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Thread: pumping at work not going well so far

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    181

    Default pumping at work not going well so far

    This is partly a rant, and partly I need advice
    I started back at work last week. I asked for some schedule changes so that I wouldn't be away from DS for so many hours in a row, but they weren't approved. My boss said she was very in support of my pumping - 'do what I needed to' in regards to it.
    However, the whole thing has become hugely stressful. Right before DS was born, I got promoted to being a manager (although I don't actually manage anyone, its just a silly title). But my boss now expects a different standard, one that apparently doesn't involve taking any breaks during the day. She is acting completely different from what she said before I started back! We are pretty understaffed and she keeps putting me on the counter for hours at a time, so its hard to sneak away. Today she said, "I know its hard with the baby and all, but since we're managers our breaks and lunches are the ones to go first."
    What do I do?? I've always been a really dedicated and hard working employee - I still arrive at work 15 mins early and cut my lunches short a little. Pumping, when I finally can, is becoming harder. Twice today I only got half the amount I usually do. Plus, I'm doing it in an unused restroom which doesn't lock, so I'm always afraid someone is going to walk in.
    To continue my rant just a bit more, in order to pick DS up on time (and avoid a $25 per 10minute late fee), I have to leave work EXACTLY at 5pm. My boss keeps pulling me into her office at like 4:45 to talk about something. Then I have to drive like a crazy person and end up completely stressed by the time I get to DS's daycare (and feel horrible because he is the last kid in the entire building).
    I'm thinking seriously about looking for a different job, but career-wise, this job is my dream. The money also helps, of course.
    I just don't know what to do - pumping and working are seeming so completely incompatible.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    473

    Default Re: pumping at work not going well so far

    Yeah, I found out too the hard way that what my boss said before I had my DS and after I returned from maternity leave where nothing but lip service.

    "Oh, I know you need to pump, but I couldn't find you at your desk." Hello, this is a library there are a hundred reasons why I wouldn't be at my desk. Gee, 95 of them because I'm helping a patron, the other 5 are bathroom break, food break, meeting, pumping, or I'm off work!

    I had to go to HR more than once. It's all sorted out now, but it was so stressfull. Luckily for me there are several other pumping moms at my workplace and somehow it was all fine with them and their managers, just not my boss. Anyway, I digress.

    So many times the first few months I would cry my entire pump break. I'm also in a storage room which every staff member has keys too, the door has been opened on me a few times. So, I put up a sign to knock, I also have positioned myself with my back to the door. My boss was also notorius for calling me to his office at 4:15, knowing I was supposed to be off at 4:00 and he'd talk ad nauseum. I had to politely put an end to that too, I'd just excuse myself and say I have to go. If it's important he was welcome to call me after bed time was over, but I made it clear I had to go. The other thing my boss would do was schedule a meeting at a time he had approved for me to take a break! That drove me nuts, I did it a few times and messed my supply up a bit and got a lot of plugged ducts, then finally I had to stand up for myself in regard to that too. If he scheduled something at 3:00, I'd say well, I take a break at that time so I'll join you when I'm finished. It was so annoying.

    Going back to work is so hard, there were emotions I felt that I was not prepared to handle. I have to say, it was also A LOT more difficult than I ever could have imagined. Somehow I'm still going strong and my DS is turning 1 soon. My mantra became "I am not quitting, generations of women to follow need some of us to put our neck on the line for what we should absolutly have a right to do."

    You can do it, and we're all here to support you in succeeding.
    Last edited by LunaticLibrarian; July 24th, 2007 at 09:05 PM.

    My Little Reverse Cyclers
    *DS born July 2006, nursed 3 yrs 10 mos!
    *DD born January 2011, happily nursing and bucking the bottle just like big brother
    *One Angel baby we sadly never met July 2009

    Happily married to an amazing man who puts up with all my craziness since 1999.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    181

    Default Re: pumping at work not going well so far

    Funny you reply first - I work in a library too! Whats up with library bosses?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    473

    Default Re: pumping at work not going well so far

    LOL

    You know. I think it might be the culture. I've had so many other library folks come out of the wood work in these boards that they've gone through the same thing. There's a few other posts, and I've received several private messages too. I think since it's a service job you are supposed to always be available no matter what. Unless you smoke of course, that's totally allowed. The more wild the pipe and tobacco the better, and heck if you roll your own you're even cooler. LOL

    Are you a salaried employee, or hourly? I know in the state I work in, I'm a salaried employee and I'm not legally allowed any breaks from my job. Trust me, you'll see many posts to the contrary on these boards, but when my boss was having difficulty with pumping our HR office contacted the DOL. If you are an hourly employee, you are entitled to the 2-15 minute breaks, etc. but the rules are different if you are an exempt employee. My employer still held ground for me, thank goodness, and said my boss was being ridiculous.

    Seems like library folks and nurses have it pretty bad when it comes to pumping, but there is proof it can be done!

    My Little Reverse Cyclers
    *DS born July 2006, nursed 3 yrs 10 mos!
    *DD born January 2011, happily nursing and bucking the bottle just like big brother
    *One Angel baby we sadly never met July 2009

    Happily married to an amazing man who puts up with all my craziness since 1999.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    181

    Default Re: pumping at work not going well so far

    Yeah, I became salaried with the 'step up.' Is it sad that I've considered asking for a demotion back to my old position? Or maybe I should just start 'smoking' three times a day! Thanks so much for your response!

  6. #6

    Default Re: pumping at work not going well so far

    I've always thought that was crazy... smokers get all the breaks. Sheesh.

    This brough ttear sto my eyes... a small statement. Big impact. "My mantra became "I am not quitting, generations of women to follow need some of us to put our neck on the line for what we should absolutly have a right to do."
    Mother to Emily June, b. Sept 18, 2005 and Lucy Quinn, b. 1/20/2012

    “Buy the ticket, take the ride."
    Hunter S. Thompson

    Excitement on the Side: Who doesn't love a confident woman with long boobs...

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    1,134

    Default Re: pumping at work not going well so far

    oh, i am so worried about this. i work in a special ed school and no matter what they say i just know there are going to be times when i cannot leave my class b/c there will be nobody there to cover me at all. to top it off i think i will be pumping in my car b/c i cannot think of any location in the entire bldg. your experience is not raising my confidence. but like you i love my job and like pp said, quitting is not an option, i'm going to have to muster up the confidence to stand up for it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: pumping at work not going well so far

    I like the point made about smokers...if anyone gives me grief (my problem is that they assume its really time consuming to bfeed..ugh)..I am going to say "it takes no longer than someone who is going on a cigarette break". I have had to alter my pumping schedule a few times...like if a mtg gets scheduled at a time I would normally pump. I either do it before or after depending on the time. But those "last minute" chats are annoying. I have a few coworkers who love to chat on and on about nothing. THAT is more time consuming than my fifteen minutes of pumping!!

    Best of luck to you....Kudos for trying to do this..

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