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Food under one - just for fun…? My 8 month old takes this very literally!

(9 Posts)
mrsmugoo Mon 17-Nov-14 10:13:11

I've been weaning my (breastfed) 8 month old since 23 weeks. We do a mixture of spoon-feeding and finger foods. We did traditional fruit and veg purees for a couple of weeks until I realised it really wasn't worth the effort of making them and trying to shovel them in for the mess it created and practically zero calories so I do try to ensure the food offered is actually nutritious and packs some calories.

Spoon fed food is whatever we have, but just mushed up. Finger foods are things like bread sticks&humous, sandwiches, pieces of fruit, eggy bread etc..

However, he just isn't interested in eating. At all.

He will play with finger food - scrunch it up, smear it all over his face, hands and hair and throw it on the floor. He will put some in his mouth but mainly just blow raspberries and spit it back out again.

He isn't keen on spoon feeding - there has been the odd time when he's decided he does like the taste of something and he's accepted 6 or 7 spoonfuls but mostly it's either mouth clamped shut from the outset or one spoonful goes in and then clamped shut. Except Fromage Frais - he will almost always accept half a pot of this.

I've had advice from the HV to try to schedule his feeds and space them out a little as previous he was feeding on demand and feeding literally every hour and a half so obviously full of milk all the time. So now I feed more or less every 3 hours and always try to leave an hour between food and milk. I've tried milk first food later and food first, then topped up with milk. Neither makes a jot of difference - he hasn't made the connection yet that this "game" (eating) has anything to do with appetite whatsoever.

Food to him is just a game that he's either in the mood for or not. (Mainly not.)

I know food under one is just for fun - but is it really? It is ok that my 8 month old basically doesn't eat solids?

I try very hard not to get stressed out - so each meal time is all smiles and encouragement and if he refuses to eat I just clear the food away and don't make a big deal of it.

Is this normal? Ok? Common? He's my first so I have no idea, but all my friends with similar age babies are all starting to cut down milk feeds now and their babies seem to look forward to food in a way that mine just doesn't.

Writerwannabe83 Mon 17-Nov-14 11:57:03

I'm kind of having the same issue with my DS who is 8 months old next week.

BLW seems like the biggest waste of time because he just plays with the food as opposed to eating it. It just seems so pointless.

He will eat what me and DH eat but we have to hand him a little bit which he takes off us and puts in his mouth but if we were to put a plate in front of him with the food on it he won't eat it, just squish it in his hands, smear it over his face, throw the bowl on the floor etc etc. So hats the point? It may be fun for him but it doesn't meet any of his dietary needs.

He's very good at eating mashed food when me or DH spoon feed him and if we give him the spoon he attempt to feed himself.

I don't really see the point of BLW and finger food etc but I don't rule it out completely. For example for breakfast this morning he had done toast to rub on his face, stick it in his hair and try and put it in his ear and then I spoon fed him a bowl of custard in order for him to actually have some food.

Like I said though, he's very good at taking food from a spoon and putting something in his mouth that is handed to him - for example a bit of mushroom.

As a result his frequency of breast feeding has gone right down, he feeds maybe 4 times a day and even then they are quick feeds.

josephine1986 Mon 17-Nov-14 12:26:39

Honestly I really would try not to worry too much. If he is just making a mess perhaps just give him stuff which is easier to clean up from the high hair, floor , walls! Not weetabix for example!
A lot of babies 'get' food later and there is a wide spectrum of when babies start to grasp that these 'toys' that taste nice can actually fill you up!
Try not to get stressed about it...hard I know...he will get there when he's ready and won't starve himself. Yes it does mean you are still having to provide all the nutrition from bf which can be a pain. But he will pick up on tension at mealtimes and that's not good either.
You will probably find him getting to grips with it in the next couple of months.

Chunderella Mon 17-Nov-14 14:19:05

Food under 1 is not just for fun, no. I don't know where that slogan came from but there's no science behind it at all. Neither breastmilk nor first stage formula contains enough iron, for example, unless consumed in very large quantities (second stage formula has more but that brings its own issues, for example constipation). We're born with enough stocks to last the first 6 months or so and then we'll usually need to get it from elsewhere.

Having said that, not all children are interested in solids at 6 months, or even 8 months. Including my own. DD was just not arsed, for ages, until it all happened pretty much overnight around 9 months or so. I worried, but she was in good health and took Healthy Start drops each day. And she was fine. It's tough because it seems like most babies are the opposite, nicking things off other people's plates at 5 months, and the weaning discussion generally seems to focus much more on early than late. I now realise it's pretty common, there've been loads of threads on here, but at the time I knew nobody in that position. All you can do is keep trying. If finger food is going in his mouth and getting chewed, I bet he's not spitting all of it out. He eats yoghurt, he'll accept a spoonful of what you're offering, that's something. While they need more than milk alone, they don't need a huge amount more. I agree with josephine that in all likelihood, the penny will drop in the next month or two. It almost always does. Meanwhile, it could be worse and you're going in the right direction.

batmanandrobin Mon 17-Nov-14 19:51:36

i hadn't heard it's just for fun, as a PP said, i was told at 6 month they needed more solid that milk because of iron. i make all my own food (mainly because i love cooking and often just blend my dinner for dc) and have had to trial and error lots of flavours. somedays it's like dc can't get enough, others solid gets the cold shoulder. i hadn't heard that fruit and veg mixs were empty calories.. i used to make veg soup all the time!!!

have you tried marmite on toast? or jam? my dc particularly likes bagel! i would just keep trying different thinks, and stay calm like you are. i often put breakfast on high chair and walk away to make my cuppa (dc within sight) so she doesn't feel she's being watched.

good luck!!

fuckwitteryhasform Mon 17-Nov-14 19:56:24

I've got a 12 month old who is my third DC and she would only eat tiny nibbles until very recently (after her first birthday). She drunk a lot of milk, was (still is) a chubby happy little thing but would only tolerate finger foods most of which got chucked on the floor after a little play and taste. I kept offering and suddenly overnight she seems to have got her appetite and is on three square meals. I would have probably been beside myself with worry if she hadn't been a neglected third child and I thought, she looks healthy, she'll eat eventually, I'll just keep trying. She also had about 6 weeks of non stop illness leading up to her first birthday (colds, ear infections, sickness bug) so maybe would have started eating a bit earlier if it hadn't been for that.

Chunderella Mon 17-Nov-14 20:04:27

Yeah some of them really get knocked off course with their eating when they're not well. Or teething. Again there's nothing you can really do other than wait it out.

LetMeDriveTheBus Mon 17-Nov-14 20:11:54

I did BLW with both mine. What you're describe seems really normal for some babies I think.

DS1 was probably 9 or 10 months old before he actually started eating a decent amount. Lots of tasting and playing as PP has said but I was confident that he was getting what he needed from milk. His weight was fine.

DS2 was independently eating 3 massive meals within weeks of introducing finger foods. Despite eating loads, he still hasn't cut his milk feeds down though (he's 9 months now).

HansKristoffAnnaSven Mon 17-Nov-14 20:17:18

I have the opposite problem. A 10 month old who likes his food but currently on a 2 week nursing strike and drinking next to no milk sad

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