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Feed or not to feed at nursery?

(15 Posts)
choceyes Thu 25-Aug-11 13:19:17

DD is 12.5 months and will be starting nursery 3 days (8.30-4.30)a week shortly.

She is not a big eater at all and wants/needs feeding during the day. Although when I am not there she eats a bit better and only needs a lunch time feed. Her dad is looking after her at the moment, and only brings her in at lunch time.

I suggested to nursery that I intended to give her cows milk in a cup (never tried before) and see if she takes it and if not hopefully she will eat better and will make up the feeds when I am around, on our days off etc.

But nursery manager says she is unlikely to take to cows milk in a cup at her age and with so many changes going on like her starting nursery it would be good if I could come in and feed her at lunchtime (I work in the next building).

I am happy to do this, and it will be a weight off my mind knowing she is not starving whilst she is there, but also I'm uncertain as to when I will eventually stop going in at lunchtime. At what point will it end? Or am I worrying too much about this and she will one day just eat loads of her lunch and won't miss me and won't need me to feed her?
Nursery might be willing for me to come in now, but what if she still expects me to when she is 18 months or so??

I also have an older DS, nearly 3, there, who might see me at lunchtime and make a fuss and expect me to take him home when I leave. Nursery says I could sneak in without him seeing me, but in reality I think that would be difficult.

Just wondered what others thought really. and what other mothers expriences of this was?

RitaMorgan Thu 25-Aug-11 13:53:25

How long do you have before she starts? I'd start introducing the cow's milk in a cup now.

The thing that would concern me about going in at lunchtime is if it would be distressing for the baby - I know my ds would freak out if I turned up halfway through and then left without taking him with me. Though might not be a problem if you fed her to sleep then left?

I think my personal feeling is she would quickly adjust to eating/drinking in the day if you weren't available.

choceyes Thu 25-Aug-11 16:15:47

She is starting the week after next and next week goin into settling in sessions till she can do a whole day.

My DH looks after her at the moment (he is a teacher, so going back to work soon), and he brings her to me at lunchtime and is fine when I go back to work, although I realise DH is different from being at nursery.

Unsettling her was also my concern too RitaMorgan, but nursery manager says I shouldn't chnage too many things at once, and I should feed her at lunch till she is properly settled in at nursery., i.e not suddenly leave her at nursery all day and expect her to drink from a cup I guess.

Pootles2010 Thu 25-Aug-11 16:19:34

My ds started bit earlier than yours is, he was 8 months. But he would not take a bottle/cup for me, absolutely refused. I was really concerned, but had to start back, so dropped him off with a bottle, and they said he drank the whole thing in one go, no fussing at all.

I think maybe nursery manager is being a bit daft. I would see how it goes, they all react so differently to situations.

GetThePartyStarted Thu 25-Aug-11 16:34:18

DS was 13 months when I went back to work and would happily have had a million feeds a day if he could have. He did eat loads, just liked to have loads of milk too (he is very very active so might have just been topping himself up and needed the calories) At home he wasn't really interested in water/milk from a cup, although I did offer him some at every meal/snack.

At nursery he had cows milk from a cup quite happily, and just had a feed in the morning and evening. Try offering DD milk/water/watered down juice now so she can get thehang of it, and then when she is at nursery youll know she can drink it if she wants to at least. I wouldn't have gone in at lunch myself, like you say I think it would have been unsettling.

They get used to having different things at nursery and home really quickly I think. If you build up her settling in sessions before you actually go back you can see how it's going and can make your mind up then perhaps?

Cosmosis Thu 25-Aug-11 16:54:17

Why would she be unlikely to take cows milk in a cup? DS is 11.5m and he takes it fine. I think that’s a bit of an odd statement.

I would worry too about upsetting her with going in at lunchtimes, I think that may be a suck it and see situation, depending on how you feel settling in sessions went etc.

Pesephone Thu 25-Aug-11 17:13:23

If it were me I'd go in, perhaps you could explain to your 3 year old that you will be coming in to feed her and that he could come and sit with you to keep you company whilst you do. he'll probably love seeing you at lunch time, if he knows in advance that you aren't there to take him home he might accept it quite easily.
As for worrying about how long it will go on for or what the nursery will think as she grows well I'd say just cross that bridge when you come to it. smile

choceyes Fri 26-Aug-11 16:11:41

I don't know why the nursery manager said she won't take to cows milk in a cup. Maybe they had babies who did that and maybe the staff had problems settling them.

I am still undecided about what to do. I guess I will have to see how the settling in sessions go and decide after that. I will have to go and feed her in the settling in sessions though I think.

I don't mind if she makes up for the feeds even at night, cos we co-sleep so is not too inconvinient. I just worry about her going hungry at nursery, cos she really is not established solids wise, despite my best efforts.

Yes I probably would be feedin her to sleep as I will be going between her lunch and nap time, so probably wont' even notice me going.

and also I would like her to adjust to eating and drinkign instead when i am not there.

