To be so fucking sick of cooking food that my DS's don't eat...

(87 Posts)
GoofyIsACow Wed 23-Oct-13 17:55:34

Aaaaaaarrrrrrrrrggggggghhhhhhhhh

Is all

angry

3asAbird Wed 23-Oct-13 19:12:15

feel your pain my 3 are fussy

lunch made raveli on toast they liek pasta they like tomato sauce they like toast-would they eat it.

Tonight did cheesey pasta with mixed veg and sliced ham hardly touched it picked out few veggies, asked for extra grated cheese and few vegetables yet they like pasta and they like cheese.

unless its chips with ketchup or roast they not interested.

They not totally i love with pizza, hardly touch potatoes they sometimes like spag bol/lasagne which we dont have much due to money also they like a mild curry with rice but finding they getting pickier and feel stuck on budget and time.

they 7, 4 and 2.5

ColderThanAWitchsTitty Wed 23-Oct-13 19:16:41

It does make children less fussy happy.

Your kids aren't less fussy because they don't fuss, they have nothing to fuss about. I know people who don't make their kids try things (because they don't try things) and it is really irritating cooking for them. I sometimes get fussing and whinging but it's worth it when they ask for something that declared yuk the week before.

sparkle12mar08 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:17:18

But I do appreciate how hard it is to disengage, and to not take food rejection personally. It took me about three years to get to this point, after two very hard years with ds2's eating.

If you can take a step back and take all the drama out of mealtimes it will help. I try very very hard to never raise my voice now, to include them in our meal planning, and to remind them very gently at the start of that meal that I don't mind if they don't eat but that they musn't play with it or be silly about it (pulling faces, fake retching etc). We also now clear the table after 30 minutes - there's no going back to food over an extended period, you eat at the table with the family. There are no snacks outside of meals times except the one I bring to school pick up. I also try not to make pudding (when we have it) as conditional on eating the main as I try and plan it into the meal in a balanced way (usually fruit based or yoghurt/home made egg custard). But I will happily use pudding as a way of gently encouraging them to eat two or three mouthfuls more!

SatinSandals Wed 23-Oct-13 19:18:52

I am not running a restaurant. I buy it, cook it and serve it. They have the simple choice to eat it or leave it. I don't do alternatives and I don't do snacks. If they are then hungry it is their problem and I just sound mildly surprised as in 'well you would be, you should have eaten your dinner'. They won't starve.

MoominMammasHandbag Wed 23-Oct-13 19:26:08

Yep, I'm another one who won't pander to people being fussy. In our house you eat what's on the table or possibly you are allowed to adapt it yourself, eg you can refuse the pasta sauce but you have to grate your own cheese as an alternative. No way would I cook another meal though.
I do accommodate genuine long term dislikes; DS has always hated Chinese type flavours. So we have our Chinese when he is away at Uni, not when he's home. And I conceded the mashed potato battle a long time ago.

Louise1956 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:28:47

I just give them things they will eat. it's simpler. making children eat things they dislike has always seemed to me a peculiarly unpleasant form of torture.

MoominMammasHandbag Wed 23-Oct-13 19:29:53

With 4 children, it is actually a rare joy to find meals that everyone is enthusiastic about.

sparkle12mar08 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:32:38

Louise1956 - it's not that any of us are deliberately making our children eat things we know they dislike, more that we will not cater to constantly changing 'dislikes' from one week to the next, and we won't tolerate silliness around meal times. Do you see? smile

SinisterSal Wed 23-Oct-13 19:34:24

I'm the same. Eat it or don't, but i am pretty strict about snacks. I am a believer in encouraging kids to eat to their appetite. if they are hungry at dinner time they will have more of a chance of eating a bit of it. they don't have to clear their plates

LegoStillSavesMyLife Wed 23-Oct-13 19:35:42

Another hard core one here. You have a decent go in a decent time at what your given or no pudding and no snacks until the next meal. Absolutely no whinging allowed (them or me wink) not my problem if you are hungry. BUT I would never put a whole meal in front of them that they didn't like and they just have to try a little bit of something new.

Works for us, they now eat almost anything and love to try new things. But I know other people for whom it doesn't work, so I guess to a certain extent it is just luck of the draw.

ExpiredyCustards Wed 23-Oct-13 19:37:49

But if you never offer anything new, how will the dcs know if they like it?

Curry night and falafel night are particularly tedious at the moment chez custard.

In this house the more time I spend preparing the dinner, the less likely it is they will eat it.
I cook one meal, if they don't like it they can make themselves a sarnie, have a bit of fruit and some cheese. I have 4 and trying to find a meal all of them will eat is like one of those mathematical logic puzzles.

LegoStillSavesMyLife Wed 23-Oct-13 19:39:31

*louise1956. I don't feed them things really don't like, this was done to me as a child and it would be a cold day in hell before I did it to my children.

I just won't tolerate buggering about at the table.

Mattissy Wed 23-Oct-13 20:15:05

I'm really laid back about food, if they don't eat I don't stress, my mother was a nightmare about my eating and I'll never do that to my kids, no way. I think that If they've eaten it before but refuse to eat it now coz they fancy bring awkward then they go without, if they try it for the first time and don't like it, that's different and I'll get them something else.

