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What's the big rush with weaning?

(16 Posts)
WhyNotSmile Tue 10-Feb-15 12:58:31

DS has just turned 6 months, and we've started blw, just letting him hold for, taste it etc. He likes being able to hold bits of pepper and cucumber and suck them a bit. Not so keen on mashed potato, but tolerated it.

My MIL seems really keen to get food into him, though, and always leaves me feeling like I should be making him eat more! She's been saying he's ready for solids from when he was 4 months old (he really wasn't), and wanting me to give him baby rice. I didn't, as I didn't see the point, especially if it filled him up and left no room for milk.

Last week I said we'd started him on solids, and she started trying to spoon mashed turnip into him. Today she gave him a biscuit and some apple, and says she has a pouch of food that she'll try him with.

I don't massively object - I'd rather he didn't have biscuits or processed stuff, but it's not the end of the world and I can't be bothered arguing - it's more that I'm curious as to what the big rush is. My own mum isn't quite so pushy, and is happy to be guided by me, but I think if it was up to her she'd be spooning purées into him too.

Is it a generational thing? I'd like him to explore food at this stage, but I'm not overly concerned with him eating loads of it - as I understand it, he should still be mainly getting nutrition from milk feeds. But MIL seems to think it's important to actually get food into him. Often when anything is wrong (waking at nights, reflux etc) she'll say it'll be cured by solids. Was weaning seen as a cure-all in years gone by?

Does anyone else find something similar?

MollieCoddler Tue 10-Feb-15 13:02:08

its partly a generational thing and partly a desperation to get them sleeping more.

I think you are fundamentally right in your no rush approach but you do sound like you have an easy, sleeping baby!

WhyNotSmile Tue 10-Feb-15 13:06:37

Heck, no, he's awake every hour or so these nights! He's breast fed, though, so I expect him to be a bit more awake, and he also had bad eczema which I think wakes him up too. He's never slept for more than 4 hours in one stretch, and solids don't seem to be making any difference - if anything, they're making things worse, as he seems to be quite windy! I've no objection to him waking up a couple of times a night at this stage; in fact from what I've read, it's the natural thing for breast fed babies to do.

Strictlyison Tue 10-Feb-15 13:10:13

Probably a generational thing, my MIL was quite sceptical about waiting until 6 months business. She wanted to give DSs some very strange foods, such as bread dipped in egg yolk, baby biscuits soaked in milk, etc. from 4 months old. She also insisted that I should put my babies on their front....

BLW is a relatively new thing, and still marginal really. I think she probably need more educating. You might want to give her a book or something you print from a website to 'educate' her a bit because I think it's ignorance, not being mean.

She might be comfortable if you would prepare some food she could try with your baby when she looks after him such as cooked carrot batons, or cooked broccoli, or raw strips of pear (I wouldn't give raw apple to a 6 month old myself, for the risks of choking, pear is better) as they are more traditional foods to give during weaning.

I am a child minder and have helped weaned a number of babies, and I think that the best thing to do is a mixture - give some spoon food, and some hand held food, they are quite happy to eat any way at that age. I have always stayed away from baby rice by itself but I have used it to thicken puréed pear or carrot for example. Many babies struggle with mash potatoes because of the starchy texture, they are nice mixed with a more watery food such as carrot.

It used to be the norm to wean babies at 4 months old.

Showy Tue 10-Feb-15 13:10:58

It's partly a desire to join in, I expect she wants to actively feed him, partly generational and partly a desire to solve problems which don't require fixing. I think it is well meant, just misplaced.

GotToBeInItToWinIt Tue 10-Feb-15 13:11:11

I think it's a generational thing. My parents and IL's always seem desperate to feed DD! I think they were told that solids would help them sleep, and no one wants to be told that their way was wrong in any way. DH was weaned at 6 weeks shock.

FWIW DD has always been a terrible sleeper and it got worse when she was weaned as she got tummy ache/wind.

MollieCoddler Tue 10-Feb-15 13:16:15

oh right, my mistake. we are clearly in the same boat <sob>

Hypotenuse Tue 10-Feb-15 13:17:10

You're absolutely right it's very odd to me too, why is 'getting food into them' such a big thing? I have people telling me my giant chubby baby needs a bit off a spoon, whatever that is, and she's only 9 weeks. She's this big because of the breast milk, so why would I want to replace that with measly watery vegetables or processed junk.

I just smile and say not yet, and hope its just ignorance. I can't imagine anyone saying it for any other reason than they really believe it's a good idea.

WhyNotSmile Tue 10-Feb-15 13:17:43

I didn't mean to suggest there was any malice or meanness intended - I know there's not! I'm more just bemused by her enthusiasm for getting food into him! I've tried telling her "Oh, I read such and such the other day, apparently they're meant to just be getting used to moving food in their mouths / still getting most nutrients from milk / whatever at this stage". She agrees but does it her way anyway!

Currently no one really minds him for me - he's breast fed, so it's easier to keep him with me - but I think I will take some finger foods when we go to her house, and she can feed him those. He loves playing with sticks of food!

JuniDD Tue 10-Feb-15 13:20:22

My mum is desperate for DD (4 months) to be weaned so she can "have her". A few people have also said this, that when she's on food they can look after her. I'm very happy looking after my DD btw and in no rush to be parted from her for any significant amount of time!

WhyNotSmile Tue 10-Feb-15 13:21:35

Ha has, I've had that too! I'm in no rush either!

Redling Wed 11-Feb-15 10:13:54

My DM always had issues with us choking, I wasn't allowed near a boiled sweet or fruit gum etc even when I was in my early teens smile and of course she weaned us on purees. So it's difficult and scary for her to grasp me giving him sticks of 'real' food. But shes not bothered with how much he eats as I apparently wasn't bothered with food until I was 8 months so she knows it can happen. As OP said there's no malice involved, it's just very different to what she did and was told. She's been reading up on BLW bless her, and is now saying 'why did I wean your brother at 4 months?!' I don't want to give her guilt after 30+ years! He's obviously fine!

ApplesTheHare Wed 11-Feb-15 19:28:09

WhyNot I think some of the generational difference is down to the older generation not wanting to entertain the thought that they might have done something that had a negative affect on their los, even if they were following the advice of the time. MIL absolutely refuses to accept that SIL's chronic IBS or lifelong severe food phobias are anything at all to do with her being weaned onto those specific foods she's afraid of (this sometimes included being pinned down and force-fed shock ) from 12 weeks.

Saying that, I find myself in a rush to wean dd because she suffers from such bad reflux and we've been told it will help. She's 22 weeks so we've managed to hang on for a while! smile

WhyNotSmile Thu 12-Feb-15 10:07:11

Apples, that's awful - your poor SIL. What you're saying males sense though. My parents are generally much more likely to say "Ooops, we did something wrong, but that was what we were told at the time - sure, you didn't die and it was probably character-building!", whereas I think my MIL would be more inclined to insist that if it worked for her at the time then it was right. She would be much more insistent on early weaning, and trying to sneak things into him when we're not looking!

Alwaysinahurrynow Thu 12-Feb-15 10:11:44

I have to say I'm not entirely convinced by BLW so have fed purées from 5 months and then a mix.

Apples - my son had severe reflux and weaning at 5 months made a huge difference. I did it very slowly though and he only started on 2 meals at around 6 months.

ApplesTheHare Thu 12-Feb-15 12:09:39

Always thanks that's good to hear. Nobody seems to be able to give you any read advice about reflux and weaning so it's really good to hear from those with experience of it!

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