Posted in Breastfeeding, Pumping, Working Parents

I am returning to work from maternity leave in 3 weeks and my mom will be watching my daughter. Right now I exclusively breastfeed and my husband gives her one bottle at night which she takes reluctently. I want to get her used to taking a bottle easier and also not be so dependent on comfort feeding on me since I will not be around while at work. I need my mom to be able to soothe her too and right now its only me that can. I am thinking of pumping and giving a bottle or two during the day in addition to the night bottle in the next few weeks leading up to my return to work to get her used to it. Does that seem like a good idea? Will it ruin my supply? Any other tips to make the transition to work easier? Im getting so nervous...

  • Alexandra
    Nov 18, 2017

    Could you try to extend your maternity leave ? She needs you more than anybody else

  • Rachel
    Nov 19, 2017

    Definitely a good idea — I went back to work last week and we are still struggling with the bottle. Luckily I mostly work from home so I’ve been able to breastfeed when needed, but I need to travel this coming week and I’m freaking out bc my 3 month old simply hates the bottle. I should have introduced it more often leading up to going back to work. You won’t ruin your supply as long as you are breastfeeding or pumping every 3 hours. If you can get someone other than you to give her a bottle during the day so she can get more used to it and being soothed, that would be ideal.

  • Diane
    Nov 19, 2017

    Alexandra-unfortunately no 😞 I have 12 weeks of leave and am going back part time 3 days a week instead of full time.

  • Anne
    Nov 19, 2017

    Definitely start pumping now. Pumping takes time for your breasts to get used to. Once you are used to pumping, your supply shouldn’t drop when you go back to work. It also sounds like a good idea to get her used to the bottle gradually. It’s really not so bad! I worked 8 hours 5 days/week and my routine was nurse right before I left, pump 1-2 times at work, then nurse as soon as I got home. The baby only had to take one or two bottles during the day and my supply didn’t drop.

  • Diana
    Nov 19, 2017

    Have your mom come over and be with her for extended periods at least a couple of days before you go back to work. Your daughter needs to know that her needs will be met even when you’re not around and she also needs to get used to your mom and learn that she is a reliable source of comfort. Maybe your mom can put her in a carrier or hold her lots while you’re around and the next day you leave for half an hour, then an hour and so on. Try starting this when your daughter is well rested and fed.

  • Srey
    Nov 19, 2017

    The advice I was given...Have your mom or husband give her a bottle once or twice a day. While one of them is giving her the bottle, you should be pumping.

  • Hannah
    Nov 19, 2017

    Your baby is highly unlikely to accept a bottle from you. She will always prefer to nurse, and that’s ok. The struggles you’re having with your husband giving the bottle is because she knows you’re around. Has he tried feeding while you’re actually away from the home? She won’t have the drive to nurse when you truly aren’t around (remember she can smell you even when you’re in another room). She’ll accept a bottle when she’s truly hungry, and otherwise she’ll be soothed in other ways. Allowing her to comfort nurse as often as possible is something that protects your supply. Pumping is necessary when you’re away, but at the end of the day a nursing baby empties a breast better than a pump, so it’s best to nurse whenever possible. Others will find their own solutions to comfort her, but your solution is nursing, which is best!

  • Alyssa
    Nov 19, 2017

    I give my daughter a 1oz bottle around 9a with her vitamin D drop and a 3.5oz bottle before bed. I pump after the first feed in the morning around 6a and after the last feed at night around 8p. I’m lucky to have a sleeper but if she woke in the middle of the night I might also pump then bc my supply is best from midnight to 6. She is 6 weeks

  • Dorinda
    Nov 19, 2017

    when i went back to work i always took my break at work and pumpped than when i got home would breast feed her and freezewhat i pumpped at work ( usually 2 bottles ) for the next day.i introduced the bottle easier by getting a nook nipple shapped like the bottle nipple. only thing was she wouldnt take any other nipple kind after that.

  • Samantha
    Nov 20, 2017

    Same boat. Don't stress! You are doing what you have to to support your girl! As long as she is only eating what you pump that day your supplt and demand equation will even out! Try bottles when you are not in the room so she can't smell you! I pump 3 x and he eats that at daycare then I feed him as much as he needs in am and afternoon. You are doing awesome!

  • Rochelle
    Nov 20, 2017

    Pump and stash. Feed your baby at night and save that pumped milk. I went back to work when my baby was 4.5 months. I prepped 4 bottles of 3oz each which she drank every 2 hours. I pumped 2-3x at work. Before lunch, during lunch, after lunch. As much as you pump, it’s not as effective as your baby at removing milk from your breast. I lose 2 oz a day (I pump 10 oz total vs the 12 oz she takes when I’m at work) but luckily I have a huge stash in my freezer. I will eventually supplement her with Holle Lebenswert. In the beginning she would not take to the bottle, I’ve tried: mimijumi, Comotomo, munchkin latch, dr brown, avent, and playtex (I was desperate bc I only had 2 weeks). The only one she took to was Lansinoh Momma. If you feel how the nipple feels, it’s completely different from all the others. It’s really soft and squishy, similar to how your own boob is like. Try It! Also my baby girl took to her bottle as long as she was being entertained (with toys or taking a tour of the house) or distracted enough to know that she was drinking from a bottle.