Jul 24th 2011

Milk Nursingwear

Expressing yourself in the office

Breastfeeding and Work. It seems that these two words muster up all sorts of thoughts and emotions for us women. Yes - breastfeeding IS work. (A lot of really, fulfilling, hard work.) But breastfeeding AT work - well, that’s a whole different story.

For those ladies who work outside the house, balancing the desire to breastfeed and remain involved in one’s career can prove challenging. Some US States are more supportive of breastfeeding moms than others. The more supportive states may require that employers make allowances for breastfeeding mothers. For example, in California, employers must allow time to pump and a private space to pump that has a sink and no toilet in the room - so, not a bathroom stall (in short).

And some of those companies that aren’t mandated to provide lactation rooms or break time are slowly catching on. But not all of them are making it easy for women who are reluctant to speak out and stand up for what they need and want. Some women are still faced with the challenge of where to express milk at work, and how to negotiate break times to do this.

We asked some of our Facebook friends to share their experience of breastfeeding at work, and here are just a few of their responses:

We finally got a room here (which doubles as a meditation room). Before that the best option was the handicap accessible restroom. –Mark (chiming in on behalf of his female co-workers)


We have a room at {work}. I have a sign I put on the door that says, "Please do not disturb. In a state of dairy." - Margo


I used to have to pump in a closet, on my lunch hour, with everyone else eating their lunch right outside the closet! - Vicki

I got walked in on while I was my male boss.... that was fun! -Melanie

I would sit on the floor under my desk. I was lucky enough to have offices to do it in, but one of them had a glass panel you could see into, and the other a huge window that looked into another building. -Aviva

I would sit in the bathroom and use a manual pump. It was gross. I ran out of milk so much faster because I could not use the electric one (no outlet)…. -Regina

At first HR told me to pump in the bathroom/handicap stall - just terrible - I cried. I tried to make the point/fight for – “Would you make your lunch in a bathroom??” -Stacy

Here is our recommended checklist of things you’ll need to breastfeed at work – no matter what level of support you receive:

>your pump (a double-electric breastpump works best) and accessories
>anti-bacterial soap, a soft cloth for washing and soft cloth for drying
>ice packs and a cooler (if refrigeration isn’t available) to store expressed milk
>a 3-prong adapter (just in case the electrical outlets aren’t fit for your needs)
>a bottle of water (just for you!)
>a photo of your baby/babies or family
>breast pads (We recommend LilyPadz or the Moisture Wicking Bravado Nursing Pads!)
>while not essential, wearing a nursing bra, and nursing dress or nursing top can make pumping more convenient and make you feel less “exposed” even if in a private space at work

We’d love to hear your stories of breastfeeding at work. Send us an email to customercare{at}!