Working Moms

I need help-heading back to work LO wont take bottle!

I am returning to work next tuesday and LO wont take bottle! DH works 5-3 and I will be going back to work 3-7 so the plan is to have DH stay home with DD while I go to work. I EBF and had a few family members give DD a pumped bottle a few times when DD was 3 weeks, 4 weeks, and so on. Then we went about 10 days without giving a bottle and it all went to hell!! DH tried and no success. All she does is scream and refuse :( I was using platex drop ins before with no problem, but have since tried the natural latch and orthodonic nipples with no luck. Also tried a tommee tippee and medela.

Our other problem is that when I leave (we have done a few 'practice' hour long leaves) DD FREAKS out. I didnt think that she would be so attached?! DH has been very hands on since birth and was home with us for the 1st 3 weeks. Suddenly she only wants me.  

I am in need of your advice!!! I am sostressed at this point about returning to work, but our bank account depends on my income also....

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Re: I need help-heading back to work LO wont take bottle!

  • Well you may not like what I'm about to tell you DS took a bottle like a champ from ages 1 week to 9 weeks.  Then we went on vacation, I got lazy and stopped pumping for a couple weeks, and he never took one again!  I tried everything the whole first year of his life, bought ever bottle ever made, dipped the nipple in sugar water, had babysitters try, the lactation nurse tried, nothing.  No matter how hungry he was he just wouldn't take it.  When he was about 9 months old the pedi told me to give up trying because we'd just have to wean him off a bottle at a year anyway.  So I ended up not returning to work part--time until he started eating solid foods and I could be away from him for 4 hours at a time.  Good luck.  It sucks.  If only someone had told us to never stop the bottle a day, right?  Just keep trying, maybe your DD will be different!
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  • DS also started refusing at around his 6 week growth spurt and refused bottles until we sent him to daycare. Me staying home was never an option and DCP told me not to worry about it. DS had a very hard time taking a bottle for months...basically just ate enough to keep him from being starving but I think most babies will eat when they are hungry so just keep trying. All of a sudden, at 10 months he started taking them like a champ and then weaned by 11 months :(
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  • I wish I could go back and find my post from a year and a half ago when I was having the same freak out.

    DS never took a bottle.  We didn't try to introduce one till he was 6 weeks old (I returned to work at 8) and he just wouldn't take it.  I literally tried every bottle I could find in the store with no luck.  Did a few test runs with my DH and my mom (since she is who watches him and has more patience than DH) and had no luck.

    Finally I just had to do it.  I left my mom with plenty of bottles and I left for 8 hours of work.  If your DD is hungry enough she will eat from a bottle. It only took about 2 days for DS to fully accept the bottle.  Your DD might also reverse-cycle to make up for not taking as many bottles when you are away.

    Good luck and try to stay calm.  Babies can sense when  you are tense and that makes trying to get them to take a bottle worse.  I know that is easier said than done, but it will all work out.  Your DD will adapt to the upcoming change.

  • Well, I'll give you another comforting story.  We didn't really work too hard on getting DS#2 to take a bottle until pretty close to the end of my maternity leave AT 4 MONTHS.  Yikes!  Anyway, the most he ever took was maybe an ounce or two until the day that I went back to work, at which point he (miraculously) took like 4 bottles of 4 oz each like a total champ.  It was so strange - it was like he knew he had to, so he just did.  No fuss.  No problems.  No nothing.  I was like he had been taking them forever.  So hopefully that will happen for you, too!

  • I don't usually post, but the same thing happened to me just a few months ago.  I started DD on a bottle at 1 mo and she was okay for a few days, then just refused.  DH tried, my mom tried.  We kept trying and trying but she would scream and hit the bottle away (which I know seems impossible at 1 month, but she did!).  I went back to work at 8 weeks and I was really nervous especially since she wouldn't eat, but I left BM with my mom and just hoped.  The first day was bad, DD cried and ate a total of about 2 ozs that day, which my mom said was really just the BM that dripped out of the nipple!  She nursed basically all evening and thru the night that first night.  Then day 2 she cried again, but by the afternoon she took a few ozs and day 3 she started taking the bottle, she wasn't happy about it, but I think she just accepted it.

     Week 2 she started daycare and they had a little bit of trouble the first couple of days, but then she just took the bottle.  Now she is 6 months old and she is about half BM half formula, but she gets excited when she sees the bottle now.  She kicks her feet and gets a big smile on her face and just started reaching for the bottle too. 

    So hopefully the same will happen for you!  I just kept telling myself that she had to learn, we had no choice, she was going to be in day care and I didn't think she would starve herself! The first few days might be bad, but I do believe she will eat when she gets hungry.  Good luck!  I hope she takes to the bottle soon!

  • i want to start of by saying not to worry... it will be ok and your DD will be fine.

     i had the same thing happen to me with my DD.  we went through 7 types of bottles during our "practice" sessions and she wanted nothing to do with them.  i went back to work when she was 4 months old and she was still refusing bottles.  occasionally she would take a sip from a sippy cup (we used the take n toss kind since they sort of drip into her mouth) but wouldn't take a bottle.

    she would starve herself for 11 hours while i was gone (3 days a week) which completely broke my heart.  as soon as i got home she would happily nurse and was making up for lost feedings all night long.  she was waking me up every 2 hours to eat at night after she was previously STTN. 

    our babysitters were consistent with trying and after SIX WEEKS of refusing the bottle, she finally started taking it.  i think it would have taken less time if i had gone back to work FT.  don't worry... with persistence she will take it.

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  • Thank you all for your advice and encouragement! I know it will be ok, I just needed to hear it from someone who's been there! I left DD home for an hour last night with DH and she did good, even drank about a 1/2oz without a fight...progress!!  
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