AIBU to find visiting child greedy and rude?(271 Posts)
I might be unreasonable and I might not. Either way, I'm sure you will all tell me.
I want to know what to do in this situation.
DD is 8 and has a little friend who is very close to her...also 8. The friend, every time she visits which is quite often, walks in and immediately asks for food.
She will usually ask DD who then asks me....I offer lunch or snacks as normal but this child is simply never full....if you offer her a biscuit tin, she will take 6 biscuits...a handful...I've stopped offering her...I just give her two biscuits now...but DD will sometimes sneak the tin out on this child's request. I've spoken to DD about it and she says the kid just goes on and on about it
.DD is allowed to get herself a cracker or something and does so without asking as she never eats anything really unless she's hungry...but this child will literally eat ALL the crackers there are...so two packs of cheesy crackers...just bought and meant for snacks for DD for a week are now gone.
I made them pasta and cheese which they like...with a side salad and ham.
The visiting child will say "Can I have more cheese? A LOT more?" in a way which I find rude...she'll expect half a block!
I don't give it...cheese is frigging expensive here and it has to last as I"m on a budget.
What do I do about the constant demands/requests for food/more food?
I usually just say "That's enough for now" or similar but then literally five minutes later, she will be whispering to DD "Get the cakes out of the freezer!"
And DD doesn't like saying no but knows it's unreasonable and so will ask me then get upset/concerned that her friend hasn't got what she wants.
I DO feed them....not small portions...but this is not ok with me and I just know what to do about it! I don't want to appear mean but I also don't want this child eating what would usually last for a week in one day!
Oh and the child IS from a good home where she is fed properly. I know that her parents give her carte blanche on what she eats. They will give breakfast...cooked...bacon, toast, eggs and then give her hot chocolate and as many biscuits as she wants after that...she is getting overweight.
She's greedy, stick to your guns and tell your daughter to be firm with her. I can't stand greedy rude kids!
How well do you know the child's parent(s)? I only really ask because I'm wondering if she is being underfed at home.
If she asks you (or your daughter asks you on her behalf) for "more cheese" or whatever, then just say no and if you feel the need to explain why it's a no, just tell her the truth - That you need whatever food item for another meal.
She sounds like a very pushy child and that may or may not be because she is genuinely hungry but in fairness it's not your responsibility to feed her. It's nice to make her a snack/light lunch so as she can enjoy a meal with your daughter but there should be a limit to the kindness, ie: one lunch a week and the rest of the visits during each week are limited to a small snack.
Just don't give her, then she can't eat you out of "house and home" (My granny used to say that about my brother). Does your daughter ever have meals at her house?
You aren't meals on wheels or running a drop in centre, just say no and stick to the occasional quick lunch one day and a small convenient cheap snack the other days.
We used to tell them they could eat all the raw vegetables they wanted between meals. If you aren't hungry enough to each some veggie sticks you aren't that hungry!
I'd tell her straight out there will be one snack between meals, but then no more. And stick to it. Sooner or later she'll stop asking
It's difficult isn't it.
I would actually be concerned that this child will have a negative impact on the currently healthy relationship your DD has with food. We have one little friend that's a bit like this, but fortunately she doesn't come to our house that often (maybe one sleep over a month) otherwise I'd be worried too. She's the 11yo's friend and the 11yo is like yours, can help herself to a cracker, an apple, a biscuit, because she will only have something when she's hungry and it'll only be one. The friend is a bottomless pit & quite demanding/forward. She's not overweight at all, but she eats like a starved horse!
I would probably start by making a bigger meal for her, perhaphs your serving sizes aren't as big as she is used to and things like pasta are much cheaper than 'snacks'. Then if you can afford it get a large bag of apples, they're filling and nice enough, but not sugary (lots of sugar in them, but not like carbs/cake or salty so don't set up that 'craving' cycle.
After that I'd simply say, there's nothing else to eat until dinner time now girls, enough's enough.
Tell DD she's allowed to say 'No, Mum has already said nothing else until dinner time'. That it's not rude, it's just the rules.
If it doesn't settle down quickly I'd certainly be too 'busy' to have her around so often.
You have said that the child comes from a good home and is being properly fed. But a Full Monty breakfast for an eight year old seems excessive to me. You have noticed that she is becoming overweight.
So is it a good home when allowing a child to become obese is seen by some as a form of abuse?
Anyway, I realise that none of this is your responsibility and I think you have been very kind and tolerant. But I do agree with other posters in that a firm refusal from now on is the only option.
Are her parents people you're able to talk to about this OP? I wonder if you went round there with a list of everything she's eaten this week (or whatever time period suits) and showed them and said you're not able to keep feeding her this much and that she's constantly asking your DD to get food for her...maybe they would have a word with her.
Aside from that, yes just keep refusing after an apple or biscuit "no more before tea now girls" or something. And definitely give your DD permission to tell her it's the rules.
If she is overweight then hide the biscuit tin and the crackers!
Do not give her any more of these items, even as a snack.
If she continues to raid the fridge even if you tell them not to then cut up or grate the cheese and freeze in small batches so it's not available.
From now on feed them a bigger meal earlier that is cheap and cheerful, no way shoud she be eating you out of house and home especially if you are on a budget!
So plenty of pasta/veg/baked beans/bread.
Then pud could be a jelly or piece of fruit.
