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Old 11-15-2012, 08:33 AM   #1
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What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

I'm up to 750 freezer ounces. DD pretty much just nurses exclusively. Once in awhile she'll take a bottle when we're out and I don't feel like nursing in public. Meanwhile, I'm pumping an extra 20oz a day. We're buying an extra freezer because we're quickly running out of room to store. (That's going to make 2 fridges and 2 freezers for us!) DH has no problem with that though. He does think I should cut back on how much I pump because he thinks it'll go to waste in the end. I don't want to cut back though.

I like the benefits of pumping all this extra milk. I can eat like a pig and I still lose weight. I want to donate, but I'm really torn about. If I donated, I would donate mama to mama style. I don't want anyone to have to pay a bank for for my milk. I'm scared that my milk won't land in the right hands. I'm super protective and possessive about my milk.

I've read a ton of donation horror stories. Some people pose as moms with babies in need. Then they sell the milk that they were given for free. There's a high-traffic website where breastmilk sells for as much as $9 a ounce! Some people have watered it down and then sold it. That's just horrible! There are also perverts on there that want breastmilk for their sexual gratification. That makes me sick to my stomach.

I'm also afraid that a mama might decide they don't want to give their baby someone else's breastmilk and just let it go to waste after I've given it to them. I want it to be used. There's just so many ways it could go wrong. I would be so happy if a baby in need drank it all. I just don't know how to get connected in a trustworthy way.

I also don't know how much to donate. DS weaned himself at 13 months. I wasn't necessarily totally ready for that. I would have gone longer. I didn't have a freezer supply anymore. He didn't get anymore of my milk. I wanted him to get more of my milk. I would like to keep DD on breastmilk for longer - even if it's just via our freezer supply. How long can I really keep breastmilk in a deep freeze? She's only 6 weeks old. Can I really give her the milk we have now in year or more? Should I just somehow find a place for my 750 ounces now and rebuild my stash with fresher milk? I'm so confused about where to go from here. I spend way too much time thinking about it. What have other mamas done?
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:26 AM   #2
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

Is there a place that can donate specifically for premies or babies in the NICU?

You can store milk for up to one year in the deep freeze. When I pull out frozen milk for DD to make a bottle I make sure I pull the oldest milk first and I'm always repleshening with fresher milk. I plan to use some of the extra for when she starts cereal and to make my own baby food if she'll eat it. I'll also be putting it in a sippy cup for her to drink when she's done with bottles.
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:36 AM   #3
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

Wow I have to say I am very jelous of your 750oz. I was happy with my 200oz. I started back to work yesterday and trying not worry that I will loose my supply at 7 months like I did with the boys.

As for what to do with your milk I would check a local hospital NICU like pp said.

What about joining the local LLL facebook page. There are a few mom's that are only pumping and having supply issues. That might be a good way to connect with a mom that you would feel comfortable donating too.
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:47 AM   #4
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

I have 1300+ oz frozen and DS just started nursing almost excluusively so I feel the same way as you, only I can't donate though I'd love too. I think of the frozen milk as an insurance policy in a way. Milk will last up to a year in a deep freezer. You can always keep pumping and then donate the older milk when you hit 1000oz or so and just aim to keep 750oz in the freezer at all times. Then, when your LO gets to a year old you can decide what youwant to do with the newer frozen stash. Good luck!
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:48 AM   #5
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

Oh, there's a mama on here who I know would love to have any milk if you do choose to donate. PM me if you'dl ike me to connect you with her!
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:49 AM   #6
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

There is a facebook group called Eats for Feets (or something similar) that has local sectors. You can post what you have or people post what they need and you just connect in person.

If you're milk is just extra and she's nursing enough during the day you may want to donate some and keep the rest for mixing in with purees later on. I used up all of my freezer stash eventually b/c I was pumping at work and not getting as much as she was needing each day.

I also used some of my extra supply to add to yogurt and fruit smoothies for my toddler.
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:58 AM   #7
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

Eats for Feets is now called "Human Milk 4 Human Babies". You can look it up on facebook, and usually there's a specific page for each state!
For many reasons, I was unable to nurse my son past one month. It absolutely broke my heart and I started formula. Just last week, I discovered this website and it has been a godsend. It's mama to mama. Donors can post, or women in search of milk. There is definitely an element of trust to it; the mamas taking the milk COULD be selling it; but you just have to try to be a good judge of character, and hope that the mama is just trying to do what's best for her baby!
My son is once again drinking breastmilk exclusively, and it brings me to tears every time I think about it. He is SO happy... smiling more than ever, less gas, sleeping better. I've taken milk from four amazing mamas so far and they are our miracles.
Just speaking from a woman who has taken donations from amazing mamas with extra, I would say it's worth the gamble. Your excess milk could help to sustain another life for a few days, weeks, or however long your milk will last them. I couldn't give my baby what he needs most; but other mamas can!
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Old 11-15-2012, 12:51 PM   #8
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

I have donated to a lot of babies, through various routes. I've used Eats on Feets to connect with other families, and I also have donated to a friend of a friend.

No matter who you give the milk to, you have no control over how they use it. If you meet up with or get in contact with someone that you feel good about donating to, then you just have to take the leap of faith and send your milk off into the world. More often than not, people looking for breastmilk are just moms or dads who need to feed their babies. The bad experiences are the exception. I've never had a negative experience with milk donation.

If I were you, I would donate half or so of what you have. You can keep milk in a deep freeze for 6 to 12 months, so planning on feeding your baby what you have frozen now in a year is about on the outer limit of good milk storage.
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Old 11-15-2012, 01:03 PM   #9
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

i donated with my older 3, and was on the receiving end for my SN 4 month old. i always donated when i hit 500 oz. and restocked but my older ones neverr took bottles so it all was donated lol. fwiw i found my donor milk on fb hu,an milk 4 human babies and also donated locally and shipped a few times. id donate before id let it sit though.
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Old 11-17-2012, 06:17 PM   #10
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Re: What do I do with all our milk? I'm really confused.

Please consider donating. If you want the milk to go to NICU babies, you would have to donate to a milk bank. My twins received donor milk from a NICU milk bank (while I tried to increase my low supply) and we were not charged a penny for it. I can personally vouch for the fact that milk banks provide breast milk to babies who really need it and the parents do NOT have to pay for it.
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