Already three months old, my little Andy has distinct personality traits shining through. He’s stubborn. Very. He’s also cheerful, content, playful, flirty and curious. He gets quite bored with the same scenery after awhile and I find myself happily challenged to keep his little mind occupied.
When Daniel was tiny we fought to get him to breastfeed, but he flat out refused to nurse and we reluctantly gave in to bottle-feeding him. In Andy’s case, he refuses to take the bottle. As part of my arrangement with work, I need to go into the office fairly regularly and I’d like to leave Andy with Liz, our daycare lady. However, I can hardly leave him with her if he’s refusing to take a bottle. It’s not fair on either of them (or the other children) if Andy’s screaming for a feed and she’s not able to give him a bottle.
We’ve tried everything we can think of, including going ‘cold turkey’ in our efforts to coerce him to take a bottle. Well, after hours of Andy shrieking and crying I gave up. He was sweating, trying to throw up, the soft-spot on his head was indented indicating that he was dehydrated and the look of terror in his face broke my heart. And the stress of the ordeal was causing my milk to start drying up. Each time I pumped at our regular feeding times I was getting less and less milk. Yikes! You can imagine my alarm at thinking that my milk was disappearing and he was still refusing a bottle. Soon we’d really be in a mess!
After all was said and done I snuggled with him in our usual spot on the couch and breastfed him. I have since made several attempts to get him to take a bottle, but his reaction remained the same (I didn’t let it go so far as the dehydration though). Well-meaning friends and a couple of books on child-rearing have said that we should bottle-feed for two days straight. But I just can’t imagine how ill he would be before he actually took the bottle. What really puzzles me though is that he did take it quite successfully when he was younger. We had made a point of introducing it quite regularly and at an early age. I’m at a loss as to why he won’t take one now. I’m guessing that the slow-flow bottle nipple frustrated him and after we had purchased the fast-flow nipples he had already made up his mind. He wanted nothing to do with the bottle. But this I do know: there must be a more humane way for me to get the work done that I need to and keep my sweet little baby happy and well-fed.
As he is now showing interest in eating our food and he’s able to hold his head up I will introduce him to infant rice cereal. I’m hoping that once he’s eating some solids, I can take him to daycare and the solids will carry him through a bit of the afternoon before I’m back and can nurse him again.