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Milk-shares

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

I just wanted to put this info out there since we're all getting really close to milk-making time :-)  There are organizations that facilitate the donation of breast milk (or you can find a milk donor for FREE through these orgs if you need supplemental milk).  It's all based on informed consent- if you are a donor there is no risk to you, you just work out an arrangement with your milk recipient.  They might ask personal questions about drug/alcohol use, diet, lifestyle, disease history, etc.  They might even want copies of medical records that show you are not carrying diseases that could be passed along in the milk.  Every recipient has a different comfort level, and you can opt out at any time.  If you need milk donations, it's up to you what kind of info you want and what your comfort level is regarding your donor's health and lifestyle.  

 

 

Here are the sites:

 

http://www.hm4hb.net/  (they have local facebook pages to set up local matches as well)

 

http://www.eatsonfeets.org/

 

http://milkshare.birthingforlife.com/

 

 

 

You can also contact your local La Leche League.

 

 

I'll be helping a mama of surrogate twins by donating my extra milk (I'm assuming I'll have tons of extra based on my first experience, but we'll see how it goes).  I'm really excited!  Please consider helping if you find yourself with extra milk, and if you are in need of supplemental milk I hope you'll consider breast milk from a donor for your child!  

 

 

 

 

post #2 of 18

Thanks for this!  I was talking to one of the lactation consultants who works at the birth center because I really want to donate milk if my body makes enough.

post #3 of 18

Thanks for this! I'm on the other side - I do not lactate (I've had three children and was unable to breastfeed all three) but I am really keeping my fingers crossed this time because we are trying a new cocktail of meds to help. But, if again I can't, I need a donor. The last three times my sister also had babies right around the same time and was able to give me a lot, but alas, she is done having kids so I am on my own. So these organizations will really come in handy!

 

post #4 of 18

I donated a small amount when my last one was about 14 months old (cleared out my freezer stash before it got close to expiring). This time now that I know about it beforehand I am going to try to donate again, even if it's just a small amount again.

post #5 of 18

Thanks for posting this.  I'm so happy that this kind of milk-sharing is starting to become accepted and more popular! 

 

I donated milk for 9mo after I had my DD.  It's a very rewarding thing to do if you're an over-producer.  There really are some people out there that can't breastfeed and all babies deserve breastmilk.   I just wish I would have known this was an option when I had #1!

post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abraisme View Post

Thanks for posting this.  I'm so happy that this kind of milk-sharing is starting to become accepted and more popular! 

 

I donated milk for 9mo after I had my DD.  It's a very rewarding thing to do if you're an over-producer.  There really are some people out there that can't breastfeed and all babies deserve breastmilk.   I just wish I would have known this was an option when I had #1!



I wish I had known, too!  I ended up throwing out over 60  6oz bags of milk because of lipase (my son wouldn't take it).  I would not have donated that particular milk because it was funky- but it sucked SO bad to waste it regardless.  Hoping I won't have the lipase issue this time, but if I do I will just scald it (per kellymom website instructions) to stop the enzymes so the milk stays good for my recipient.   No need to let good milk go to waste!

post #7 of 18

This is really great!  Keep in mind if you would like to be a donor that most milk banks only take milk from mothers that are less than 12 months postpartum.  It's the fattier newborn/infant milk that is needed and mostly the newborn milk for preemies. 

post #8 of 18

If I end up getting a pump, I will look into this. I had crazy over-production with both girls. I never really pumped, though. I started trying to give them a bottle too late (I guess??) and neither would take it. Plus, I never really left them. Well, I think those two things were connected, actually! So I'm not sure if I will even bother this time. Even the Isis I had with dd2 was $50, I think. So it seems like a waste if I'm not going to use it... 

post #9 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaimee View Post

This is really great!  Keep in mind if you would like to be a donor that most milk banks only take milk from mothers that are less than 12 months postpartum.  It's the fattier newborn/infant milk that is needed and mostly the newborn milk for preemies. 



Good to know!  For those of you planning to donate, how long postpartum do you plan to wait before starting the process?

post #10 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaimee View Post

This is really great!  Keep in mind if you would like to be a donor that most milk banks only take milk from mothers that are less than 12 months postpartum.  It's the fattier newborn/infant milk that is needed and mostly the newborn milk for preemies. 



True, but these are not milk banks.  They are just organizations that exist in order for mom's to have somewhere to find donors for free. (!!!!)  Donors are NOT allowed to charge for milk (very important) because it is illegal to sell bodily fluids like that.   Milk banks charge moms for milk and pasteurize it as well (they charge 3-4.50 an OUNCE for milk).  Not that donating to a milk bank isn't a great thing, but this is just a system of finding donors or moms in need.  The organization stays completely out of it, really :-)  

post #11 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TalkToMeNow View Post

If I end up getting a pump, I will look into this. I had crazy over-production with both girls. I never really pumped, though. I started trying to give them a bottle too late (I guess??) and neither would take it. Plus, I never really left them. Well, I think those two things were connected, actually! So I'm not sure if I will even bother this time. Even the Isis I had with dd2 was $50, I think. So it seems like a waste if I'm not going to use it... 



