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Dd 13, won't cook, can't cook.

(26 Posts)
VivaLeBeaver Wed 05-Mar-14 08:36:12

Ok, she's actually not 13 till the end of the month but I still feel she should be able to do more than she can.

I'm working till 6:30pm tonight which happens maybe once a week. She wants to eat earlier and I'm struggling with stuff she can eat.

Default option seems to be money for the chip shop over the road. She will heat a microwave meal up.

She refuses to try and use the oven. I told her there's a pizza in the fridge she could have and she starts wailing straight away that she's not cooking it, she'll burn herself, etc. which has been her response every time.

I have when I've been home made her get stuff out the oven so she can see with a big pair of double oven mitts that she can't burn herself. But this has always been a big drama, accompanied by tears and she refuses to do it if in the house on her own.

Surely most 13 yo can cook a pizza? Any ideas for what to do apart from just hope she grows up soon?

LaurieFairyCake Wed 05-Mar-14 08:40:32

Can't whoevers looking after her help her confused

Or have you got an even worse babysitter/au pair?

OldBeanbagz Wed 05-Mar-14 08:42:48

My 12 year old DD loves cooking/baking but is very reluctant to take things out of the oven. I think like your DD she's probably scared of buring herself, even though she never has when i'm there. She would however put things in the oven to start cooking.

On the nights when i'm taking DS to a club and she's home alone, she either has a large snack (something like chopped veg and houmous) and then eats late with me or i'll leave her leftovers from the previous day to heat up in the microwave. This she's happy with.

How about your dd cooking pizza when you're in the house to start with. That way she knows she can do it before being left on her own?

VivaLeBeaver Wed 05-Mar-14 08:42:53

Nope, she's nearly 13. She doesn't have a babysitter, au pair. Hasn't since she started high school.

VivaLeBeaver Wed 05-Mar-14 08:45:06

She refuses to eat left overs apart from curry. Won't even eat reheated pizza as she reckons its awful.

She has done pizza when I've been home but kept screeching that she'd get burnt.

Maybe she's just too young for the oven then. I was cooking Sunday lunch at her age on my own!

rachyconks Wed 05-Mar-14 08:45:12

Does she not do any cooking in school? Surely they use an oven there. Just give her the choice - make it yourself or don't eat anything. She'll soon realise she has to do it.

LaurieFairyCake Wed 05-Mar-14 08:48:35

A child of 12 without SEN who wails and actually cries at the thought of burning herself is possibly not ready to be left alone - is that the only area where she struggles? Would she be able to cope if someone came to the door or there was an emergency?

Is there anyone you can get to pop round?

Anyone wailing and crying over something so teeny suggests that it might be about something else like she can't bear being left alone.

I agree it's not 'normal' to not be able to cook a pizza
- think you're going to have to spend some time teaching her how to do it while you're there

OldBeanbagz Wed 05-Mar-14 08:54:01

I'm with her on the reheated pizza, cold pizza is much better.

I agree with rachyconks that you'll just have to be tough with her, if she wants to eat a meal, then she'll have to cook it. Otherwise she'll have to make herself a sandwich.

It's not unusual to not do cooking at school. My DD's school doesn't have provision yet but we cook plenty at home so i know both her and DS will be able to fend for themselves when they leave home.

TantrumsAndBalloons Wed 05-Mar-14 08:54:40

At that age,mine would have had the option to cook something or screech about it and be hungry and wait until I got home.

They both started cooking a family dinner one night a week at that age.

What would happen if you didnt offer alternative?
If the only options were to cook the pizza or whatever else or to wait for you?

Can you get her involved in cooking every night, get her involved in the shopping and meal planning for the week so she can decide what she wants to cook or eat on the night you are late home?
It might make her feel a bit more in control if she decides at the beginning of the week what she wants to prepare/cook that day.

throckenholt Wed 05-Mar-14 09:00:28

Mine (age 11 and 12) are still a bit wary about putting things in (just beginning to twig it is cold at this stage !) and getting things out of the oven.

But - I think your dd is building herself a big problem. I would have a campaign of making her do it with your supervision as often as possible so that she learns to assess the risk and act accordingly. Facing a fear like that helps build confidence - leaving it hiding in the background doesn't help.

I wouldn't expect her to do it on her own for a while though.

Is she happy to take stuff out of the microwave ? - they can also be very hot.

Asteria Wed 05-Mar-14 09:02:23

Is she just making a massive fuss so that you will get exasperated and eventually do it for her? My DS used to adopt that tactic a lot! All 3 of ours help to cook (11,8,5) but only the oldest is allowed to do unattended oven stuff.
Does your dd not do cooking in school at all - if so how does she cope with that? Might be worth looking into a local cookery course - there might be something free in a local college? Either way she is old enough and it sounds like she is just being difficult so you will let get her way!
I made my mother's wedding cake at the same age!!

5madthings Wed 05-Mar-14 09:14:30

Is she making a fuss because she can?!

What about bmeans on toast or soup she can heat on a hob?

Tbh I have little sympathy, my eldest two are 14 and 11 both can and do cook. Chilli, spaghetti bog, home made soup etc.

I guess start getting her involved more with cooking when you are home, is she really upset or is she just creating because she can? Maybe let her invite a friend round, whilst you are there And say they can cook themselves a pizza. See if she creates in the same way!

5madthings Wed 05-Mar-14 09:14:40

Is she making a fuss because she can?!

What about bmeans on toast or soup she can heat on a hob?

