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Letting DD eat herself...

(17 Posts)
mummysbigsmiles Wed 01-May-13 23:03:03

My daughter is 7months old, she eats a great range of food but, me, being a little OCD hates when it goes all over her mouth or when she puts her hand in her mouth while food is in there.... I would love to start allowing her to pick up foods herself but i just cant stand the thought of mess! Does anyone have any tips??

Devora Wed 01-May-13 23:07:22

Tips for stopping messy eating or tips to help you cope with it?

You're going to have to deal with the former for a few years yet, I'm afraid. I have come across mums who wipe their toddler's face after spooning in every mouthful, and I have to say it upsets me: it makes eating such a joyless, controlled experience.

I'm really sympathetic to how you're feeling, but urge you to get some help in managing it, fast.

mummysbigsmiles Wed 01-May-13 23:22:24

Yeah i mean tips on how i can let her be messy and not panic about mess. Sleeves bibs ?? Etc...??

I am totally that woman and i know that i must start letting her enjoy it.

MortifiedAdams Wed 01-May-13 23:29:13

Go to Poundland and buy a pile of wipeable tablecloths (they stain bad quickly). Just have her in her vest for meals, which are easy to pull up over or down off and keeps the clothes away from the food. Take loads of photos as its so lovely to watch them eat, and let them get messy and properly play with the food.

Im through the other side of it now with DD but a friend has an eight month old who.now gets an after-lunch bath every day grin

KatyN Thu 02-May-13 11:50:27

try and see it as a learning experience for your little lady rather than eating. when she crawls or walks or talks she's not going to be as good as an adult who's done it for ages and it's the same with eating.

she'll get there but it might be a bit messy (falley over for walking etc). the messy will come at some point. I would suggest you go for it now rather than when she's 3 for example!

try getting body bibs and put a wipeable table cloth on the floor under her highchair. I was told to not wipe their mouths between spoonfuls or it would make everything taste of wet wipe (although we use flannels to wash our boy's face and it's a fun part of the end of a meal when I come after him with the flannel).

Unfortunately there will be lots of things she does that make you a bit uncomfortable!

Goldmandra Thu 02-May-13 12:47:06

She needs to explore food in order to learn about it and develop normal eating habits. If you stop her you are stopping her from learning important skills and getting important sensory experiences. I'm sure you don't really want to do that.

You can let her feed herself with her high chair standing in the middle of a big mat and then bath her afterwards if it bothers you that much. It's not great to restrict it to once a day but you could if you really needed to.

You can get good bibs and aprons which cover them up really well.

You could let her eat in the garden it it's warm enough where you are.

Please, please don't stop her enjoying and exploring her food. You need to find ways to cope with your emotions about it, not ways to stop her making a mess smile

mummysbigsmiles Thu 02-May-13 20:02:13

Thanks so much for all your replies I am going to just go full steam ahead and allow her right in about her food. At the end of the day whats the worst that can happen??? ������

babyphat Thu 02-May-13 20:14:12

If it helps, I found letting them self feed with finger food gets the mess over with quicker, as they get the hang of it sooner. So you could see it as putting in the hard work now to benefit later! IkEA bibs are pretty good. And if you put newspaper on the floor you can just roll it all up and chuck it after each meal.

SizzleSazz Thu 02-May-13 20:19:22

Well done on trying to overcome it now. My sister wiped her children every time they had a speck on them (food or dirt) and they now (as preteens) panic about having a slight mark on them sad

Goldmandra Thu 02-May-13 20:46:45

Go for it OP grin

dementedma Thu 02-May-13 20:49:11

sorry, thought this was a masochistic cannibalism thread......

miffybun73 Thu 02-May-13 20:51:53

I also thought from the title that your DD was "Eating" herself in a weird self harming/cannibalistic way blush

SwishSwoshSwoosh Thu 02-May-13 21:01:15

Just wanted to say hope it goes well and i think you deserve flowers for trying to get over the mess issue and let your daughter explore food in a happy way, you sound like a very nice mum!

GingerDoodle Thu 02-May-13 21:06:03

i just accept that some days the outfit may not last the day!

Some days I let her eat in a vest without a bib and chuck it straight in the wash.

MrsHerculePoirot Thu 02-May-13 21:11:45

From a practical point of view I bought three of these as otherwise we arms got covered!!! I used to rinse out in sink with water and washing up liquid or pop in machine - they dried very quickly. She did still have a bib with a lip over the top and I used to use them for painting an all sorts and she got bigger so I did get my money's worth!

these

mummysbigsmiles Thu 02-May-13 23:41:41

Haha had a giggle at the cannibalistic comment there

TotesAmazeGoats Fri 03-May-13 13:05:29

Sainsburies do the overall aprons which are really good. They are Towling on the sleeves so nice and soft. I think they are 3quid and we have several which we alternate.
We have a bucket bib over the top. She knows now when she's finished, seconds Is usually found in the bib!
Now the weather has improved, we eat a lot in the garden in the highchair. I also got some cheap squares of oilcloth/tablecloth material from haberdashery. They go under her highchair in the kitchen as I just cannot face seeing bits of mushy goo stuck to the floor! Just having those there that I can shake off makes me much less anxious!
On really bad days (think pasta bake) she just gets hosed off in the sink!

A dog would make our lives easier, the cat is only bothered about crumbs if fish or cheese is involved haha!

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