Full Time Working Mothers Who Make Breastfeeding Work
Working mothers all have crazy schedule. And who doesn’t need to work a full-time job to survive nowadays?
Not working isn’t an option for some women.
Being a mom is a full time job itself. Then also working on top of that can make us all feel a bit overwhelmed. Now, add to the mix breastfeeding your baby, working full-time, school, pumping, being a wife, being a mom, not forgetting to breathe…
I think we’re all exhausted- but I guess that comes with motherhood.
My every day schedule goes a little like this:
Wake up, nurse, make breakfast, nurse, get dressed, nurse, drop baby off, run late to class, pump break, go visit baby, nurse, go to work, pump, go home, nurse, nurse, sleep, nurse- and do it all over again the next day! Yes, it’s exhausting just reading it, but it is 100% worth it all. Do you ever sit back while your feeding your child and just really appreciate that moment with your child? Well when you do that, all the hard work you do will make this nursing journey so worth it.
Full time working mothers have a huge challenge to breastfeed your baby. That’s because of the major challenges most working mothers face when it comes to pumping. This isn’t about mothers failing at breastfeeding.
This is about our country failing working mothers when it comes to maternity leave.
The AAP recommends babies be exclusively breastfed until at least 6 months. WHO suggests to keep going, along with solids at 6 months, until baby is at least 2 years old. Too often, this isn’t feasible for working mothers because breastfeeding is a job itself.
Some working mothers can actually take some needed time off from work. This allows them time to parent, so they can do what’s best for their babies. It allows them to establish a breastfeeding relationship. Then, later, we can worry about when and how we can hook ourselves up to a pump so we can bring home milk for baby.
Another reason working mothers struggle is the lack of support in the workplace
Mothers discover it is difficult to continue breastfeeding when maternity leave ends. Many lack a clean, private place to pump. Or they struggle with a boss or coworkers who don’t understand or aren’t educated. Only 10 percent of mothers who work full-time are still breastfeeding their baby at 6 months, according to a 2005 CDC report.
The benefits of breastfeeding extend well beyond just providing nutrition for the baby. Along with giving immunity to the newborn, it’s also a time of bonding between the mother and child. It is a real tragedy that women cannot manage work and nursing their child, either due to a too short maternity leave, or a workplace not accepting the law-mandated pumping breaks.
I am hopeful in time that mothers will get the needed PAID maternity leave to build that bond with their baby and have appropriate pumping breaks and clean private rooms. For all women, we need to stick together and help make a movement so that it is more acceptable in the workplace.
If I can do it anyone can do it. It’s exhausting and you may just want to quit but like I said- before stop, take a moment to really enjoy that bond when you nurse your beautiful child later and you’ll see it is all worth it.
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