Tbh I have little sympathy, my eldest two are 14 and 11 both can and do cook. Chilli, spaghetti bog, home made soup etc.

I guess start getting her involved more with cooking when you are home, is she really upset or is she just creating because she can? Maybe let her invite a friend round, whilst you are there And say they can cook themselves a pizza. See if she creates in the same way!

5madthings Wed 05-Mar-14 09:14:47

Is she making a fuss because she can?!

What about bmeans on toast or soup she can heat on a hob?

Tbh I have little sympathy, my eldest two are 14 and 11 both can and do cook. Chilli, spaghetti bog, home made soup etc.

I guess start getting her involved more with cooking when you are home, is she really upset or is she just creating because she can? Maybe let her invite a friend round, whilst you are there And say they can cook themselves a pizza. See if she creates in the same way!

5madthings Wed 05-Mar-14 09:15:01

Is she making a fuss because she can?!

What about bmeans on toast or soup she can heat on a hob?

Tbh I have little sympathy, my eldest two are 14 and 11 both can and do cook. Chilli, spaghetti bog, home made soup etc.

I guess start getting her involved more with cooking when you are home, is she really upset or is she just creating because she can? Maybe let her invite a friend round, whilst you are there And say they can cook themselves a pizza. See if she creates in the same way!

5madthings Wed 05-Mar-14 09:15:16

Is she making a fuss because she can?!

What about bmeans on toast or soup she can heat on a hob?

Tbh I have little sympathy, my eldest two are 14 and 11 both can and do cook. Chilli, spaghetti bog, home made soup etc.

I guess start getting her involved more with cooking when you are home, is she really upset or is she just creating because she can? Maybe let her invite a friend round, whilst you are there And say they can cook themselves a pizza. See if she creates in the same way!

5madthings Wed 05-Mar-14 09:16:02

Oops sorry, New phone...

MsIngaFewmarbles Wed 05-Mar-14 09:20:00

DD1 and 2 (11 and 10) are learning to cook and can manage simple meals such as pasta carbonara and curry and rice. DSD is also 10 and refuses to even try, she's scared of cutting or burning herself. I'm trying gentle encouragement but so far it's not working. DD2 was a bit nervous at first but I stayed in the kitchen and supervised her for a while and now she's happy to cook. Maybe more supervised cooking for a while?

CaptainCorellisVentolin Wed 05-Mar-14 09:42:51

I honestly think that at her age she should most definitely be happy and able to stick a pizza in the oven and get it out again without turning herself into a fritter!

Is it "drama" because she is not happy with you working that late? That is not a criticism btw!! - my two are home alone after school every weekday until 6pm and they are almost 13 and 10.

My DC are happy to eat a bit later but equally happy to cook, be it pizza, pasta, home made soup etc. DD even makes a great simple Thai curry and likes baking bread.

Even DS of 10 can make cup cakes solo and sometimes surprises us smile

Maybe it is time to put your foot down: no money for chip shop but a pizza - like it or lump it!!

Artandco Wed 05-Mar-14 09:54:10

She should be able to cook at that age tbh. Most things on the hob are easy enough. Can you teach her risotto/ tomato sauce/ omelette etc? At that age we all cooked once each a week

Has she never done any cooking/ baking with you? My 4 year old makes blueberry muffins alone and I just do the oven bit, but would assume in nearly 10 years he will have progressed to the oven also. He also makes a great mushroom and spinach omelette alone, with me standing next to him due to heat. But again I would assume in 10 years he will be trusted to realise alone its hot

ChoudeBruxelles Wed 05-Mar-14 10:02:29

My ds (7) can make a cake on his own (I obviously am about in case he needs help) including putting it in the oven and taking it out. He can easily cook things like oven chips and frozen pizza. I think a 12 year old shod be able to do that. If she doesn't want to them she would just have to wait til you get home.

VivaLeBeaver Wed 05-Mar-14 10:15:08

She does baking with me cupcakes, etc. I've tried to get her to get stuff out the oven but she refuses and I end up doing it.

I think you're all right I need to get her more involved in cooking at home. So tell her if she wants to make cakes we will but only if she gets them out the oven.

They did six weeks of cooking in year seven.....I can't remember if they actually cooked or did fruit salad type stuff. School provide all the ingredients and she doesn't bring anything home so it passes me by a bit.

I don't think she's bothered about been home alone. She seems to enjoy it. She is a bit nervy generally about stuff. She's only recently started using the toaster. She gets herself worked up about DT at school because of the machines.

throckenholt Wed 05-Mar-14 10:40:31

Maybe getting her used to the oven then will boost her confidence generally with machines. Good to be cautious but not to the extent that it stops you doing things.

drspouse Wed 05-Mar-14 11:04:28

I'd second the suggestions of beans on toast, ravioli etc. and get her doing the oven/kettle for pasta/stirring things on the hob when you are cooking.

Several of my Brownies (and some Guides, aged 10+) have been told they aren't allowed to take things out of the oven/light matches/touch hot pans/kettles even under supervision. I'm afraid we do not have a "must not touch hot things" consent box on our enrolment forms and we just forge ahead with supervised cooking/lighting matches. So we do have 7 year olds taking things out of the oven under supervision. I let the Rainbows (5-6) use the sushi knife too...

cory Wed 05-Mar-14 18:23:50

I think at that age I would be tempted to point out that the risks of my burning or cutting myself when cooking for her are just as great and that I don't really see why that would be any better... hmm

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