These Embarrassing Pumping-at-Work Stories Prove You’re Not in This Thing Alone

Going back to work after having a baby is tough enough without adding on the stress of pumping in an office. Whether you’re pumping in your office’s lactation room or trying to carve out a bit of space to pump in private, you’re bound to encounter at least a handful of awkward situations.

To help a feel a little less alone in the embarrassing pumping-at-work moments, we collected some stories from moms who have had their fair share of tough pumping moments.

RELATED: Cheat Sheet: These Are the 11 Things You Actually Need if You’re Planning to Pump at Work

Embarrassing Pumping-At-Work Stories From Real Moms


“I went back to work as a nursery school teacher right when my son was three months old. The only place they had free for me to pump was the Xerox machine/printer room. I would draw the shade down and people would know that they had to wait to go in until I was done pumping. Well, the Xerox machine repairman didn’t know about shade down rule and walked right in, stared for a bit like a deer in headlights until I said, “ummm, it’s going to be another 10 minutes.” There wasn’t a lock on the door, unfortunately, thus the shade rule.” – Danielle

“I was pumping in a small closet (the only space they had for me to pump in the office) and one of our accountants came in for a box while I was mid-pump – a shirt-off, pump-on situation. She paused while running her ill-timed errand to ask me how it felt to pump. I just stared at her for a moment thinking, “we’re going to have this convo now?!” I kept right on pumping while she got her box (though I declined to answer her questions).” – Sara 

“My boss was frequently late for meetings, so they’d often start just as I was supposed to start pumping. A couple of times, when it was just me and her, I would pump with a cover in her office while we had the meeting just to keep things a bit more on schedule!” – Jess 

“There wasn’t a lock on the space where I pumped and every once in a while someone would just walk right in while I was pumping. One guy in particular, William, would walk in no matter how many signs we put up to let everyone know I was pumping. It got to be like a sketch comedy routine – it felt like every time I was pumping (with my back to the door, fortunately), he’d attempt to come in only to have my colleagues yell, WILLIAM, STOP!!” – Heather

“I was on a work trip and my last scheduled pump session of the day was just before I had to board a plane. I ended up pumping in a bathroom stall at the Atlanta airport. Not the most glamorous conditions, but it got the job done!” – Kristin 

“I tried so hard to remember everything I needed to pump at work, but one day I forgot multiple pieces to the pump and had to rush out just before a pump session. I was frantically running around a Babies-R-Us buying while I could feel myself getting engorged. I barely made it back to the office before I started leaking – it felt like some kind of crazy pumping marathon!” – Marisa

“I wear scrubs to work and had been wearing breast pads for months. I skipped one day and of course that was the day I was in the middle of an X-ray with two huge milk circles on my chest. I made sure to wear pads after that.” – Lynn 

Do you have an embarrassing pumping-at-work story? Feel free to share in the comments!

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