Did u have to choose between breastfeeding and working? Is it possible to do both? - page 2

:nurse: From what I see, some days nurses get 15 minute break, sometimes none throughout entire shift. Doesn't this force a working mother of an infant to choose between breastfeeding and... Read More

  1. by   sanakruz
    So kewl,RN2b-I like that child-friendly attitude!
  2. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I breastfed my daughter for 16 months, even tho I went back to work (on a perdiem basis) when she was 6 mo. It takes serious dedication and work, for sure. I usually would put a picture of my daughter in front of me when I pumped to "get things going", along with sipping a liter of water beforehand, as often as possible. I even put on headphones w/classical music to drown out "work thoughts and noises".

    It worked out ok...I had a lot of milk in the freezer for my dh and son to feed her. I guess it boils down to COMMITMENT, yours, that of your significant other, AND your employer's......and not all employers are supportive. You may have to FIGHT to do this, but it is worth it. I just don't care for formula......it's too expensive and nothing when stacked up to breastmilk. GOOD LUCK to you...hope it works out. When are you due? (I somehow missed that).
  3. by   RN auditor
    I too was concerned about breastfeeding and working. Especially since I was a first time breastfeeder on my fourth child. I went to the OB department and met with the lactation consultant and together we came up with a schedule, a room and a machine. See if your facility has a lactation consultant on staff and see if she can get you set up. Good luck. I only wish I had breastfed my first three!
  4. by   altomga
    It is possible to do both! I had my 3rd child 3 yrs ago this May. I have always worked the night shift 7p-7a which probably helped me work it in better. I had a wonderful group of co-workers also. The hospital I work at provides a lactation room with a big mama pump I unfortunately did not have time to go upstairs to use it; but I had my own pump I took to work with me. I work on a very busy step down ICU unit with only 7 RN's at a time max. When I needed to pump another nurse would watch my patients, I scooted into the bathroom and pumped. They knew I might be awhile and didn't mind at all. (They thought it was funny to "pretend cry" to get my milk to come down and then they had no choice but to listen for my pts....LOL LOL) Anyway, if you have good co-workers, committment to breastfeeding and the selfishness that is needed to step away from your patients it works out. Your baby is number one!!! It also helped me keep my milk production going by my husband listening to our son cry for that little bit until I got home to feed him also instead of giving him a bottle of breastmilk!! Good luck and don't feel guilty about doing what you've got TO DO
  5. by   Spidey's mom
    Yes, I'd have to say it is possible and worth it. I went back to work part-time when my last child (boy) was 4 months old. I got a great Medala Pump-In-Style electric pump. The hospital where I work is very accommodating (well, employers have to be. . .it is the law now! They have to allow you the time and the place). I pump three times a day in the same room that was set up for breastfeeding moms (there is one other mom) and my husband or inlaws bring my son in to work for me to nurse at least once a day. I liken it to the smoker's breaks . . . and I take less breaks then they do. :-) My son is 18 1/2 months old and I'm still nursing. I nursed my daughter until she was almost three(she is 13 now) the son before that until 18 months (he is 18 years now) and the first son until 6 months (I didn't have much support way back 20 years ago). I really enjoy the time with my son. Speaking of breast milk in the fridge . . . one of my older supervisors came to me and said in a hushed tone "Honey, I put your bottles of breast milk in brown paper bags so no one would have to look at them". I cracked up! We deal with urine, feces, phlegm, etc all day long and people are offended by MILK! So funny. My advice is to give it your best shot . . .. my one true desire would be to stay at home with my child (I did with the other three). I'm grateful I'm just working 2 days a week. This time passes so quickly. . . . . best of luck.
  6. by   fiestynurse
    I breast and formula fed for 6 months. I breast fed the baby right before I went to work and right when I got home from my 8 hour shift. I just breast fed on my days off. The baby got formula when I was at work. I stopped pumping at work because it was just too stressful. Somehow, this worked. I always had plenty of milk. My baby was thriving and happy.

