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Walking and Feeding Themselves

(36 Posts)
Jodee Tue 01-May-01 20:12:18

My 13 month old boy is not walking yet, although he pulls himself up on the furniture, but when we try to stand him up he refuses to put weight on his legs and carrys on crawling (which he is extremely quick at!). We are going abroad on hols when he is 15 months and were hoping he would be walking by then. I know it's said that girls are quicker than boys at certain things, but friends with boys say theirs were all walking before 12 months. Any thoughts?

He also shows absolutely no interest in feeding himself. He will hold a spoon and even crawls around holding one, but will not put the spoon anywhere near his bowl of food. I've tried loading up a spoon and handing it back to him, but it just gets emptied out onto the highchair/floor. I suppose I should be grateful that he is a good eater and is good with finger foods but does anyone have any ideas?

Ems Tue 01-May-01 20:34:55

I dont know any boys who walked that early! My sons were 15 months and 13 months, the latter was commented on that it seemed early. First one was holding onto our hand type walking/brick trolley but would not let go of even our little finger for AGES (weeks), whereas the second one just got up and went. They are all so different. It might make your holiday VERY different if he was suddenly walking.

As for the feeding, still EARLY! The finger feeding is a really important stage, let him develop that, he plays with spoons thats fine, he watches you eat, when he is ready he will know what to do.

He sounds like he is a completely normal 13 month old, no reason to push him anywhere.

Lizzer Tue 01-May-01 20:39:54

Jodee, don't worry at all! My friend's little girl started walking when she was 15 months and some baby's will go for much longer. Compared to my baby ( they are both the same age ) she was really happy nipping around on the floor and was really contented all the time. Mine just hated crawling because she couldn't get anywhere fast enough and use to be constantly whinging to be 'walked' everywhere holding two hands. I used to get annoyed at mine for wanting to walk and my friend got annoyed at her's NOT wanting to!! It's a shame for baby's really not knowing what's expected of them!! He'll be fine and when he does walk you'll be sooooo wishing he couldn't!! Same for feeding too, my baby can feed herself quite well now (16 months) but only started about 14 months or so - so don't worry as she got the hang of it really quickly. I used to feed her her dinner then let her loose with a bowl of yoghurt afterwards, she soon learnt that if she wanted all the yummy yoghurt then she'd have to scoop it up herself!

Jodee Tue 01-May-01 21:11:02

Thanks Ems/Lizzer - v. reassuring. He is so happy and contented crawling about and pulling up on things, I definitely wouldn't want to push him into walking. I'm sure you are right - once he starts I'll be wishing he that wasn't!

Peaches Tue 01-May-01 23:50:28

Just to add to the conversation,I've got two girls.The elder didn't walk till 15 months and the younger who's nearly 14 months has shown signs that it could be anyday but I've got to admit she is lazy.Sometimes she won't even stand up if she don't want too.All babies are different and as you said he's happy and content.Have you got a good health visitor?She will be able to put your mind at rest.Please don't worry,I bet your little boy isn't.
Take Care,

Emmam Wed 02-May-01 07:43:21

Ems - all the boys in my immediate family walked from between 11 and 12 months.

From what I can gather anywhere between 10 to 15 months is perfectly normal.

Azzie Wed 02-May-01 07:57:20

My son walked at 12 months (well, 11 mths and 3 weeks to be precise) and was one of the earliest children in his particular group at nursery to walk. So don't worry at all about 13 months, its completely normal!

In fact, there can be an upside to it - my daughter walked at 9 mths (wanting to copy her brother), and hardly crawled at all. Because of this she never learned to turn round and come downstairs backwards - everyone knows that walking people walk forwards down stairs, don't they? - which has given us some real scares! At 17 mths she's just about safe on stairs, whereas her brother was pretty much OK by his first birthday.

Marina Wed 02-May-01 08:07:12

Jodee, all the boys I know didn't walk until at least 14 months (mine included, he left it til 16 months), so try not to worry. I had heard they are later to do these sorts of things than girls. If anything, it *might* be better for your holiday if he isn't keen to practise a new skill - no wobbling towards steps/swimming pools when your back is turned, for example: and children who aren't walking confidently tend to be less resentful about going in a back-pack or buggy.
And as for feeding himself, I think it sounds like your little guy is doing quite well with the finger food, far better than mine was at that age. It might just be that he needs to see more people (family, older children) using cutlery to feed themselves to get the idea. It is so hard sometimes to find time to sit down to a meal with them rather than just shovel the food in, but our son's use of a spoon and fork improved after we tried to have dinner with him several times a week. Sometimes it seems like you are getting nowhere but I would also keep trying with the loaded spoon, and maybe have one for him and one for you at each sitting. One day he will surprise you...

