Need Help - My 2 Year Old Will Not Go to Sleep Without a Bottle

Updated on March 26, 2008
B.B. asks from New York, NY
5 answers

I have a 2 year old who refuses to go to sleep without a bottle. I have tried sippy cups and he just says that he doesn't like it. During the day, if I even give him milk in a sippy cup, he will spit it out. Now that I have a newborn at home, it has been even more difficult since there are many bottles around the apartment and I give in to his request for his bottle without a fight since I am always tired.

Any advise on how I can break my little man of the bottle?

I wanted to point out that my son DOES drink water and juice from cups with no problem. It's just that he will not fall asleep without a bottle of milk.

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answers from New York on

Hi B.
I know it sounds mean, but it has to be done cold turkey and with some tough love. It will be hard, especially 'cuz you have a newborn and it will be a battle of wills. Your son will push you even more so because of the newborn. He'll see bottles for the newborn yet none for him. He may get jealous and is, which is probably why he refuses to let it go now. So you'll have to replace the bottle with a different form of affection, like reading with him at bedtime because he's a "big boy" and a "big brother". Graduate him onto the next step for 2 year olds and celebrate it.Make it fun and make it seem like it is something special he and only he is doing. Hand the baby off to your husband for his bedtime. Make it special time between you and he, so he knows that even though he is not a baby and there is a new baby in the house, he is still special. Good luck!



answers from New York on

Hi B.,
My daughter was the same way w/ her nite time bottle. She gave up all the day time bottles pretty easily. She was 2 1/2 when my 2nd child was born and by her 3rd birthday the nite time bottles were gone. We tried everything, finally we told her that 3 year olds don't drink from bottles and she agreed that as of her birthday she will no longer drink from one. It also helped that a friend of mine had a new baby and we told my daughter that he needed her bottles. So we packed them up and sent them to the new baby.
Good Luck and it's really not such a big thing that you need to stress out about. Enjoy your little guy and newborn!



answers from New York on

I just had to reply and say DON'T GIVE YOUR TWO YEAR OLD SODA!!! If anything, give him 100% juice and water it down. If all he drinks from the bottle is water or milk then he'll want the sippy with juice and after several tries will take to it.

I'd try to give him just water if he's drinking it without brushing his teeth after. It's my opinion that he's beyond self weaning. You need to make the bottle less attractive. Start by only giving the bottle at night - no more during the day for a week or so and then begin weaning at night. Try introducing other soothing techiques like a sound machine or books on tape, a new stuffed animal that has "suckable" parts (one designed for that purpose, not just a regular teddy bear with an ear or arm he can suck on). Go to walmart or babies r us where they have every sippy cup imaginable. Many are designed for the transition period - with soft spouts and/or slim body styles. We had to try different styles before my daughter found one she liked. But the ones we tried were't thrown out or a waste...she took to them eventually. It was just about finding the right one to get her away from the bottle. I think she liked the Nuby cups at first. Within a few weeks she was drinking from all different types of sippies. Good luck!



answers from Syracuse on

i had the same problem, i just did it cold turkey....take the bottle away, and in about 3 nights or so, he will stop asking (i hope so) thats how long it took my son..good luck!



answers from New York on


Just try diffrent colors,
and the straw sippy cup- looks just like a bottle but has a straw, ALSO SODA, if you put soda in a regular cup and let him get a tast for it,this helps teach them to hold their own cup. ( it may get messy tho, but if you teach them to only drink at the table its less work)

I also throw away anything thats been around for a while,
Each child has only 3 possible choices.
3 red for the 2 year old and 3 blue for the 3 year old and 2 yellow for just in case and guests.

anything else needs to get tossed.

As for sleep, my kids usually get a bottle to sleep with until they don't need it any more, they wean themselves, from bottles and pacifiers.

I never force them becaue they need it for comfort,

When they are ready they stop, I do have a MILK or water rule,
only milk or water in the bottle, and only say half a bottle.

eventually they can't be bothered and stop.


Good luck


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