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Going back to work and continuing feeding

(10 Posts)
joolsandoliver Sun 25-Feb-07 22:48:09

Hi there,
I'd appreciate a bit of advice please. My little one is 19 weeks now and I'm going back to work in 7 weeks. I'm very worried about returing to work for many reasons.
This week I started to reintroduce a bottle (tommee tippee closer to nature and the normal avent type) (he's rejected this since he was 9 weeks old) with absolutely no success, and also no joy with a tommee tippee feeding cup. I've tried to up to 4 hours only offering him a bottle and the most he will take is about 30ml EBM (more by accident as he spits most out). Other people have also tried and still no luck.
I'm also trying to get him to nap more regularly with no luck in that field either. Despite my best intentions all he wants to do is BF to sleep and then stay asleep in my arms. Since I've not let him do that he only sleeps for about 10 hours a day, cries a lot, falls asleep in my arms and wakes up the second I put him down in bed. I know he'll "crack" eventually but I can't bear seeing him so unhappy. Have to admit that so far he's won most of the battles but I really don't want to give up on this one.
He wakes up several times a night wanting a feed. All the other babies in my antenatal group are starting to sleep the night, or a good portion of it. DS is very big for his age (91st centile) so I appreciate he needs the extra calories but I'm getting tired/want to be able to drink wine in the evening.
Mainly I'm really really worried about how he's going to cope with nursery. I know at 26 weeks he'll be a bit more developmentally advanced but do you think he'll be able to manage the cup? What do I do if he won't. I know that they won't carry him around all day ( which is pretty much what I do) and i would appreiate any advice on how to make the transition any easier for him.
I'm also getting really fed up as the most time to myself I've had is a trip to Sainsbury's or the hairdressers and I'd love to have more than an hour off.
Advice please!?

Elasticwoman Sun 25-Feb-07 23:53:31

I was not teetotal when breastfeeding. The odd glass of wine might not affect your supply too much; I just avoided spirits. You need to keep hydrated though.

At 6 months he may well be taking some solids and may accept water in a cup.

A good childminder probably would carry him round a lot if he needed it. But I suppose you've booked him into the nursery now.

If you're still worried, could you put off starting work for another month or so?

You say all the other babies in your antenatal group are sleeping through the night etc. But are they all breastfed exclusively? Sounds like you have established bf really well and given your baby the best start in life with all the protection from infections, allergies, asthma and so on that breastmilk gives. Your baby is more likely to stay well than babies given artificial milk. You have not got much longer on the milk-only stage, hang on in there.

maximummummy Mon 26-Feb-07 00:05:50

it can feel a bit suffocating exclusively br.feeding BUT you are doing the best thing for your baby. i maybe a little biased as i am a ch/minder but baby would have more similar care with ch/minder than nursery i'd imagine

maximummummy Mon 26-Feb-07 00:08:45

oh and a glass of wine wont hurt not much crosses through the milk ..... other people always say their baby's sllep thru .. bet they don't really!!!!

joolsandoliver Mon 26-Feb-07 21:53:27

LOL Maximummummy! And it's true that not many of the babies from my ANC are still exclusively BF now (smug grin!!).

Don't get me started - I'd love to be able to go for the CM option but I really couldn't afford it. I found a lovely CM that I really liked but she cost more than nursery and I was worried about the time off work I'd need to take when her kids were sick, her annual leave etc. Money is a big worry for us, and as I'm a junior doctor time off work is a big issue for me too. Basically if I take more than a few weeks off my job won't count as training and I'll have to redo it. As I'm going back to work part-time my salary is more than halved and I'm already taking 1 month AML which is the most we can afford. It's so shit, if DS was born from April 07 none of this would be an issue. GRRRRR... oh dear I seem to have started my rant.

What about the cup though - any idea when babies start being able to use it. Maximummummy - have you had any babies you looked after that refused a bottle and if so what did you do?

Thanks for the moral support

bumbleweed Mon 26-Feb-07 22:11:50

Just another message of support, as dont have any experience of getting a bf baby to bottle feed.

