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Why won't my baby eat?

(23 Posts)
fifitot Mon 28-Feb-11 13:43:07

Sorry if this thread is more of the same but honestly I don't know what to do!

DS is nearly 8 m and is not interested in food at all! Hates me coming near him with a spoon now. Will mess around with food in his hand but won't really eat anything so BLW also a non-starter.

He has had a cold but is better now so hoping for an improvment but all weekend he has had a couple of spoonfuls of yoghurt and last night about 2tsp of spagetti and veg sauce.

He is BFing normally but would love to cut back on this but while he is eating so little there is no chance. I am amazed at some of the threads here which show that babies are eating loads of solids by this age.

When and how will my LO 'get it'??????

lorisparkle Mon 28-Feb-11 20:42:48

I know this won't help but from chatting to other mums it is quite common for LO not to really 'get' solids until they are 9 months. I personally would go the BLW route and not 'push' spoon feeding. I would still offer a spoon but see if he will take it. Try not to worry it won't last forever and the more you worry the more they pick up on it.

Sorry can't be of more help.

UnseenAcademicalMum Mon 28-Feb-11 20:53:25

Give him time. Let him explore the food, don't worry about mess. If you do spoon feed him, give him a spoon too and encourage him to feed himself. Is his weight an issue?

Whatever you do, don't allow it to become a battle. If he indicates he has had enough, just leave it. If he is breastfeeding well, he will still get all the nutrition he needs from that for now. I know it can seem frustrating, particularly if you were looking forward to some freedom afforded by bf less, but that will come with time, honestly.

babybouncer Mon 28-Feb-11 21:40:36

It took my LO until 10monthsish to 'get it' and when he did it was very sudden, like a switch just went on. He never had any interest in spoons (unless they had petits filous on!), so we sort of did BLW, but I had many moments of panic that he'd never work out how to eat. Around 8/9months he started eating toast, shreddies, some fruit and baby crisps/rice cakes (not at the same time!), but most 'real food' was just pushed around and ignored. Then, suddenly, we were away with friends for a weekend, and he started eating fish fingers and alphabetti spaghetti, then mac and cheese - neither of which I had thought were finger food, but he managed them!

Many of my friends' children were eating full meals long before then and even some who were doing BLW seemed to be doing better. It's difficult, but try to have faith - they get there in their own time. I wanted to 'give up' (not sure how I would have done that?) many times, but he's got there eventually.

fifitot Tue 01-Mar-11 09:21:39

Thanks for replies. He is my second and I thought I'd be more laid back this time but I am still stressing!

He has dropped a centile which got the HV on my back a bit re getting him on 3 meals a day and cutting back on his milk - easier said than done!

Will just keep trying! He goes to nursery 3 days a week now so may eat better there with the other kids.

Thanks again.

MooM00 Tue 01-Mar-11 10:18:23

Same problem here still fifi. Dc3 is just 8m and has recently started eating 'more'. But she is in no way eating what the other 2 ate at this age. She will not even open her mouth for any 'proper' food. But my view is that no child starts school still eating only toast,plain yog and mummy's milk, so give her time and she has to give in eventually.... surely? I am lying low and keeping out of the way of the HV though as they always wind me up about these things.

UnseenAcademicalMum Tue 01-Mar-11 12:18:24

fifi, my ds2 dropped 2 centiles (from 9th to 0.4th) at around 6 months. The hv started nagging about getting him on 3 meals a day and reducing his milk. I can honestly say it was the worst advice I ever received as it made weaning so stressful and heavily contributed to the fact that ds2 will not eat well now. Dropping one centile is not much and at over 6 months they should only be weighing him every 3 months (max) anyway. Provided he continues to gain weight, he is probably fine.

AitchTwoOh Tue 01-Mar-11 12:23:10

but what three meals would the Hv suggest that will be more nourishing than bm? i never understand that advice.

i would keep on with the finger food and loaded spoons, tbh. the thing about blw is that it allows YOUR child to develop at their own pace, not according to someone else's schedule (where that is a bummer is if you want to reduce bfing of course but there is always formula).

9 mos was the standard time to introduce solids for babies in the 30s in north america, fwiw.

MoChan Tue 01-Mar-11 12:25:46

My DD barely ate until she was about 12 months - she began walking then, and I think it's no coincidence. I got very stressed about it, and wish I hadn't, because she was perfectly healthy and bright. She just wasn't ready to eat much. These days (now 3.5) she's generally a good eater, will try new things, and is only minimally faddy about it.

I think as long as they're not losing loads of weight, it doesn't really matter at this age. I also think that at this stage their instinct is very strong on what's required, food-wise. I really would not worry if this happened with a second child.

MoChan Tue 01-Mar-11 12:26:24

my second child. If I had one.

lorisparkle Tue 01-Mar-11 12:31:39

I have only had DS3 weighed once since he was a tiny baby and think that it is the best way to go! My friend was pressurised by her HV about how much milk and then how much food her LO was eating and I think that is why he is not such a good eater. Unless you LO looks pale, underweight, is lethargic, is not moving into the new age of clothes, then relax and go with it. My LO will always take puree off a spoon and rice cakes where what started him on finger foods. THere are some yummy baby biscuits with nothing naughty in them which might help get the idea that putting things in the mouth to eat is a good idea!

porcupine11 Tue 01-Mar-11 12:37:59

My DS2 is the same, and he's 10.5 months! He shrieks if I try to spoon feed him, but I've found in the last week that if I step away from the table and get on with other things, he will spoon feed himself on the sly! Just leave him to it I think. I saw a HV last week, who agreed & said not to worry (but she did tell me to stop night feeds pronto - he still bfs every 2.5 hrs in the night).

