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Getting a stubborn 3 y o to eat

(3 Posts)
MargaretHale Sat 20-Feb-16 16:09:26

My DS, 3.5 years old started to be a fussy eater about two years ago and has reduced his range of foods to an incredibly narrow range- he will now only eat cereal, biscuits/ chocolate, corn cakes (occasionally with peanut butter, usually not), potato waffles, sausages and bacon ( only streaky bacon, and only if overcooked to dark brown- he will only eat burnt sausages, and only at grandmas house). He will drink fruit juice, and will tolerate stage 1 baby pouches, certain flavours anyway, and he will eat rhubarb yoghurt. I can very occasionally cajole/ bribe him into eating a chicken nugget or fish finger.

I always intended not to bribe or cajole him into eating, but we're now in a situation where he just refuses to eat even foods off this list, then he gets into the most awful moods because he is hungry.

This has all got much worse since the arrival of baby brother three months ago, it's now about control.

What do we do? His behavior when he hasn't eaten is so bad! Do we back off, take the pressure off, or get ultra strict and start serving up big helpings of broccoli and nothing else offered?

I was a picky eater so I have some empathy, but i was never this bad. Please help!

MattDillonsPants Sat 20-Feb-16 23:50:10

There's always so much conflicting advice re fussy eaters and I find that much of how people respond is related to how anxious this makes them.

I have two children, one who'd always eat anything and one who from about 3 would only eat cucumber, fish fingers, bread and cake. It just didn't make me anxious and I ignored it...continued to include something which she liked in all meals but still served her what we had.

So if we were all eating casserole, she'd have that in front of her plus a side plate with fishfingers and cucumber on it....it's probably the wrong way but now she's almost 8 and slowly but surely she did begin to change.

I never hassled her into trying anything...she began to say things like What's that nice smell? And I'd be able to say That's curry sauce...do you want to try it?

Now she eats almost anything but still likes to dictate a bit....so she'll have rice with the curry sauce on top with no meat included...my only advice is not to stress, not to cajole but to ignore and keep serving him the same as you...but with something he will eat too.

Believeitornot Sun 21-Feb-16 07:18:30

That's quite a lot of processed food (sausages, bacon, fish fingers, waffles) which will be sugary and salty. This might be party why.

I would cut down the processed food. It isn't good for them

I have had two fussy kids and it drives me nuts. My eldest is much better since they've started school. With my youngest (4), we try and give breakfast which we know she will eat. Other meals I keep giving stuff I know she has eaten and I basically stay calm and ignore the protests. Usually I wash up or something and she will eat something. I try to make sure she isn't starving come meal time because this makes her worse.
I also ask her to try and do not negotiate puddings (so she can have pudding regardless, she just has to wait until her brother is done).

We've seen some progress as she will eat a bit more now.

Also I let the DCs help me cook meals including when I'm doing batch cooking and they will have a taste.

It is a long slog. My reactions are key really as is what we give them.

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