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AIBU about visiting DC and food?

(131 Posts)
SnailsInMyPaddlingPool Sat 20-Jul-13 14:49:30

I look after DNephew (3) unofficially, usually 1-2 days a week, though it varies. As a result of SIL and BIL's working hours, DNephew is usually left with PIL for most of the weekend (11am-11pm). Poor PIL are going through a really hard time at the minute, and to give them a break and for the benefit of my own DC, I often bring DN to our house to play. Sometimes I am asked and sometimes I offer, it's nice for the cousins to see each other, etc,etc. This has been going on about 6 months plus.

The only issue is that DN will eat nothing but chicken nuggets,potato waffles, and bananas, and will only drink fruit shoots. This means that I have to buy all of the above specifically for DN's visits, as we do not eat them (except for bananas). We are on a very tight budget and cook from scratch. Living in an area with limited shops means we often spend a fiver or more on foods which are only for DN, while my DC eat the food which I have budgeted and planned for. I know it doesn't sound a lot, but it is to us. The chicken nuggets have to be a certain type- made and sold by the local butcher, so 3.50 for a box of about 10- the issue is DN will easily eat the lot in one day, as he has them for both lunch and dinner and they are quite small. The potato waffles and fruit shoots are less of a problem, because they will keep until the next time, but even so I still end up having to buy them every other week at least.

I don't often get to supermarkets, but I have tried to buy cheaper substitutes to keep for DN, but SIL found out and I got the impression she was not happy as it was poorer quality and apparently DN can tell the difference. Also tried saving the fruit shoot bottles and filling with dilutable squash, but DN refused to drink it.

For a few weeks I tried giving DN no chicken nuggets and offering him what my DC were having. He refused to eat it and was apparently up most of the evening "sobbing with hunger"- SIL kicked up a bit of a fuss and was derogatory about my own family's diet.

Basically...AIBU to expect SIL to therefore send round food for her son or accept that he will have to eat as we do? I feel as though I am being horribly petty and tight, but we really are poor at the minute and have to be so careful with our own food budget.

MadameGazelleIsMyMum Sat 20-Jul-13 14:52:11

YANBU. Your DN's diet doesn't sound good, is there a reason that it is so inflexible? I would ask SIL to provide the food.

notanyanymore Sat 20-Jul-13 14:53:28

YANBU your sail is

notanyanymore Sat 20-Jul-13 14:53:50

Not your sail your SIL!!

OldLadyKnowsNothing Sat 20-Jul-13 14:53:53

So sil gets lots of free childcare, and complains about the quality of the free food? Of course she should provide the food.

SaucyJack Sat 20-Jul-13 14:54:26

Bless your little cottons. YANBU.

Your sil is extracting the urine.

Hassled Sat 20-Jul-13 14:54:57

Assuming you're not being paid for the childcare, she should buy the bloody chicken nuggets and a massive bunch of flowers and be insanely grateful. J

ust tell her - your PILs can't cope all weekend, you're happy to help but you can't afford but extra food. Her alternative is paying a childminder.

fuzzpig Sat 20-Jul-13 14:55:38

I think SIL should provide the food. I would certainly offer if I were in her shoes.

Has he been referred to a feeding clinic? It sounds like he needs to be (my DS is getting referred and his diet is considerably more varied than nuggets and bananas, though it is nowhere near ideal)

hermioneweasley Sat 20-Jul-13 14:56:33

What SaucyJack said x100

TimeofChange Sat 20-Jul-13 14:57:56


She is being awful.

Maybe asking her to bring his food with her will be easier than asking her for cash.

Does she know your financial situation?

SnailsInMyPaddlingPool Sat 20-Jul-13 15:03:59

I'm not sure really. His diet has never been good, lots of sweets from a very early age etc. SIL has always been a bit PFB with him, but in a strange way. He 'only wears' clothes from H&M and can 'only sit' in the front seat of any car for instance, and has to have the TV on at all times even if he doesn't watch it- she'll visit people and insist they put on the Disney channel until she and DN leave, even if DN is out playing in the garden for the duration.

This does not happen when DN is with us mind you- DN is a lovely boy who doesn't seem to notice if TV is off in our house, doesn't mind wearing my DC non-H&M clothes when his own get dirty etc- however he does refuse all other food.