I don't usually fanny on doing different meals but I'm happy enough to do some varying between us all, like some others have said and I avoid major dislikes, which I'd pretty standard I'm sure. Ds hates mushrooms, I cook with them in the pot but pick them out when dishing up etc. The worst bit is ds hates gravy, his meals always look so boring, lol

I cook one meal. Either eat it or lose it. (I bin or plastic box it)

If it's not eaten its fruit. No sweets snacks or dessert. I will happily move meal back 30mins if you just aren't hungry. That's allowed. I microwave.

Every meal has visible veg. It is what it is and don't whine. Try a bit then you can leave.

I love food. I love cooking. I sincerely want them to love both.

Do you find involving them assists? Which foods does that work best with? I'm gathering courage, she's nearly three. I think she would relish that though.

sparkle12mar08 Wed 23-Oct-13 20:38:51

Involving them in planning/choosing - I find it does help, yes. I can pretty much guarantee that they'll both choose pizza for Saturday as it's our family ritual now (I buy a base then make up our own toppings - real cheese, proper ham, sometimes tuna, usually pineapple), but they must also choose a veg to go alongside (they usually go for sweetcorn cobs). They will also usually choose a burger/sausages type meal as well, which is perfectly fine if using a good quality sausage/burger (I usually go for 90%+ meat) and again I let them choose what veg they want, but they have to have at least one.

So I'd say let them choose something that they struggle with, iyswim - ds2 hated almost all veg for a very long time, but if we give him the freedom to chose which one he has, he will mostly eat it without complaining. The problem is they can tend to be short term - I prefer to meal plan weekly but by the end of the week they often can't remember what they chose! So I moved to three/four day planning. You could also try a chalk/slate board and letting the child write the decided menu on it themselves, that might be good.

I got to the point once where I actually said "I was making spaghetti bolognese tonight, but you wont eat it, so I'm just going to cut the middle bit out and you can go to bed hungry!"
It didn't really work, but it made them sit up. Totally fed up with food being wasted.

SatinSandals Wed 23-Oct-13 22:32:21

When I said 'take it or leave it' I don't serve up and expect then to eat real dislikes, but anyone who dislikes more than a few things is just fussy.

paperdress Wed 23-Oct-13 22:47:41

My 2 DS are nearly 2. Reading this thread has confirmed for me that
a) family cooking blows (i loved cooking before kids)
b) its probably going to get worse before it gets better

GoofyIsACow Wed 23-Oct-13 22:54:50

Wow! So many replies, thanks all.
I am actually normally in the 'take it or leave it' camp.
I have 3 DS's 5,2&2, eldest DS will gag and vomit if he doesn't want to eat something. When he was younger he ate absolutely anything.

DT's today didn't even pick up their sandwich at lunchtime and didnt even pick up their forks at tea time. I made jacket potato with cheese because i was dashing out and it was quick!

Tomorrow I am going to make curry with rice and if they eat it they do and if they don't I am leaving home will be fine about it! grin

My DS2 (3 years) has decided he doesn't want tea anymore. Fine. He doesn't have to eat tea, but if he doesn't there is NO MORE food at all that night. I think it is something to do with his age, quite common apparently.
I don't believe in forcing him to eat, I go by the notion that if he's hungry he will eat it.
I don't make a fuss, just tell him when he says 'noooo tea !' 'OK, but no more food tonight.'
It works. You don't have to be a food nazi, or get worked up and stressed out about things. My children are definitely not starved or fading away !

SatinSandals Thu 24-Oct-13 06:57:38

A lot of it is not about food, it is a battle of wills. It gets them masses and masses if attention.
As kiwi says you really don't need to get stressed or be a food nazi. You leave the choice to them of take it or leave it and then it really is not your problem, they take the consequences. If they say thy are hungry you can point out that it is not your problem, you ate your meal and so you are not hungry, if they had done the same they wouldn't be. Don't enter arguments or get drawn into long discussions, treat it as boring and just offer a bit of fruit. Once you have established your response they will eat when it is offered, especially if they are not full of snacks. It may take a while with some children. It is difficult with your own because of course you are bothered really.

VoiceofRaisin Thu 24-Oct-13 07:07:01

When my DC did this (many years ago), I found I was less angry/deflated/despairing if I had put in less effort. SO instead of cooking say, carrots and leeks with herbs, or ratatouille, they had raw pepper and cucumber sticks or else cherry tomatoes or pitta and hummus etc I discovered they preferred raw "unmessed about" food- the simple things - no sauce, no herbs, no interesting twists. Perhaps that was because I was more relaxed about it. The result was they ate and I was spending less time cooking. Happy mum and happy DC.

PS don't really take advice from me as my DC are both now pretty thin as young adults which makes me think I should have fed them more!

galwaygirl Thu 24-Oct-13 07:15:51

What age do people start this at? I like the sound of it as my DD is so fussy and eats so unhealthily but she's only 2yrs 4months so think she might be a bit young yet?
And the same with cutting out snacks? When can you start that?

galwaygirl Thu 24-Oct-13 07:17:28

P.S. I feel your pain OP. spent ages making chicken paprika last night, made harder by baby DS screeching and needing to be in wrap only for DD to announce she only wanted ketchup!

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