It might surprise you to know that Faith is capable of taking milk by mouth. She went without a tube for the first 25 days of her life. A tube feed was inserted when she lost too much weight as a result of not getting enough milk. It takes more effort for her to coordinated her sucking and swallowing than most babies, and she tired before getting enough. She also has a partial cleft palate and that makes eating more difficult too. It doesn't mean that she cannot eat on her own, but rather, she was not eating enough. Many babies with special conditions need feeding tubes in order to get their required intake. They are often just temporary. The tube is a very soft, flexible plastic and does not cause discomfort. Faith makes more of a fuss when I wipe her face then when her tube is inserted! I think she is doing really well, all things considered.