to try to break the mold re: fussy child

(86 Posts)
Heinz55 Thu 28-Mar-13 20:30:26

very good and lovely friends are coming to stay. We see them a few times a year even though we live 3/4 hours apart. Between us we have 5 kids. One of theirs is extremely attention seeking fussy. She will only eat a particular dinner (it used to be that her mother could be the only one to cook it) and when we give all 5 kids a treat (like a chocolate bar) she will come in whining that she doesn't like it (ditto homemade cakes or anything that is not straight forward chocolate - unless SHE has specifically asked for it beforehand) and her mother gets her something different. Because I am also cooking a separate dinner for 4 adults and trying to enjoy my friends company I usually just tailor everything to suit this child because it really grates that her mother (who will then be annoyed with her dd too) will start preparing a different dinner/treat/lunch for this particular child. ANYWAY...this feeding my children boring stodge is also grating now and I want to make say, fish cakes for all the dc next week instead. Am I setting myself up for a fall by doing this as most likely all dc will fall on the food until this one goes "I don't like it..." and then they all stop eating and wonder what potentially better option is going to be offered....AAAGH!! Not a big deal by any means but while I am so looking forward to seeing my friends this is all I can concentrate on (the having to cater to this "special" child) should I just let it go and make the stodge???? I'm hardly going to change her fussy-britchiness in one weekend, am I?? (BTW she's 10 and the eldest of the dc)

HildaOgden Thu 28-Mar-13 20:37:52

I think I'd discuss it with the Mum this week (before they arrive).If you are good friends...and she herself gets annoyed at the 'fussy' one...I'd bring it up in a tactful way.Mention that you're getting the shopping list sorted,and wondering what to do about her dd.Tell her your own kids are starting to kick up about the dinners when she comes,and can she think of a way around it??

Alternatively,you could try explaining to your kids that her dd is being a PITA,and that they will just have to humour her ...as they are so much more 'mature' than her (even though she's older).

I understand how it irks you,it does seem like she is being spoiled,for whatever reason.

You aren't going to change it in one weekend. Especially as the DM sounds like she indulges it. Can you do fish cakes with boring stodge and she can just eat eat that?

Sirzy Thu 28-Mar-13 20:41:45

Its not up to you to tackle the problem its up to her family.

However you could send her an email saying you are cooking the same meals for everyone and what you are planning on doing - ask her if that is ok with the majority and then she can always prepare for the fussy child herself.

YellowandGreenandRedandBlue Thu 28-Mar-13 20:42:59

Not your place to change someone else's child, however annoying the behaviour might be.

Cook what you want and offer sarnies for the fussy one, or let mum deal with it.

When I cooked for lots of kids I used to do a load of bits and let them pick what they wanted. Why make your weekend more stressful than it needs to be by going to battle with someone else's kid?

TeggieCampbeggBlegg Thu 28-Mar-13 20:50:11

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

I would do what you want and just do plain buttered pasta as the carbs part of the meal. Don't sweat it - you'll face enough challenges parenting your own kids without trying to 'fix' anyone else's

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 28-Mar-13 20:53:13

You don't have to live with this child, and it doesn't sound like you have thought about the reasons behind the fussiness. It really isn't much skin off your nose so i would just try and be a good host.

Mumsyblouse Thu 28-Mar-13 20:54:23

You won't break it at all but it is up to you if you don't want to cook two meals, so I might let the mum deal with it. We have friends whose child has never eaten anything I cook ever, he eats bread and jam instead but I don't fuss over it, it's mortifying enough for his mum and I just let them get on with preparing something different.

AgentZigzag Thu 28-Mar-13 20:55:42

There is a fine line between giving your guests what you think/know they'd like and everyone having to pander to the food thing the girl's got going on.

For a 4/5 YO who's going through a stage of trying it on and only eating one thing, then maybe, but a 10 YO should have learnt a few manners to not make a fuss and get on with it.

I feel sorry for her mum who obviously would have sorted it if she knew how to, it must be awful to know it's coming and want to come and visit but know this must grate on you.

Just give everyone what you want to cook and let her mum sort her out, if she gives her something different then that's her business, just look away and try to keep the steam from coming out of your ears grin

OhDearieDearieMe Thu 28-Mar-13 20:57:13

Rather rude Teggie don't you think? What's with the reaction? Special is a word you know. You don't own it. HTH.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 28-Mar-13 20:57:25

Good post agent

Now i have calmed down a bit I agree.

Welovegrapes Thu 28-Mar-13 20:58:24

My school friend was like this as a child. As an adult she has had hours of therapy for her food phobias which include a fear of lemons. It makes it very hard for her to travel and go out for meals, so she has tried really hard to work on this.

As kids everyone used to say she was just applied. Now she has been treated in an eating disorder clinic I realise there was a lot more to it blush

SnotMeReally Thu 28-Mar-13 20:58:25

unless there are serious sensory or dietary allergy type reasons for a child being "fussy" I firmly believe that they should not be indulged when they are guests in someone elses home - a 10 yo is old enough to know she should be POLITE about the food you have been kind enough to prepare - in fact being among other children who are not fussy eaters can often be a mini breakthrough for fussy children who WILL then try somehting different

as a small compromise, can you serve crusty bread & salad or something with the meals, so she can choose to just eat that if necessary. I certainly do not think the mother should be expecting you or herself to provide an alternative - if she is hungry she will eat whats available!

VenusRising Thu 28-Mar-13 20:59:13

Just prepare whatever most of the kids and adults will eat.

Let her mum know you're not cooking anything special for her fussy eater, and she can bring some food for her.

Sounds like this little girl may have allergies, but that's not your problem.

Enjoy your week!

AgentZigzag Thu 28-Mar-13 20:59:46

Bit OTT Teggie, the OP was explaining how she felt the child was controlling the visit and everyone was pandering to her as though she was more special than anyone else.

Welovegrapes Thu 28-Mar-13 20:59:49

Spoiled not applied blush

TeggieCampbeggBlegg Thu 28-Mar-13 21:00:39

It was the "" and the insinuation that a child who quite obviously has massive issues with food and eating is simply fussy. And the snide way in which 'special' was used to describe her.
Also the idea that one relative stranger would even consider cuting her of her food issues by forcing her to eat what the OP thinks she should eat.

AgentZigzag Thu 28-Mar-13 21:00:58

Thank you Jamie, your post was very measured by Teggies standards grin

anonymosity Thu 28-Mar-13 21:04:26

I agree you should just not let it bother you so much and allow for them to manage it as they see best / and be helpful with that.

I wonder, if she were an adult friend visiting who made a fuss, would you also be seeking to break her, or would you be more accommodating?

Badvoc Thu 28-Mar-13 21:04:40

Wow.
Does this woman know how you refer to her child?

TeggieCampbeggBlegg Thu 28-Mar-13 21:04:43

True agent. Jamie put it so much better.
Sorry. Lack of sleep and 15 years of people helpfully telling me how to cure my special child of her fussiness.

YellowandGreenandRedandBlue Thu 28-Mar-13 21:04:50

I also interpreted "special" as very sarky, not very kind.

Yfronts Thu 28-Mar-13 21:06:27

In your shoes I'd cook one meal for everyone and let the mother know what you are cooking. Don't ask her opinion but tell her you are doing one very nice meal for everyone and if she thinks her 10 year old won't like it, then can she bring something extra along for her/let you know what extra to provide. I wouldn't let one child dictate everyone elses meal though.

AgentZigzag Thu 28-Mar-13 21:06:32

I read 'fussy-britchiness' as 'fussy-bitchiness' and was going to lay into ask the OP about it grin

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now