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can a woman produce milk for an adopted baby even if she has never been pregnant?

this question is because i found a place on the internet called things to do while breastfeeding and i found about breastfeeding an adopted baby,is this even possible?

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Asked by maryfer at 4:05 PM on Jun. 7, 2009 in General Parenting

Level 2 (4 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • i've read in parenting books that it is. however they said its usually not enough and the child still has to be supplemented formula and that it can take months for milk to come in.

    Answer by vabchmommy at 4:07 PM on Jun. 7, 2009

  • Yes, it is possible. Usually it is something that has to be started months in advance (so typically only works if you know for sure that you are getting a certain baby & will be there as soon as the baby is born). The adoptive mother will use a breast pump to stimulate production & some doctors will even give a shot (I'm not sure what it is) that helps produce milk. The majority of adoptive mothers who attempt breastfeeding will not be able to breastfeed exclusively but it is an incredible bonding experience. They can supplement with a bottle or by taping a tube connected to a bottle to the breast so that baby gets formula while breastfeeding. I've even heard that it is physically possible for men to lactate & breastfeed but I've only heard that in theory, not for any particular person. I have met an adoptive mother who breastfed & also supplemented with a bottle.

    Answer by funnyface1204 at 4:13 PM on Jun. 7, 2009

  • I don't know anything about it except that it is possible and when I took a breastfeeding class at the hospital before my son was born there was a lady there who was in the process of adoption and was planning on breastfeeding her adopted baby.

    Answer by mybella81 at 4:16 PM on Jun. 7, 2009

  • oh wow i didnt know this was even possible how amazing is the woman's body!!!

    Answer by maryfer at 4:17 PM on Jun. 7, 2009

  • A friend of mine recently adopted a baby and she tried to breastfeed but she had also just had a miscarraige the month before but she couldn't produce enough milk so she uses this bag that she wears that has breastmilk in it (don't know where she got it) it simulates breastfeeding.

    Answer by sammiesmom2000 at 4:27 PM on Jun. 7, 2009

  • Yes, lots of adoptive moms induce lactation. There is a ton of info on this at

    and The Adoptive Breastfeeding Resource Website


    Answer by maggiemom2000 at 6:31 PM on Jun. 7, 2009

  • no

    Answer by marievegan at 7:16 PM on Jun. 7, 2009

  • Completely possible with medication and nipples stimulation, b ut as someone else said you usually have to give some formula too.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:21 PM on Jun. 7, 2009

  • YES. Men can lactate too. :)

    Answer by Arisce at 12:57 PM on Jun. 8, 2009

  • marievegan, what do you base your answer on?

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:02 PM on Jun. 8, 2009

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