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Breast Pumping While Working

Would You Pump in Front of Co-Workers?

Here's a post from our partners at BabyCenter! Every week, we bring you the best parenting and lifestyle stories from the experts at BabyCenter, including this post from Jessica Kim about pumping at work.

Remember the song, “Pump…pump it up…yo pumpin’!” It has become my theme song as I walk off to pump throughout the work day. As the founder of a startup, BabbaCo, I brought baby Brandon to work with me and breastfed him in front of anyone and everyone. I used my hooter hider cover, of course, but would breastfeed him even while recruiting new hires! (My co-founder recalls that I was all business from neck up, but in the midst of talking about product lines, you heard baby Brandon literally slurping underneath a cover. Hilarious.)

Related: Do younger moms cope better with pregnancy and babies?

Well, now that Brandon no longer comes to the office, I’m now pumping several times a day. It has become a very public "to do" amongst my 14-person team. "Jessica, you need to pump, right?" "Let’s meet while you pump! I used to whisk away and privately pump, but I soon got comfortable with pumping in front of people.

Here is a pic of me in the bathroom stalls meeting with Stef, my product director, as I pumped. At first, I felt really odd about her seeing my milk for some reason. I obviously got past that quickly.

However, it’s different. I can breastfeed in front of male co-workers, but I can’t pump in front of them. I just feel a bit guarded and awkward. Everyone discusses breastfeeding in public, but what about pumping? Is it different to pump in public vs. breastfeed in public? In both situations, I’m covered, but I have found that people respond differently when it’s a machine sucking my milk out versus. a baby.

Would love to hear your thoughts…before I scare off my 26-year-old bachelor teammate. Thanks!

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