Being a working mom is so hard, especially during your baby's first year. Not only are you trying to "have it all" on zero sleep, but, if you're a nursing mom and want to pump during the work day, you face even more hurdles. I learned the hard way,that even if you have an employer that claims to be "family-friendly," or promises they'll accommodate your needs when you return to work, there are so many reasons pumping at work is the worst. I mean, it literally sucks.
Keep in mind, I'm saying this as someone who was offered breaks for pumping, as required by the Affordable Care Act (thanks, Obama) and who was even able to visit my child at day care across the street to breastfeed during the day. Still, being offered breaks and being able to take those breaks are two entirely different things, depending on your workload, schedule, and office culture.
To make matters worse, the designated pumping room at my place of employment was in another freaking building. Rather than walk outside and five minutes away to pump twice a day, I opted to put up a sign (provided by human resources) on my door. It turned out that not everyone understood the "Not" in "Do Not Disturb," which created some seriously awkward and infuriating moments. Despite these challenges, though, I consider my pumping situation to actually be pretty good compared to others.Which makes me wonder, if I was lucky, what must pumping at work be like for them?
With that in mind, and because it certainly doesn't hurt to be prepared, here are some of the reasons that pumping at work is the absolute worst: