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Thread: 13 month old wont drink milk

  1. #1

    Default 13 month old wont drink milk

    I'm feeling ready to wean my 13 month old boy from the breast and so far it's been quite difficult. We've very slowly gotten down to 3-4 feeds a day but he would like to nurse much more than that. What worries me about quitting the breast is he wont drink anything but water from a cup. I've tried breast milk, cow's milk, juice, formula etc. he refuses it all and wont take a bottle with anything in it including water. My fear is, if he doesn't have breast milk, what will he have if he wont take anything else in a cup or bottle.

    Suggestions?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    Hello, and congrats on nursing for a year! Can I ask why you are looking to wean? It seems your DS is still needing to nurse from his momma! Older babies get lots of benefits from nursing, and if he nurses then you dont have to worry about cows milk!
    Mommy of 4,
    3 who I watch over, 1 who watches over all of us

    J- 8/20/05 pumped breastmilk for 11 months due to his cleft lip and palate!

    M- 10/17/07 my precious baby lives forever in her mommys heart

    M- 3/31/09 my special gift, she helps heal her mommy and daddys heart. Nursed for 4 years and 10 days, self weaned the day her baby brother was born!

    E-, new little miracle born 4/11/13, my BIG baby! Born 8.6 at 38 weeks. At 9 weeks nearly 17lbs, at 12 weeks nearly 20lbs, at 6 months nearly 23lbs, at 8 months nearly 25lbs and all from BREASTMILK


  3. #3
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    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    This is a tough situation to be in! My kid wouldn't drink milk, and at 13 months ate maybe a tablespoon or two of solid food per day, and I found it much easier to continue to nurse than to try to get my baby to eat a balanced diet.

    If your LO will drink water from a cup, he should be fine without cow's milk as long as he's eating plenty of fat and calcium-rich foods. Whole-milk yogurt and cheese are a way to meet a child's dairy requirement.

    Any particular reason you're feeling ready to wean? If you're on the fence at all, we may be able to reassure you about how nursing gets better as your toddler grows (and it really does get better!). No shame if you're just ready to be done, though!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  4. #4
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    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    agree with pp s. If you want to wean then offer him cheese and yogurt, cottage cheese and the like so he is getting good fat and protein, calcium, etc. My dd has it in her mind that water is the only thing that belongs in a sippy cup too. I've tried putting milk in it and she cries. Maybe you could try a different design of cup or something. It might be a long shot but if a particular cup is his "water cup" maybe he could get a new cup that he'd accept milk in.
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

  5. #5

    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    The main reasons why I want to stop breastfeeding is because a) I'm just getting too tired. He's still waking in the night wanting to nurse and I hope that if I stop, he'll stop waking so frequently (at least that was the case with my older daughter) and b) he's barely eating a thing for solids which of course worries me in terms of nutrients and I hope that if I stop nursing, his intake will pick up. He of course would much rather nurse than eat and I'm already supplementing his VitD and iron and now I'm worrying about calcium. Also, his weight gain has not been very good over the past 6 months since his solid intake is poor. I wonder if I continue to breastfeed for a few more months, will he become more indifferent about what's in his cup and start to drink cow's milk? Or should I just keep persisting with a bottle? I've tried all different kinds of cups from sippys to sports bottles to my own glass. It's also so difficult to decrease the frequency of nursing. I know it's his comfort and I want to give him that but I don't want to compromise his nutrition and weight gain and, I need some sleep. Thoughts??

  6. #6
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    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    Instead of going right to complete weaning, how about focusing on night-weaning? A lot of us have done that first, and found that a) it results in better sleep for everyone at night, and b) it gives us strength to continue on nursing during the day. A lot of mamas here, including me, have had success with the Dr. Jay Gordon night-weaning program.

    Regarding your son's diet and weight gain, I think nursing is actually a good way to make sure that both continue to be healthy. First of all, according to my pediatrician, breastmilk or formula alone provide complete nutrition up to the age of 1 year, with the transition to solids after the first birthday being a gradual one. Many kids, including mine, eat barely any solids until well into their second year, and that's not really a problem because it's not like kids go from needing only breastmilk on day 364 to needing a ton of solids on day 365.

    Second, weaning does not ensure that your child will automatically transition to eating a balanced, nutrient-rich diet. All you're doing is taking away the one thing he actually will eat! So if you're concerned about your child's nutrition, I think it's better to continue to nurse, offer healthy solids, and supplement with a dropper of baby vitamins. As long as you are nursing 3-5 times a day, there's no reason to worry about your child's calcium intake.

    Third, it's normal for weight gain to slow, often significantly, from 6 months on. Once a baby is mobile, he tends to expend his calories on motion instead of packing them on as fat. Have you been getting grief from someone- like a pediatrician or grandma- about your child's growth?
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  7. #7

    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    Thank you so much for your suggestions! I feel so much better now.

    I actually have gotten down to nursing him only once at night between 4-5 am now but he still wakes up a couple more times, I just don't feed him if it's before 4am.

    I'm very glad to know that your kids didn't eat either lol! My daughter is 2 1/2 and is only just starting to eat a reasonable amount. I weaned her just before her first birthday because I was 6 weeks pregnant but because she also hardly ate solids I gave her formula until she was about 17months so I felt like she was covered.
    You're right that I'd be taking away a food my son will eat which is why I worry that if I stop, he may starve to death! Thank you for setting my mind at ease with the whole calcium bit.

