April 2013 Moms

What should I do with all this milk??

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So I'm probably making this way more complicated than it needs to be, but I'm conflicted about what to do with my pumped milk. I have probably around 180ish oz in the freezer now, and it's looking like I will be staying at home. Before I had Noelle, I thought I'd probably like giving her a bottle more than breastfeeding, but now it kind of makes me emotional to think about her not depending on just my boob (is that pathetic or what?).

So anyway, I guess I need to figure out when and how to use this frozen breastmilk. If you give a bottle, what time of day do you do it? Do you pump instead? I guess I just don't see the point in replacing a feeding with a bottle when my boobs are always available, but I also don't want to waste all the saved milk. I guess I should also think about weaning myself from pumping if this is how I feel, but DD has started sleeping long stretches at night, and I wake up so engorged and she never fully relieves the discomfort first thing in the morning. I only pump once a day, after the first morning feeding, and I'm getting 9-10oz total.

Sorry for the babbling, just looking for thoughts/experiences/etc. Our freezer is getting full, and when I expressed this to DH, he said "Well, maybe you should throw out the oldest milk.." Um, no!

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Re: What should I do with all this milk??

  • You can contact a milk bank in your area and see what their requirements are for donating it. At ours, you have to do a little interview, a blood test and be willing to donate at least 100 oz. They send milk to hospitals around the country and use it for NICU babies. I am donating my frozen milk to a friend who is having triplets so finding a friend who might want it without going through the testing is another possibility. How old is LO? I pumped after every feed for the first 4 weeks or so since my LO was in the NICU so I have around the same amount of milk as you. Once I weaned off pumping as often, my supply went down. I wonder if you start pumping for less time in the morning, if your supply will drop enough that you won't make as much so you won't need to pump then. Good luck with whatever you decide.
  • There are places where you can donate it to mothers who are unable to breast feed for whatever reason... I generally pump enough so that hubby can feed the baby a bottle a day, but I've got a much smaller stash than what you have...
  • First of all, I'm totally jealous of your supply and your stockpile.  If you live in central IL I'll take yours so I can stop having to supplement with formula! :o)

    I'd contact a milk bank -- the local La Leche League or your hospital's NICU would probably have information on how to contact the milk bank.  That or find a friend that needs it; maybe someone who adopted a baby.  It's good for a year in the freezer too so you can always just hang onto it in case you end up needing it yourself.  

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  • NandaBNandaB
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    You know it lasts a long time in the freezer, right?

    I would just try to wean off pumping. Just pump enough to relieve the discomfort and your body will eventually adjust. Don't you ever plan on leaving your LO with a sitter? Or your husband? Its nice to have a freezer stash just in case. Also, my son weaned 9 months. It was nice to have frozen milk to use for a few weeks before we had to switch to formula. You can also use the milk to mix rice cereal/oatmeal or to thin purees.

    [Not that donating it is a bad idea, just giving you another perspective]
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  • I would keep it...I have a large freezer stash as well but I was unexpectably placed in the hospital and the stash came in handy the days I was there. You would be surprised how quickly you can go through it Don't throw it out I would save it for later on just in case you need it. I bought a small deep freezer for under a 100 for just my breast milk not sure if that's an option for you.

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  • I have about 600oz in my freezer.  I don't have a deep freezer so it is only good for 3 months i there.  I don't feel like constantly rotating it to make sure I use up the oldest milk.  So I found the nys Human Milk for Human Babies Facebook page and offered 100oz to a local mom. I will be bringing it to her later this week.  I like that someone else is able to use it and ill still have another 500oz as backup.  I think every few months ill donate 100 or so ounces.

    Mommy to L (6), J (4) and S (March 2013)

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