Emmam Wed 02-May-01 12:20:40

Azzie - was that coming down the stairs? My two year old is ok going up the stairs, he'll bound up them on all fours, or hold on to the banister and walk up 'properly'. Going down the stairs is a nightmare! I can't trust him at all. He either launches himself off like superman or jumps with both feet onto the next stair down, which usually results in him slipping over. If it wasn't the fact I had got hold of this hand he would fall down them. The one time I did let him go by himself to see if he could be trusted he fell down them and banged his head! I've tried showing him how to go down on his bottom, how to go down backwards on all fours. Tried to get him to walk down holding the banister, but nothing works. He is in such a hurry to get back down he doesn't seem to care how it happens as long as it happens quickly! Have I just got to resign myself to the fact that I've got a kamikaze child?

Jodee Wed 02-May-01 15:18:07

Since yesterday my 13 month old has gone from just about managing to climb up one step of the stairs to going all the way to the top at high speed - how did that happen! It was a bit of a shock as I turned my back for a minute then thought everything had gone too quiet, and there he was, half way up. I've got a gate at the top but not at the bottom so a quick trip to the shops I think (yet more expense - tried a number of times to get gates through small ads in free papers, but they are like gold dust).

Janh Wed 02-May-01 16:07:06

jodee - i have 4 kids and 13 months was the earliest any of them walked (19 months was the latest!!!)

until you get another gate try putting the one you have on the 3rd or 4th step and have some up-and-safely-back down lessons with him - one of mine taught himself very early (well before walking) to go rigid and SLIDE (feet first, face down) top-to-bottom in about 3 seconds! (it always made me cringe but he was so well padded he didn't feel a thing.)

Rozzy Wed 02-May-01 19:03:48

Message withdrawn

Aubergine Wed 02-May-01 21:44:14

My son didn't walk until he was 20 months - he didn't sit up until he was over 10 months.He never tottered - one day he just stood and walked across the room - I think he was just happy with his bottom shuffling until then. As for feeding himself, he was 2 before he would reliably feed himself. He is now just 3 and refuses to come out of a nappy even though he has plenty of control. He is very strong willed and we now accept that he will do things when he is ready and no amount of cajoling on our part will change that.
I know at the time there seemed to be a huge gap between him and his friends who were walking at 12 - 14 months - everybody invariably commented on it and it did seem a long time coming. Now of course, you can't tell the difference!

Eulalia Wed 02-May-01 22:03:20

I am not sure why you are concerned about your boy. Seems to be perfectly normal. The average age for walking is about 14 months so your boy is doing just fine. He may well walk yet at 15 months, as they change so quickly at this age. My son was 15 months and most of my friends kids were about 13-16 months.

Also 13 months is very young to think about a baby feeding himself. Generally speaking they aren't doing this till about 18 months.

No point in pushing the walking or eating - he will just do it in his own time. At the end of the day we all manage to walk, talk and feed ourselves and it doesn't matter one iota exactly what month we did it.

Jodee Thu 03-May-01 07:54:08

Thanks everyone for your messages. I know all babies are different, but as I'm quite a self-critical type of person being told by friends/relatives that their children walked by 12 months (or earlier) can make you feel a bit of a flop as a parent when yours doesn't (totally irrational I know!).

I'm not worried now, seeing as your children walked at such different ages.

(rozzy/aubergine - weren't you/your friends just a teensy bit worried when 20 months had arrived and they weren't walking?)

I would never push him into walking or eating if he didn't want to, though.

Alibubbles Thu 03-May-01 09:27:59

I have looked after two children, neither walked until they were 21 months old, they cruised round furniture etc. I was looking after a 10 month at the same time who was walking, she was far more of a liability!. The other 2, when they did walk didn't have as many falls or bumps and were much more stable walkers from the beginning. The 10 month needs constant vigilence and is always bumping into things and wanting to walk not ride in the pushchair, so now we are getting tantrums too!! Don't worry, it's awful how competitve mums get about achievements.

