost 14 months old. I plan on doing the same (working and continuing to breastfeed until at least 12 months) with this baby. Here is how I made it work:

BF on demand whenever you are home with your baby, including during the night. I never did any sleep training with T in part because I had read that night feedings help keep up your supply. I BF'ed on demand and never used bottles during the first 12 weeks when I was home with him.

I did the same (BF'ed on demand whenever I was with him) once I was back to work. Actually, I literally never gave him a bottle, because when we were together I wanted to BF since that was easiest and also the best for my supply.

You need a good pump that pumps both sides at once. You can buy Medella's PIS or something similar, or some hospitals and local bfing stores will also rent a pump to you for a small monthly fee. You will need to buy the...uh....can't remember what they are called....the "suckers" for lack of a better term (:ROFL:) and the tubing, but the pump itself can often be rented.

Before you go back to work: The last couple of weeks before you go back to work, keep breastfeeding like normal, but after baby has his/her fill, pump for about 10-15 minutes. You probably won't get a ton especially at first, but it will stimulate your body to produce more milk, and you can start building up your "stash."

I have heard some babies are resistant to taking a bottle, but T would take one whenever someone would babysit during those first 12 weeks and he liked it (he was lazy, and drinking from a bottle was less work!) so I never really worried about that too much. I don't have a lot of advice to give if you end up having a baby that refuses as some do, so let's just keep our fingers crossed that that doesn't happen to either one of us with these babies. LOL!

Once you go back to work:

I bought some of those blue ice packs that you can freeze over and over again, and I would take those with me every day to help keep the milk cool in my cooler. I never felt comfortable putting the milk in our office fridge, but that probably depends on your office environment.

So the stuff you will need to take with you:
Ice packs (maybe)
Cooler
Pump with all of it's tubing and bottles and whatnot
Breastmilk bags
Sharpie (this is for labeling the bags with the date, although we quickly got to the point where that was not necessary because whatever I pumped that day went to daycare the next day.)
Book or magazine to read
Hands Free Pumping Bra or Bustier (trust me, you don't want to have to sit there holding the things for like 15-20 minutes. Some people say they let the suction action of the pump hold everything up, but that scares the bejesus out of me...what if it slips and spills milk all over you? :eek:)

2-3 times a day (I recommend 3 if your work will let you), go to a quiet room with a locking door, and do your thing. It will take about 15-20 minutes, and it does get easier once your body is used to the whole thing and you can relax.

After you're "empty", pour the bottles of milk into the bags, and seal tightly. Label if neccesary. Rinse out your bottles and suckers thoroughly. BM actually has anti-bacterial qualities that will keep it from spoiling for the duration of your work day which is why I don't think you need to go nuts sterilizing it in between uses during the day, but you still want to rinse it off really well because just letting it sit there is gross. LOL

At home, you can wash your bottles and sucker things in the top rack of your dishwasher. You can also buy these sterilization bags that you pack everything into, and then microwave. I would always run the bottles and suckers through the dishwasher after dinner, and then sterilize in the microwave before bed.

For nursing, I would nurse T in the mornings before work, then as soon as we got home from work/daycare, and then before bed. Also during the night when he wanted to (which was most nights until he was about 8 months old) and also on demand during the weekends. Basically, if I was with him, I nursed him, I didn't let other people give him bottles.

The last thing I wanted to note is that the pump is less efficient than a baby. My pumped supply dwindled over time, so that when I started I was able to produce 3-4 bottles worth of milk per day, but by the time I stopped pumping at 12 months I was down to about a bottle per day. Because of this, we did supplement with formula at daycare. But my philosophy was (and is) that some breastmilk is better than none, and that the pumping was still important because it allowed me to continue producing enough milk to still nurse on demand when we were together.

I stopped pumping when he was 12 months old, and nursed on demand when we were together for about another 2 months when he really lost interest. I'm sure that part of it was that my supply dropped when I stopped pumping, and also because he was eating a lot of solids by then. He was completely weaned and eating solids and drinking cow's milk by 14 months. It was a really peaceful gentle transition, and I felt good about it.

Good luck, and let me know if you want those books, or if you have any questions!

eliann's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 2441

Awesome Alissa! I'm going to print this out. Lol!! Super super helpful. I would love to have your books if you don't mind.

Joined: 10/02/11
Posts: 1937

I want to BF and pump, but the "quiet room with a locking door" doesn't exist at my work. hmm..

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

"babywings1" wrote:

I want to BF and pump, but the "quiet room with a locking door" doesn't exist at my work. hmm..

Could you get by with hanging a "Do Not Disturb" sign when you're pumping?

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

Sorry, just realized I didn't answer any of this:

When do you transition from on demand breastfeeding to pumping? Which bottles were your favorite? And how often do you pump and how often do you nurse? How long can you freeze breast milk for? How much pumped milk do you give to the daycare provider?

LOL I'm super observant this morning.

When do you transition from on demand breastfeeding to pumping? - I didn't. Other than the last couple of weeks before I went back to work when I would pump after breastfeeding (on demand) I only pumped at work, and only fed on demand at home.

Which bottles were your favorite? - I honestly don't remember since I never personally used them. I got the tip for some good bottle types from some of my formula feeding friends. I will have to ask around again.

And how often do you pump and how often do you nurse? - Try to pump 2-3 times a day (preferably 3) every day at work. BF on demand the rest of the time when you are with your LO. Having said that, you will probably fall into a routine. My routine was nursing once in the morning before work, once as soon as we got home from work, once before bed, and as "asked for" LOL at night. Completely on demand during the weekends, which translates into every couple of hours.

How long can you freeze breast milk for? - Kellymom is a good source for stuff like that. I honestly never got a chance to freeze anything after the first couple of weeks (when I was still home) because I never really had a surplus stash.

How much pumped milk do you give to the daycare provider? - All of it. LOL Keep in mind, though, that T was the only baby at his (in home) daycare, so it's not like it was going to get mixed up. She knew that if she didn't use any that I gave her, she could use it the next day and so on. The only thing I would make sure of is that your daycare provider knows how to handle breast milk. Like, I don't think you can heat it, and then if the baby doesn't eat some from that bottle, you can keep it and reuse it the next day, I think you have to use it within a couple of hours. I know you can't reuse if they mix it with formula (like if they do have to supplement a bottle); stuff like that. Again, Kellymom is a great resource for the details, but my main peice of advice is just to make sure that your daycare lady is familiar with and has experience with breastmilk.

This may sound like a dumb question, but how do you give the daycare the breastmilk? Do you make bottles? Do you give them freezer bags and they keep a supply there? - Yes, I gave her several (I think like 5-6) bottles to be used with T when I started taking him there, and then every morning I would give her the bags of milk to use in the bottles. I didn't take the bottles home; she would wash them every day when she was done with them. I also gave her the containers of formula to use if she needed to supplement. I would give her an entire container, and she would keep it there and tell me when she was running low.

Hope all that helps! Please let me know if you have any other questions. I'm certainly not the expert and I'm sure people do things different ways, but I am happy to share my personal experiences with you. Smile

Joined: 10/02/11
Posts: 1937

Alissa - no, there's no do not disturb. I was really thinking *where* I could get away for 15 minutes of quiet time and there's ONE room without a camera, but it's someone's office plus the manager computer is in there and... it's hardly not being used for 2 to 3 minutes, much less 15.
But thanks for all this info!

eliann's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 2441

Wow yes! Thanks again!

Jessica, could you pump in the car? I think the pumps come with a battery pack. I know its not the ideal situation.

I work in an office where there are multiple tenants. The landlord is another architecture firm and its across the hall, well inside their office there is a closet that has a bunch of old storage items. That's where my ex co-worker would pump. She said it was dusty and some spider webs. LOL, not excited about that.

What I'm mainly nervous about is not being able to pump as much as I want. I do a lot of client meetings outside the office and I travel to different cities for most of these meetings. This is why my co-worker had such a hard time I think. Her supply started dwindling fast because she couldn't always fit in pump sessions.

Going to check out Kellymom now.

Joined: 08/15/12
Posts: 109

Do you know of a good breastfeeding book for working moms?
No, and someone ought to write one! I will contribute a chapter on how to pump in a courthouse parking deck without showing off your goods. Wink I'm lucky to have a private office with a door that locks, but I don't have that luxury on trial days!
I like Ina May's Guide to Breastfeeding for general info.

When do you transition from on demand breastfeeding to pumping?
I didn't. My son just plain wouldn't nurse, no matter what we or our lactation consultant did. I pumped exclusively for 5 months and supplemented with organic formula after that until he hit about 14 months and was good on solids. I am hoping to make it at least as far this time.

Which bottles were your favorite?
Adiri Natural Nursers - they've redesigned them since Ben was born, we will try some of the new design and some Dr. Brown's bottles this time around. I used Medela bags for freezing and Medela 4oz. bottles to hold pumped milk at work.

And how often do you pump and how often do you nurse?
I pumped every 2-3 hours during the day and got up twice at night to nurse at first, then once after we started supplementing.

How long can you freeze breast milk for?
I never had enough of a surplus to know, but I've heard at least 6 months.

How much pumped milk do you give to the daycare provider? This may sound like a dumb question, but how do you give the daycare the breastmilk? Do you make bottles? Do you give them freezer bags and they keep a supply there?
My DH was a SAHD until Ben was 9 months and went to mother's day out a few mornings a week. MDO wouldn't feed BM, but he wasn't there long so we didn't mind just sending formula. I think this is on a daycare-by-daycare basis, so definitely look around for a nursing-friendly daycare!

wishing4agirl's picture
Joined: 09/11/03
Posts: 917

:lurk:

I just thought I'd chime in here. My son who I pumped with was in the hospital for a long time at birth. While they had pumping rooms I didn't like leaving him and the rooms were either always busy or on a different floor than us. So I started pumping in his room. And it was NOT private the whole time. I could pull the curtain but people walked in. To combat this while I did put a sign on the curtain so they could see it I pumped with a poncho type nursing cover over me just as if I was nursing a baby. Most people thought it was a great idea. So if you are traveling if possible you could stop at a rest area and cover yourself in the car with the poncho type nursing cover and get your pumping session in.

