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Please Help, My daughter WILL NOT eat!!

(18 Posts)
charlibunny Tue 01-Mar-05 19:36:25

I dont know who else to ask for help.
My 10 month old daughter will not eat. I give her finger foods and she refuses to eat them, they go on the floor. I try to spoon feed her and she clamps her mouth shut and slaps me. I have tried giving her a spoon, toys, singing to her, many other things. Please help me, my health visitor says she wont starve herself... but she can go days with only a spoonful or two of food. she screams all day because she is hungry but wont eat.
Its really getting me down, and i find myself in tears after most mealtime.

helsi Tue 01-Mar-05 19:37:52

Is she still drinking milk? If so how much? It might be that you have to reduce milk intake.

MaryP0p1 Tue 01-Mar-05 19:43:20

My sons a sod too. He's three now and we have to leave the room if he's in one of those moods to get him to eat. For some reason best known to himself if we're in the room especially at the table with him he refuses to eat. This is really really difficult when the MIL is eating with us because we're guaranteed he won't eat and that she'll make an enourmous fuss of him while my daughter will be sitting beautifully at the table, eating nicely and all of it and be completely ignored - good message hey. MIL won't be told though. Fortunately for me the ignoring him and letting him get on while making a fuss of the DD is working slowing however its been a slowly slowly process.

Does she not like the texture of food or chewing or is it whats you to fed her? A suggestion I found helpful was giving it to him to play with, not eat and if he ate some great.

charlibunny Tue 01-Mar-05 19:44:13

She has 8oz at bed time.... and maybe 4oz in the day, thats is, she wont drink juice either, she has a bit of water spits it out. I even tried her on milkshake and tea as she looked thirsty!!

jabberwocky Tue 01-Mar-05 19:47:46

Ds was very much the same way. It drove me crazy. He would turn his head and put his hand up as if to say, "Talk to the hand, 'cause I'm not eating!" I just continued to give him milk to keep him from being hungry and finally gave up trying to force it. The nanny would come in and say, "What food are we going to throw away today?" Because that's what we did for the longest time. Just keep offering something each day but try not to make a big deal out of it. Ds has a favorite CD that he likes to have in when he eats. FWIW, he is now 18 months and is still refusing most fingerfoods. I do get exasperated about it but as he will eat crackers, biscuits, etc. I know that it is not a physical problem and he is quite developmentally advanced in other areas so I don't worry that there's something going on there. It is very tough to hear other mums talk about all the things that their children eat and know that yours is so difficult. As, dh says though, he won't be taking baby food with him to college!

jabberwocky Tue 01-Mar-05 19:47:59

Ds was very much the same way. It drove me crazy. He would turn his head and put his hand up as if to say, "Talk to the hand, 'cause I'm not eating!" I just continued to give him milk to keep him from being hungry and finally gave up trying to force it. The nanny would come in and say, "What food are we going to throw away today?" Because that's what we did for the longest time. Just keep offering something each day but try not to make a big deal out of it. Ds has a favorite CD that he likes to have in when he eats. FWIW, he is now 18 months and is still refusing most fingerfoods. I do get exasperated about it but as he will eat crackers, biscuits, etc. I know that it is not a physical problem and he is quite developmentally advanced in other areas so I don't worry that there's something going on there. It is very tough to hear other mums talk about all the things that their children eat and know that yours is so difficult. As, dh says though, he won't be taking baby food with him to college!

stitch Tue 01-Mar-05 19:48:01

i think your hv is right. babies wont let themselves go hungry. but the battle with you can become a major major thing.
i know its hard, but if she doesnt want to eat, then leave it. let her knoe that it is not a big deal toyou, and after a few days, she might start eating without the drama. offer her the food, if she wont take it, forget it. because remember, your sanity is far more important
good luck

helsi Tue 01-Mar-05 19:48:10

Be reassured that she will eat. If you are worried please take her to see health visitor or doctor.
My friends ds didn't eat properly till he was nearly one. Anything lumpy he wasn't interested in. He came round eventually. She kept him on baby jars for ages.

jabberwocky Tue 01-Mar-05 19:48:15

Ds was very much the same way. It drove me crazy. He would turn his head and put his hand up as if to say, "Talk to the hand, 'cause I'm not eating!" I just continued to give him milk to keep him from being hungry and finally gave up trying to force it. The nanny would come in and say, "What food are we going to throw away today?" Because that's what we did for the longest time. Just keep offering something each day but try not to make a big deal out of it. Ds has a favorite CD that he likes to have in when he eats. FWIW, he is now 18 months and is still refusing most fingerfoods. I do get exasperated about it but as he will eat crackers, biscuits, etc. I know that it is not a physical problem and he is quite developmentally advanced in other areas so I don't worry that there's something going on there. It is very tough to hear other mums talk about all the things that their children eat and know that yours is so difficult. As, dh says though, he won't be taking baby food with him to college!

