This is what happened next.....
He cried like his heart was breaking, and looked at me like I was the most evil mother a boy could have! I was trying to see which he would choose - he could have milk but in a cup (have tried this before with various types of cups and beakers) or if it was the bottle he wanted he could have it with water in it. I thought it more than fair, but he wanted milk, and it HAD to be in a bottle.
Last year Leo drank milk at milk times and water throughout the day, during the summer especially he drank lots and lots of it, and sometimes 2 whole bottles of it in the night. I didn't offer him squash for ages and when I did one day for no apparent reason he refused it and carried on drinking water quite happily.
He only drank from a bottle, a fact I didn't even think about as I was too busy being pleased about the water, and it was 40 degrees so he could have been drinking from a bucket for all I cared as long as he was drinking.
Before I had Leo I had considered not giving him a dummy as I was worried about having problems getting him to give it up at some point. I did give him a dummy at 2 weeks old, and was very careful to remove it as soon as he stopped crying as I thought this would help later. At 3 months old though Leo decided he no longer wanted a dummy and refused to take it ever again, I was surprised but pleased I didn't have a future issue to deal with.
However, the bottle is the dummy equivalent, and to add to that somewhere in the last few months he stopped drinking water, and would cry and cry for milk - daft Mummy here started giving it to him when he asked (baby-led weaning is great but I may have got a bit carried away) and now will only drink milk, and lots of it.
I started to dilute it with water hoping it would put him off, but it seems that as long as it looks like milk he's happy - give him water with a splash of milk and he's happy, anything else and he looks at the colour and refuses it.
I'm not sure what the bigger problem is, the milk or the bottle, but it is driving me crazy! I want him to drink other things as it's difficult when out to refill his bottle with milk and will be much worse in the summer heat to carry milk around. But I feel that at 20 months old he should no longer have a bottle at all.
I suppose the only way is to go 'cold turkey' and throw them out, but like with the sleeping issues I keep finding reasons to do it another day. Stupid really when we sorted his night waking in just two days after months of getting up 4 or more times a night. I just don't know how to start - do I change the drink or the bottle first? Shall I give him milk at night, in the morning or at a set time during the day? Do I offer water, juice, squash or something else? (vodka? oh, sorry that's just me!)
"This too shall pass" - a phrase I'm repeating a lot at the moment. I know in the grand scheme of things this is not a problem and he won't be going to school with a bottle hanging out his mouth but for now I am at a bit of loss with what I should do now.