Monday, March 31, 2003
This response has ended up longer than I expected, so I've pulled it out of Comments and into here...
I agree with Gary: persistence, and SJ's hunger, will probably be the key.
Both of our two oldest were exclusively breast fed (Sausage is a stay-at-home Mum).
Ruairi, though, for a combination of reasons was just not wild about the breast. He had difficulty 'latching' and just wasn't getting full up enough.
So we introduced formula early on - starting with a little medicine cup (messy - but helped get him used to the taste), then switching to bottles.
He's now a happy, hungry bottle beast - hoovering down 40+ ounces of formula per day.
A few general observations and things we've found that make a difference:
1. Waiting until the kid is really hungry for the first few times. It seems cruel, and you'll feel like a complete bastard at first; but it may be the only way to help SJ learn that the bottle is his only option until Mum comes home.
2. Having the formula just slightly warmer than the books suggest. This may be a matter of taste, but Ruairi likes his milk a good bit above room temperature. Not hot, of course, but certainly a little warmer than you'd think.
3. Avent bottles. Quite simply the only ones that worked - and they have the added bonus of dramatically reducing the burp factor.
4. Using canned concentrate as opposed to powder. We only twigged this one fairly recently - but the difference in Ruairi's appetite has been remarkable since switching. Think about it: would you drink powdered milk?
5. Using a non-iron formula at first. The iron stuff led to Ruairi suffering dreadful, painful week-long constipation. Apparently, kids don't actually need the extra iron until after the third month. We switched to unleaded and everyone was much happier. Going to reintroduce the added iron formula now.
Hope some of his helps. If you can get him comfortable with the bottle it becomes a genuinely wonderful thing for a Dad to be able to experience. Gives you much more of a feeling of participation and a certain extra bond you can't get from watching Mum do all the work.