Wednesday, February 16, 2011

i'm not dumb. that's not your boob.


Going back to work had been such a breeze that first week.  My husband stayed home, which was great.  I ran home about lunchtime to nurse Baby Girl, and she drank pumped milk from a bottle the rest of the time.  It was all good.  Happy, shiny people.

And then the ear infection came.

I don't know if it's the infection, or the antibiotics (which, among other things, has been causing Massive Diaper Blowouts the likes of which are going to turn her bedroom into a Superfund cleanup site), or just her little stubborn personality making its first grand appearance, but she has suddenly decided, after months of being fine with it, that she is NOT going to drink from the bottle.  No, no, no, no, no, Mom.  NOT.  DOING.  IT.

She gets the bottle in her mouth and tongues it around for awhile before realizing, "Hey, this isn't a real boob; this is some kind of rubber fake boob and IT IS REALLY PISSING ME OFF."  And while I'm glad that she's not a fan of fake boobs, the bottle-refusal piece is problematic. 

We've tried dipping the nipple in sugar water, which worked once, and then she seems to have figured that out.  Sometimes she'll take it if I start her by nursing and then slip her onto the bottle, but that doesn't really fix the whole "Mom needs to work and you have to eat without her sometimes" thing.

Any ideas?  I welcome advice of all kinds. 



  1. My son refused the bottle for a time too - but our pediatrician gave us awesome news. Babies won't starve themselves. If all that is offered is a bottle, they will eventually eat. Now, the day that we choose to only offer him a bottle was a really long, long, long day, but eventually he ate. It is not fun, but you will get through it and she will soon be taking a bottle without a thought.

  2. Heheh. If you figure this out, please let me know your solution. H has refused a bottle since week 4 when he figured out that he was being offered an inferior product.

  3. I've never had to deal with this personally, and you may have already tried it, but have you tried switching nipples/bottles? There are so many out there shaped completely differently...

    Good luck! (And I agree with Christy - she won't let herself starve to death!)

  4. Paisley won't accept bottles either and we've been trying for 4 months. So I obviously never figured it out... Good luck!

  5. Ugh! Hazel is 4 months and stopped taking the bottle a month ago, right before I went back to work. Looking for information on the web was super frustrating, as far as I could tell, the advice was to try every possible combination of bottle type, nipple, feeding position, time of day, person feeding, etc, etc. What we ended up doing was sending 4 different bottles, each with pumped milk to daycare with her every day. She took maybe 2 oz from a bottle that first week, which meant she was PISSED. OFF. when she got home in the evenings, and spent the entire evening nursing to get her calories in. The next week was a little better, she took more like 4-5 oz and we were able to figure out which bottle she would take (First Year's Breast Flow). This week, she took closer to 8 oz a day - she's there for 9 hours. Not as much as she eats when I'm home to feed her, but enough that she's not screaming bloody murder when I get home. Honestly, though, our success, such as it is, comes mainly from the daycare providers who are amazingly patient and don't even seem to hate me for bringing in a baby who won't eat.

    I can't wait until she starts on solids and will maybe (I hope) eat more of that during the days.

    I have heard that some kids will be willing to eat from a sippy cup or regular cup rather than a bottle.

    Good luck, this is seriously one of the most frustrating and stressful things I've dealt with as a mother.

  6. My son is about to be 4 months and will take the breast and Born Free bottles. but only that type of bottle!

  7. I had this same problem when I had to go back to work about a month ago. Luckily, my daughter is staying with my mom. My mom was able to get her to take a bottler, whereas my husband and I were not able to do so. Now she is a champ. I was prepared to quit breast feeding entirely if switching between the 2 continued to be an issue, but that has not been the case for us.

  8. I have no advice for the bottle refusal, my boys would eat anything they could get in their mouths (and still do!) but for the diaper blow outs you might want to put her on a probiotic. Those antibiotics can really mess up their poor little bellies and probiotics can only help, not hurt. Ask your pharmacist for the best ones for babies :)