Adelaide Thu 03-May-01 18:22:51

Son No 1 walked at 9 months and son no 2 looks as if he's going to be similar (cruising the furniture at 8 months) and as many others have commented it's a complete nightmare - they have no sense and spend all day collecting bruises!

Aubergine Thu 03-May-01 20:58:36

Jodee, yes I did wonder if there was something wrong physically and of course all the comments I got didn't help in that respect - however he was quick with his speech and talked well before he could walk so I wasn't too concerned about there being a serious overall developmental problem.

Eulalia Thu 03-May-01 21:02:58

Babies who bottom shuffle tend to walk later, mainly because they can be very good at it! My son bottom shuffled for about 8 months and he could get up a fair speed. They can also see where they are going, unlike crawling so don't see the point in getting up to walk. Also bottom shuffling is excellent for building up muscles in all parts of the body - try it some time! My son did it 'properly' without using his arms to slide, he actually pushed them up into the air to throw his upper body forward.

Yes 20 months is late but often some babies go straight to walking without any intermediate stages. Baby walkers (the kind they sit in) can slow them down a bit and if you make your environment too much baby protected then there is less incentive for them to pull themselves or or reach forward for things. Push along baby walkers are a good way of getting them going.

Jule Fri 04-May-01 22:05:46

Eulalia - I have to agree with the enviroment comment, my 10 month old little boy has just started taking his first steps, I think because he was so curiuos about looking out the window and waving at passers by,he just wanted to be on his feet, I also have a table (Cheap MFI) in the centre of the room which he has spent so much time walking round and round picking up coasters banging them on the table and eating. I think too many people remove everything from a room just in case, my advise is let them explore and give them some help. Get down to there level and make everything kiddy friendly(And I've stopped being over sensitive about tidying up-I think that helps too!!)
Every child is different, what would us mothers boast or whinge about if they were all the same!!
Enjoy your baby, they do everthing eventually sometimes quicker or slower than we might like!! It makes them all a little individual and thats all us mothers want.

Lizzer Sat 05-May-01 13:07:42

Big thumbs up to Eulalia's suggestions too. I'd forgotten how useful my daughter's push along baby walker was for encouraging her to take steps when she was ready. She loved hers so much-in fact we had two! The best one for stability was the Early Learning centre's own design, which was lovely and slow but very wide and chunky so not great when they get the ability to turn the walker (about £25). The other was a V-tech first steps which was more portable and slim and lasts longer because it has an electronic removable activity panel on the front-which drives you crackers, but she seems to love it!(about £35- and was a present, in case you thought I had money to burn!!) Don't think you need two though, I'd go for Early Learning if I had to pick one, it's just what you need when they're just starting out, great for gaining confidence...

Jodee Sat 05-May-01 19:27:37

I'd been thinking about getting a push along walker for a while, but wasn't sure what type to get, so will check out the ELC one.

It's great to be able to talk to other Mums and get some first hand experience - thanks!

Ems Sun 06-May-01 12:07:45

Jodee, we have the wooden ELC with bricks, its been brilliant. Sturdy and heavy enough for those first steps and pushing.

Aoibh Sat 26-May-01 21:30:32

My daughter is almost 16 months, sat up at 6 months crawled at 9 months, stood against furniture and pulled herself up at 11 months, but is still not interested in walking. She has taken a few steps over the course of a couple of weeks but seems to have reverted back to crawling which she just loves. We are also off on holiday to visit a friend whos 14 month old daughter has been walking for almost 5 months. My daughter is quite content and happy with herself. The only problem is when we are outside and we are walking along holding her hands when she suddenly decides she would rather crawl and throws herself to the ground. She will walk in her own good time I know, so theres no point worrying about it. At the same time she has been chatting away since she was about 9 months. Other kids I know walked early and talked later. Maybe the brain decides which it wants to do first.

Jodee Sat 23-Jun-01 20:18:41

I started this thread a couple of months back and would just like to say that ds is now walking! Albeit with the wobbles! He started about 3 weeks ago to stand up and drink from his beaker using both hands, ie not holding on to anything and gradually started to take a few steps. It's amazing how quickly they pick it up isn't it. We were in the park today and he was behind the buggy pushing it along for ages.
Looks like he will be walking on our hols after all. I needn't have been concerned at all eh! What a worrypuss I am though.

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