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I don't want to be a nag, but...

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I hope this is an ok place to post this question...

So, my cousin had a baby about 4 weeks ago, and was really excited about breastfeeding. Only now, I found out that somewhere along the way she thought she had a low supply of milk, and has switched to ff. Her Dr. told her to ff since she supposedly had a low supply (I don't think she really did, btw, I suuspect that she was embarrased or pressured).

Here is my issue... I really want to try and support her choice, but I think that she switched to ff because she wasn't getting the support for bfing that she needed. : Her mom and sister (who has a child also) are really passive, and her dad is a nut (the kind who would say bfing is nasty and gross). I know that her partner is supportive, but he may not know much about bfing. I also live across the country from her, and this news makes me really sad.

I was thinking of sending her a link to the breastfeeding forum (which is why I didn't post there, in case she reads it), and to the kellymom page that talks about low milk supply.

Do you think this might push her in the other direction even more to ffing? Should I even say anything about it? I feel like I should at least give her better info than she had before...

What would you do??
post #2 of 11
You know, I had a friend who quit nursing after a few days. I talked to her when the baby was about 12 days old. She said something along the lines of I gave up too quickly. I "gently" mentioned that it was still possible to breastfeed, gave her some information, gave her some links, and then gave her some #'s to LLL leaders in her area. She didn't seem offended. I did everything in a non-judgmental "here's the info if you think you could use it" kind of way. I think with some people the "just wanted you to have this info in case you didn't know it existed" kind of approach works. Good luck.
post #3 of 11
I would send the links ("here's some stuff I sure wish I had known when I was a new mom, I know you don't have a lot of time on your hands right now so hope this is helpful.. ") and make sure she knows that drs often don't have the most accurate info and that she can start again if she wants to, but I would not feel compelled to "support her choice" if she decided to continue ff. I would simply not comment further about the baby's feeding method. I'd have to move on to giving her positive feedback and encouragement about motherhood in other ways. I'm sure as a new mom she will appreciate your encouragement.
post #4 of 11
Unfortunately, breastfeeding success has a lot to do with the support system the mother has. If dad, family, and/or friends aren't on board with her decision to BF then more than likely she will quit especially if things get difficult. : There are so many moms who give up in the first week because of one reason or another. They don't read a whole lot about the mechanics of breastfeeding and don't know that feeding early (like straight out of the womb!) and often will stimulate milk production. That's basically the simplest of rules in BF. I would encourage your friend by giving her non-threatening information and if she takes it great. If not, no sweat off your back. You tried. Good luck!
post #5 of 11
I think a note or email letting her know that you're sorry breastfeeding has not gone well for her, as you know that she was excited about it --

then the links to the discussion group/Kellymom etc. and let her know that you know there are a lot of reasons that women can struggle with breastfeeding, and that maybe these resources will be helpful for her, yet with with this baby or the next one .... And that as always, you are absolutely available to support her.

I'd make sure that the conversation/email also touches on non-bf topics so that she doesn't feel like it's "all about the breastfeeding," so she knows that regardless of whether she decides to relactate or etc., you are still interested in her voyage as a mom, KWIM? That keeps the door "open," and hopefully she'll discuss and research and realize that she was given poor support and misinformation during her bf intitiation, so that she's able to avoid that the second time 'round.
post #6 of 11
I'd include a link to Dr Sear's website while you're at it- since he includes info on bottle-nursing. She may not be willing to give BF another try, but there's no reason she should start propping bottles!
post #7 of 11
I have a friend who leans towards AP stuff but has a zillion main stream friends & family members. I'm pretty much her only BF support. Whenever I send something to her & occasionally when I say something to her, I tell her that I would rather take the chance of offending her by what I send than have her say to me later, I wish someone would have told me XYZ.

You're a good friend.
post #8 of 11
Originally Posted by mama24-7
Whenever I send something to her & occasionally when I say something to her, I tell her that I would rather take the chance of offending her by what I send than have her say to me later, I wish someone would have told me XYZ.

I have a friend of a friend that is having a difficult time breastfeeding. I only know her story secondhand, but I felt a responsibility to pass along some information about lactation consultants who might be able to help her with some supply issues she's been having. I did it in a very "here's some stuff I wish I had known..." kind of way. But, like mama24-7 said, I just couldn't bear the thought of running into her 6 months later and saying, "Well, you probably could have gotten some help with that early on, and I knew someone who could have helped you at the time, but I just felt awkward saying anything..."

I think I would frame it exactly as velcromom or elanorh did. Great advice from all the PPs!
post #9 of 11
Your friend sounds a lot like me, and I wouldn't have been offended to get some more information. The only thing that ever offended me during the 6 weeks I struggled with breastfeeding was the 'formula is poison' agenda, because it broke my heart to know that I wasn't doing the best thing for my son when I so desperately wanted to.

I would have loved referrals to LCs that were either free or had a sliding fee scale, because the only ones I found cost way, way too much.

I didn't find out about nipple shields until DS was 6 weeks old and my supply was all but dried up. He took to them like a champ, but there just wasn't anything left. I'd have given anything for someone to suggest them before then.
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the great suggestions! It makes me feel more confident about giving her, info without feeling like I am butting in... :

Hopefully she will look into things more, and be able to make a more informed decision!
post #11 of 11
This is speaking from some sort of experience

When i had my first babe...i was ready to give up bf-ing...actually i think i had "quit" for 1-2 days and my aunt (who had bf-ed all 4 of her babes) suggested to me to try bf-ing for a few more days. She wasnt pushy or full of info. Just supportive in saying that it would be ok if i quit for good, but that it would be worht it to me and my boy to give it a second chance.

I did give it a second chance and successfuly bf for 3 months and then pumped for another 3 months.

I hope your friend gives it a second chance
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