Thanks again ladies!
You're right, support is thin on the ground. Breastfeeding is not the norm here although things are improving in the last few years after a lot of healthcare and government campaigning. I'm still surprised by the people who tell me that I've done my part and to stop, as they are well educated and some have medical backgrounds. I have another friend who at 5 months wants to keep going and is experiencing the same issues.
She and her baby would be a great person for my baby to see nursing, but unfortunately her baby has severe reflux and crys during feeds (even on meds) so I don't think that will help matters.
I've contacted a lactation consultant and am waiting for her to come back to me with an appointment next week and I am going to see if there is a local support group that I can hook in with. In the meantime I will keep trying to dream feed her whenever I can get a window. She's a poor day sleeper but I can get 4 in overnight.
As for slow letdown, I do think from close observation that it may have a part to play. Initially when she tries to nurse there is no milk in her mouth or on her face and probably isn't for a minute or two......on the rare occasion that we get that far!
One last question I have (I hope you don't mind) is that after the first 4 months I started giving her a soother after her feeds when she was going to bed. This is because I was her way to get to sleep and some nights I was there for 2-3 hours- because as soon as I'd move her away she'd miss my warmth and wake up. It also meant that no-one else could put her to bed eg dad. So the soother has been in action for 5-6 weeks at this point and I'm wondering if it might be causing a problem (even though the 'striking' has only started in the last 2 weeks)?
Really appreciate your help.