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Impossible to feed screaming 13 month old

(10 Posts)
redundant Thu 14-Mar-13 20:43:34

Our DS was like this. Always ate much better when out and about or at childminders. After several months of cajoling and getting upset about it, we just decided (as his weight is fine) to not worry if he didn't eat.

So first sign of a tantrum, we ask him 'have you finished?' and give him the chance to indicate he wants to stay and eat. If he's still screaming or thrashing he is just lifted out of his high chair and put in the other room while we stay and finish our meal. Much less stressful all round. I really didn't want to go down the route of trying to tempt him with different foods etc - as long as i knew I hadn't put something unreasonable (eg too spicey etc) in front of him, it's up to him if he doesn't eat it. Through a lot of calm repetition of this he has got much better. I think he feels a bit more in control too - knows I'm not forcing him to do something.

amazinglightshow Wed 13-Mar-13 11:08:09

Hi OP. I also have an opiniated 13-month old. She's a great eater but these days just will not entertain being spoonfed her evening meal. Like your son, mine eats a big lunch with her childminder and I think is probably mostly spoonfed for that. We tend to give her lots of finger food meals for dinner and now that's all she wants. It's a bit of a pain in that it means more prep (e.g. roasting strips of veg, making and slicing up an omelette etc. instead of grabbing a stew or something out of the freezer), but it seems to be the only way forward!

I tend to sit at the table near her high chair and drink a cup of tea and more or less ignore her. I eat something small myself and just let her at it with her hands. She's so much happier that way, when the focus is less intently on her. She'll bang away with the spoon but nothing much goes in. I'd rather she eats and makes an almighty mess rather than not eating at all.

And actually I wouldn't put on a YouTube show to distract during meals because friends who have done this have ended up with a YouTube reliant 5-year old. Sometimes I do put on one of her baby CDs or even just the radio in the background. I think the main thing I've learned is that she gets cross when being fussed over too much and is much more cheerful when benignly ignored.

Finally, I think babies always play up the most for their mothers! It really is sickening when you hear how angelic the little darlings have been all morning and then they come home to Mum and turn into demon-fiends...

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 13-Mar-13 09:26:30

Think the op might have done a runner.

ZuleikaD Wed 13-Mar-13 07:40:55

Don't feed him - let him feed himself might be one answer.

brettgirl2 Tue 12-Mar-13 21:34:22

I've always given main meal at lunchtime as I think they are hungrier then. Is he self feeding - I cant feed my 14th month old and havent really tried since about 8 months? How long has this been going on for?

In desparation I might try sitting and eating something myself and then putting lo in high chair when he thinks hes missing out to break the cycle...

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 12-Mar-13 19:57:21

Sorry about that. How are things now? How is your wife too?

Sounds like you have posted this in the right section as it sounds like a behaviour issue and your DS has learnt the power of no.

Could you tell us a bit more about his day? What milk is he on and how much does he have each day? What time is his nap or naps?

He could be overtired in the evening, does he have his main meal then and could you swap this to lunchtime? Do you all eat together and what do you do when he throws or refuses food?

We've had issues with our dd refusing food and personally I wouldn't go do the distraction route, he needs to learn to eat as part of the family not to scream and get entertained or something more to his liking, but that's just my view smile.

inquisitivemummy Tue 12-Mar-13 18:43:28

Hiya HenryJonesDad

I had the same problem when my DS was little and when it all started with the tantrums I was at the end of my tether. I ended up ignoring his behaviour and walked away from him (asuming he was in a safe place and couldnt get hurt) until his tantrum finished.

If that dosent work how about trying to let him feed himself and also eat things of you/wife plate to make it fun for him. My son ended up eating brussel sprouts after I did that! lol

Hope that helps!

Bouncey Tue 12-Mar-13 18:43:14

He might want to feed himself (or try to). My 15 month old can be quite temperamental at meal times, but likes holding the spoon and pretending that she's feeding herself and I can slip some spoonfuls in too. I also try some finger food as she's becoming increasingly independent.

Distraction might also work. Sounds weird, but try playing gagnam style (YouTube it, there's a video of a fussy eater totally transfixed by it!)

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 12-Mar-13 18:37:05

Haven't got time to post as its bath time but have a look at a book called my child won't eat by Carlos Gonzalez and ill try

HenryJonesDad Tue 12-Mar-13 18:04:56

Hi there, appreciate any advice from anyone who's had similar. Wife currently in tears, same as almost every evening.

We have no idea why but our son wont eat for her pretty much every single evening. He's usually fine if I feed him (although that's a relative term) and our child minder who he is with during the day 4 days of the week can never stop gushing about how happy he is and how well he eats; but with my wife he starts thrashing around the second she tries to pick him up to put him in his seat. Then he screams and hits any food away she tries to give him. He's been like this for months so it's not teething and he has the same food at the child minder so it's not that. And it's starting to spread into other things like changing him and dressing him (and that's with both of us not just the wife).

We never give in and let him have his own way, so it's not like we've spoilt him, so we're clueless. And desperate.

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