Pump it up

What do you guys think about this trend?

I think the story does a good job of outlining the whys and why-nots of pumping breast milk exclusively, although it does leave out a couple of key issues.

For one thing, a mama’s body produces breast milk according to what a baby needs based on age, etc., and pumping all the milk you’ll need for a year really seems to circumvent that process.

And for another, as I understand it, there is an exchange of antibodies between mother and baby, so that if one or the other is exposed to something both get some level of protection through breastfeeding. With the pump that’s just not going to happen.

You have to hand it to the women who are doing what they think is best for their babies by being so diligent about the pumping. I know there are lots of you out there who pump while you’re away from your babies for work, and I know there are lots of you out there who pump because your babies can’t or won’t nurse, but I, for one, can’t imagine pumping ’round the clock just for the heck of it.

Does anyone really like pumping?!

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6 Responses to Pump it up

  1. tallgirl says:

    i would not say I loved pumping, but I would say that I didn’t mind it. Most of the time, the baby drank the milk I pumped the next day.

    I didn’t mind pumping because I went to a quiet room and read magazines once a day while I was at work. It was a great break. For a while with both kids, my best friend was pumping at the same time so we had time to gab while pumping.

  2. kdishongh says:

    That doesn’t sound like a bad experience at all! : )
    I might not mind it so much under those circumstances.
    Pumping and using the next day is a lot different than pumping and using in eight months. (I think the story said that by the time one baby was 4 months old the mother had pumped enough to last a year. I’m doubtful it would even last that long in the freezer.)

  3. abailey says:

    I didn’t have much of a choice about it. I got a severe case of mastitis when my son was only a week old, and eventually the infection got worse with yeast and some other issues. So I had to stop nursing for about 3 weeks to heal, although I could pump milk so that’s what I did. When it was okay to start nursing again, he wouldn’t do it. He’d gotten used to the bottle. I ended up pumping for five months before moving to formula exclusively. I was terribly guilty about the whole scenario and actually still am, but it was the best i could do. I agree that old-school nursing certainly sounds ideal. But I say give hats off and kind words of encouragement to all women who keep their babies healthy and well-nourished, no matter how they do it.

  4. Yavonda says:

    I’m an exclusively pumping mom. Thanks to our NICU days, Alaina learned breast and bottle at a very young age. Once we came home from the hospital, she eventually was breast only until she started day care. During the whole time I was nursing, we were battling thrush on and off. Finally, my doctor told me to take a week break from nursing so the meds I was taking could get rid of the yeast once and for all.

    I quickly found that pumping worked much better for us. Alaina spent at least 45 minutes breastfeeding, but could take a bottle in 10 or so. At 3 a.m. (one of the few feeds I still got with her when I went back to work) that time difference made all the difference in the world. So I started pumping exclusively. I’ve been doing it for 5+ months now.

    Like the women in the article, I have a lot of milk in the freezer (mine and both of my sisters’). We mix the frozen with freshly pumped and formula since I’ve started the weening process.

    I love my pumping time now (absolutely HATED it when Alaina was in the hospital). At home, I set my pump up by my computer and I’m able to get my email and blogging done then. At work, I take a magazine or book to read and life is good.

    I don’t know that I would encourage all women to pump, but it was the right choice for me. It let me continue to give Alaina breastmilk far longer than I think I would have been able to nurse her.

  5. kdishongh says:

    Austin – I understand feeling guilty, for sure. It’s one of the things moms do best, right? And Lord knows we have myriad reasons to feel it. But you did a fantastic job of keeping up with Amos for those five months – hats off to you for that. (Heck, I’m amazed you could pump with mastitis anyway, because I know it makes you feel absolutely lousy.) You go, girl!

  6. kdishongh says:

    Yavonda – Hats off to you, too. We all have to make choices, and you sure didn’t make the one that would have been easiest for you.

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