Worried about putting eating disorder stuff on to my toddler - bit long, sorry!(2 Posts)
DD has always been a brilliant eater until the last month or so (she's 2.5 so I guess this is par for the course). She's got fussier and fussier and started to say she doesn't like food that she's always loved. Anyway, we were having a terrible day on Monday, awful tantrums, very demanding behaviour,plus I'm quite stressed as we've just moved house and I've also got a small baby. It all culminated in her dumping her entire bowl of food on the floor at tea time while shouting and crying. I got really angry, didn't shout at her but told her very firmly that we do NOT throw food on the floor and that it made mummy very upset etc. etc. Luckily at that point DH came in and took over so I could take a breather.
So today we're having lunch and she's been lovely all day and she ate everything. I said "Oo that's brilliant DD, you've done really well and eaten your food so nicely, look DS hasn't she eaten well etc. etc." She looked at me and said "Make mummy happy, make daddy happy, eat all my dinner."
Now I may be over-analysing here, but I'm really worried about her thinking that if she eats her food then mummy is happy. I had a very unhealthy relationship with food and was anorexic for most of my 20s (am totally fine now), and my mum also has a weird relationship with food (which might only be obvious to me cos I know all the signs - she hides it well but I know where I got my warped views from). I don't want DD growing up with the same guilt and anxiety I had about eating, and I certainly don't want her thinking that her eating is what makes mummy happy. Am I being silly, or should I do something about it now?
Personally, from reading that, I would have said that because you told her that throwing food upset you, she thinks that not throwing it around and eating well pleases you. Which, if she's becoming fussy is probably a good thing.
I've no experience of any eating disorders myself so can't speak from that point of view but it can't be a bad thing to have a toddler who eats her meals well & doesn't throw the food around or play with it too much.
I wouldn't worry too much for now, just try and teach her to have a positive attitude towards the foods she eats and that she does other things that make you happy too, that way she doesn't just associate you being happy with her eating.
Sorry if that's not much help but she sounds fine to me. My lo and the little boy I've been looking after this week both like to be praised & told I'm happy they've eaten well so maybe that's all it is, she's probably just happy you're happy she's eating if you get what I mean
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