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She just doesn't eat!

(51 Posts)
RumpledStiltskin Fri 21-Jul-17 13:38:28

My daughter is ten months old. For four sodding months I've been offering and offering and offering food, and it's been unbearably slow progress. She will play with food, even sometimes taste it, then spit it back out and throw the rest on the floor. She will tolerate one or two spoonfuls, then clamps her mouth shut, wants the spoon, jams the wrong end in her mouth and screams if I try and take it away, move it, or spoon something round it. Lunch today: she licked a piece of tomato, crumbled up some boiled egg slices, sucked a rice cake then spat it out when it went soggy, and refused to let me spoon anything in. This is typical.

I know it happens at their own pace. But she's ten months old. We're still on playing and tastes like a seven months old. I'm losing the will to live here and I don't know what to do. sad

Yayitsfriday Fri 21-Jul-17 13:40:39

How much milk does she drink and how often?

Bumpsadaisie Fri 21-Jul-17 13:47:48

But she's ten months old. We're still on playing and tastes like a seven months old

This really stood out for me, ie that you are expecting her to be transformed at ten months from what she was at seven months.

Maybe I have forgotten how quickly babies change but really it seems such a small amount of time for her to start eating lots regularly like a big toddler.

The playing and tasting is not wasting time. It's all grist for the developmental mill. She'll start eating more when she's ready I am sure.

RumpledStiltskin Fri 21-Jul-17 13:47:48

She's breastfed very approximately every three hours. I've tried offering food at every possible interval in between feeds and it makes no difference whether she's full, a bit hungry, or very hungry.

TractorTedTed Fri 21-Jul-17 13:50:12

Just keep persevering, provided she's a healthy weight?

My first was like this. I used to see my friends' babies woolfing down yogurts, whole bowls of purees, etc whilst mine refused the lot.

I remember the health visitor telling me to try Weetabix, because "all babies like Weetabix." Of course mine didn't!

But eventually he did start eating, so don't despair yet.

From your description of what she had for lunch, I'm guessing you're doing blw? I started out with purees, but discovered he hated being spoon fed, so mainly gave finger foods.

Things I found helped a bit:
I used up my freezer stash of lovingly prepared steamed and pureed fruit and veg by spreading them on fingers of toast.

Macaroni cheese was one of the first things he ate I think, and mushrooms, funnily enough!

He also loved tinned peaches, wrapped in foil and baked in the oven for about 15 mins.

I used to remember the 'food is fun until they're one' mantra.

I still stressed about it of course, but my advice is to try not to. And try to be as relaxed as to you can around food, so she doesn't pick up on your worry.

RumpledStiltskin Fri 21-Jul-17 13:50:50

Bump I am expecting some change over three months, not a 'transformation'. She's barely ingesting a thimble full. She's my PFB (can you tell?!) but surely she should be eating something not just licking and spitting everything out?

thunderyclouds Fri 21-Jul-17 13:51:12

Both of mine were exactly the same, and didn't really start to eat until 12 months, and even then just tiny amounts.

With my first a HV told me to stop giving dd milk. I trusted her so followed her advice. Result, an hysterically hungry child that screamed all night, but still didn't eat. So I ignored that advice after that.

What I did was stop stressing and let them go at their own pace. I let them sit on my knee and touch the food on my plate. I gave them Ella's pouches to suck rather than wasting my life pureeing and throwing away food. I didn't make an issue of it. If they tried something, great, if they didn't it didn't matter.

Peer pressure also helps as I found mine were more willing to try a food if other children really wanted it. Nursery was good for this.

By 2 dd ate pretty much anything, and ds although slightly more fussy ate most things.

thenewaveragebear1983 Fri 21-Jul-17 13:53:06

Have you tried some strong flavours? In a finger food style- maybe olives, cheeses, marmite on toast, hummus.
My ds barely ate anything until we tried him with curry and he wolfed it down. He's now 22 months and still only eats really flavoursome foods. Be careful with salt intake though as often these things can be salty.

Ropsleybunny Fri 21-Jul-17 13:53:21

She's completely full up with milk and still loving it, so well flipping done you!

There's plenty of time and every single child (unless they have physical or learning disabilities) will start to eat.

The really important thing is don't fret and if you do fret, don't let her know. