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Need advice regarding a fussy eater.

(15 Posts)
TheBreastmilksOnMe Sat 21-Sep-13 15:20:22

My nephew who is 4yrs old is coming for tea and an overnight stay tonight and we are having roasted lamb, mash & veg for our evening meal. Nephew is a notoriously picky eater and lives on alphabet chips, fish fingers and beans and refuses to try anything else.

My two, aged 5 and 2 eat most of what's put in front of them so im really thankful for that but put it down to liking lots of different foods ourselves.

Im feeling a bit anxious ahead. I dont really want to make a seperate meal for my nephew as my two won't eat theirs then and tbh im pregnant and cant be doing with faffing in the kitchen all afternoon. Also id like to try at least with tempting him with something different as his mum and dad are by their own admission very unadventurous and eat a lot of frozen stuff like pizza etc but i also dont want to get him stressed either.

Its not my job to expand his tastes really is it? So my question is really do i go against the grain and cook him his usual or do i leave him to it to eat or leave the meal we are all having?

jennycoast Sat 21-Sep-13 15:34:50

How about just making some Alphabites to go along with yours? You're offering him something new, but at the same time, no too much hassle, and there will be something familiar for him to get started with. Then he can follow your two with the rest. It's only one night. He won't starve. You can always offer his some toast later if he's hungry.

Artandco Sat 21-Sep-13 15:40:53

I would offer all the above you are having but maybe see if he wants beans also if he doesn't like the veg. Yours could have a few also so it seems like the same. Just tell him to eat what he wants and leave what he doesn't.

You can always offer lots of fruit and yogurt after if he won't eat or toast last minute.

TheBreastmilksOnMe Sat 21-Sep-13 15:41:35

He has alphabites for every meal. I feel sorry for him. If i had him here for a fortnight he would be eating like most kids! I might do what you suggested, it seems the middle road, im not giving into his fussyness but also im not starving him either.

NoComet Sat 21-Sep-13 16:05:16

"If i had him here for a fortnight he would be eating like most kids!"

Not if he's like my ultra stubborn DD2 he wouldn't be.

Honestly the best you can do is offer what your having and if he really, really won't eat anything, do the simplest possible alternative.

And don't stress, DD2 can and does live on fresh air at times. If she couldn't she wouldn't be able to be so damned awkward.

(And embarrassing when kind friends and relatives have cooked her nice food.)

fiestabelle Sat 21-Sep-13 16:14:10

You have obviously never dealt with a fussy eater, I hav tried everything with my ds to vary his diet, and it is very disheartening to read your posts...i wish it was as simple as you seem to think.

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Sat 21-Sep-13 16:17:41

I know you mean well but really, new surroundings, different bed, it's not the time to even think about altering things. After all you aren't the one dealing with it when he gets home.

Just do the alpha bites and beans. Oven is already on they don't take any effort. And he is free to try anything else. Don't say anything either he will be concious enough bless him.

PoshPenny Sat 21-Sep-13 16:28:08

Discuss with his parents. If you want peace and harmony and everyone to have an enjoyable time, then give him fish fingers beans and alphabites. fussy eaters are an utter nightmare and almost certainly you will have an epic fail on your hands if you think you can miraculously "cure" him. trust me it will be easier in the long run to cook him something different to everyone else. those who have had fussy eaters UNDERSTAND this... the good news is that they generally do grow out of it eventually

Sirzy Sat 21-Sep-13 16:30:09

I agree but something you know he likes with the meal and then serve what everyone else is having.

Goldmandra Sat 21-Sep-13 17:50:40

If I had a guest like this I would cook something for the children to eat together and make it a treat for them.

I imagine that his parents find eating out or as guests quite stressful and embarrassing. Wouldn't it be nice for them to arrive and find that they didn't have to worry about etiquette or stressing their son out because there is food there he will enjoy and he won't be singled out because his cousins are eating the same?

It isn't your job to change your nephew's diet and, even if it was, this wouldn't be a good time to try. He would feel under pressure, his parents would feel embarrassed and upset on his behalf and probably irritated about your implication that you can parent their child better than them.

Much better to go with the flow, provide food that everyone will find enjoyable and just enjoy their company.

If you feel that cooking a different meal for the children would be too many balls in the air ask one of his parents to come into the kitchen and prepare the children's meals so that they can make sure it's cooked to their son's liking.

TheBreastmilksOnMe Sat 21-Sep-13 18:19:32

I gave him what we were having plus some food that i know he likes and he ate what he wanted but not a lot so when they go to bed later i will make them some toast for supper (which i know he likes) and i know that he's got a full belly. We didnt make a fuss, just gave him his food on the plate and carried on as normal, making conversation etc. He has a lot of anxiety around food so we kept it relaxed and took his plate away when we'd all finished.

I appreciate how hard it is to cater to fussy children and im lucky that my two are good eaters, long may it continue. I hope he does grow out of it as the lack of nutrients in his diet would worry me sick.

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Sat 21-Sep-13 18:23:07

Sounds like you handled it well. Can see why it's a worry for you I would be worried too but not a lot you can do as it's down to his parents.

Have they sought advice ?

TheBreastmilksOnMe Sat 21-Sep-13 18:34:43

I dont think they have yet but theyve been talking about it as they were worried about the lack of nutrition too. I suggested he take multivitamins as we give them to our two too. It stops you worrying so much i think, when they dont eat so well. Bit like a safety net. I get mine to eat all sorts of weird and wonderful things like aloe juice, spirulina, chia seeds and bee pollen so they take strange and unusual food in their stride. I wouldnt know what to do if my next one is born a fusspot!

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Sat 21-Sep-13 18:43:28

Hopefully he will grow out of it. It must be very frustrating for all of them. It's very hard to see your kids upset and hungry and clearly they have ended up in a vicious circle.

NoComet Sun 22-Sep-13 00:33:36

DD2 is growing out of it slowly, but I wouldn't worry about nutrients.

Beans are pretty nutritious (and on DDs yuck list), but she does eat apples, strawberries and grapes and the odd tangerine and drink smoothies and fruit juice.

I bet on the quiet DN does too, or will before he's much older.

I'd just find DDs limit diet boring, she didn't. It's only since she was 10 or 11 we have found curry and Nado's medium chicken sneaking in. Also Cornish pasties with swede. We had lamb stew to night also with swede and far far more onion than she'd of been happy with if she watched me cook, all gone.

It does get better, but painfully slowly. My DSIS even eats peas, that I never thought I'd see.

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