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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

More thoughts on Introducing a Bottle

I had more thoughts about introducing a bottle from the previous post. A few of these thoughts are copy and paste from comments in a previous post about sleep and daycare.

I wasted too much energy fussing over training my first son to take a bottle. Looking back at that part of my transition to work, it wasn't worth so much focus. I should have savored the time together more and just nursed.

When moms are going back to work at 6 weeks, 12 weeks, whenever... and ask me how to train a baby to take a bottle in preparation to go to back to work, I actually now am telling moms to nurse and feed their baby and don't loose precious bonding time training a baby to bottle-feed. If the baby has to take a bottle for the first time, it might as well be delayed as long as possible and max out the time the baby gets exclusive breast.

Now, I know how normal, it is to worry that your baby won't "take a bottle" when you are not there that first time. I was there. I worried too. But a bottle isn't the only way to feed a baby. How about give your sitter a syringe, dropper or even cup? If a syringe or a dropper is present, the baby won't starve. Syringe and dropper feeding is a passive activity from the babies side and requires no sucking to be fed. We are just programed to think that bottles are the alternative feed. If we made syringes and droppers in pastel colors and put cute animal on them it wouldn't look so "clinical" and would be more acceptable. Perhaps a syringe or dropper doesn't offer the adult the same convenience as the bottle does? All-in-all a syringe, dropper, or cup is less disruptive to breastfeeding than a bottle when the breast isn't available.

Because this topic has come up before, I know the next question that comes up: "What if the sitter/dad won't use a dropper or syringe?" As a parent, you have the right to know all the feeding options and make your choices weighing all the pros and cons. Maybe it's not the right sitter? Some dads you can't change, darn. The daycare dilemma is discussed in detail before. Maybe you're okay with the bottle. As a provider it is my responsible to share my observation and respect your choices. I just wish I was aware of my choices earlier on. It embaresses me to say I didn't know the options. Most breastfeeding relationships are negatively influenced by the bottle.


Tammie said...

What great thoughts! I have to admitt I have never thought of such a thing but makes sense. Mom's need to feel like it's OK to think "outside the box!" And they can be so good at it when given the chance!

Melissa said...

I am not even sure which post to leave this comment but I have a question that I think you can help me with. I found your blog when I wanted help with my sons "reflux" and have loved reading it since.

I stopped nursing about three months ago, not by choice, but because my milk had dried up. I got pregnant when my son was 5 months old and my milk supply dropped. I miscarried a month later and I dried up. He was getting nothing but frustrated.

To my surprise three months later, out of the blue, I am engorged. There has been NO stimulation or demand. What is going on? How can this happen?


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