I've also noticed that if he eats too much food on a fluke day, he will wake up in the night and projectile puke everywhere. This is weird, and I'm starting to use Gaviscon at bedtime to try and help.

porcupine11 Tue 01-Mar-11 12:39:59

MoChan - I thought exactly the same, as I was super relaxed about first child, but second child brings all new problems and stresses - including, am I actually spending enough time trying to get him to eat, as I'm so distracted by DS1?!

MoChan Tue 01-Mar-11 12:41:22

I just think they know when they're not ready. Don't force them to eat. Leave them with some finger foods, and when they are interested, they will eat. Ignore HVs who say that baby HAS TO EAT.

Would be my advice. grin

MoChan Tue 01-Mar-11 12:43:27

I don't mean to be insensitive and arrogant, porcupine. I completely understand that every child is different. I just think mothers end up under SO MUCH pressure over this eating thing. It really isn't that important until they're a bit older.


gourd Tue 01-Mar-11 15:49:37

Cutting milk feeds to get the child to grow?!! That doesn't make sense to me. There are more Kcals and fat in milk than in fruit and veg anyway that's for sure. I agree that 8 months isn't very old and whatever your HV says they still get nearly all their calories and nutrition from milk at that age. Just relax and enjoy shared meal times more - and expect mess rather than very much to actually go in and perhaps your LO will relax too and start to enjoy meals more? Babies do pick up on parental stress! Perhaps just concentrate on fattier/more calorific foods like cheese (Cream cheese and other soft ones like Goats log or Mozarella are good) and full fat Greek yogurt to start with if weight in an issue.

fifitot Tue 01-Mar-11 15:59:25

Thanks - I know what all of you are saying makes sense, it's just hard to keep a sense of perspective isn't it? I am sure he will 'get it' soon but it is so frustrating having to put out food, try and get him to eat it and pretty much bin it all.

I would really like him to cut back on milk feeds though - i am bloody exhausted with the nightfeeds but until he takes more calories in the day I don't feel able to.

AitchTwoOh Tue 01-Mar-11 20:34:17

now that you are introducing other foods you could consider formula?

and please don't put out foods specially for the baby, just don't put any salt in your food and let him get on with bits and bobs, it's so much less stressful.

oh, also. my children used to do a windscreen wiper action and throw all food to the floor if there was too much on their tray, i think it overwhelmed them. two pieces of food, max.

feministmama Tue 01-Mar-11 21:37:27

Oh dear. I really feel your pain - I'm on my third baby, and while the other two were no trouble, this one has been a lot fussier and has sometimes screamed and refused to open her mouth at all. The only thing you can do is stay calm and keep trying. Everyone else is right in saying that one day sooner or later it will click, as long as you keep offering a sensible supply of solid food, and he will reduce his milk himself.

In the meantime, to help your calmness, I would suggest making sure your baby is very hungry before you try feeding him, and to concentrate on just one or two foods (on the spoon, anyway - definitely hand him stuff to have a go at like rice cakes and broccoli and whatever you're eating, I wouldn't worry if lots of it goes on the floor) until he enjoys those. Something sickly sweet like pureed pear or banana and just keep repeating the same stuff each day until he gets it. Or anything that's been more of a favourite - stick with that. I had several weeks where I just repeated banana and weetabix for breakfast and then tomato sauce, potato and cheese for lunch. But we're getting there slowly.

Good luck.

fifitot Tue 01-Mar-11 22:12:45

He won't do formula - or any bottle at all - little devil.

Thankfully he now appears to be eating at nursery but also refusing milk there. He will have BFs at home but no food! Something has to give!

AitchTwoOh Wed 02-Mar-11 10:18:57

you have to get out of the house for the day, and see your friends and HAVE FUN without your son. now that he is eating (albeit when you are absent) you have that option and you MUST take it. everything is so much more bearable when you have been out for a boozy lunch with your mates.

i feel for you, one of my friends had a bottle refuser, it was a total nightmare for her when she got to this stage. and she couldn't blame her daughter, who wouldn't prefer a cuddle and hot milk from their mother to normal food?

fifitot Wed 02-Mar-11 19:13:23

Thanks Aitch. I was actually off sick from work this week and while I felt terrible, having a day to myself (albeit in bed with some paracetamol!) was very restful - while they were at nursery and school!

Nooona Sun 28-Aug-11 13:24:56

Just read through this thread and am beginning to feel a bit better about my DD who won't eat and is 8 months old. We started at 5 months with a spoon but she was not interested. I've since then gone down the BLW route. She does put things in her mouth, but has not swallowed anything and just coughs bits back out. She does have reflux, so milk feeding has not gone well ever. We have been putting meds in her mouth since 4 weeks old, so I'm not surprised that she won't take anything (spoon or food) that we try to put in her mouth. It is hard though when out and about with other Mums with babies the same age who are demolishing whole bowls of food.

I feel like I spend my whole day trying to feed her. A typical BF takes about 1.25 hours - she is on and off as the reflux means that feeding hurts her. Then we try some food which she plays with for a while before getting upset. It feels like we just spend all of our time battling to get her to eat. The paediatrician says I must concentrate on getting her to eat food, but after trying to force her to eat I've given up. Horrible for her and for me. I can't make her eat! Her weight has gone from75th to 25th centile. Not a pleasant experience watching her get thinner.

I'm going to go easy after reading all your threads. She will get it in her own time, I hope. I think it will be better for feed times to be fun. I would be interested to hear if things improved for fifitot?

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