Sent this email to the LC who came over, after I told her it wasn't thrush and she offered to come back to work on latch some more:
"Every time I latch him on, even if its one of our better attempts, with minimal creasing, the pain is aggravated and they remain super sensitive for the rest of the day to the point where holding my baby against me becomes very unpleasant. Wearing a seatbelt is very unpleasant. I don't think I can handle the pain that working on his latch would entail. I can't really do it more than once a day without it becoming absolutely excruciating, and that's too infrequent to make any difference I think. And since its not thrush, I don't think it can really be helped. I don't think this kind of pain is all due to just a bad latch, I think its just the way I am. It's all well and good for people to claim breastfeeding is not supposed to hurt. The fact is, for me, it just does. Breastfeeding for me is nothing but misery. Its not like that for everyone, but it is for me. This time I wanted to really explore every option for normalcy, whatever that is, and I think I have and can look back and appreciate that. I think holding and cuddling my baby are frankly more important than breastfeeding and even breast milk, as is wearing a seatbelt, and going about day to day activities without constantly wanting to climb a wall from sensitivity and pain.
At least I can pump and I'll just continue to do that for awhile. But since he seems so much more settled, satisfied and less gassy on formula, its hard for me to see who the "breast is best" for in our situation.
Thanks for trying though."
Its been a pretty miserable couple of nights. Takes a long time to get a burp up and by then he's hungry again so its a constant cycle of feeding, burping and feeding again with only short and few breaks in between to sleep. One of the hour long breaks I got last night came at 3am and I had to spend half an hour of that pumping and washing bottles. I JUST lay down to rest and he's famished again, eats an ounce, can't burp but is writhing in stomach pains, finally burps, hungry again, on and on. From my mommy groups, several women (breastfeeders) are experiencing this. I can't imagine what this would do to my nipples if I were putting him to the breast. The term "shredded" comes to mind. Ugh. I've been giving him doses of simethicone to ease the burping process, but really, he should be getting formula exclusively at night if I'm to get any meaningful rest at all. The breastmilk just exacerbates the whole vicious cycle anyway and I pump and suffer for what? There are no benefits here to him or me.
I need that pill.