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Dropping the bottles. Epic tantrums. Worth it or give up?

(42 Posts)
Thurlow Mon 01-Dec-14 12:44:33

So we failed to drop bottles for milk when DD was 1, as she refused to drink milk from anything else, and at that age milk seemed more important. I tell you what, any future DC will be having that bottle stolen from them on their 1st birthday to save this hassle...

We've tried periodically to get her off the bottles, but no - drinks water from every other cup under the sun, but milk comes in a bottle. So now she's nearly 3 and still has milk in a bottle morning and night. I wasn't overly bothered as it's a comfort thing, she drinks it quickly and brushes her teeth afterwards, but decided last week that really, 3 is getting a bit old. I decided she can keep the bedtime bottle for now but in the morning we would change to a different cup.

Cue epic, sobbing tantrums every morning for the past week and a half. 5 minutes of mixing between ignoring, cajoling and bribery to get her to drink from any damn cup she likes - a mug, a beaker, a Tommy Tippee cup, a glass with a straw, you name it - before she eventually breaks and decides to drink it, reluctantly, while sobbing and having a cuddle. We've started a sticker chart for it and she clearly understands what's going on, she just doesn't want to do it.

One of the big problems is its the morning, and most days we only have a finite time to get ready to leave the house.

Anyway, I can't decide if I should plug away with this or just give up for another few months when she might understand bribery even better? Any suggestions? I'd prefer her to have some milk in the morning as she's not naturally the world's biggest drinker and she's got the better part of an hour before she has breakfast at the CM's most mornings.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 12:50:18

Ha, we had the same grin you're half way there so keep going imo. I wouldn't try and coax her to drink, she will eventually and it's not like it's hot atm, if you are in the uk anyway. Just put the drink down and get on with something else, don't refer to it or her drinking it at all, just stop giving the whole thing attention.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 12:52:22

Take a sippy cup with you and then if she is thirsty she can have some on the way to the CM's.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 12:53:05

And if she decides not to drink it I bet you anything she'll make up for it at breakfastwink

kiki0202 Mon 01-Dec-14 12:57:24

I have went though the same thing with DS he didn't use a dummy or any comforter/teddys so his bottle was the only thing he had and he LOVED it I mean loved it more than anything but he was obsessed with it and was actually becoming more attached to it the older he got. He had more or less given up food for the bottle of milk so I needed to get him off. I tried cutting down but it never worked tears tantrums and him following me around all day asking for it and me telling him off all day sad

I ended up going cold turkey and chucked them all in the outside bin with the tops cut off for good measure I told him they were gone let him look in all the cupboards to prove they are gone. It took a few days but he got over it so much quicker than he had when I tried to just cut down to bedtime. I think it's harder for them knowing it's in the cupboard and they just can't have it DS was like an addict knowing his fix was in the house just made it harder on him.

I would chuck them buy her a special cup and teddy (we went to build a bear for something extra special) and try your best to ride it out use. If she's anything like DS it will be easier in the long run.

TarkaTheOtter Mon 01-Dec-14 13:09:09

I've got a nearly three year old (such a lovely age hmm) so I do get where you are coming from but I think you are making this quite hard on yourselves. I'd ditch the bottles entirely and offer milk in a cup morning and bedtime. No bribing or cajoling - just offer it. It really doesn't matter if she doesn't want it at 3 but if she's anything like my dd the more she senses you want her to have it, the more she'll resist.

Thurlow Mon 01-Dec-14 13:52:31

Oh, I no doubt am overthinking the whole thing, that's a very common occurrence grin

It's a relief to hear other people have had this too. Yes, Tarka, it is indeed a charming age, bless them. I'm sure it doesn't really matter if she doesn't have the milk but I'm a bit worried about mucking up her sleep if we completely ditch the bedtime milk. Morning milk, though, you're right, it doesn't matter.

Ok, so show her the milk in the cup and leave her to drink it or not - yep, she can drink it on the walk to the CM if she wants to. The only thing at the moment is she gets out of bed, walks into the living room, sees the milk in the cup not the bottle, and starts wailing and crying. I can ignore her, but I also need to get her washed and dressed at the same time! This could be entertaining... You're right though, no attention, I'm mucking things up by giving her some attention over it. So show her the beaker, tell her she can have a sticker if she drinks it, and then ignore ignore ignore.

But then there is the little part of me that is wondering if this is really worth the hassle at the moment. It's not an enormous deal - I just got a bee in my bonnet about it the other day. Maybe in a few months time her language will be at the stage of understanding buying a special new cup for her milk and that she's too old to have a big cup.

And typing that reminds me of the other problem we're having which is probably linked to it - she's insisting that she is "little", not "big", and getting very wound up over anything to do with being a "big girl" and this is where younger siblings probably come in useful!

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 13:56:45

Maybe don't put milk out for her? Then she will ask for it and you can say yes but we'll quickly get dressed first and you can drink it on the way to CM's

Fairywhitebear Mon 01-Dec-14 13:56:45

I'd go cold turkey and ditch the bottles in the bin. That way she can't have them.

I might add, I'm having issues at the minute with dummies. If I didn't have a baby in the house who did need them, they'd be binned. Problem solved.

