Confusing title, sorry. I was going to put this in the Breastfeeding forum, but it isn't really a breastfeeding question, so move it if you have to! :)
My friend had a baby about 2 weeks ago. She didn't seem to do much online/book research, even though I gave her every natural birth book that I had, and I have a lot. She asked me lots of questions though, so I gave her every bit of advice and experience that I could. She had a very traumatic induced birth (they wouldn't "allow" her to go past 41 weeks. It kills me thinking about.) I'm sure that comes into play here.
I know she was very overwhelmed by the whole thing, she had a extremely rough couple of days with the newborn, she didn't trust herself to hold him/change him/felt incompetent,etc. Breastfeeding took a back seat and they introduced formula because the baby "cried at night." That was the only reason, that baby latched perfectly!! (I won't lie, a part of me is very disappointed that she gave up so easily.) Anyway, I have a huge feeling she just doesn't want to breastfeed, but she says she feels guilty and keeps going back and forth between "How do I get the baby to latch?" "Can I just exclusively pump?" and "I am just formula feeding now." It changes every day and I just don't know what to say to her! Do I keep encouraging her to breastfeed? I feel like by now (week 2 of baby's life) he might be preferring the bottle. And then since I know she gives him formula, I don't want to give her breastfeeding guilt. I just want to be helpful. When she does attempt to nurse, he is frustrated. I remind her of nipple confusion, but she seems to not get it?! She thinks the baby just likes the bottle better, and doesn't connect the dots. I then tell her if she wants to exclusively pump, to go ahead. I did with my first. But she doesn't pump! Then she complains that her milk is going down. I keep reminding her that she needs to stay on top of the pumping routine, but she just doesn't do it and she can't give me a reason why. I feel funny telling her it's okay to formula feed, but sometimes it seems like that is what she wants to do, so I try to stand behind that choice. Again, I am here to support her, not guilt her. BUT THEN! she is disappointed in herself and either we go through the whole breastfeeding-pumping-formula cycle again, or she asks about me donating some of my breast milk. (Which I without question would give her whatever extra I can.)
Ahhh. I don't know how to help her. I feel like she is going in circles and, truthfully, I am feeling irritated and I don't want her to think I am losing patience with her. I want her to know I am here for her, but I am starting to crack. Any advice anyone?