A very cheap but delicious way of making a cheescake that children love is by crushing Value digestives in a bottom of a glass bowl. Microwave 2 packets of Basic jelly (any flavour but lemon or lime work especially well) in a little water then whisk in a tin of evaporated milk plus normal milk or a combination of cream cheese/coconut milk/condensed milk. Any of these items work well so whatever you have! Then pour over biscuit mix and leave to set.
Then stir in tinned/frozen or freshly chopped fruit into the mix or wait till it has set before adding it as a topping (or do a bit of both).
This is a great way of making a few biscuits or a punnet of strawberries or blueberries go far!
Any snack after this should be a carrot/apple/toast.
Good luck op!
Maybe your food just tastes too good?
Offer something unappealing, like bland porridge [/grin]
is it possible that her parents are trying to help her become a healthy weight by restricting treats at home. Therefore when shes at your DDs house she sees it as an opportunity to have what she doesn't have at home.
I did feed them very good portions....I know what's normal and what's an adult portion....I gave them something inbetween because the child seems to be hungry after a child portion.
I do buy apples etc but again, I don't buy these to be eaten completely by one visiting child!
I'm certainly not making her bloody cheescakes!
I did hide the biscuits in the end but felt so petty doing so....I wish I could afford to give her what she wants but again, that's not healthy.
I would not have her round or when she is round, take them out e.g. To the park where she cannot ask for food (well she can but there isn't any at the park!!)
I hate this, especially the whispering! Used to have kids round who mine are no longer friends with, who would whisper "ask for this" "ask for that" do this/do that and I just can't stand it. I had to say after a few times, no whispering here please! You will just have to be vigilent, it's not fair of the friend to keep on at your daughter all the time about it. Once you've served the dinner/tea (whichever then one snack and that's that. I don't know...something like "we only have goodies after dinner and we all have a set amount equally. No more now " Something along those lines, if she doesn't like it, then tough!
Serve fruit and vegetables only or just offer jam on toast. No sugary crap, that way she probably won't keep coming back for more and it is a lot cheaper. Try to avoid having her over for dinner times, I know that sounds harsh but you cannot afford to keep feeding her.
I do feel your pain, my Ex SiL's sons use to be like this when they over, both of them were always begging for constant snacks etc and second servings of the main meal. They had a sleepover here one time and I woke up at 6am to find them eaten half a family size slice of fudge for breakfast (just helping themselves!).
I could see why though, ex SiL gave them much bigger portions of family meals and served up huge dinners (I use to have meals at hers from time to time) so maybe that could be why. Or she could come from a home where the food budget is not an issue.
Hide the snacks. That's what I did in the end. I couldn't afford it.
The requests where endless. Would come
For a couple of hours and typically would consist of -
Large portion of dinner -, one time half a fucking chicken (that's
When I snapped) huge ladle of potatoes and other veg, with 6 Yorkshire puddings. All meals he asked for more.
After he polished off the dinners he would go through a punnet of strawberries or grapes. Or a bunch of bananas. Or a big tub of yogurt. Or half a cake.
The snacks every time - several packets of crips, packet of biscuits, crackers, muffins, ice cream and ice lolly, sweets.
Even drinks were none stop - milk and juice. Never ever water.
At first I thought if he's just going through a growth spurt mine was the same. Hollow legs, pack on a few pounds then shoot up. But no he was just greedy. He still comes, but snacks are hidden.
I did have an awkward conversation with parents. He's the same at home and they were hoping he wasn't like this outside.
Oh and I certainly wouldn't be going round having words with her parents about it either! Can't imagine that would go down well. Just casually mention what she has had at your house and leave it at that. You've already said she gets what she more or less wants to have (and more!) at home and is becoming over weight so she isn't starving.
My first thought would not be that the child is greedy and rude, more than they had a less healthy attitude to food. I feel a bit sorry for them actually, it isn' t pleasant feeling constantly compelled to eat especially when a guest. I am sure that the financial implications are not even on their radar. On the other hand, you could be right and I could be hugely projecting! We just don't know.
Either way I don't think you should have to go on providing all the food. I would definitely just say that there are no sweet things in, and keep offering something very bland if they can't be distracted.
I was this child . I was just hungry all the time, and food was so much better round other people's houses than at mine. Obviously I didn't give a second thought to the cost, and I just wanted to eat and eat. I'm trying to think what would have worked with me. Straight talking I think - sit her down and tell her there's to be no more snacking, please stop asking. Give large portions of cheap food at meal times, and leave it at that. If she asks for more, tell her there is no more, and if she's still hungry, she'll have to go home.
You say your child gas a healthy attitude to food and then say she gets through 2 packs of cheese crakers a week?
What is wrong with a full breakfast? It is an excellent way to start the day.
She said she has a healthy attitude to food, not that she only eats healthy food. Being deprived of a few less than healthy treats can actually lead to a less healthy relationship with food overall. As in most things, balance is important.
I'd swap your 'that's enough for now' for a very firm 'no, you've had your snack/tea/whatever' every time she asks for more, and if she persists tell her then she needs to go home if she's really still hungry and her Mum can feed her.
I think i'd be limiting the visits too tbh. Not as a punishment but just to give yourself a break, she sounds hard work and if it is a simple case of her being greedy/demanding then it's her parents job to tackle it, not yours.
Angel well I say DD gets through two packs a week but there's other DD too and DH eats a few aswell.
Angel - the crackers are meant as snacks, so they are given one or two at a time. Eaten that way, it's perfectly possible that a packet (or two) would last a week or a fortnight. Whilst a full breakfast can be very good, the issue is that the child appears to be being served adult sized portions - which isn't good.
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