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BL not W [she will only take boob at 8 months]... what to do?

(20 Posts)
Jules125 Thu 18-Aug-11 13:46:34


DD now 8 months old, weaning has always been difficult and have tried BLW as she refuses to be spoon fed. But she really just takes no more than a spoon or two of solids dailly and there seems to be no progress after 2.5 months. Its really getting me down and worried, though of course I try to just keep offering and not let that show at alll.

As soon as I try to feed her solids she just cries to have milk and generally makes her preference for breast feeding very very clear. She was EBF up to 6 months (and basically still is).

As an example today:

12am - bf
3:30am bf
7am ate a bit of weetabix (maybe about half of one) then
8am bf
10:30 after nap - tried a snack of potato salad but refused - started crying in high chair after just a couple of miutes so I took her out
11am bf
12 - tried to feed her a tuna mayo sandwich but ate just a small amount of tuna
1am - bf again - she was crying for it and dragging at my boobs

[and this is typical ]

No matter what I try in terms of timing for food (before milk, after milk, in between milk or different foods, it seems to be the same, and yet I feel she does need more solids as she is now waking 2-3 times durign the night (when she used to sleep through).

Has anyone seen anything like this before - or any suggestions how to diminish the breast milk and increase solids. I've tried cutting out one feed during the day (afternoon) but she did not eat any more solids, cried a lot and then just woke more overnight for milk - not a good option for me when I'm not getting much rest anyway!

Thanks agai!

mumwithdice Thu 18-Aug-11 18:02:29

I'm hoping AngelDog will show up as she is far more knowledgeable than me. Apparently, at 8-9 months, there is a natural sleep regression whether baby is on solids or not, because the world is too darn interesting. So you are not alone and this is normal.

My DD is about the same age as yours and she has done the same wrt sleep. She is also BLW. What I've found is that she won't eat things she can't handle easily. So I cut things into long slices for her (cucumber, pear, cheddar, apple, toast) or give her things with handles (broccoli, asparagus, etc.) then she looks at them, turns them around a bit and munches.

Also, apart from the eating solids, how is your DD generally? If she seems fine, then don't worry. According to the BLW book by Gill Rapley and co, many babies don't really get eating until 9 months anyway. Hope this helps somewhat.

islandbaby Thu 18-Aug-11 18:20:03

Have you tried putting cut up chunks of soft foods on the high chair tray and just leaving her to play? That's basically how my DS started to feed himself and at first he just squished them around (don't worry about the mess, it's inevitable) but things eventually found their way to his mouth and now he eats whatever, whenever. Mash a banana onto toast and cut the toast into little squares. It'll be fairly soft yet manageable, and at 8 months she should have the co-ordination to put it in her mouth. Or if you're worried about choking (which is more often than not just gagging to manipulate the position of food in the mouth), try something even softer, squisher and messier, like mashed potato or pear softened to not quite puree in the microwave.

Tommy Thu 18-Aug-11 18:25:26

when I did BLW with DS3 I didn't pay any attention at all to whne he had his "solids" and BF. I fed him when he needed feedng and sat him up with us at mealtimes and let him play/eat he food I put on his tray. Some days he didn't eat anything.
The mantra for BLW is "Up to one, it's just for fun" so I really would try and not worry about it
(Easier said than done I know - espccially if it's your first smile)

Debs75 Thu 18-Aug-11 18:44:50

take a step back and stop trying to 'feed' him solids.
Keep bfing as much as he likes and then when you are eating let hoim have tastes of what you are eating. You can do this in his high chair or have a little picnic and sit down with him on a mat.
Let him play with the food and relax about how much he eats or doesn't eat.
Remember food is fun until 1. he will get everything he needs from your milk so don't cut bf's out.

DD3 was like this for about 6 weeks and then she started to play more and to push bits of food to her mouth. At 1 year she is now eating 3 meals and 2 snacks a day and still bfing 4-5 times

Jules125 Thu 18-Aug-11 18:46:05

Thanks all - yes generally she is fine and she does pick up food and feed herself from time to time (mostly looks at it and chucks on the floor though). I've tried all the normal BLW foods and I'm not worried about chocking - she doesn't really eat enough for that to happen.

But she'll only play with food lliterally for a few minutes before screaming to get out of the high chair (and I've tried feeding her on the floor - but she just crawls away, she's not really that interested in food). I'm wondering if that screaming to get out quickly is normal.

She is crawling well, pulling herself up and starting to furniture walk too and I think maybe just so interested in other things she's not fussed about food -I'm not sure.

I am really worried but hoping she'll get into it eventually. Thanks

Debs75 Thu 18-Aug-11 19:47:50

Sorry just realised he is a she

mumwithdice Fri 19-Aug-11 09:39:24

Do you think it might be the high chair itself that is the problem? I only mention it because DD howled to get out after a few minutes too and then we got her a different chair (Antilop from IKEA £15 so not too horrible) and now she sits in there quite happily making a mess and munching.

