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To still feed my 5.5 year old child?

(114 Posts)
Cannierelax Sun 24-Mar-13 20:30:55

He is a horrendous eater. Today I made him chicken pasta and he ate 3 bites of pasta and 2 pieces of chicken in 25 minutes. If I don't feed him he will not eat a varied diet but will get hungry and demand cookies. Aibu to continue feeding him do he will at least eat a few bites of healthy food?

kinkyfuckery Sun 24-Mar-13 20:33:11

YABU, you should stop feeding him.


Of course you still make him food. You tell him he eats that, or he doesn't eat (there's usually a compromise to be made somewhere after a bit of effort). He's not likely to starve himself.

JazzAnnNonMouse Sun 24-Mar-13 20:33:22

Yanbu as your child your rod etc wink

But - surely you're the one giving in an giving him the cookies if he doesn't eat his dinner? If you stuck to it and after a few moments of 'hunger' I'm sure he'd eat more. Unless he is sn of any kind he's at an age where you can tell him and he'll understand.

organiccarrotcake Sun 24-Mar-13 20:34:40

Check out "My Child Won't Eat" by Carloz Gonzales

Phenominal book.

When you say "feed him" do you mean hold the fork and pop it in his mouth for him?

parakeet Sun 24-Mar-13 20:35:29

Yes, YABU, sorry. No 5-year-old will starve themselves. Make a vow today to never feed him again. Serve up meals and after 10 or 15 minutes take the plate away without comment or criticism.

(This method only works if cookies and the like are banished from the house though.)

Good luck...

OhDearieDearieMe Sun 24-Mar-13 20:35:54

This is simple but requires a little bit of determination from you - the adult. Of course he's going to hold out for cookies if he knows that is an option. Who wouldn't? grin It's up to you - the adult - the ensure that cookies are not an option until the good healthy home cooked stuff is eaten. Then cookies are negotiable. He won't like it - but it won't take long for him to 'get it'.

Annunziata Sun 24-Mar-13 20:37:38

Do you mean physically feeding him yourself?

Softlysoftly Sun 24-Mar-13 20:38:15

So it sounds like you give him the crap hedemands and feed him a few bits of healthy?

He's 5, give him healthy food, he eats it or goes hungry until the next meal.

Don't feed him, negotiate, or in fact discuss it at all. Plate on table, ignore, take plate away 30m later.

If you absolutely can't bear to wait until the next meal offer fruit/cheese/veg sticks as a snack.

SamsGoldilocks Sun 24-Mar-13 20:38:48

Stop buying biscuits until he makes progress eating. One good week and he can have a couple.

Good luck, its hard work and dispiriting having a child who doesn't like eating.

ItsallisnowaFeegle Sun 24-Mar-13 20:39:56

I can imagine in the daily frustrations of trying to encourage him to eat it might seem like the easiest way to ensure he eats something but I agree that now is the time to refuse snacks and stop physically feeding your DS.

Give it a go and please let us know how you get on.

missmapp Sun 24-Mar-13 20:40:45

The only way we got ds1 to eat, was to remove ourselves from the situation. first off , he ate on his own ( as I couldn't leave well alone if I was there) then, when eating together ,w e would talk about other stuff, but not mention food AT ALL. If he ate, we said nothing, if he didnt eat, we said nothing, but he got nothing else either.

I hadnt realised how much attention his lack of eating was given. As soon as we stopped the attention, he started eating. That was about 3 yrs ago- he now eats most things and tires new things happily.

Good luck!

redskyatnight Sun 24-Mar-13 20:41:23

I'm with the rest. If he doesn't eat within a sensible time frame (say 10-15 minutes) take the food away. Do not offer alternatives.

olibeansmummy Sun 24-Mar-13 20:42:13

Yes yabu sorry. What does he do at school?

MsVestibule Sun 24-Mar-13 20:43:45

Of course YABU. I still feed my 4.5yo DS for exactly the same reasons you do and I am being U too! I know I should stop feeding him, but he's a stubborn little bugger and I know he wouldn't eat it. I guess I'm just picking my battles. Dinner times would be unbearable, but I realise I'll have to bite the bullet sometime.

OTOH, my DD(6) is a fantastic eater and has just polished off a full roast dinner while DC ate a Yorkshire pudding by himself but I had to feed him the mashed potato, peas and gravy. No chicken, stuffing or carrots.

Shybairns Sun 24-Mar-13 20:47:27

I still feed my DS 5 and a half if he's really tired. Same with my DD aged 4 if she struggling due to fatigue.

They can both use a knife and fork correctly and eat well at restuarants, friends houses and most of the time at home.

I'm quite relaxed about it. As long as they know their table manners and can handle cuttlery correctly.

HollaAtMeBaby Sun 24-Mar-13 20:50:33

I thought you meant breastfeeding shock

YABU - this is purely an attention seeking tactic! What happens if he's at school or at a friend's house? Presumably the dinner ladies/friend's mum don't sit for hours playing the aeroplane game with him. Just stop.

Does he eat meals with you? How can you eat your own dinner if you're spoonfeeding your DS?

Zatopek Sun 24-Mar-13 20:51:38

My 5 year old still won't eat much. She eats cereal at breakfast, lots of fruit during the day but won't sit for more than 5 minutes for a meal. I try not to let it wind me up (she's a healthy weight) but I do always worry she's going to wake up hungry or get grumpy due to low blood sugar.

I find it best if I feed her her main meal in the middle of the day. Come the afternoon when she's tired, she is not interested in eating a meal.

To get round this I usually offer a picnic tea or toast or sandwiches, cheese, fruit and yoghurt which she will usually pick at through the evening.

Whilst I encourage and remind I won't force her to eat. Though if she hasn't eaten much I will offer cereal at bedtime.

wannabeEostregoddess Sun 24-Mar-13 20:52:53


What does he do at school?

DD1 is 4 and hasnt been fed by me since she could use a fork well. But she still acts up now and again with her dinner. Its all for attention. If I play into it nothing gets eaten. If I ignore she will eat it 9 times out of 10. The one time she doesnt she will be starving at breakfast and wont do it again for a while.

wannabeEostregoddess Sun 24-Mar-13 20:54:55

Oh and we never say, "You have to eat whats on your plate."

She is told to eat what she wants and leave what she doesnt. But she has to eat something.

Bluelightsandsirens Sun 24-Mar-13 20:58:39

What happens when he is eating lunch at school?

kinkyfuckery Sun 24-Mar-13 21:09:21

Oh do you mean you physically feed him? Like spoon feed him? I do that at times with my nearly 8-year-old blush

Fairenuff Sun 24-Mar-13 21:38:35

I'd like to know what he does at school too.

simpson Sun 24-Mar-13 21:41:20

Like the others, my first thought was how does he eat at school?

My DD is 5.1 and there is no way I would feed her...

MsVestibule Sun 24-Mar-13 21:42:17

For everybody asking what the OP's DS what he does at school - perhaps he's on packed lunches? My DS will happily eat sandwiches (with limited fillings!) by himself, it's just proper meals where he won't feed himself.

Maggie111 Sun 24-Mar-13 21:47:30

I really enjoyed a Supernanny episode where she faced a similar child...

He had 3 portions on his plate even carbohydrates/protein/fruit&veg

He had to try at least a mouthful/taste from each section to achieve a sticker for a reward chart and he was allowed to eat his dinner in peace and leave whatever he didn't want.

Take the stress away from meal times and use a clock - tell him whatever isn't eaten by X time gets put in the bin

And don't feed him snacks in between meals!!!

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