So I actually need some help on this one. No rhetorical questions here. Please leave a comment or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any advice. Thanks in advance.
I have a friend. Well kind of a friend. I’ll call her Megan for the sake of this post. I used to be her boss a few years ago. She’s a really sweet, lovely girl but very troubled.
She’s been through a lot in her life. Her parents weren’t there for her, she struggled a lot with her mother throughout her teens. She has suffered from depression and eating disorders for a long time.
She came to work for me when she was 16. Started out as a Christmas temp. A girl who already worked with me was dating Megan’s brother, and suggested her as a temp because she needed some stability.
When I took her on she was a typical wallflower. Didn’t say a lot. Very shy. But very sweet. It was difficult, because I knew more about her than she thought I did. Partially because her brothers girlfriend had given me a bit of her background, and partially because I could tell. She would suddenly come in to work wearing long sleeves in the height of summer, and I would know she had relapsed and cut herself again. I helped her, I hope, I guided her into feeling a little more confident within herself, and she eventually moved on to work somewhere else. I haven’t seen her since then.
Myself and the other girl are still friends now, and even though she split from her boyfriend, she still sees Megan regularly.
Megan got pregnant last year. She found a guy who was a bit older than her, fell in love quickly and got pregnant. Her baby is now 4 months old. And her relationship with the guy is rocky at best.
She’s susceptible to pressure, and craves a family more than anything, to the point where she’s willing to get pregnant again already in the hope it will make the guy stick around. To be honest though, that’s not what I’m worried about.
She’s been breastfeeding since birth, but she has struggled a lot. I’ve tried to help from a distance but again, I know more than she thinks I do because I see her brother’s ex quite often.
She knows that I know she had to combi feed for a few weeks, but then she bought nipple shields and continued to BF exclusively.
I’m worried because I met with the other girl today for lunch, and she told me that she took her to the health visitor last week to get the baby weighed, and she has dropped a percentile. The health visitor advised her to combi feed again, but she’s going against the advice because she so desperately wants breastfeeding to work for her.
I know the reason her daughter is losing weight is because she is not eating enough herself. I was told she’s lost more weight again, and she was tiny before. Her milk supply is low and she has decided to stop taking her anti-depressants because she doesn’t think she needs them anymore.
I want to help her. I want to give her advice. I’ve been breastfeeding for 11 months successfully. She doesn’t have any mum friends, she doesn’t really have any support system in place.
I need to know how to approach this, if at all. I know my advice might come unwanted, and I don’t want to close her off from the only people she actually does have in her life. I also know I could be what she needs. I’m 6 years older than her and could support her through the next few months of breastfeeding. But I am so afraid of approaching anything to do with it in case she feels like myself and the other girl have been talking behind her back. I’m desperately worried though. About her and the baby. And I don’t think she’s being supported by the right channels in the right way.
If anyone can give me any advice on how I might be able to do this, if you’ve been through something similar, or anything you’ve got, I really would appreciate it. She’s such a sweet girl, and she loves her baby daughter so much, but I know how easy it is to get clouded between doing what you think is best and what is actually best for your baby. I just want what’s best for them both, and for them to be happy and healthy.
Thanks so much of you can help. I really am so grateful in advance.