Skip to main content

Donating Breastmilk

Being a breastfeeding/breastpumping mom - I've had my fair share of highs and lows.  Good thing is that I have a supportive family, supportive friends and supportive (online) strangers who lift me up and give me advice on breastfeeding/breastpumping.  My Kailee is nearing her 10th month mark and STILL I am giving her my breastmilk!

Freezer Stash

To pay it forward - I have been donating my frozen breastmilk to friends and strangers in need.  Since I have a good supply - I share to those in need.  Its just my way to support lactating mothers - help them when they need it.  You see, breastfeeding/breastpumping is not easy - its really hardwork!  One may say its FREE but you have to be healthy, nourished with good food and is hydrated at ALL times!  And being well fed - well, that's not cheap!

Storing and collecting breastmilk too is not cheap.  You'd have to have ample refrigerator and freezer space.  You'll need storage bags, storage containers and etc.  You need to label them and organize them (FIFO - First In First Out)  It's quite tedious - but then, it has to be done right?

So when I donate to friends and strangers - its done with love and care.  I am sharing a part of me to their kids - to keep them healthy, to help them out with their milk supply, plainly said - to keep them BREASTFED.

The reason why I am doing this post is because I've had my fair share of not so good experiences with strangers asking for milk.  I know it's quite odd - but I was hoping that people would have this 'rules of engagement' - ethics in asking for breastmilk.  I've LIKED the FB page of Human Milk 4 Human Babies - Philippines and I've given quite a number to those who posted that they needed breastmilk.

This post if for those lactating mommies who donate.  Think of it as my way of showing consideration to them (as I am one too). 

Breastmilk is FREE but the collecting and storing process is not.  It takes time to pump out the milk, pour the milk into bags and freezing them.  When the milk bags are frozen - we still organize them by date.  Here's a thought to those asking for breastmilk:

1)  GET IT when you say you will - I've had numerous experiences when those asking DO NOT pass by for the milk.  They said they will get the milk but after a few days - they still haven't picked up the milk you've prepared for them.  Its either they've gotten from other sources or simply forgot to pick-up and end up not picking up at all!  Be considerate enough to inform those you've asked from that you won't be getting the frozen/chilled breastmilk already - it's the LEAST you can do.  We could have shared that milk to someone else in need. 

2)  Bring a CLEAN cooler with ice packs or ice - Transporting breastmilk is tricky!  One must have a good cooler with ice packs so DO NOT FORGET to bring a cooler!  I've had one stranger look at me like I'm crazy when I expressed disappointment when she didn't bring a cooler - you see, frozen breastmilk is delicate and once thawed, it must be consumed within 24 hours.  Proper handling of frozen breastmilk is important - it'll be put to waste when not handled correctly!  We took our precious time pumping them and preaparing them only for you to end up spoiling our precious milk!  Also, make sure that your cooler is CLEAN!  We, moms have taken out time out to ensure the cleanliness of storing our milk so when I receive dirty cooler - I hesitate and think 'Should I still give my breastmilk?' because the cleanliness is compromised.  So, be sure to clean your coolers! 

3)  TEXT or CALL before you pick up - this is a very considerate gesture.  To remind and be reminded.  There are times that we moms - forget and there are times that we need to be reminded.  Inform us nicely so we won't be hassled with an 'I forgot' (for both the mommy donating and the mommy asking) 

4)  Arrange a pick-up TIME that is CONVENIENT for the both of you - Time is precious, therefore inform ahead, what time you intend to pick up the breastmilk.  A ball park estimate of time is enough - just be considerate enough not to pick up during the wee hours in the morning or night.  If you're running late - a text informing us of your lateness will be very MUCH appreciated.

5)  Since the milk is FREE - a simple thank you is fine.  But let's be honest - milk storage bags costs a lot too!  I was giving away bags of frozen milk - then I suddenly noticed my milk bags stash is depleting and I needed to buy more.  I thought to myself - I am donating YET I am spending so much on milk bags that I don't even get to use (for my baby).  It was then that  I started asking for milk storage bags as an exchange.  At first I was uneasy with the idea BUT then I realized - What am I suppose to use for myself?  There is no SOP on the number of bags you will give - think of it this way, the cost of breastmilk is free BUT the time and effort put into it is great, so be generous!  These donating mommies are generous enough giving their precious milk to you, right?  A simple thank you is appreciated BUT it's also nice to receive a token from those you that we have given milk to!  These tokens need not be expensive gifts - a small box of goodies such as ensaymada and cookies will go a long way!  It will make the donating mommy feel appreciated - AND it will put a BIG smile on her face.

There's this saying that women complain of not being appreciated.  So, let's all do our share in making lactating mommies FEEL APPRECIATED. 

Comments

  1. Nice one Didi. Breastmilk bags ain't cheap and it's not bad to ask. Will also twit this.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, Di. I agree with you. Sometimes, ang hirap magdonate when the person asking for milk doesn't even bother to spell my name right! While I don't expect anything in return, minsan wala manlang thank you din. My freezer stash isn't unlimited, when I give, nababawasan ako. When I give, the milk I give usually took me a week to pump. Mababaw naman ako eh. Just text me to say thanks after you receive the milk - what's PhP1 right in exchange for the milk I've shared with you, right?

    Anyway are you still donating? If you have excess stash, let me know. I know someone who needs it din. Her baby's allergic to formula kasi.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Good job, Di! Bless you. SIL

    ReplyDelete
  4. Good Job, Di! Bless you for your efforts and sacrifices. SIL

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Yellow Cab's new Chicken Alfredo Pasta

The newest addition to the yellow cab family! If your're a cream based pasta lover, then this is the pasta for you! Its not too creamy and overpowering, actually its just perfectly mixed! The chicken pieces are perfect bite sizes too! Its a great great alternative to the Charlie Chan!

Mercury Drugstore: No Return No Exchange

Mercury Drugstore has been the only drugstore in the country for years.  It was only recently that there were new players in the industry.  Before there flooding of The Generics Pharmacy - it was only in Mercury Drugstore that you can buy medicines.  I used to complain that there were so few Mercury Drugstores and that their business hours were only up to 8PM.  When I was younger I used to worry that if an emergency happens, we wouldn't be able to buy medicine elsewhere!  But then a few years ago, I was so happy to see that there are branches that are open 24 hours.  Gosh, FINALLY someone thought of doing that.  It was a long time coming.  A few years after - branches were mushrooming everywhere.  I applaud their desire to serve more people - I thought it was such a great move.  I mean for a pioneer - it was a long time coming. One of the things that I like with Mercury Drugstore is that they offer refunds and exchanges without question.  As long as you have the receipt with y

Breastfeeding Mama!

"Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (July). For this month, we join the National Nutrition Council - Department of Health in celebrating Nutrition Month with the theme "Isulong ang Breastfeeding - Tama, Sapat at EKsklusibo!" Participants will share their experiences in promoting breastfeeding or their tips on how breastfeeding should be promoted. Please scroll down to the end of this post and check out the other carnival participants." When I got pregnant, I knew instantly that I would be breastfeeding my baby.  My mom found it odd that I decided to breastfeed - this was because I grew up formula fed.  My twin brother and I were given formula since birth, there was no attempt whatsoever to breastfeed.  In fact my mom recounted that she was given medicine to stop the milk production.  My pedia, Dr. Joy Ty-Sy said that during my mom's time (when she had us) it was the boom of formulas, that it was the trend that time.  I grew up with formula, my c