My little girl (age 2) is a picky eater and always has been tbh. I don't really pander to it - she gets whatever we're eating and if she doesn't eat it, there's no alternatives. If she really hasn't eaten a bite, I'll sometimes give her a sarnie before bed or some cereal or something, but later, so she doesn't see it as an alternative to a meal (can't let her go hungry).
She also has big problems with constipation - has done for a good few months now and is on lactulose. She'll 'go' every few days and it's always traumatic.
She is odd - will eat oranges/clementines but not apples. Bananas but not melon or strawberries. Will eat ham and cheese and chicken but not potatoes. Will eat eggs but not beans. Mostly she picks the protein bit out of the meal and eats it. It's probably not helping her tummy situation.
Today I got fed up with her refusing to touch a tuna mayonnaise and sweetcorn sandwich. She's never had it before but refused to even contemplate it, but was asking for ice cream (which Daddy had annoyingly promised them). I don't believe in forcing children to eat or to clear their plates or anything like that, but I said that she had to try the sandwich. If she doesn't like the taste, fine, but she had to have one bite. She agreed to take one bite and chewed it but with tears running down her face, and she kept massively gagging and retching (properly, not faking) and I felt TERRIBLE. I thought she was going to be sick. It was definitely involunatary and she's a bit young for dramatics anyway.
I'm wondering now if she has some kind of sensory issue with food. Or does this all sound normal and she possibly just doesn't like sweetcorn?
Hi my dd was similar for a long time, to the extent that I was still feeding her so she'd eat. Hiding peas in yoghurt even! I do think she didn't like 'slimy' food.
Yup, had the tears while eating too, though I was traumatising her!
It probably is normal, think its a way of having some control perhaps. I started to worry less about what dd was eating in a day and rather took a weekly view. Her appetite varied day to day. And she was growing so I realised she was getting what she needed.
Your doing the right thing, asking her to try, no alternatives, etc.
It will eventually pay off. My fussy dd now eats well from a wide variety of food and will try most things. She refuses ravioli though!
DS is/was food faddy. At about 2 he'd eat fish fingers, sausages, sweetcorn, Cheerios and bread. Pretty much it. Now at 3 he's getting really good at trying new things - maybe consider asking her to do it for reward though, rather than insisting. DS has a sticker chart and one of the thins is eating tea "nicely", by which we mean a decent go at a food we know he'll eat and a taste of a new food. That taste can just be putting it in the mouth and spitting out if he doesn't like it.
If its a new tea altogether, he will get toast if he doesn't eat it. The whole business of offer tea and remove if he doesn't eat it doesn't work with DS. He just gets thinner and v grumpy as hungry. No yummy pud if he won't eat though, but always offered fruit.
Personally I would never force feed a child, even insisting food is tried. My advice would be to keep offering and wait it out. Offer reward for trying. Btw, frozen peas/sweetcorn (not cooked, straight from freezer) go down brilliantly in our house!
My dd was like this at 2. Her appetite for her evening meal improved greatly once we stopped offering her anything else before bed. Its hard to think of them being hungry, but then if she was hungry, she would haven't eaten when the food was there
Yy to keeping a food diary. Its helps you to stop focusing on individual meals. Have you read My Child Won't Eat by Carlos Gonzalez too?