Just wanted to give you that idea because I was never able to read that in any of the nursing books I read.

eliann's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 2441

Thanks ladies for all the info! I have those Adiri bottles on my amazon wish list. Lots of people say they really liked them.

OOoooh one last and very important question. More of a daycare questions...Do you use tape or labels or how do you label your bottles and baby items? There are all sorts of brands out there and wondered if any particular kind worked best for you or if you just find tape and a marker is easier?

Joined: 08/15/12
Posts: 109

We used Orbit labels for bottles/sippies/etc (bonus - now we can use them for his big kid water bottle!). Tape came off too easily in our dishwasher.

tink9702's picture
Joined: 09/28/08
Posts: 2977

*lurker*

Hi! Thought I'd add my two cents on two very different experiences with this!

When do you transition from on demand breastfeeding to pumping?
With DS he never learned to nurse so I pumped exclusively from week 1. I ended up lasting 4 months pumping and working full time outside the home. With DD I pumped while at work and nursed while at home. I stopped pumping when she turned 12 months old. I started building up a stash with both at the very beginning and was VERY VERY glad I did. I'm a terrible pumper, never get enough and having a stash helped me to go longer with both children! DD and I just stopped nursing this past month actually!

Which bottles were your favorite?
DS liked Avent bottles and DD hated bottles period. We tried 10 different kinds with her before she'd finally take a cheap walmart bottle with a preemie nipple. It was incredibly frustrating. Best advice on this is to not buy too many of one kind, your child may reject a certain brand!

And how often do you pump and how often do you nurse?
DS drank a bottle every 3 hours or so by the time I went back to work at 12 weeks. DD was probably around 2.5 hours or so. I fed on demand with both no matter if it was BF or bottle. I pumped 2 or 3 times while at work (8 hour day). I was able to pump more often with DD because of a different boss who was more understanding of pumping. I highly recommend every 2-2.5 hours if you can manage it!

How long can you freeze breast milk for?
Kellymom! I can't remember! LOL

How much pumped milk do you give to the daycare provider?
This varies greatly from the beginning to later when they add solids. I think I started with 12-15 ounces and went all the way up to 32 oz with DS. Since DD hated bottles I never sent more than 15 oz.

This may sound like a dumb question, but how do you give the daycare the breastmilk? Do you make bottles? Do you give them freezer bags and they keep a supply there?
I did both depending on whether I'd done the wash/thawed the BM in time! I froze the stash in freezer bags and pumped new into bottles so my daycare allowed either. I used Medela and Lanisoh bags. I highly prefer the Medela - it leaked less. My daycare could only hold a single day's supply in their fridge/freezer because of multiple babies on breastmilk. You'll have to run that part by them.

Do you use tape or labels or how do you label your bottles and baby items? There are all sorts of brands out there and wondered if any particular kind worked best for you or if you just find tape and a marker is easier?
We used a Sharpie directly on the bottles. It wears off fast in the dishwasher. My daycare provider washed the bottles every day and I never had to take them home. I did take home the little Breastmilk Medela bottles to re-fill with breastmilk though. As far as clothing each child has a bin with their name on it so we don't have to label clothes. For things like diaper rash cream just use a sharpie.

Last little bits of advice - I have definitely used a nursing cover to pump in the car (in the ER parking lot actually). It's awkward, but possible!

Oh and I don't know of any books that are geared towards a pumping/working mom. Most moms don't last long at it. There was a lady on the June 2009 board - Mary, who pumped exclusively for both of her kids for over a year - I was so blown away by her accomplishment.

Oh - if you or anyone has trouble with the baby taking bottles - please PM me! I have a ton of advice about that!

eliann's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 2441

Thanks Mel! Wow you ladies are a great source of BF'ing knowledge. I will have to remember to ask you if I have baby that doesn't like bottles. I've heard that can be a problem.

I will be happy to make it 1 year. My friend/ex-coworker made it to 10 months. She had to start supplementing at 6 months. She gave me the advice of start pumping immediately to build up a supply. She constantly talked about that. How if she had only started pumping sooner, she could have had a stash built up to last her longer. She built up a supply once around the 4-5th month, but accidentally left the freezer open all night and had to throw it out. She said she cried the whole next day.

I want to breastfeed really really bad. It's important to me. But I'm also realistic after seeing my co-worker and talking with you ladies that I might have to supplement. I'm so so afraid of my breastfeeding friends judging me if I have to do that. I know that's silly. But its a fear I have.

Oh and thanks for the label info. I will have to see what works for me I guess.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

Working and pumping and breastfeeding is hard work. Anyone who would judge you for needing to supplement is being very unkind. Smile

tori729's picture
Joined: 07/23/07
Posts: 1743

I don't have experience working and pumping but I highly recommend The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding. Great book!