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Thread: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    110

    Default How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    I am wondering how to making pumping work in the office.

    With my first child, my office had a designated "mother's room" which was quite luxurious! LOL Soft lighting, a sink, storage space, refridgerator, full couch and coffee table. And a spread of Nursing Mom Tea (which I added myself ha)

    Anyway I am with the same company (family friendly) but in a small satellite office now. I walked all around and there is no mother's room, and there is not even a private office. As far as I can see ALL offices have at least one wall that is all glass, and often the walls in the offices are not 100% sound proof from other offices.

    What would you do? Anyone had a similar situation? I thought of actually getting them to dedicate an office, but I'd have to put up blinders or something myself (?!?) and it would be blatantly obvious what was going on.
    With my first, I pumped until he was 20 months old, and even with the discrete setting people looked at me like I was a fruitcake for pumping for an older baby. Having a jerry-rigged pump room seems like an awkward thing but I guess I should try it if they'll let me.

    No rooms lock either.

    THANKS!

  2. #2
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    Oct 2006
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    8,272

    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    My 1st office - had a door that closed and locked, but a wall with a window into the center of the office. I brought in a pretty wall hanging (I think it was a big scarf) and used magnets to hang the scarf and cover the window when I was pumping.

    I currently have a cubicle. Walls are high enough so people can't see over. I hang a sheet across the opening to the cube when I'm pumping.

    There is enough "white noise" in the office that people can't hear the pump.
    Lynn
    DS1: bf 7/2006 -> 4/2009; multiple food allergies
    DS2: bf 9/2009 -> ???
    ; multiple food allergies
    Breastmilk Donor - http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk
    Click HERE to learn about baby led solids (BLS) / baby led weaning (BLW)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    My office has glass walls too. One of my coworkers bought a folding screen that she put up when she was pumping, and I used that too, or else a conference room (when it wasn't in use) which had real walls. It was a little "jerry-rigged," but it was fine. I have also been known to pump in my car in a parking lot or while driving! I only pumped for my LO until he was a year old, but I am still nursing him the rest of the time at 18 months. Folks at work assume I've weaned, and I usually don't correct them.


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    seriously? Sound proof? who cares? If there is an office for you that is private when you use it do you really think the sound issue is that major of a deal breaker?
    Mommy to Maxwell 10-9-07 weaned with love (a party and a remote control monster truck) on his 4th birthday
    My Boy 3-16-10
    And my sweet pea Sam 2-12-11

    Watch Your Language

  5. #5
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    Dec 2009
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    110

    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    LOL! No I don't think the sound would stop me!

    It's more just hating the attention drawn to a room with some jerry rigged covering. I know I wouldn't NOT PUMP until my son was say a year, but I guess I will just have to get over hating the attention. I guess if I put a little effort into the set-up (maybe do it on a weekend) and make it as non-attention grabbing as possible, I won't feel like it's a big deal.
    I will have to put a clear sign up though since there are no locks.

    I know no one else has pumped in this office ever so I'll just have to make it work and deal with some odd looks I guess.

    This is just a brand new set of coworkers so I don't feel comfortable forging a new path in this office before they've really gotten to know/like/respect me.

    Will have to just deal. I am pretty dedicated though, so I doubt I'd skimp on actual pumping (pumped 7 times a day including weekends for my son AND night nursed til 20 months.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    I agree, most pumps aren't that loud. I used to pump AND talk on the phone all the time! I thought it was good when everyone in the office knew what I was up to, because then no one would knock on the door! (I put up a do not disturb sign, and everyone knew what that meant - boobies! ) Seriously, if you're chill about it, everyone else will follow your lead.


