Getting Him Off the Bottle

For the most part as a first time mom I have either known how to do most things or been able to figure it out by myself (with a little help from Google and books in some cases). We’ve done pretty good so far I think, though I know every parent has a different method of raising their children. We’ve avoided the pacifier with ease, never had to use any numbing gel for teething and managed to avoid any severe cases of diaper rash as well. The one thing that bothers me is that I was not able to exclusively breastfeed, but under the circumstances that is understandable. We did what was best for William at the time and he is healthy because of that.

But this next hurdle I am not sure how to approach. I’m not going to rush William off the bottle, but I would like to start getting him off of it by a year old. I want to make the transition as easy as possible for everyone. The problem being, he can hold his bottle but refuses to. I think he enjoys being cuddled and fed by mom or dad. We enjoy that time also and haven’t pushed him to hold his own bottle. We have seen him do it for about 30 seconds a couple of times but he won’t do it regularly. So when I try to introduce a sippy cup it’s not so easy.
I’ve gotten the Nuby brand cups with the long spouts so he doesn’t have to tip his head way back to drink. They are also are made of a similar material as bottle nipples so it’s easier for him to get use to it. He is ok with the cup and doesn’t mind it, though the change in flow throws him off. But he will not hold it. I’ve put his hands on either side and shown him. I’ve held it for him for a little while, just to get him use to it. I’ve left it on the floor near him in the hopes that he would get curious and/or hungry and try to pick it up himself. He just doesn’t want to be independent in that manner.
This is the boy who hates if you stop him from doing something. Who desperately worked towards crawling and moved almost immediately into standing up with support and then pretty quickly into standing without support (his newest skill that still needs a little work). This kid is beyond curious and very independent. Maybe this is all normal, but I don’t remember my sister being this way (I was almost 15 when she was born, so I got a lot of baby experience from her). I thought that he would be wanting to hold his own bottle and feed himself as soon as possible. Doesn’t seem that way.

I’ve had a lot of people pushing the cup. Skip the sippy cups and go directly to a normal cup. WIC was especially adamant about this. What they likely don’t have is an apartment with rug everywhere except the bathroom. This includes the kitchen as well. I have a bottle of rug cleaner and a rag that I follow William around with after he eats in case of any spit ups. If I hand this 9 month old a cup of anything he is going to dump it as soon as he can (believe me, I have tried this). He does however drink from a cup if mom holds it and tips it carefully for him. So that is not an issue at all.
Well who knows. Maybe he will jump right to cups. Maybe I will never have luck with this sippy cup thing. This is one area that I don’t really know what to do in. I guess I am going to keep trying. If anyone has any ideas let me know in the comments because I am a little baffled.


One thought on “Getting Him Off the Bottle

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  1. Ma’am – sippy cups can be/ are over rated. If I read your post correctly, William is 9 months old. My eldest (now almost an adult) didn’t care much at all for his sippy cup, and did the same thing your son does with a regular cup for quite some time. I deeply empathize with your travail of trying to follow him around with his spills. It worked better for us just to keep the drinks at the table or at a table until my son got better with it.
    There is nothing wrong with allowing your 9 month old son to sit on your lap or be held, with a bottle or without it. No doubt someone will disagree, and tell me what a horrible mom I am, but well, you have to raise your kids the best you can and with what you feel comfortable with…
    ***The big issue is kids who go to bed with a bottle develop very bad teeth — I once knew a family whose little girl had to have extensive dental work before age 5 because of this. I Never, ever sent them to bed with a bottle — unless it’s was bottle of water and out of necessity.
    For my son who was in daycare constantly because I had to work, he tended to enjoy his time with me but was often demanding, and tired.
    For my son that was able to stay home with me, he enjoyed just being around me, watching TV together, playing, etc. much more because it was a much more leisurely pace I guess.
    (In retrospect, they did not want the bottle so much as they wanted me.) But the difference in their respective temperaments frankly is wired from a very young age — and the one boy still tends to be somewhat demanding, while the other is patient and laid back. I stayed home with the third boy as well, and he is also demanding and impatient (like from when he was 1 day old…)
    None of my 3 really used the sippy cup for a long time.
    Otherwise, trust that when your son is cruising through the house and wants a drink, eventually he will hold his own bottle…
    There are many people who feel it’s their privilege or right to “push” things on moms. I’ll never forget for example, the first breast-feeding Nazi I met (breast is best but what if they can’t latch or are premature? Out of 3 kids, I only had one who had any success with the breast.)
    Your son will grow up faster than you realize. Enjoy this time while you can 🙂 without the guilt if possible,

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