Younger siblings don't always help! Our DD had ditched bottles by 15 months and then DS came along...and she wanted them back! She's now 2 and still has a morning and night bottle. Shrugs. Bigger battles to fight at the minute!

(all this said given you don't have a baby in the house who needs bottles!! )

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 14:00:42

Personally I'd ditch the sticker too, it's more attention on something that really isn't a big deal. It's only a big deal to her as it's loss of control and change of routine.

Thurlow Mon 01-Dec-14 14:05:07

OK, will ditch the stickers, that makes sense.

TheBatteriesHaveRunOut Mon 01-Dec-14 14:11:35

Tell her you've been in touch with Father Christmas and he needs bottles for the baby elves and you've struck a deal. She'll leave her bottles out for him, he'll leave her an extra present. You may need <cough> Father Christmas to write her a special letter about it.

Don't put milk in a cup for her to see in the morning, if the very sight of it is upsetting her. She will be fine if she doesn't have a cup of milk in the morning at age three. (presuming rest of her diet is OK)

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 14:16:48

I would disagree about leaving the bottles bottle out for Santa, she'll get upset at seeing them again, nice idea and it's something that could have been done at the start but you're a week in now, so see it through.

My mum talks of stopping breast feeding my sister at 2 she refused to drink anything for 4 days but gave in eventually. It was obviously a big stand off as sis is 40 and mum still talks of it add if it was yesterdaygrin

Thurlow Mon 01-Dec-14 14:17:40

Ooh, I like that idea Batteries. I might go back to the bottles for a few weeks until Christmas (she's very adamant it's not Christmas and not time for Father Christmas yet!) but then do something around Christmas about giving it up.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 14:19:22

You could say Santa's been in touch about an extra present but that's more attention and I honestly think she might be feeding off the attention atm. I really would ignore and carry on/distract.

bonzo77 Mon 01-Dec-14 14:20:47

I'd just give up on the milk entirely. Give water instead and replace the milk with yoghurt, cheese etc, calcium and vit d in a supplement if you're really worried. DS 1 stopped drinking milk at age 1 when we stopped giving him bottles. He drank no milk at all till he was at least 2. DS2 is nearly 2 has a bottle at bed time and no other milk. Haven't planned to drop this bottle -because I like giving it to him too much--

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 14:24:15

Honestly Thurlow just ride it out, this time next week this will be over and there'll be another issue to deal with.

I think it world be extremely confusing to start up the bottles again.

Thurlow Mon 01-Dec-14 14:29:50

Gah! Me, confusing the issue? Never grin

This will sound silly but we've been very lucky with DD and never really had any of the eating and sleeping issues that I know a lot of people have had, so this is genuinely one of the first times we've had to stick to our guns and ride something out!

Of course it is coinciding wonderfully with her starting to muck around with her food...

OK, thanks all. Convinced. No milk out in the mornings, just water. If she asks for something, give her it in a beaker. Just bedtime milk - will have a think about whether we will fight that battle on a beaker or not, especially if she's not had much dinner. (And bonzo, I know what you mean, I get lovely cuddles when she has her bedtime bottle blush)

TheBatteriesHaveRunOut Mon 01-Dec-14 14:33:01

Re the bottles - I may have misread, is she having a bottle at bedtime?

5madthings Mon 01-Dec-14 14:36:15

My dd was like this, it was only this summer age three and a half that she gave up milk in a bottle, rather than try and get her to drink milk in a cup we kept the bedtime bottle and just ditched the morning bottle. Over Sumner she miraculously gave up the bedtime bottle in her own..,, the dummy however is yet to go.

Tbh I dint think it's worth battling over, they will grow out of them. If she has a milky bfast then it doesn't matter if she drinks milk in the morning. My dd loves cheese so I figure she gets her calciumfrom that as she doesn't drink milk at all really now. All the madthings were the same, once stopping boob or bottle they didn't really drink milk.ds2 will now drink milk age 12 and the other boys have the odd hot chocolate or milkshake but they seem fine despite a lack of milk.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 14:40:20

Thurlow my lovely, she is THREE, she will be fine even if she hasn't had much dinnergrin She's asserting herself that's all, if it wasn't this it would probably be something else.

I look back at photos of ds when he was 3 and wonder what on earth I was thinking giving him a bottle in the middle of the night he was a big boy then but there was obviously a big part of me that wanted to keep him a babysmile

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 14:42:59

You see,I was a bit like 5 mad <wavessmile > but ds was getting more attached to it,I honestly thought he'd still be having a sneaky bottle at 15 given half the chancegrin

5madthings Mon 01-Dec-14 14:46:06

Ds4 still sucks his thumb.,, age 6 hmm so I can't be arsed to battle with dd over her dummy, it's just for bedtime or tired/poorly not out the house. She is four on Friday shock I have discussed the dummy fairy, she is not impressed by that idea!

5madthings Mon 01-Dec-14 14:48:06

Ds4 was bottle obsessed, we went on holiday and 'forgot' to take the bottle with us, the change of scene and routine being away helped distract him and we offered him a new big boy cup but he wasn't interested. That was s good way to stop the bedtime bottle.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 01-Dec-14 14:51:09

FOUR?? How did that happen?shock grin

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