Time: up to 2 hrs
Total Cost (in office or virtual): DKK 2100/€290/US$325
Time: up to 1 hr
Cost (in office or virtual): DKK 850/€120/US$140
Mothers who receive children through adoption, surrogacy, or a partner who is birthing can still have a breastfeeding relationship! Women who are interested in choosing a protocol and inducing lactation should work with an IBCLC who has a great deal of experience and knowledge in this area. Depending on the mother’s health history and method the mother and IBCLC choose, a doctor may also be on the lactation induction team.
In 2012, I induced lactation for my son, whom my husband and I adopted at birth. Between my own induced production and donor milk, he received breast milk for 14 months. Since that time, I continued to follow the developments in research regarding processes for mothers to breastfeed their non-birth children. I am available as an experienced resource for in-person appointments as well as virtual appointments for women who wish to breastfeed without birthing.
The lactation induction process usually involves several appointments. At the initial appointment, we review the mom’s personal and medical history; perform a brief physical exam; and choose a lactation induction protocol that is the best fit for the mom’s goals, available energy/time, and length of time before the baby’s anticipated arrival. Depending on protocol and timing, we may go through the process of how to use a breast pump comfortably and successfully. Mothers will receive instructions regarding physician follow-up and other steps to take.
Follow-up appointments are for troubleshooting the lactation induction process as it progresses. When the baby arrives and the mother begins at-breast feeding, we may also meet again to make adjustments to the plan and/or to do general troubleshooting. (See ‘Postnatal Appointments’ for more info.)
The process of making milk without pregnancy and birth is called induced lactation. For a mother who gives birth to her child, the hormones of pregnancy and the postpartum shift in those hormones cause a woman’s breasts to produce milk. A mother who will not be the one giving birth can develop a breastfeeding relationship by giving her body other messages to produce some milk and by using alternate methods of at-breast feedings.
Babies in fragile states or whose birth mothers had poor health or limited prenatal care may benefit from breastfeeding even more than the average baby does. In addition to the nutritional and immunological benefits found in breast milk, the lactation induction process provides adoptive mothers/mothers through surrogacy an intimate source of bonding with their child– and often healing in their relationship with their own bodies. I found both true when I induced lactation for my son.
Please note: some birth/first mothers and surrogates are willing to provide pumped milk for the babies they carried. This can be a fantastic additional source of breast milk if the birth givers are physically and emotionally able to do so.
For questions, email me at email@example.com.