Sometimes the recipient mom will be willing to pay for a pump for you, just in case you are wanting to help out :-)  It's also standard donation etiquette for the recipient to provide breastmilk bags or bottles to store the milk.  

post #12 of 18
Thread Starter 

SORRY I should have multi-quoted all my responses.  Woooops.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsKatie View Post

Good to know!  For those of you planning to donate, how long postpartum do you plan to wait before starting the process?



I plan to start pumping just a few weeks postpartum.  That's when I started with DS1.  I could have started sooner, to be honest, I was so uncomfortable.  I don't mind maintaining a huge supply since it will be going to a great cause.  (Usually you wouldn't want to pump too early because you'll mess up your body's regulation of milk)

post #13 of 18

I plan to donate this time! I donated for a short amount of time last time but didn't start until after my supply regulated, so it took some good effort to get 15-18oz/day. This time, my SIL gave me her PIS so I'll have a good pump from the beginning. If past experience is any indication, I'll be drowning in milk within a few days pp. So I'll pump the excess as much as necessary for comfort. I always tried to just suck it up in the past and express just a teeny bit to take the edge off so that I wouldn't increase my supply, but this time I'm not going to worry about increased supply and just go for it! I would LOVE to find a recipient with a baby close in age so the baby can have the benefit of having milk intended for their age. I wonder if I can find someone in advance who already knows they're adopting a baby due in Nov? That'd be cool.. but not sure where to ask around for that except maybe through API, see if anyone knows anyone.. maybe I'll just do that. 

post #14 of 18
Thread Starter 


Lilstar- I just posted on HM4HB's - oregon branch facebook page and literally within the hour a mom of twins due in November (a surrogate is carrying them) messaged me.  So maybe you could do something like that?  Just mention that you're interested in helping a baby at the same age as yours, but I would also look for moms of preemies and moms who are really looking for milk too.  Wherever it can be most used would be good :-)   I was happily surprised that a November mama matched up with me so fast- what a perfect pairing!

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by LiLStar View Post

I plan to donate this time! I donated for a short amount of time last time but didn't start until after my supply regulated, so it took some good effort to get 15-18oz/day. This time, my SIL gave me her PIS so I'll have a good pump from the beginning. If past experience is any indication, I'll be drowning in milk within a few days pp. So I'll pump the excess as much as necessary for comfort. I always tried to just suck it up in the past and express just a teeny bit to take the edge off so that I wouldn't increase my supply, but this time I'm not going to worry about increased supply and just go for it! I would LOVE to find a recipient with a baby close in age so the baby can have the benefit of having milk intended for their age. I wonder if I can find someone in advance who already knows they're adopting a baby due in Nov? That'd be cool.. but not sure where to ask around for that except maybe through API, see if anyone knows anyone.. maybe I'll just do that. 



 

post #15 of 18

This is interesting. I could never get much from pumping (even with a good pump) and never even built up any kind of freezer stash with DD, even though we were having major issues with oversupply and overactive letdown. I'd like to put all my extra milk to good use though, if I can get it out. 

post #16 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KayPea View Post

This is interesting. I could never get much from pumping (even with a good pump) and never even built up any kind of freezer stash with DD, even though we were having major issues with oversupply and overactive letdown. I'd like to put all my extra milk to good use though, if I can get it out. 



The one thing that would help me get a good letdown with pumping was just pumping on the side that DS wasn't feeding on WHILE he was nursing.  He'd stimulate a letdown, and I'd start pumping the other boob.  I had so much milk that I knew he was getting PLENTY and would then sometimes finish off the pumped breast as well.  I would easily get 8oz a session, multiple times a day.  

post #17 of 18

Yeah, that's a good idea. Hopefully this baby will be less sensitive than DD, because I had to be in a calm, quiet environment for DD to nurse, and it was all over if I even came close to her with the pump. But that would work perfectly for me, because DD was block feeding anyway.  
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbk21 View Post

The one thing that would help me get a good letdown with pumping was just pumping on the side that DS wasn't feeding on WHILE he was nursing.  He'd stimulate a letdown, and I'd start pumping the other boob.  I had so much milk that I knew he was getting PLENTY and would then sometimes finish off the pumped breast as well.  I would easily get 8oz a session, multiple times a day.  



 

post #18 of 18

Yes, this is a much better way to donate imo.

 

I started pumping about 4-5 days pp, just after my milk came in really strong.  I was pumping with the sole intent of donating, so I started right away to keep my supply up.  I generally got 12-14 extra oz a day.  The woman that I donated to had 2 donors and her baby was on 100% breastmilk for the first 9mo of her life.  :)  She paid for the bags and the pump, I donated my milk and time.

 

Honestly, I wouldn't suggest a first time mom be concerned about donating milk.  Once you figure out breastfeeding and if you have a large supply, then maybe.  There's no way that I could have added pumping to my new life with baby #1.  It's a huge transition as it is!  I have a few first-time mommy friends that were able to donate some later, after they got mommy-hood figured out a bit.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbk21 View Post

True, but these are not milk banks.  They are just organizations that exist in order for mom's to have somewhere to find donors for free. (!!!!)  Donors are NOT allowed to charge for milk (very important) because it is illegal to sell bodily fluids like that.   Milk banks charge moms for milk and pasteurize it as well (they charge 3-4.50 an OUNCE for milk).  Not that donating to a milk bank isn't a great thing, but this is just a system of finding donors or moms in need.  The organization stays completely out of it, really :-)  



 

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