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  7. #7
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    Dec 2009
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    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    What a good point! (to be chill about it). I can be the one to set the tone that I am not doing some weird wacky thing, but rather I am doing what a typical mother of an infant does when she must return to work. Hopefully it will be a positive note in the heads of the young women there :-)

    I'll try to not make a big deal out of it myself & set the example.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*joe.s.mom View Post
    I agree, most pumps aren't that loud. I used to pump AND talk on the phone all the time! I thought it was good when everyone in the office knew what I was up to, because then no one would knock on the door! (I put up a do not disturb sign, and everyone knew what that meant - boobies! ) Seriously, if you're chill about it, everyone else will follow your lead.
    this is what i do! i have a bunch of male construction workers that work for me, so totally don't get bfing. BUT, i just made it clear from the very beginning that that's what i was doing, and it really made it so much easier than trying to be discrete about anything.

    I have an office that has doors, but it has two entrances and it's just not relaxing to pump because people come in and out as they please. So I use my one of the crew's office and hang a sign "PUMPING!" or "NURSING" (when Max is there) - everyone is surprisingly supportive and actually funny about it.

    I was feeding Max the other day and i forgot to put a sign up on the door. It's right by the entrance and there were a couple of other guys there before he went in and i heard them yell "HALT!" before he could come in. So cute for a bunch of tough guys.

    Anyway, the point I was trying to make in a really long way was to just be wide open with it, then it's a lot less uncomfortable for everyone.
    Julia and Maxwell (and Dan and Haddie)
    Maxwell, born January 3, 2010
    A year on Mama's milk and still loving it

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    58

    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    I pump in a bathroom. It's absolutely not 100% sound proof, and it's next to a heavily-trafficked stairwell and a busy mens' room. I felt awkward about "Oh no, people will HEAR me pumping" and then I got over it. If someone has an issue with the sound, then that's their issue. While I have no problem explaining where I am and why if asked, I don't trumpet the fact that I'm pumping and I suspect the majority of my (mostly male) coworkers have no idea.

    If HR had done their job and followed the law rather than denying my request to pump in a long-unused office, then I wouldn't be pumping in a bathroom anyways!

    I have tried to make the room as comfortable as possible for my use. I brought in a more comfortable chair and HR kindly provided me with disinfecting wipes and an air freshener. Since other women can and do use the room as a bathroom I didn't want to put up pictures of my baby. Thankfully I have an iPhone, so I can look at pictures of her on my phone and surf the internet or play games while I pump. I'm considering requesting a folding screen to further separate the corner where I pump from the toilet.
    Katie - mom to Lily, 8/5/2010

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    93

    Default Re: How do you find/make a place to pump at work? (office)

    Luckily, there is a lactation room where I work. To be honest, I never knew it was there until I had to start asking around to see if we had one or not! It is a room off the back of a bathroom and you need a code to get in so not just everyone and anyone can come in. I will have to say that the room is pretty busy, though. I am using an older hand me down pump so it does make noise (before giving birth, I would wonder what that noise was when I went to the bathroom! LOL. Now I know.), but I look at it as an extra opportunity for one of the other pumping Moms to know I am there. Their pumps are so quite, I have to knock and ask if anyone is in there just to make sure they are not listening to an iPod or something. It is still embarrassing to wash pump parts in the bathroom sink…most random people that come in say comments like, “Oh, I remember when I had to do that!”.

    Anyway, what I was trying to get to was that I work with all men (I am an IT Support Technician and the only female out of a team of about 20 men). When I first returned to work at 6 weeks I was petrified they would know what I was doing...most of the men to this day (DD is 9 months) still do not know what I am doing! They make comments like, "you going home early?" if they catch me with my bag on my shoulder! However, there was a few I worked regularly and whenever we went past my pumping time, I just simply said "I need to go or I will explode!" and they knew exactly what I meant and they did not bat an eye. NOW, I can make statements like "I have to pump and then I can help you with that....". In my case, I am the only person on the team with kids (believe it or not!) but most of the guys are newly weds and are thinking about starting families so when they ask why I do it the biggest reason I can give them that I think they can easily digest is "It saves LOTS of money!". Who can disagree with that in these economic hard times? I agree with the "don't make it a big deal, so it won't be a big deal" statement. Best of luck to you!!! I remember those first days...I would not go back to them, that is for sure! Just know, it all seems kind of comical a few months down the road. Honestly!

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