Going Back to Work or School

If possible, take as much time off as you can before returning to work or school.
At least six weeks of leave can help you recover from childbirth and settle into a routine. Twelve weeks is even better.

Going back to work or school can make you happy, sad, or both. This is normal. You may have lots of questions about how you will keep breastfeeding. Being prepared will help ease your mind.

  • Learn as much as you can ahead of time
  • Ask WIC for tips on how to continue breastfeeding after returning to work or school
  • Talk with your employer or school advisor about your options

Tips for Talking With Your Employer or School Advisor

Plan first – and come prepared with answers. Questions to ask yourself:

Schedule a time to talk.

Discuss different types of schedules such as:

Explain your needs

Help your employer/school understand your needs, such as:

Keep in mind that returning to work or school gradually gives you more time to adjust.

Let them know you won’t take time beyond what you need. Whether your time spent expressing milk is paid or unpaid, you can offer to make it up. And when it comes to finding a place to pump, offer creative solutions, such as offices, areas that can be blocked off, storage closets or even your car with window coverings.

Workplace Support

Breastfeeding mothers need all the support they can get as they go back to work. Click below to download a free Returning to Work Plan. Ask WIC breastfeeding staff to help you fill out this sheet so you can take it to your employer.

Preparing for Childcare

Talk with your childcare provider. It is important to find a childcare provider that supports breastfeeding and will feed your baby stored breast milk while you are at work.