Returning to Work - The Working Mum’s Guide to Breastfeeding
Returning to work after having a baby can feel daunting, especially when you’re still nursing. But many women have successfully managed the breastfeeding-and-work combo, and so can you. You’ll need some backup from your employer, colleagues, and family to make it work who all need to keep in mind the importance of flexibility and support in this new phase of your life. Remember, your boss is legally obligated to have your back, so don’t be shy about asking for help.
To begin with, check if your employer offers the option of working remotely or having your little one with you in the workplace. You may live close enough to be able to pop in and nurse your baby multiple times during the day. Depending on the nature of your job, this may be feasible, at least during the initial few months of transitioning back into work. However, if having your baby nearby isn’t viable and you need to continue breastfeeding, then consider expressing your milk during your work hours.
Expressing your milk at work:
Expressing milk could be an excellent alternative for the time you’re away from your little one. Don’t hesitate to discuss this option with your employer and remember that you have legal rights concerning breastfeeding. Here is a list of things you might require:
- A private and hygienic area with a comfortable seat.
- A fridge or freezer to store the milk safely.
- A power outlet near to where you’ll be sitting, especially if you’re using an electric pump.
- A washbasin and soap for cleaning your hands and pump.
- Sufficient time to express milk without disturbance.
- Consider using a double and electric pump for convenience and efficiency.
Other things to keep in mind:
- The frequency of expressing milk at work will depend on your baby’s age. As your little one starts consuming solids, they’ll require less expressed milk.
- You might want to nurse your baby just before leaving for work and prepare for a reconnection feed as soon as you reunite.
- Have a conversation with your childcare provider or early childhood education centre about your baby’s feeding requirements.
- Leaving a piece of your clothing that you’ve worn with the carer can provide comfort to your baby when you’re not there.
- Consider expressing milk a few weeks before heading back to work so you can have some stored breastmilk.
Remember, it’s your legal right to breastfeed or express milk. It may be helpful to discuss your intentions with your employer before taking maternity leave, so they are aware of your plan when you return to work. This will provide them with ample time to make arrangements that enable you to work and feed without any difficulties. It’s advisable to attempt to negotiate a fair agreement initially, but if your employer creates obstacles that make it difficult to continue breastfeeding, don’t hesitate to contact your union representative or the Australian Breastfeeding Association for guidance. They’ll be more than happy to support you. Keep calm and breastfeed on!
Zoe Sage came from a genuine desire to ease into the transition to motherhood and breastfeeding because - let’s be honest - motherhood is no joke. Owned and operated by a young mother of two, Zoe Sage is all about offering incredible products that reduce stress levels instead of increasing them.
From baby sleeping bags, silicone feeding sets and our signature Five In One Multi Use Mama Cover, we’ve got the essentials of motherhood covered alongside free shipping over $100, a thirty day returns policy, and of course, flexible payment options like ZipPay and Afterpay.
If you are on the hunt for baby products that actually benefit you and your family, follow us on Instagram to stay updated on new arrivals, or get in touch with us today if you have a query about one of our items available at Zoe Sage.