    I have heard lactation consultants speak of part-time breast feeding. It doesn't work for everyone, but it did for me.
  7. by   K O'Malley
    I had a terrible time trying to work and breast feed. With the first baby the doc said no way because I had to go back to work full time at 6 weeks. He said I would end up with mastitis. With the second and third babies I went back part time at three months and six months. It was so busy and there really was no place to pump so I would get horribly engorged and leak like crazy. If I had to do it over I think I would have taken a year off from work and then weaned before going back. Somehow we would have made it financially, we always seem to manage no matter what.
  8. by   Spidey's mom
    The Breastfeeding Accommodation Law states that "the employer must have a sensible amount of break time to accommodate an employee desiring to express breast milk for the employee's infant child. If possible, the break time should coincide with the employee's paid rest time, as required by the Industrial Welfare Commission. To make a reasonable effort to provide the employee with the use of a room or other location (other than a toilet stall) in close proximity to the employee's work area so that the employee may express milk in private." Quoted from the Shasta County Press Release stated on October 21, 2003 This is the law in California . . .check with your own states and counties.

    Of course the easiest way is to find a way to stay home (playing the lottery hasn't worked yet - ha ha) . The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends nursing for at least a year. Other medical organizations say two years. Good luck and don't take any guff from your job. Your kids come first!
  9. by   semstr
    Since you can stay at home here after the birth for 2 years, this question is hardly ever raised.
    however, it is common law too, to get all the time you need when breastfeeding your child.
    But just a question, how is the MM-quality, when you have to do "it" so rushed everytime?
    (Don't want to start big discussions here, I am really curious!)
  10. by   Anagray
    semstr, where are you from?
    I live in the US, but I wasn't born there. In my home country mothers also stay home, etc. When i was growing up, mothers had 2 year maternity leave, sometimes even paid.

    I stayed home with my first child, but this time it will not be an option, because I am starting clinicals this fall and my child will be born in August. I also have to manage to keep my job on the unit somehow between going to school and taking care of the kids.

    and everyone, thank you for your comments. It really helps.
  11. by   opalmRN
    Originally posted by Anagray

    Has anyone able to do both and has the employer met your needs?
    A close friend of mine did work and continue breast-feeding but it took a bit of creativity on her part. She is also a nurse and worked out an agreement with her employer that she would absolutely be guaranteed a 30minute break sometime between 6 and 7:30 in the evening. Her husband would bring the baby (and their other two children) to the break room. The younger children also benefited from seeing mom before bed and it enabled my friend to continue breast-feeding.

    In exchange for the guaranteed time with her baby, she agreed to give up her two breaks during her shift so that others would get a break. Everyone benefited.

    Of course this is not possible for everyone, but it maybe an idea that someone could use.
    I do hope that something can be worked out, as the time we have with our babies before they are grown is so short and precious.
    You will be in my thoughts,
  12. by   eltrip
    In nursing school, I had a fellow student who had her baby at the beginning of August. Her mother, mother-in-law, husband, etc. all brought the baby to her so that she could breastfeed her baby. I was so proud of her.

    When I had my daughter 6 years ago, I was able to stay home for 3 months with her. When I went back to work I used the Medela Pump-n-Style. The cold packs kept the expressed milk quite cold. I worked nights & I found time to pump at least once per shift while working a busy surgical floor. I was able to use the pumping room on the 4th floor or the little "dictation room" (that wasn't ever used by anyone at night) for pumping. Management & my fellow nurses were all immensely supportive.

    I was blessed to be able to exclusively breastfeed my daughter for the first six months. She weaned herself when she was 16 months old. We found that Avant silicone nipples worked best when switching back & forth between me & the bottle of expressed milk. Yes, it did take committment...and some days, I wanted to BE committed ! I miss breastfeeding...hoping for another one, Lord willing.

    Good luck to you!
  13. by   semstr
    Anagray, I live in Austria