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Newbie - 3.5yo fussy eater - anyone tried tough approach?

(5 Posts)
thunalata Wed 21-Oct-09 14:50:32

Hi everyone
I'm new to the boards and hoped to get a few ideas on fussy eating.

DD3 is reasonably fussy. She eats a range of foods, but has just started nursery and at lunchtime there quite often will eat nothing but a couple of slices of fruit. No underlying health/settling issues - she's just not keen on eating the food unless it's sausages or other 'easy' things.

The approach we have at home is basically 'no alternatives and no dinner = no pudding', she sits at the table until DS5 has finished his food and then she is allowed to get down. Fruit snack mid-morning when at home and a biscuit in the afternoon when DS gets home (unless she hasn't eaten lunch when she gets nothing except small piece of fruit).

I have been getting tough because she is so grumpy in the afternoons after nursery if she hasn't eaten. I have started re-presenting the food she hasn't eaten at the next meal(s) except breakfast. Can't cope with fights at breakfast time smile . She has managed to eat nothing for 2 meals eg not lunch, not tea, but has eaten the food at the next lunch time, with good grace. I've done this twice.

Anyone tried this approach? How long does it take???!!! Any advice??? She is 'happy' to go to bed hungry rather than eat... We praise her when she tries things and she can be encouraged to eat with lots of work and attention but this is no good long term...

Thanks for reading.

Twinsmommy Wed 21-Oct-09 15:27:29

Hi there thunalata:

I have twin boys who have just started pre-school and are tending, on some days, not to eat any of their lunch there.

I am of a similar opinion to you. If they don't eat their lunch, they wait until dinner time for their next meal - no treats inbetween. However, I don't represent the meal they have refused, I prepare them something completely different.

If, as you say, they don't eat that, then they have no dessert.

I do try to go by how I think I would feel if I didn't want to eat a meal. If I didn't fancy what I was served for lunch, I sure as h*ll am not going to want it at dinner time a few hours later. Especially, if it's then the leftovers of my lunch!

pranma Wed 21-Oct-09 15:32:02

We had the rule that if someone didnt want to eat what was on offer,'there's bread,there's cheese,there's apples,there's milk'otherwise nothing.Dessert not an every day feature for us.

smee Wed 21-Oct-09 15:42:14

Hard to say as only you know your dd, but I know ds is so stubborn that he'd definitely turn that tactic into one almighty battle. I used to do a sort of halfway thing - so definitely no pudding if he didn't eat his main meal, but equally as part of his meal I always gave him something I knew he'd eat, but not enough to fill him up iyswim. If I didn't it was hell on earth as he was so grouchy through hunger, so counterproductive as he then saw all mealtimes as a battle. I never ever made a big deal out of it though - just said that's all there is. And I never represented food next day either, as that was a challenge to him - ie let battle commence! Like pranma we always let him eat fruit whenever he wants too. He moaned a lot, but when we weren't fussing over him, he ate in the end. And actually I always thought it fair enough if he'd tried something but said he didn't like it. So long as he tried it that is grin

smee Wed 21-Oct-09 15:43:56

Meant to say, we're not big on puddings either but if I really wanted him to eat, I'd put on a massive treat (think Jelly and Ice Cream), but he only got that if he ate his main meal. Usually worked a treat. wink

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