DS is 10 1/2 months old now. I work full time and so pump 2-3 times per day. The first 8 months I was pumping 12 ounces per day, which DS took while I was gone. This summer I went down to 9 ounces which seemed to be fine because he was eating a good amount of solids. Slowly, I am loosing ounces. Today I was only able to pump 4 ounces in 3 45-min sessions. I need advice. Am I loosing supply and so should I hook myself to a pump all-work day until I pull it back up or supplement (which I'd hate to do) or is this a sign that DS is just drinking less as he eats more solids and is regulating my supply based on his weekend demand? Pumpers, how much should be be drinking at this age while I am gone? Does he need a few ounces of liquid with his solids? If not breast milk, then what? Thank you for helping!
Self-weaning or supply issue?
Second, I'd check out the book "The Nursing Mother's Guide to Making More Milk" which has a whole section on boosting supply while pumping at work.
I doubt it's because he's nursing less on weekends given that you're pumping five days a week (although trying to nurse as much as you can when you're together can only help). Other culprits could be pregnancy, hormonal birth control, your period returning, etc.
At 10.5 months you don't need to pump and leave milk at all. Your baby can eat solids while you are gone. My DIL went back to work at 10 months and never pumped or left bottles. My grandson wouldn't have taken them. He would nurse a lot at night and went on nursing until he was over 2.5. The book Working Mother, Nursing Mother by Gale Pryor talks about how mothers of older babies don't have to pump and how to manage feedings.
Babies don't self-wean at 10 months. They may stop nursing for some reason but it is not self-weaning. It is unusual for a child to self-wean before 18-24 months, the age that they would be likely to survive without breastmilk in more primative times. More primative times wasn't that long ago in human history and exists in much of the world today.