To not return to work because baby won't drink from a bottle(69 Posts)
My baby is nearly 4 months old and I wanted to start returning to work part time in May. She's EBF but just will not take a bottle of my expressed milk.
I need them money really but worry that she'll starve the whole time I'm at work.
WIBU to not go back until September? (teacher)
Will probably mean getting into debt if I don't .
Have you tried getting some one other than you to give her a bottle? Sometimes that works as with you, she knows there's the bf option available!
When my dd was 7 days old i was struggling with bf and mw suggested putting ebm into a teeny cup for her to drink from to avoid nipple confusion. Apparently its the same drinking action as bf. I didn't try it in the end, but my cousin did with her tongue tied ds and it worked really well
Have you left her with anyone for more than a couple of hours? I know how distressing this is (teacher also, going back next week). She won't starve herself.
I had exactly the same issue with my first one.
It sounds harsh, but they eat when they are hungry.
I remember weeks of a big morning feed, dropping off at nursery with 10 one ounze bottles, and a massive feed the second we got in the door at 6pm. This was also in the days when you could give them purees from 16 weeks or so, and we bought follow-on-milk fromage frais (not sure if they still do these).
Anyhoo; the upshot is: don't worry too much. Go to work if you need to. Provide lots of tiny feeds for while you are away and top up in morning, on arrival home and before bed. good luck!
Have you tried cup feeding? Some breastfed babies don't like plastic teats in my experience.
Or different bottles? My friends DD would only take a Dr brown bottle with quite a big teat if i recall. Another swore by mimijumi bottles.
Hope you find a solution that works for you both.
DD2 was like this. I sent milk in a cup for her to drink. The first 2 weeks she refused it but after that she drank it all. Don't forget, if you're part-time, it won't be every day, and you will presumably be able to feed her morning and evening still. Also, she'll be starting on solids too.
Thank you. It's really stressing me out, I'm crying about it now abs I should be enjoying my last weeks of maternity leave (I love my job) but the thought of her being hungry through the day really upset me.
DH can bring her to my work as we live close by for a lunch time feed but she has quite a few feeds with me throughout the morning.
Be warned she may start reverse cycling. I went back to work at 3 months, and DS went on hunger strike initially then fed (bf) all night for a few weeks. He did eventually take a bottle though.
I could have written your exact post. I also have a four month old DD who just will not take any bottle we offer. I'm also hoping to go back at the end of May but it's looking increasingly unlikely. We've tried three different kinds of bottles, different times of day, different people offering, before a breastfeed, after a breastfeed, in between feeds, before a nap, after a nap, before bed, after waking up in the morning, warm, hot, cold. Nothing. Nothing's worked. I'm now considering what pp have said about using a cup instead. It does seem like she doesn't like the plastic feats as she won't take a dummy either.
I'm hoping the other posters are right and that she won't starve herself. She'll have to take a bottle eventually and she should be able to start weaning just before I head back to work so that may help.
I obviously have no advice for you but you're definitely not alone. Hope something clicks for you soon. And in answer to your question, no, yanbu to delay your return to work. I'll do the same if I have to and we'll also end up in some debt too. Needs must. Good luck x
Have you seen a breastfeeding counsellor/lactation consultant? They may have some useful tips. YADNBU to consider not returning to work, it's a very stressful situation and in a few months will probably be a lot easier. As a teacher can you go back in September? Baby will be 1ish by then so many only feed twice a day, so it's possible to continue BF like this, even from 9-10m many babies can cope like this and perhaps feed a little more at night to make up for a missed feed in the day. (Trust me they still wake even if you're not bfing)
Tommie tippee sippy cups are suitable from 4m - worth a try?
This might be useful
B (BF peer supporter)
Pace feeding. Different teats. Sippy cup. Get Dad to do it while you're out the house when she's very hungry.
Breastflow bottles worked for mine in a similar situation.
Bless you, it's SO stressful. I think you need to try to take a long-term view if you can, of the short-term stress of moving to a bottle vs the long-term stress of getting into financial difficulties.
When DS1 was five months he was rushed into hospital and when he came out my milk packed up from the stress. He'd always refused a bottle but we had no choice - we had about five tough days of him complaining and drinking an ounce at a time, but by the end of the week he was fine and never looked back. We found NUK teats worked out best.
Does you dh not work or is he sharing mat leave? Dont forget your return to work day can be the first day of the summer holidays.
I had the same issue. I had success with not trying the bottle when ds was hungry, instead between feeds I'd put a tiny bit of expressed milk in and just let a bit drip on his lips so he'd get the idea there was milk in there and treated it like a game. Then I started going out for a walk while someone else offered him a bottle, then into town for a few hours. When I returned to work he was fine with the bottle.
We found out that if you are about, baby can smell you, you emit a certain scent, so whilst you're in the same room, downstairs, or in the house, if she can smell you, she'll create Merry hell till your boobs are out.
One thing to do would be to go out for a day, have DH & MIL there so he doesn't go stir crazy. If she's thirsty enough, or hungry enough, eventually she will take the bottle.
If out and about you need to think about your milk supply, so wear 2 pads, as if you hear a baby cry, it's possible for your boobs to leak, sometimes one pad isn't enough.
Try a manual pump if you can do you don't become in gorged, risking mastitis. Whilst pumping or even in the loo, check for lumps. I used to get tissue, put it over my nipple and squeeze on the lump and milk would empty. If not that, whilst you're in the bath as it's warmer, so more relaxing.
Wishing you lots of luck
I know how you feel but she really won't starve herself, babies are good at getting what they need.
DD was a bottle refuser - she shifted a lot of her feeds to nighttime when I went back to work at 5 months but she also (grudgingly) took a bottle. There was quite a lot of screaming (poor DH!) but she took it after a few hours. We didn't find much difference between brands of bottles and milk temperatures - it was the absence of boob that made her cross.
Well she is pretty young still so yes i would not leave a fully milk fed baby if they wouldnt take a bottle. ..
I had this problem, and in the end I went out for the day and left DD with DH and bottles of expressed milk.
She absolutely refused and got into a dreadful state - dehydrated and very distressed. Some babies just cannot/will not accept a bottle.
I agree with PP - have your return date for end of July.
Could you try a 'cup' my DD was a total bottle refuser but tried her on a sippy cup and that was it, she happily had formula at nursery after that!
Thanks for all your thoughts everyone.
It's tricky because I want to negotiate going back part time and I also want to organise keeping In touch days to top up my money as the money dwindles but I can't do this until I'm assured that she'll actually eat.
Have you tried a minbie bottle? It's the only bottle my ds will countenance! Has to be breast milk though, formula is firmly rejected!
I'm normally a poster who is quite gung-ho about women going back to work and keeping their independence. However, the baby needs to be ready and happy to be left, and it seems as if yours isn't quite ready. If you could stay at home for a few extra months it might be best for baby, even if you have to cut back financially.
I would be tempted to back for the last week of term or first day of the holidays, YADNBU. If money is an issue can you do exam marking? I did that whilst on maternity leave and it helped, it counts as self employed so doesn't interfere with maternity pay.
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