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How to ask for a place to pump?

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from julper. Show julper's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    I'm wondering if anyone has any experience withthis. I am going to be returning to work full-time 10 to 12 weeks afterI have my baby. I have a coworker who said she was unable to find asuitable place to pump at our office, so she formula fed while she wasat work and nursed at night. I am really hoping to avoid that scenario.I think my company should provide a decent place to pump.

    Wedo have some open offices which I think should be allowed to beconverted into lactation rooms, at least until they have someone whoneeds to use the office for work. I mean they are just sitting empty!And I believe they lock from both sides.

    Does anyone have anyadvice on what would be good timing for me to bring this up? Anyresources I should have in my reserves before I bring it up? Any otheradvice? Thanks!

  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from julper. Show julper's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    Thanks for your input - I wasn't thinking that the words "converting" or "lactation room" would be negative but I can see your point! I wasn't thinking of any renovations, just closing the blinds to the existing offices. That's good advice.

    I am on salary so I don't think they can take away pay - I may just have to work through my lunch break or something (I don't mind).

    Any thoughts on when would be a good time to bring this up? I'm 30 weeks pregnant right now - should I wait until I'm closer to taking leave? Or wait until I get back from maternity leave? People in my office seem to be assuming that I'm not returning to work even though I will be. So I'm thinking it might be better to prove I am returning before asking for things.

  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from veggirl. Show veggirl's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    We are doing awesome.� Sprout is doing SO well, she's HUGE (she was over 20lbs at her 9 month appt - not bad for a vegan, breastfed baby who wasn't given any solids until 6 months :-) )�� She's soooo smart, she says mama, papa, baby, ball, bye-bye (while waving), and claps on command, and is just such a sweet, happy baby.�� I'm so happy too!!�� I can't wait to give her milk and eggs but I'm waiting for a year, because of DH's allergies.�� She loves table food, especially green beans and broccoli ;-)�� Just think, you'll be doing these things so soon!!! :-)��� I'm so glad your pregnancy is going well :-)

  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from sandybaby. Show sandybaby's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    I hope you are not forced to go to your car or a storage room but if you are, they sell modesty capes for pumping/nursing. They look like the capes you wear at the hairdresser, but shorter in the�front, just long enough to cover baby/pump. Again- I am not a mom, but supported enough friends and family through to know, second hand, how hard it is and how a little kindness and accommodation goes a long way.

  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from julper. Show julper's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    I really appreciate your HR prespective - you don't have to pretend to be a parent! I can use all the advice I can get.

    My immediate supervisor and her boss as well are both very supportive. I do not get eye rolls when I go to the bathroom every 1/2 hour or even when I have to take a half day to go to a doctor's appointment. (In fact, according to a coworker of mine, our boss has had extensive conversations with him about breastfeeding, when his baby was first born) However, we work for a subsidiary of a large corporation. So, 1) I don't think my bosses have any control over whether I use extra offices so I will have to talk to corporate HR, and 2) I don't think corporate HR gives a rat's behind whether/where I pump.

    Culhasa has a good point though - I have no idea whether bf-ing will actually work for me and my baby, so it does make sense to wait to ask. I just hope they don't promote or hire anyone to fill those offices before I get back!
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from sher. Show sher's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    I think sandy baby and culhasa gave great ideas. I did pump at work. there was an empty office and i just used that. i work for a very small company (6 people) so it wasn't really an issue. i just told them i would be in the other office for 20-30 mins. I don't remember really asking. my boss and i are pretty close, i've worked for him for over 12 years, and he was very supportive through the entire pregnancy (and previous miscarrige) so i think i just knew it would be ok.

    I think i might let your boss know that you are "hoping to nurse" and would be appreciative if you could use one of the empty offices when you return as a pumping room. let them know that you wouldn;t need any special accomadations other than the time (and if people complain about you getting extra "breaks" tell them to take up smoking! the smokers in my building go out at least 4 times a day!...not bashing smokers but i think nursing moms should have at least a break or two without being complained about!)

    best of luck with the baby, delivery, nursing and getting your room!

  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from veggirl. Show veggirl's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    My company has a "nurses room" which I have CONVERTED to a "pumping room", no two ways about it.�� I've been pumping for almost 7 months now.� I also recommend not asking for anything until right before you need it - no need for them to feel like they've accomidated you when you don't eventually need that accomodation - "save it" for when you really need it.I am also salaried, and work with mostly men.� I asked for a place to express milk, and�I was show that room.�� it was a cold drafty room with a door but no lock.�� I asked for a lock and received one.�� Then I asked for a cabinet to lock my breastpump/cooler in, and received one (its MUCH easier to leave the pump in the room that you pump in, because set up time - takes time!!� And being salaried, every minute you spend in there, someone else in the company is grumbling.�� If only they knew�how hard�pumping is!!!�� Smokers take breaks and no one cares, take a "break" to give your baby the best, most natural food, and you're somehow abusing the generosity of your employer.� Sigh.)Assert your rights.�� After a few months of pumping, people will be surprised you are "still doing that."���I personally use men's fear of discussing anything having to do with "womens issues" to my advantage.�� Start talking about breastmilk and pumps and most turn white as a sheet and will do just about anything to make you go away.� Sounds b*tchy, but as you can probably tell from the tone of my post, my return to work has not been too easy - I need all the leverage I can get!!�� Hopefully your return will be much more smooth!!!�� I think they know that if they said squat to me, that I'd have my la leche friends in there with a nurse-in faster than you can say "lactate", lol.�� It is true, your right to nurse is not protected in Massachusetts - but that doesn't mean its not a right worth fighting for.� THere is legislation right now that some people are trying to get passed.�� Hopefully that will get done in time to help other moms, or even me for the second time around ;-)�� Good luck!