EssexVic Fri 26-Aug-11 23:09:21

Y not compromise and have an expressed feed given to her in a soft top beaker???????? My LO woudl NEVER taek a bottle at admitedly at 12 motnhs struggled with a cup.....and cows milk, but i found she would drink out of a soft top beaker and slightly warmed expressed milk ( eventually moving to a +1 formula feed which she still has now). Surely it will unsettle her more to have to reappear during her day only to dissappear again?????? I also foudn my LO was more likely to eat onteh absence of my comforting feed, and this then greatly improved her eating at home. I would try having your husband introduce a beakered feed now, good luck x

organiccarrotcake Sat 27-Aug-11 00:05:45

Perhaps this is just one to try one thing (eg milk in a cup) and see what happens, but be open to other options.

My personal experience was that I fed my DS 3x a day when he first went to nursery (he was 6 months at the time) plus at drop-off and pick up (so every 2 hours) then slowly changed it to every 3 hours, and now (at 14 months) he's ok from drop off to pick up. It was a nice way to transition him to nursery as he was pretty uncertain about it to start with. He was a bit upset when I left him each time but it only lasted a moment, and was much better than being without milk which he couldn't have managed at the time. I do think that being able to feed at nursery can be really helpful for some mums and babies.

Your little one is much older which does help, and I think you just need to go with what feels right for you, and be open to changing it if it's not working. I think your nursery manager sounds really supportive, but you don't need to do what she says if it's not right for you.

redvelvetpoppy Sat 27-Aug-11 14:53:02

Sorry haven't read all posts so might replicate advice....great that the nursery are supportive of bf!! You might be pleasantly suprised to find that your DD will get by on very little breast milk through the day and eat food offered/drink water while at nursery then have a "catch up" bf session when she is reunited with you.
I went back to work when DS was 11.5m & bf like a newborn (though also loved his food). He would tank up on my milk before being dropped off & catch up when we reunited. He would bf loads on my days off...and sometimes my DH brought him into my work & he would take milk then too. He had dairy intolerance so has never drank cows milk (now 3y). Tried expressing initially but he wouldn't take it from the nursery staff! So I abandoned that.
You can always quote WHO guidelines if feeling anxious about bf up to 2y and beyond.
Am not sure what concept of time babies/toddlers have so while it is lovely that you have the chance to go in and feed at lunchtime, you may find that your DD is fine to skip that once settled into her new environment. Hope all goes well for you both smile

choceyes Thu 01-Sep-11 10:21:57

Thanks for the replies again.

Settling in isn't going so well sad. She is on her 4th setting in session today and yesterday she was upset at nursery on and off they say. She absolutely refused to eat anything at lunchtime and was hysterical when I went in while they were finishing lunch. Then she had a BF and fell asleep feeding and I laid her down and left and the picked her up after she woke up, even then she wasn't happy.

Nursery is really worried about her being hungry, as she is refusing lunch. But she was also very tired (she normally has a morn and afternoon nap, but didn't go to sleep till lunch).

Tearing my hair out as to what I should do.

Ideally I'd rather not go and feed her at lunch as I am worried she will start expecting me to come in and feed and and hold out for the BF instead of eating lunch. She is a very poor eater and fills up on BM throughout the day when I am with her. I worry if I continue feeding her at lunch she will take a long long time to get the association that solids will take away her hunger, as she still assocites BM to be her meal really.

I have tried her with a cup of cows milk but she is not keen but I shall perserve. It breaks my heart that she is not happy during the day at nursery and I am scared of doing the wrong thing by her.

lilham Thu 01-Sep-11 11:28:47

I know how you feel. sad I am going back to work in 2 months and my DD won't take a bottle. I also have the same worries over lunchtime bf as you.

I don't have any advice. Just want to say you aren't alone.

Goldrill Fri 02-Sep-11 22:58:02

Not sure if this is helpful or not because your issues with lack of solids are a bit different what ours were, but my DD started nursery two days at seven months and I went in to feed her at lunchtimes as she was not settling at all well and won't take milk (expressed) from a bottle or cup. Two months on and she is still refusing milk during the days she's at nursery (or with my mum). I had to give up one day of going in at lunches as I work too far away on Mondays and she seems quite ok with going from 08:00 to 18:00 without a feed now: and her solids intake increased dramatically at around the point I made that change. As she was ok with that on Mondays, I've now stopped the other two days of lunchtime feeds and again she seems fine with it - she feeds a lot more on days when I'm with her. She has also settled well at nursery after a very shaky start, and I suspect me not appearing at lunchtimes has helped that process.

Hope you get a happy solution soon - I found the worry of DD being unhappy very hard to deal with and was very glad when she finally got the hang of things.

ChippingIn Fri 02-Sep-11 23:01:59

Could you express for her? At least then it's only the 'how she gets it' that's changing not 'what she gets'?

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