Monday, March 23, 2009

Ouch, my heart hurts

We’re in the process of transitioning from a bottle to a sippy cup and it’s not going well. The plan was to get rid of the bottles during the day, then to work on the evening. I hoped the day switch would take place while I was gone, but it didn’t.

I took away the day bottles (usually one, sometimes two, given at time of rest) cold turkey, replacing them with a sippy cup of milk.

The first day or two went OK. He didn’t seem to like the sippy cup much and he didn’t drink much of the milk. But he still rested (though a bit less than usual) and he didn’t protest.

In the past couple of days, he seems to have figured out what is going on and now he’s pissed. Yesterday he threw a fit and pointed at an empty bottle on the floor. I was about to cave and pour the milk from the sippy cup to the bottle. It was dirty though, so I didn’t.

Just now, he threw a massive fit – probably the worst I’ve seen, screaming and crying for well over a half hour. I tried to comfort him, to rock him, to potty him, to let him get up and play. No, he’s tired and he wants a bottle. Luckily, there are no more bottles within sight in his room.

Since nothing I did helped, I eventually gave up and put him back in his crib with his sippy and his animals. I came downstairs and put away all of the bottles out of sight.

My heart aches. It’s so painful to see him angry, to see him feel denied, especially when I know I could solve what is hurting him. I was tempted to give in today as well, but I thought about the big picture. He’s only going to get more angry and throw bigger fits the older he gets. It won’t get any easier, only harder. We missed our window of opportunity when he could have cared less what form he received his milk in. Now I feel I have to stay strong – let him be angry if he’s angry, let him reduce his milk consumption if he doesn’t want it from the sippy (the dr. says he should be reducing his milk intake anyway), let him sleep less and deal with the cranky result – but don’t give him a bottle except at night.

Or am I doing this all wrong? Any advice? Any ideas of how long this rough period will take? If we get through it, then how do we get rid of the night bottle with the least pain for all involved?

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