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Help - Dinner refusenik, we are going hard core, are we being too mean ?

(16 Posts)
rookiemater Sun 05-Oct-08 18:35:34

DS 2.5 has a fairly limited diet. We are trying to improve the situation by having more family meals together, but easing in to this by starting off with things that he is quite fond of.

First couple of days went quite well, but tonight home made soup and vegetable pizza were on offer. I knew that the soup was unlikely to be touched, but thought that the shop bought pizza would go down ok. However DS refused to touch it.

I thought we should maybe give him an oatcake with his milk before bed, but DH reckons we shouldn't give him anything else and see what happens. Thoughts and suggestions please.

mumto2andnomore Sun 05-Oct-08 18:40:33

I have a fussy 5 year old so I sympathise. When he was 2 I wouldnt have been able to send him to bed hungry so I agree with you, something plain and some milk before bed.

BeHereNow Sun 05-Oct-08 18:40:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

As others will tell you on here don't make food/eating/mealtimes into a battle or its a slippery slope downwards to a fussy eater.

Perhaps he simply wasn't hungry? Personally if my 17 month old doesn't eat his dinner, I give him some fruit/yoghurt for pudding and then his milk before bed as usual. I wouldn't give him an oatcake before bed if you don't normally. He may eat more breakfast though tomorrow morning!

rookiemater Sun 05-Oct-08 18:53:59

Thanks folks. Thing is he is already a fussy eater. I'm not sure how much worse he could be than he is now and I don't think I can cope with another 5 years of it

BeHereNow Sun 05-Oct-08 19:02:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

rookie, imo 18mths to 3 is the worst time eating wise. They start to develop their own tastes and opinions and let them be known. It's fine to give him the things he likes over and over (I am still doing that now for a 7 year old and a 4 year old!). Somedays he may eat and others not. The important thing is not to make an issue out of it. (easier said than done, says she who had a battle with dd yesterday over her lunch!)

Does he have snacks in between meals? What does he drink? You could either beef up the snacks with lots of healthy things and downplay the meals or take the snacks out and just do the meals. Also juice/milk drinking before meals tends to fill up their tums too.

rookiemater Sun 05-Oct-08 22:17:16

I'm trying to cut down on the snacks in between meals and he does have either a fruit juice or smoothie during the day. I'm not too bothered about that as although its high in calories and natural sugar at least it is fruit so he is getting some of his fruit portions. He also loves apples, grapes and pears so quite often has those.

So do you think if we keep persevering with the family meals, but also maybe give him a slice of bread or something like that as well, then thats the best thing to do ?

paddyclamp Sun 05-Oct-08 23:14:11

I went through this with my DS. Made the choice he ate what we ate or did without. If he didn't eat what was on offer I told him he could have fruit but not rubbish! Followed the usual advice bout not making a fuss if he didn't eat etc..After a few days he was eating what was put in front of him or at least making a good attempt

To be honest, i think it might have been the fact that we sat down and ate with him that helped.

I'd still stick with the fruit tho and if he normally has milk at bedtime then keep that goin, that's what we did.

Anyway he's 4.6 now and is a really good eater!

rookiemater Mon 06-Oct-08 11:40:48

Thanks paddyclamp, am mid way through a batch of cooking as am off on Mondays so trying to get meals sorted for the rest of the week. Good to know that you did it and it worked.

Fennel Mon 06-Oct-08 13:00:07

My dds (of assorted fussiness) have always been allowed just bread/toast or a sandwich or fruit instead of the main meal. But nothing else. So they don't go hungry and we don't make a fuss, but it's not very exciting for them to opt out.

I think this works well, our meals aren't too stressful even though not all the dds are fantastic eaters.

bluemousemummy Mon 06-Oct-08 13:41:16

Ds (21 months) knows that if he doesn't eat or at least attempt to eat his tea, there's nothing else on offer AT ALL except milk at bedtime. I don't even offer him fruit because to be honest if he had his way he would live on fruit and yogurt, with the occasional biscuit!

I am fairly relaxed about what and when he eats during the day and we almost never have a proper sit down lunch but I try to not give him any snacks in the afternoon for 2 hours before his tea time, and that usually ensures he eats, or at least attempts to eat his tea. I wouldn't faff about offering alternatives as you are only making life difficult for yourself in the long run, but as others have said on here there's no point in turning mealtimes into battles - just take it away if he doesn't eat it but make him understand that it's that or nothing.

CarGirl Mon 06-Oct-08 13:46:49

I think as well if giving them something new or that they wouldn't normally eat just give them a very small amount on their plate.

rookiemater Mon 06-Oct-08 13:58:07

Thanks folks. Lunchtimes aren't so bad, just had a lovely lunch with DS where encouraged by complete feigned disinteres he ate some chicken and hoummus in addition to his pitta bread and cheese , preen, preen.

Out of interest what sort of things do you give at dinner time as I need to up my repetoire a bit.

BeHereNow Mon 06-Oct-08 16:20:08

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Weegle Mon 06-Oct-08 16:34:54

We just give DS exactly what we are having (although if it's going to be something particularly spicy I might take his portion out before adding the heat). We all eat together and the same thing and this helps. No one comments on what he eats/doesn't eat. If he tries something and doesn't like it then he can have bread and butter. If he doesn't try it I say "oh you must not be hungry" and end the meal. Now he's very good and genuinely if he's hungry he'll eat what's offered, if he's not he doesn't. And I don't stress about that - he had weeks of eating like a dustbin and then weeks of barely eating anything. As long as he's got energy then I don't stress!

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