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Help! BF baby and I'm going back to work

(8 Posts)
Tallulahoola Thu 13-Oct-16 20:00:11

I'm panicking.

Background is that I have a DD(4) who was mixed fed because of various bf issues in the beginning. So weaning her off the boob was simple, I just increased the number of bottles until she was totally formula fed by 10 months. No drama.

Different story with DS. It was all textbook in the first few weeks with him taking a bottle a day, going down in his cot tired but awake, all that. And then somehow... I ended up entirely breastfeeding him and when I tried to reintroduce bottles he point blank refused. I also started feeding him to sleep.

So now he is 11 months old and I go back to work in 3 weeks and he's going to nursery. He won't drink from a bottle or a cup, though he happily drinks water from a cup. I currently bf him mid-morning, mid-afternoon, bedtime, a dream feed at 11pm and then when he wakes at 5am, when I bring him into bed with me and he goes back to sleep for a couple of hours.

Help! How am I going to deal with this in 3 weeks?? I guess he might be persuaded to drink milk from a cup at nursery mid-morning and afternoon. More worrying is the bedtime one, because my job involves events sometimes after work when he will need either a babysitter or DH to put him to bed. Can I drop the dreamfeed? I feel like if I drop the 5am one he will just cry for two hours until it's time to get up because he won't understand why I'm not feeding him. I guess I could keep this one up for a bit because tbh I will miss it. He does eat pretty well at mealtimes so am I feeding him too much milk anyway if he's nearly 1? Sorry I'm asking a lot of questions here but I'm just freaking out because I've had my head in the sand about it and suddenly my back to work date is looming sad

Note3 Thu 13-Oct-16 20:29:03

I have been in your predicament twice before and about to be a third time! Sounds too clichéd but they honestly just work themselves out! I had a baby who was comfortable with anyone but would only BF and have a teeny bit of water with a meal. She had a few sips of formula at nursery from a tommee tippee dippy cup and water with meals for first few mths (began nursery at 8.5 mths).

Second child exceptionally clingy only to me and again only BF. Started nursery at a yr and apart from crying for ten mins at drop off for first 6 mths she adapted almost straight away to cows milk in sippy cup.

Nursery would have offered EBM but I chose to pump and dump.

For the evening...I'd suggest getting a noticeable bedtime routine so that someone can follow the pattern to the letter in your absence. Dc will also then recognise sleepy time. Caregiver can then offer milk in a bottle or cup and then will likely find cuddling and rocking soothes in your absence.

You could definitely try dropping dream feed. If that's a no go then just don't do dream feed on the nights you can't and deal with whatever happens as a result (earlier wake up and resettle next day maybe) or dream feed at whatever time you come in from work after event

Tallulahoola Thu 13-Oct-16 23:30:51

Thanks, this is reassuring. Think I will try dropping the dream feed in the next few days, can't decide whether to go cold turkey or to start moving it earlier and earlier then dropping it (I read somewhere that's a good way to do it)

I just feel guilty that he'll be going through so much change at once - not getting fed any more (in the daytime at the very least), going to nursery, sometimes not having me there at bedtime. Need to keep reminding myself that they do get bigger and tougher, and soon he'll be a tantrumming toddler...

Note3 Fri 14-Oct-16 10:06:26

Lol yep...I found toddlerhood fine it was when mine started school they became mini Vicki pollards

One thing I've learnt is each baby seriously is different. Mine have had same parents and parenting style yet all have differing quirks even as newborns.

Think about what seems most comfortable to you and most practical for your situation, start it and then if it doesn't work you can try plan b.

They're so adaptable at this young age...I returned to work full time after eldest and it was more stressful on me then on her. She loved nursery and adapted amazingly from being with me most of time to minimal contact on work days.

One thing I found was I'd always have a dinner prepared to be warmed up once home (rather than cooking from scratch once in) as DD just wanted to have cuddles and be fed once home. Once she got a but older this wasn't the case but while she was adjusting it was and she'd feed a little extra before bed to make up for none during day.

Of her dad collected her she wasn't a screaming wreck though so don't panic and think if you're working late your DC won't cope...he honestly will smile

Nicketynac Mon 17-Oct-16 15:57:13

This will be us in a few weeks! Glad I read this today.
Not sure what to do about expressing at work but will figure it out

Redkite10a Mon 17-Oct-16 16:09:27

I was feeding a similar amount to you at 11 months, and went back to work at 12 months. I started giving snacks and cows milk in a beaker pre mid morning feed and stopped offering breast, and cutting the feed as short as possible when he demanded it. After about a week he seemed to forget about the morning feed. Another week later (so 2 weeks before going back to work) I tried to do the same with the mid afternoon feed. This one was harder work - I had to introduce a first tea, snacks weren't enough and it took at least another month before he stopped demanding a late afternoon feed when he was tired, particularly after nursery pick up.

All the other feeds I didn't do anything about until he was settled into nursery. Bedtime we eventually did what somebody has suggested above, which is have a bedtime routine with bath, stories, and my husband rocking him in a rocking chair. I'd only go in and feed once my son was almost asleep, and on the two occasions I was out my husband managed to get him to sleep without me.

Nottalotta Mon 17-Oct-16 19:32:28

I had the same, bottle refusing ebf ds. I went back to work at 9 months, three days a week. He ate well and drank water from a sippy. It was three days in a row too. He was fine, bf on waking and literally the minute he saw me after work (in the car!)

I asked mum and Mil (who have him when I'm at work) to offer milk in his sippy at snack times but he wasn't interested.

At 12 months I started giving him cows milk in a nuby grip and sip at breakfast and bedtime. It took him about 4 days to stop bf at bedtime of his own accord. Just need to tackle the overnight comfort feeds now!

I really worried about going back to work but he was fine.

Nottalotta Mon 17-Oct-16 19:35:00

Oh I didn't need to express at work either. My first week (3days in a row) I got quite uncomfortable by 2.30 the first day but it got later each day. By the end of my second week I had no issues. By my 4 th week I no longer needed breast pads.

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