  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from princess-cal. Show princess-cal's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    ��� Hi Juliper - I don't have children so I have never been in your situation.� However, my company does have a "Mother's Room" just for your situation.� I would think (hope) any company would accomodate you, and others, but you may just have to ask.� I would think it wouldl only be a benefit to the company to set up such a space for mothers.� I don't think it's ever "too early" to bring this up, especially if they have empty space.� I'm sure a lot of other women will thank you for it!� Good luck!

  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from sandybaby. Show sandybaby's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    Full disclosure - I have not been in this situation.�I am in HR and despite that, I had a coworker come back and pump in a closet...�not one of our conference rooms is private and we just didn't have the physical means to provide a private place for her.� So I did look at your post through the eyes of the company as well as a new mom (I tried on the latter, anyway!). I keep going back and forth with the "when". There are pros and cons to each and I don't know much about your workplace culture. One, like you said, is to make sure they know you are returning before you ask for anything. On the other hand, use of an otherwise empty room is not such an outrageous demand and it is better for them to be prepared on the day of your return so you don't show up, pump in hand, with nowhere to go except the ladies room.� Have you thought about how you will store the milk? Is there a fridge you can use or, even better, will they allow you to take in one of those mini college dorm fridges? I think only you can be the judge of how your office handles pregnancy in general. Has your boss been supportive so far or do you get an eye roll when you run to the bathroom every half hour? Some places are very cool with it and all that comes along with it - doctors appointments, special consideration, understanding of the physical changes, etc. Other places treat it like a disease or, even worse, refuse to give the expectant mom any leeway. Not to say you're asking for any but let's face it, �a little leeway is warranted - we treat pregnant women as special for a reason. I assume you'll be having a conversation with your boss on the terms of your leave - when it starts, when you expect to return, etc. That is probably the best time to let them know that you'd like to pump and�will empty office xxx be available for that?��I hope that they will be happy to have you back and willing to do what it takes to make your return possible. If you have a policy handbook pull it out, it may even be addressed there. Let us know how it goes.�

  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from julper. Show julper's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    Hi Veggirl! So glad to hear from you. I hope you and little sprout are doing well! Sorry to hear your return to work was not as easy as you had hoped.� I'm not sure how it will go for me - my department is very family friendly but my larger company isn't as much.

  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from sandybaby. Show sandybaby's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    I think direct is best "I'll be pumping breastmilk when I return to work. Can you help me find a private room with a door that locks?" I would not mention the words "converting"�or "lactation room", all you need is a comfy chair and an outlet if its an electric pump.� You don't want to give the impression that you are looking for an extra break or trying to cost them money on renovations.�Be aware that any time you take to pump is unpaid unless you have a generous employer who is willing to look the other way for however long it takes you to pump and you don't have�co-workers who�get jealous and petty because you get to spend a half hour a day with a suction device attached to your boobs. Some people will complain about anything at all...even some men will demand to know why you're getting pumping time and they don't! Massachusetts does not have any employement law mandating a place to nurse or pump but it is good practice to allow it and hopefully your employer is sympathetic to your needs. Massachusetts does not consider nursing or pumping indecent exposure - some states still do- so they can't use that as a deterrant. Good luck.

  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from culhasa. Show culhasa's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    I would wait until after you have the baby and you are a month or so before returning.� The reason that I say this - is that I also was set on breastfeeding.� (We have a lactation room at my company.)� However, my son did not take to all.� I pumped for 6 weeks and then we put him on formula.� Instead of stressing yourself out about whether or not you need a room now - hold off until you have to stress about it.�

    Good luck!

  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from julper. Show julper's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from canukgrl. Show canukgrl's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    I just returned to work last week, my daughter is 3 months old.  I approached a female member of the facilities department, and I had a suggestion in mind (an empty office as others have suggested -- I now have the key to it)  I work for a large tech company that is definitely very male dominated, and while they don't HAVE to give you a place to pump, I think it's in their best interest to accomodate you.

    Re: pumping in the bathroom, I think that should be a last option... My boss suggested that as an option, and I said "would you eat your lunch in the bathroom?"  ick!  That being said, I did have to visit one of our other offices last week and pumped in the bathroom rather than take my chances ;)

    Good luck!
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from julper. Show julper's posts

    How to ask for a place to pump?

    "would you eat your lunch in the bathroom" That is a GREAT response. Thanks! I just might have to use that!

    Unfortunately our facilities dept is one guy, so no female members I could approach. And since HR is being outsourced more and more, I'm not sure who I will ask! I'm sure my boss will help me figure it out if I need her to, though.