Is this a feasible plan?

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-01-2003
Is this a feasible plan?
6
Thu, 12-13-2012 - 2:29pm

Hello, my DD is currently 5.5 months old. She is EBF, nursed when I'm with her and drinking pumped milk while I'm at work. With my older daughter I wasn't able to BF at all and exclusively pumped until I gave it up at 4.5 months, so I'm already well ahead of the game there. The thing is, I'm getting REALLY tired of pumping, which I'm sure a lot of you have experienced. I pump every day as soon as I get up (or after I feed her, depending if she's awake or not) and right before bed. On weekends I just nurse her the rest of the day. On work days I pump twice during the work day, around 10 and 3.  Right now I have almost a whole deep freezer in the garage full of bagged milk, I'm pretty sure over 200 bags! And I add several bags each week. I've been having DH give her 1 bag a week just to get the oldest stuff out of the rotation.

So now that you know the background, here is my idea/question. I would like to try to continue with this schedule until she is around 9 months (assuming I don't have a major supply loss or anything), and then give up the pumping and just nurse when I'm with her and have her work on the freezer supply while I'm gone. Do you think this is feasible? Would not pumping at all cause my supply to drop too much?

Photobucket
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-21-2009
Wed, 12-19-2012 - 7:47pm

You can really cut back on which ever pump sessions you want to. So for example if you wanted to cut out the pre bedtime one just make the pump session a bit shorter, gradually over time. You can really cut back gradually two ways, cutting total number of pump sessions or length of time hme you pump. Anytime you decide to cut a pump session it's probably best to cut back on the length of time gradually first especially if it's a long gap between feedings or pumping.

Warmly,

Kathy Kuhn IBCLC

iVillage lactation consultant

and Grammy to Brennan, Elias, Elianna, Tahlia, Makenna, Maura, Silas and Charlotte    

Kathy Kuhn IBCLC ivillage lactation consultant Grammy to Brennan, Elias, Elianna, Tahlia, Makenna, Maura, Silas, and Charlotte

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-01-2003
Wed, 12-19-2012 - 12:52pm

Thank you both for all of your help. I'm sure I will be back with more questions. I think for now I am just going to finish out the year on my current schedule and then see how just pumping once a day at work goes.

Merry Christmas!

Photobucket
Community Leader
Registered: 06-10-2008
Mon, 12-17-2012 - 10:35pm

Just throwing out ideas.....

What if you didn't have to clean and pack up the parts? Many working and pumping horns invest in a second set of horns specifically for that reason. And why pack them up? Just bring a plastic grocery bag, toss em in and worry about washing them when you get home! And if the cord is a hassle, is it possible to get the battery pack and just run on rechargeable batteries?

You can certainly give the reduced pumping a try and if it doesn't work out for you, you can always go back! 

Photobucket
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-01-2003
Mon, 12-17-2012 - 1:14pm

*sigh*  I would LOVE to be able to cut down more on pumping. But 1) I'm scared that if something happens and we start using the freezer stash on a regular basis, then it will all get used up before she turns 1 and we have to start using formula. 2) I have to pump first thing in the morning even if she's already eaten because she never empties them, and most nights she only wakes up to eat once during the night to eat so they're pretty full by morning. Which is why I also pump right before bed. She gets her last meal and goes to bed around 7:30, so if I didn't pump before bed at 10 then I'd be going almost 12 hours with only the one nighttime feeding. Ouch! lol

Pumping at work is the biggest PITB part of pumping. Having to carry it around, clean and pack up the parts all the time, wrap and unwrap the cord.....  (at least I don't have to take it EVERYWHERE with me this time like I did when I was EPing lol).  What if I cut the work pumps from two/day at 10 and 3 to just one/day at lunch time? I feed/pump around 6 in the morning and then get home from work at 6 pm. Hmmm, that's every 6 hours, which would probably be another "ouch!"  Would that cut down my supply too much?

Photobucket
Community Leader
Registered: 06-10-2008
Mon, 12-17-2012 - 11:16am
Kathy as always gave you lots of wonderful information. In looking at your post, you are pumping a TON!! I can understand why you're sick of it. Can I ask a question? If you already have tons in the freezer and are continuing to put away several additional bags each week, why are you continuing to pump in the morning and at night in addition to while you're at work? Would it be more palatable to you to only pump while you're at work? That might be a good middle ground to keeping your supply up while not overdoing it and making yourself crazy.
Photobucket
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-21-2009
Thu, 12-13-2012 - 7:55pm

 

It would be really hard to predict how much your supply would dip without pumping and if your baby would mind it or not.  But in general the less you pump the less you will produce.

I understand why you want to stop pumping. Most moms think it’s a pain. Some babies will tolerate the slower flow that usually comes with a lowered supply b/c they love to breastfeed. Some will decline breastfeeding and move toward more bottles as mom’s supply dips. Again, it’s impossible to predict how your baby will react.

So probably if you want to keep breastfeeding and reduce pumping the best thing to do is to gradually back off the pumping rather than making any changes too abruptly. That way if you see problems, you can decide to go back to pumping more or keep reducing the pumping if you are ok with the changes.

Sorry, I can’t give a more precise answer! Those LO are just so unpredictable…………..:-)

 

Warmly,

Kathy Kuhn IBCLC

iVillage lactation consultant

and Grammy to Brennan, Elias, Elianna, Tahlia, Makenna, Maura, Silas and Charlotte    

Kathy Kuhn IBCLC ivillage lactation consultant Grammy to Brennan, Elias, Elianna, Tahlia, Makenna, Maura, Silas, and Charlotte