(Hi, google searching perverts!)
There is no such thing as nipple confusion, says the physical therapist, who we will meet on Friday at the Oral Motor Therapy clinic. There is only strength. When he is strong enough to suck productively, he will suck no matter where you put him. The most important thing, she reminds me gently, is to have baby gain, not lose weight. If it takes 45 minutes to feed him 2 oz in the finger feeder, then he will not gain, since he is burning calories while he tries to eat.
It’s hard! She chuckles. Not every baby can get it all down right away. The jaw, the tongue, the force…some babies need a little help! But don’t worry; when this is worked out you’ll be able to breastfeed him and Dad will be able to give him a bottle of your milk anytime you want a break.
I’ll take it.
In the back of my mind though, I’m scrolling through all fourteen thousand stories I’ve read about babies who never went back to the breast after being given a bottle. How can there be no such thing as nipple confusion if there is this much anecdotal evidence to the contrary?
I’ve decided to trust the people who fix broken babies’ mouths for a living. Plus, he’s a month old, and this is the beginning of bottles-he’s had boobs and fingers since birth. That’s bound to count for something.
In other news, I read a blog post today that reminded me that I used to write as if I were trying to be a writer, and not so much as if I were a 14 year old writing in a diary. I’m not sure how I lost that, but it’s gone and I hope like hell it comes back. This must be boring the crap out of everyone who’s still reading.