MamaChocoholic Fri 19-Aug-11 19:58:35

ds1 didn't eat anything till 10mo. he is now 3, healthy and enormous (in length, not girth). I think he just wasn't ready for much food before then. let her sit on your lap at mealtimes if the highchair is stressful perhaps, and let her play with the food on your plate. she doesn't have to eat it, just explore it. if she's healthy and growing and developing, then she will eat when she's ready. I read a good book that said back in the 19th century, docs used to advice against any food before 1 year. then they introduced a thin gruel, to which could be added an egg at 18 months. fruit and veg not before 3 years. thinking of generations of babies ebf till a year comforted me.

libelulle Fri 19-Aug-11 20:07:18

My dd was like this. At 3.5 she is a good and unfussy eater. I know how hard it is but try to relax - she will get the hang of it in her own time. In 6 months you'll suddenly turn round and think 'eeh, she eats!' it happens imperceptibly but before you know it you're slightly wistful for the days when your milk was a nicer bet than a slice of cheese on toast!

woowa Fri 19-Aug-11 20:11:02

We nearly gave up on BLW at 11 mths because she wasn't eating anything. I stopped BF at 13 months, so in those two months her eating shot up massively. DD seems to have always eaten less than babies on normal weaning, i think perhaps they don't need as much as people give them? Motto of BLW is "until they're one, it's just for fun". Don't give up, just keep stikcing dinner in front of her, she'll get it when she's ready (and make sure you don't tell health visitors what you told us!)


gourd Sat 20-Aug-11 14:56:35

I suggest offering food more often, every two hours, fruit and dried fruit is good, and plain Greek yogurt always went down well with ours - no matter how full she was/is, she can always stuff in some (more) yogurt! Always eat/drink with your LO too so she can see you enjoying your food, but don't deny her milk. You could try other distractions between milk feeds though when she starts to get a bit agitated for mil you could try books, looking in the mirror, songs and musical instruments etc just to delay the next breastfeed a bit longer each time, even if only for a few minutes. Ours didn't really start eating significant amounts till around 8 months. She evidently enjoyed food right from the start of weaning, but saw it as an added extra rather than something she needed, until about 8 months when she suddenly upped her intake for food - but even then, she still breastfed every 3 hours. At that stage though, each breastfeed was only a few minutes, so she can't have been doing it for nutrition - more for comfort or out of habit I think, so that's when I really started to try to distract her for longer between feeds (and offer water and soft fruit in case she just needed some fluid) but it wasn't until about 9 months that she (suddenly) stopped breastfeeding feeding during the day.

gourd Sat 20-Aug-11 15:00:55

BTW I think not liking being strapped into seats is normal - ours hated it, even the pram and car seat were not popular for a long time. She seemed to like being at the table with us from really early on, well before we started weaning, but would only tolerate being strapped into her highchair for a few minutes, then would want to sit on our laps whilst we tried to eat! It just takes perseverance i think - and distraction!

DecapitatedLegoman Sat 20-Aug-11 15:21:03

I promise you, having had 2 DC go through this, that one day in the next month or two she will suddenly start eating. I honestly don't think that babies are developmentally ready for any significant amount of food until around 9 months. But I can confidently say that she won't starve herself.

FWIW I didn't notice any improvement in sleep with increased food intake. Sorry about that grin

Jules125 Sun 21-Aug-11 10:03:42

Thanks all. At least I am not alone here. All the other mums I know have their same age babies chomping through 3 course meals by now. She's actually done quite well with breaskfast this morning (most of one baby weetabix and a small slice of avocado) so yes she does eat solids sometimes.

Her sleep isn't that bad actually - its just that she seems really hungry overnight (will bf for over half hour - twice last night) whilst in the day most of the feeds are now quite short. I figure she is not really taking quite enough during the day. She's more interested in other things during the day though and its hard to engage her with any food.

Thanks again.

mumwithdice Sun 21-Aug-11 11:29:17

Hope I'm not overstepping the mark, but I'm at the exact same stage as you and DD does very very similar things so I keep posting what helps me and maybe if you find something that helps you, you could post back? We could help each other maybe.

Anyway, I have sometimes handed DD a carrot stick to hold onto while she plays with other things. That way, she can have a snack on the go and not make too much of a mess as it isn't sticky.

Jules125 Sun 21-Aug-11 12:22:07

Yes mumwithdice. Happy to share anything that seems to help. I do the carrot sticks whilst doing other things too - or offer them whilst out in the buggy. She'll have a small bite sometimes. My DD also loves nairns oat biscuits and rarely turns them down. Sandwiches sometimes work.

MockingbirdsNotForSale Sun 21-Aug-11 14:20:27

I feed DD in her Bumbo with the tray on on top of a plastic table cloth, so any food she drops its easy to pick up again. I eat next to her. The chair is comfy and she does better in it than in a highchair where most food falls victim to gravity.

MumtoF Sun 21-Aug-11 14:42:12

DD was exactly as you describe. She got interested in food when we gave her some bites of birthday cake! Since then she is much better. I think it is largely and age thing. She has just turned 10 months and I think she is just not keen on bland soft veggies (inc banana) so is a better eater because she is capable of eating more than just that. She prefers meat/fish/sweetcorn and these are not easy to eat until you are pretty good at chewing and picking up small objects. Yoghurt (Yeo Valley) is popular and for breakfast she has readybrek but will only eat it if it has pureed apple in. Her absolute favourite food is dried cheerios.
The HV basically told me to give up on trying to force feed her and just stick her in her highchair (we have an Antilop) whenever we are eating and share food with her. I was worried about salt but by the time she is eating significant quantities of food she will be one so is well within guidelines. She likes bits of chicken from a chicken curry (sometimes supermarket ready meal - bad mummy). Because she is DC2 organic and homemade can't be so much of a priority as DC1 is a terrible eater so while he had a good start our main focus with him is just getting food into him and I need to try to do something that we can all eat.

I also now only give her 3 breasfeeds - morning, 2.30ish (which I am going to drop soonish and try to replace with a drink of cows milk and a snack) and evening. She is also eating spoon food as well as BLW. I go back to work at a year and want to be on my way to giving up BF by then.

mumwithdice Sun 04-Sep-11 17:24:32

I've just discovered dried fruit is quite useful. Plus DD loves nectarines now. But then, she now has two teeth. Maybe it's easier then.

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