helsi Tue 01-Mar-05 19:48:15

Be reassured that she will eat eventually. What is she like on baby foods in jars? If you are worried please take her to see health visitor or doctor.
My friends ds didn't eat properly till he was nearly one. Anything lumpy he wasn't interested in. He came round eventually. She kept him on baby jars for ages.

helsi Tue 01-Mar-05 19:48:15

Be reassured that she will eat eventually. What is she like on baby foods in jars? If you are worried please take her to see health visitor or doctor.
My friends ds didn't eat properly till he was nearly one. Anything lumpy he wasn't interested in. He came round eventually. She kept him on baby jars for ages.

jabberwocky Tue 01-Mar-05 19:49:54

wow,helsi, strange goings on with the site today.

jackeroo Tue 01-Mar-05 20:13:41

i really feel for you as i know it's very stressful when they just won't eat... my DS has been like that frequently. there's nothing worse than when you come to dread meal times... the best advice i've heard is that our responsibility is only to offer them food - not to make them eat it. DS seemed to get better when i relaxed a bit more - but it's not easy! (then again he still doesn't eat at times). i guess you can just keep on offering and i'm sure she'll eventually she will come around.

HappyMumof2 Tue 01-Mar-05 20:19:47

Message withdrawn

bambi06 Tue 01-Mar-05 20:19:54

keep your calm and busy yourself whilst he`s eating so he`s not getting the wanted behaviour!!! my daughter still eats better if i ignore her otherwise she forgets whats she `s doing and shes 3 1/2! try new intersting things..ice cream cones filled with things and leave them for a while then if they dont eat just take it away and wait till next time , dont fuss over them otherwise they do it all the more and then they`ll get bored

charlibunny Tue 01-Mar-05 20:23:08

Thanx 4 your tips, She has refused jarred baby food from around 6 months of age. She had alwys been a tough eater, she used to make herslef gag, but now its getting worse each day. She wont even eat yoghurt, chocolate or anything at all!! The only thing is, if i dont feed her, she will be up in the night screaming cuz she is hungry.. yet still refuses to eat.
I think the thing that bothers me most is how violent she is with it, hitting me very hard. aaagh, she is such and angel in the day, but when it comes to food, she is the devil re-encarnated!!

pipsy1 Sun 13-Mar-05 17:46:37

My DD is exactly the same. She is 18mths and lives on a pint of milk a day most days and that is it. On a good day the total food intake would be a handful of shreddies, a fromage frais and a couple of mouthfuls of egg. That is a GOOD day. It worries me no end, she is getting no goodness. The HV says not to worry.... And of course she wakes at 4am for the day, presumably starving but still resisting food.

Amanda3266 Sun 13-Mar-05 18:03:09

Hi charlibunny,

Your HV is right in saying that she won't deliberately starve herself. However, that's not enough help in itself. I used to have all this with DS - and it's amazing how quickly they pick up on it. What finally worked with us was taking him out of the highchair - he was crawling by 10 months (is your DD doing this). It seemed that as he was able to get about he had not enough time to sit and eat - it used to freak me out as he took till 9 months to go through the night and I used to get myself in a dreadful state about how much he was eating and trying to calculate if I was likley to be up that night. In the end the only thing that worked was leaving a platter of finger foods in easy reach so that he could just help himself as he crawled and cruised his way through each day - I used to leave out grated cheeses, cubes of bread and butter, toast and marmite fingers, and chopped banana etc.

Try not to show her you are frustrated as she'll love the response she gets and you'll end up with real problems and battles every time you want her to eat. Is she gaining weight okay? if she is then my guess is that she's filling up on milk and you may need to cut this back.

Lastly, don't worry too much about the violent response. Babies of this age don't understand that their physical actions impact on others. She is just responding with frustration and anger and a tantrum as you want her to eat and she doesn't want to. She could also be teething and may not want to eat because of that. At the end of the day it's not worth fighting over - you can cajole and fuss and make every other effort to get food into her mouth but ultimately she has control over swallowing it. - if she won't then the hassle is just not worth it. Try the "food within easy reach" thing and see if she just helps herself - if she does - give lots of praise.

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