    You're correct to think that I'm getting grief from others. When I look at the food guides for toddlers, he's not even close to where he should be for solids (you addressed this and thank you) but they also say that breastfeeding should be a snack and not their main source of nutrition at this stage and they should get only 2-3 feeds per day. My doctor referred me to a paediatric dietitian and she said that he was breastfeeding entirely too much (but at that time it was at least 6 times a day), and that I should cut down a great deal and if his intake didn't pick up I would need to consider weaning just because he dropped from the 95%ile to the 5%ile. Also my mom thinks I will be less exhausted if I stop. So I am getting a lot of external opinions and it has been confusing.

    Any other input you may have would be much appreciated.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    I have a few questions...

    you said he dropped from the 95% to 5%... in what time frame was that?

    what IS is willing to eat?

    as was said breastmilk is full of all sorts of good things and continues to stay beneficial for the child (and you) as long as you continue to nurse. If you're offering solids and he's not interested maybe he;s just not ready?? "smaller" kind tend (and yes thats a generalization) to not be big on eating solids for a while... your experience with your other child sseems similar... right?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*cathymr View Post
    Thank you so much for your suggestions! I feel so much better now.

    I actually have gotten down to nursing him only once at night between 4-5 am now but he still wakes up a couple more times, I just don't feed him if it's before 4am.

    I'm very glad to know that your kids didn't eat either lol! My daughter is 2 1/2 and is only just starting to eat a reasonable amount. I weaned her just before her first birthday because I was 6 weeks pregnant but because she also hardly ate solids I gave her formula until she was about 17months so I felt like she was covered.
    You're right that I'd be taking away a food my son will eat which is why I worry that if I stop, he may starve to death! Thank you for setting my mind at ease with the whole calcium bit.

    You're correct to think that I'm getting grief from others. When I look at the food guides for toddlers, he's not even close to where he should be for solids (you addressed this and thank you) but they also say that breastfeeding should be a snack and not their main source of nutrition at this stage and they should get only 2-3 feeds per day. My doctor referred me to a paediatric dietitian and she said that he was breastfeeding entirely too much (but at that time it was at least 6 times a day), and that I should cut down a great deal and if his intake didn't pick up I would need to consider weaning just because he dropped from the 95%ile to the 5%ile. Also my mom thinks I will be less exhausted if I stop. So I am getting a lot of external opinions and it has been confusing.

    Any other input you may have would be much appreciated.
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  9. #9

    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    He fell in percentiles from age 4 mos to 10 months so it was gradual and he definitely still has chub but has for sure leaned out quite a bit. at 4 mos he was 17 lbs 12 oz and at 10 mos he was 18 lbs 12 oz, at one year he was 19 lbs 8oz.

    He will snack on cheerios and shreddies, he likes a little bit of yogurt, never would take infant cereal, will eat a bit of cheese, sometimes toast, not much in the way of meat, loves fruit, will eat a bit of peas and cucumbers maybe some corn or beets, loves goldfish crackers (not the healthiest), I usually have pretty good luck with pasta and there are some jarred casserole types that he'll work on for about 3 days but has yet to finish an entire jar (even the small ones).

    Yes I did have a similar problem with my daughter, but she drank formula after I weaned her so I didn't have to worry about iron, Vit D, and calcium. I feel ready to wean my son, I really don't want to breastfeed much longer but he wont drink milk or formula, and that's my main concern if I stop.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: 13 month old wont drink milk

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*cathymr View Post
    I actually have gotten down to nursing him only once at night between 4-5 am now but he still wakes up a couple more times, I just don't feed him if it's before 4am.
    If you've already mostly night-weaned and he's still waking, my thinking is that total weaning won't improve the situation one bit. Is he teething? Or mastering a new developmental milestone?

    I'm very glad to know that your kids didn't eat either lol!
    I thought I was going to go nuts! I kept thinking that I would have to be still breastfeeding her when she was a teenager, because she had zero interest in solids. There are still splatters on the walls from where she batted the spoon away before it could get into her mouth.

    When I look at the food guides for toddlers, he's not even close to where he should be for solids (you addressed this and thank you) but they also say that breastfeeding should be a snack and not their main source of nutrition at this stage and they should get only 2-3 feeds per day.
    I'm so sorry you're getting grief from people who should know better! That pediatric dietician is totally out to lunch. First of all, IMHO those toddler nursing and eating habits are so individual that those nutrition charts are barely worth the paper they're printed on, and second, who decreed that breastfeeding "should be a snack"? These resources may interest you:
    - Fat and Energy Contents of Expressed Human Breast Milk in Prolonged Lactation- abstract of article from the journal Pediatrics, talks about the increased nutritional content of breastmilk after 1 year
    - Extended Breastfeeding's Benefits- article from Mothering magazine on extended nursing, with data on nutritional value of breastmilk
    - When to Wean- article from Natural History magazine on the biological (as opposed to cultural) norms for weaning

    If I was worried about my child's nutrition, I would nurse more during the day, and focus on trying to get him to eat more high-calorie solids, perhaps by adding olive oil or a pat of butter to the solids that he does eat.

    All that being said, are you really ready to wean?
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

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