You are doing a fantastic job bf your ds. He sounds like a high-need baby like my dd was and still is. She also used to go to sleep only if bf or rocked, and cry the moment we tried to put her down. It has taken over a year before we could get her to sleep any other way - its just how she is. Still wants carrying all the time at 16months!

You may be worrying too early - alot can change in 7 weeks at this age - by the time you actually start back, he may be much more willing to drink from bottle or cup. He may be unwilling to accept a substitute when he knows if he holds out he will get what he really wants - you. But he will hopefully adapt when he starts nursery if he senses things are different here.

It is totally relentless and demanding having a young baby, and sounds like you have a demanding job to go back to as well. Do you have family support to get the odd hour to yourself here and there, as you might not feel so stressed about the feeding if you could get a bit of a break?

amijee Mon 26-Feb-07 22:39:00


I can feel your anxiety because I was there too.

I went back to work when ds was 20 weeks old and he had been demand feeding on average 2 hourly and had no routine whatsoever. I had to do something and fast. So here's how it went...

I first extended his feeds to an average of 3 hourly. There were tears initially but he quickly got used to it. It even made his naps longer. Then we offered him only the bottle and after an 8 hr hunger strike and me expressing everything he took it. Initally I was expressing at work and then this bacame too stressful and so he had formula whilst i was away. This was a little battle we also had to overcome but he eventually realised it was formula or nothing.

Now he is 7 mths old and can happily switch between breast and formula and is going approx 4 hrs between feeds as is having solids as well. We are now working on sleep as he still likes to be nursed to sleep and I am letting him cry it out a lot more.

It's lovely to be able to practice attached parenting and breastfeed for as long as you can but in reality when you have a demanding job, it's extremely difficult and there comes a time when your needs have to be addressed as well.

I think my baby is actually a lot happier since he has had more routine in his life and knows when to expect certain things and sleeps better.

Best of luck with everything and a huge well done for getting this far x x x

maximummummy Tue 27-Feb-07 20:48:08

i think baby will definately manage a cup- try a doidy cup they're great but need a lot of patience! i'm a br.feeding peer supporter & we learnt about really tiny babies using a cup( lapping it like a cat!) i've only minded one baby but he was bottlefed & i couldn't believe how fast he could down a bottle!! hope this helps

sarflondon Tue 27-Feb-07 21:06:20

Hi Jools and Oliver I went back to work when ds3 was 5 months and managed to fully breastfeed him until 14 months. The advice from amijee about stretching out time between feeds now is really good advice. I spent my last month of maternity trying every teat on the market for him to take expressed milk. The most successful was the Avent spout teat. Although he was very reluctant to take any bottles from us he settled down very quickly to taking bottles from our childminder. I think he responded well to being in a different environment and worked out it was bottles or starve. Will you have good facilities to express at work? If you are a hospital doctor you should have. Things which I found helped were making sure I drank lots of water while at work and having set times to express each day. Initially I expressed before going to work, mid morning lunchtime and then around 11 at night. I was in court for one 3 week spell which was challenging...From 6 months when he went on to solids, i could cut out one expressing session a day. Oh the joy when I was able to put away my breast pump for the last time. I borrowed a steam steriliser to take to work so that I was able to sterilise the pump and reuse it. It is worth sticking with.

Fleecylis Tue 27-Feb-07 21:10:48


I am going through exactly the same but return to work on Monday!!!!

DS is still not taking a bottle/cup tried tommee bottles, avent, NUK teats and even nipple protectors still protests but after reading what amijee did I am going to try offering just a bottle until he eventually takes it.

Also with my son he is excl. bf and feeds every 2 hours and wakes during the night the same we are busying doing the controlled crying routine. 1st night was last nite he eventually settled at 2.30 fed him and then he didnt wake until 6.45 which is fantastic see how it goes tonight!!!

and as for the odd glass of wine I have now and again and hasnt done any harm.

Im new to posting messages, etc so I will let you know how it goes. Good luck to you.... I think its perserving but if you are like me its awful just letting them fret cry but as my consultant said " you have to be cruel to be kind".

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