AIBU asking for help with a bottle refuser, I'm desperate!(34 Posts)
DD is 8 months old, and EBF. When she was tiny she took the odd bottle of formulae, expressed mink, but since 4 months old has completely refused any kind d of bottle.
I have spent a fortune on various bottles and treats, but no look. Also tried different people giving it her, giving when not hungry, when hungry etc, no luck
She still has minimum 3 night feeds, so obviously I'm the only one that can do this.
I'm desperate for a decent nights sleep, and for my husband to be able to help
Has anyone managed to get their baby to take a bottle in circumstances such as this?
She will drink water from a sippy cup at a push, but again not milk
My second was/is like this. Just this week started drinking EBM from bottle ONLY if it's totally cold straight from fridge. Might be worth a try if you haven't already.
My first never took a bottle. Straight to cup as early as I could (I think 4 months maybe). We used Munchkin Miracle 360 Cup. Was the only thing she would drink from.
Hope that helps.
How old is your lo? What bottle have they finally accepted?
DS was like this, also stopped taking bottles (after 3 months in his case). Like you, we tried everything- bottles, teats, other people, grandparents, random people on the streets, me leaving the house for ages —and feeling guilty for starving my baby—. Nothing worked. I was due to go back to work so things were desperate.
In the end I hired a specialist ‘troubleshooter’ nanny (who looked and sounded exactly like nanny Plum from Ben and Holly, except 6 foot tall and minus the wings). She cost a fortune, but we hired her for 3 days, she slept on the sofa and she instantly got DS to take a bottle. 😳 I don’t know how she did it, I think DS took a look at her and realised she meant business and would take no prisoners!
7.5 months. It's a MAM bottle. I think from Boots but not 100% sure as like you I've bought so many. It's one that has a screw off bottom, you can close it all up & sterilise in microwave in itself.
When baby is due a feed give bottle to DH and leave the room or even the house!! My ds2 would not entertain a bottle if he knew I was close by! He never ever took a bottle through the night though and woke every 2hrs till 13m when I put my foot down and went cod turkey!
But I know it's the temperature, not the bottle, as he 100% will not take warmed milk from same bottle.....
I had 3 bottle refusers. 2 were persuaded by Playtex latex teats and the "drop in" system. The third I had to get something called a "breast bottle" which I don't think you can even get any more.
Latex is more successful than silicon for lots of bottle refusers.
The mimijumi bottles look very like the defunct beast bottles that my most steadfast refuser eventually took.
The other thing I did was express breast milk and mix it in decreasing ratios with formula. So we started bottles with 100 percent breast milk, then 90 percent breast milk and 10 percent formula, etc.
@manikoutai what was the troubleshooter called and how did you find her?
@mylittlepony374 i will try the cold milk!
DS and DD would only take a bottle if I was completely out of sight so I agree with the PP who said give your DH the bottle and leave them to it, it was the only thing that worked for us. And room temperature milk, neither of them would drink milk from a bottle if it was warm. DD goes the extra mile and would only drink milk from a bottle if it was chilled from the fridge.
My daughters both refused bottles for ages (when I started trying about 6m). One eventually decided Nuk was ok, the other went for Minibie (?)... we tried a lot of different ones.... DD2 also liked the milk really warm, whereas DD1 was fine with any temp. So much trial and error but we did get there finally after about 2 months trying with both of them. Good luck...!
Also, those that have had success, did you try every day until they just took it?
Two of my three were bottle refugees. Managed to get one of those to drink from the NUK bottles eventually at 9 months ish but the other never took a bottle.
Just a thought, at 8 months you could night wean if growing well? Say between 10pm and 6am-it will involve tears but so did trying to get them to take a bottle!
My 3rd never would take a dummy or bottle. When I left him he had a from age Fraisthorpe for if he got hungry and water in a sippy cup.
I've heard good things about the Doidy cup for bottle refusers. I'm going to try it on DS as he'll need to feed without me when I go back to work in a couple of months (he's 3 months atm).
Have you tried a beak? I had to use one with my son. Also milk can be drunk from a cup with no lid by 8 months (with help at first)
The drop in system is a sort of condom looking thing that you drop into a cyclinder instead of a bottle. The drop in bit collapses as they drink minimizing any air swallow. It was just the system that worked for two of my kids, and friends with bottle refusers had a good success rate with the same system. The teat was flatter. Plus no sterilization required as the drop in liner was pre sterilised.
You can still get Playtex bottles with drop ins, just checked on line.
Your baby needs to get confidence in feeling sated by the contents of a bottle if you want him to feed that way. It is harder if it's the nights that bother you . If it were me I would get the baby used to having a bottle ( formula or ebm) from your DH. Perhaps he could do a regular morning or early evening feed when you are not around. Once he is used to it and knows that it will help his hungry feeling your DH could do the late night feed ( again assuming baby is in his own room and not aware of your presence).
It is all tough but don't forget that with any luck he will be dropping at least one of those feeds fairly soon so if you are finding the transition stressful your option could be to concentrate on increasing his daytime calories, getting used to beaker and dealing with solids etc.
It's not a guarantee because babies vary enormously on this but you might be lucky ! Best of luck.