HRMumness Sat 20-Jul-13 15:04:29

If my 1 yr old DD can't eat what is offered when we are guests, I will bring something for her (in addition to the snacks I normally bring).
She isn't a fussy toddler mind but if a child has a very specific restrictive diet by choice and not by an allergy, the parent should cater for it.
Sounds like your SIL needs to encourage your DN to eat a wider range of foods. A little bit of hunger isn't going to hurt if he learns that he must eat what is offered (rather than being pandered to all the time).

exoticfruits Sat 20-Jul-13 15:07:54

I should just tell her that you will have him. It be will have to eat what is offered or go hungry. I am surprised the grandparents put up with such nonsense! Once be has cried with hunger a few times he will eat at least some of what is offered.
My take as the adult is that I buy it, cook it and clear it away- they only have to decide to eat it or not. I am not a restaurant. I take special requests once in a while but that is it!
The fruit shoots is simple- I would just say 'sorry- we don't have them' and list the alternatives.
If SIL is derogatory about your diet I should stay calm and just tell her it suits you as a family and she can either accept it or not send her DC.

SnailsInMyPaddlingPool Sat 20-Jul-13 15:08:17

Glad to know I'm not BU - felt like a horrible cow resenting DN's chicken nuggets. I love having him round but will tell SIL about the food, as come to think of it, chicken nuggets are cheaper than childcare. Though hopefully that wouldn't result in PIL minding him more, which would be a shame as they already so put upon.

whatsleep Sat 20-Jul-13 15:15:57

Try refilling the fruit shoot bottles with cordial, I bet he wouldn't notice the difference.

exoticfruits Sat 20-Jul-13 15:17:45

Have you discussed it with PIL? Are they not fed up with it?
My mother's friend' grandchild used to come with a whole list of what he would eat and not eat- she just used to say yes, yes, and yes and then ignore- she found he just ate it- however she was a tough lady, he knew there was no point in arguing!

ihearsounds Sat 20-Jul-13 15:19:57

What is she going to do when her pfb starts school? Demand that they only give him nuggets, waffles and fruit shoots? She is clearly living on another planet.

Carry on offering him the food you are cooking. When she again brings it up, tell her while in your care, you will feed him what you are cooking. If this is not acceptable, then it is well within her right to go and find paid childcare and try and convince them to feed the child such a shit diet.

trinity0097 Sat 20-Jul-13 15:21:03

The boy just eat more than that as there is no way a school canteen would dish up that kind of food each day nor would he have that kind of food in a packed lunch. What does he eat for breakfast at home? If he refuses the meal you have cooked for your family I would offer him toast or cereal. That way he won't starve.

specialsubject Sat 20-Jul-13 15:22:13

as long as this isn't a matter of allergies, time to change the rules. Starting with the expensive, teeth rotting, obesity causing fruit shoots.

surprised the poor little sod hasn't died of deficiency disease already. Let him refuse real food and see what happens.

or explain that free childcare (of a nice kid) means he eats what you eat, like all good guests.

formicadinosaur Sat 20-Jul-13 15:24:59

I Think you just need to let SIL know ghat you won't be buying in nuggets drinks etc as you can't afford them. Give the boy everything you give your own kids, if he chooses not to eat then that's his decision. He won't starve in one day and if he is upset in the evening it's because people haven't cow towed to his picky demands. In the long term it is in his interest to have a varied and balanced diet. If SIL is unwilling to run with it, she can buy the crap food. She has set him up to have these food issues.

formicadinosaur Sat 20-Jul-13 15:26:45

He will eventually get used to your good food but obviously will try and kick off to get his own way. Don't cave.

coronalover Sat 20-Jul-13 15:28:15


SIL/BIL should send him with a packed lunch or offer you money towards whatever you are providing. They should certainly not expect you to go out of your way and pay for special food. How rude of them!

Also agree with PP, they are doing nothing to prepare him for eating at school or even nursery.

formicadinosaur Sat 20-Jul-13 15:29:01

You sound so much healthier then your SIL

Viviennemary Sat 20-Jul-13 15:29:41

My DS was a fussy eater when he was little. But I wouldn't expect other people to pander to him. I think your sil is taking advantage of free childcare. Sometimes the more you do for people the more they expect as their right. Just offer what you have in the house and if he doesn't eat it then too bad.

JADS Sat 20-Jul-13 15:38:53

Holy crap. His diet is awful. I cannot believe your Sil slated your diet. She sounds like a bitch.

I have a ds with an embarassing limited diet at home who eats a very wide diet when at the cm/nursery. I would keep giving him what you are having or get your sil to send him enough nuggets/waffles and fruit shoots.

A compromise could be 1 nugget meal and 1 normal meal a day then he's not starving. Can you not freeze the nuggets?

Actually reading this back I would be tempted to tell her to sling her hook, but then the grgrandparents suffer. Is that right?

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