My LO was like this. 8 months I went back to work so at 6 months I was desperate. I’d tried everything and figured it wasn’t the milk, it wasn’t the bottle, it was just that he preferred BF’ing, and I couldn’t do it any longer so we went cold turkey. The GP’s stayed, Day 1 DH tried him on a bottle whenever he could, kept reinforcing it. He got through day of drinking nothing as bottle was all he was offered so I made him very milky, mushy food to keep his liquid intake up. At night he’d been fed to sleep so that was going to be hard. We did the routine the same; DH read story, offered bottle (again refused) put him down, he cried, returned to comfort and again offer bottle after 2 minutes, then lengthened it to 5, then 10, and he was asleep by 20 minutes of this. Didn’t wake but if he had we’d have been prepared to try again with the controlled routine. The GPs spooned some milk into him at breakfast to help and Day 2 went much the same as Day 1. Thinking back we either cracked it that evening of Day 2 or the evening of Day 3 with that strict consistent routine. It wasn’t easy but having support meant we didn’t give up and after getting him to sleep without it Day 1 I knew we’d be able to crack it. He went on to love his bottle, it only took a day or so after the ‘trainibg’ Before he was feeding himself whole bottles and was having two full ones a bedtime! The way we did it isn’t for everyone but it worked for us.
Mine were EBF and bottle refusers but it wasn't so much of a problem for me as they were certainly not waking more than once during the night by 8 months, if at all.
I suspect this is a habit rather than a need for milk. What food are they having before bed? When you do the last feed before settling them down are they feeding until they drop off?
I wouldn't bother trying to get them to take a bottle, they just need to realise they will be getting less milk/bfing
Going through the same thing here! Although I want her to take a bottle during the day so I can work. It's so tough when you've no one to help
Bottle-refusing DC2 started nursery at 8 months when I went back to work (3 days a week) so had to start drinking from a bottle or cup during the day or just go without I didn't want to start using bottles at that age so I just sent in a Tommy Tippee sippy cup. She barely touched a drop for 2 weeks then one day downed the lot and never looked back.
At 8 months, assuming she is eating a reasonable amount in the day, you could try only offering bottle or cup during night wakings as they don't actually need milk at night at that age. Pick one night feed to start off with. You could need to prepare for a few nights of resistance but eventually she will probably either give in and take what's offered, or end up going back to sleep without anything to drink. If you want to prepare for this, you could start shortening night feeds beforehand. That's how I weaned my DC off night feeds. She went from feeding every 2 hours at night to not feeding at all between 8 and 6 within the space of about 2 weeks. She still woke up sometimes, but was happy with a quick cuddle (or more usually, coming into bed with me!)
I'm not advocating leaving to cry by the way. I've never ever left mine to cry, which is possibly why 6yo DD still wakes every night, but that's another story!
I gave up in your circumstances and have never been so relieved as when I did.
I introduced a cup at 6mo and night weaned at 10mo.
He had a cup of formula at bedtime and a bf and started sleeping through (he’d been ebf till then).
He used a cup and had food in the day when I was at work.
Honestly giving up on trying bottles was such a relief.
We had a lot of problems with my son when he was younger - CMPA, 2 hospital admissions, constantly hungry, night feeds every 45 mins, faltering growth. We weaned at 4 months - he snaked his neck out like a "Hungry Hungry Hippo" and chomped a banana I was holding. He was still feeding multiple times a day and night at 7.5 months, and our lovely pediatrician told me to stop demand feeding. It was such a relief to be given "permission" to do this (we'd been crucified for early weaning etc at baby group). DS refused bottles for top ups from a very early age but took to a sippy cup very well. Perhaps your little one would prefer a sippy cup? We liked the Boots basic one so much that we bought 5!
Hunger strike eventually worked for us.
Try different temperatures. MAM bottles were good. But we did have to let her go hungry/thirsty eventually.
Just wanted to send some moral support. Ds is 14 now but the most stressful period of my entire parenting experience was when he refused any alternative to the breast, and I was about to return to full time work. Tried everything including starving him but he just sobbed and screamed ( and so did I)
I tried loads of different teats and in the end he took one.. (it was a Chico one ) ... but I was in bits trying to sort it out!.
Just wanted to wish you good luck and to keep the Mn adage in your mind... this too shall pass
Thank you for the advice, its so stressful I dont want to stop feeding her, but I just want my husband to be able to do the odd feed and for me to return to work and not worry that shes not having milk.
Its definitely more of a comfort thing rather than thirst/hunger, but I just cant get her to be settled any other way. She feeds every 2 hours through the night still, despite being on solid in the day.
3 feeds a night that 8 months? That seems a lot. If she gets hungry enough she’ll take a bottle for sure.
I had a bottle refuser who basically never drank milk again after I gave up breast feeding at 15 months. He's now a strapping 6ft young man who still never drinks milk (has never had it on cereal or anything either) but it hasn't done him any harm.
By eight months you could try increasing solids and trying to reduce night feeds?
I have been trying that, and giving more solids, but the milk in the night is purely for comfort I think. I have tried just cuddling etc, but shes only settled by the boob . It's so hard, I'm on my knees plus I have a bad back at the moment which is also affecting my mood. Sorry for moaning, I know I'm lucky to have her, I'm just so tired
Join the discussion
Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Get started »
Please login first.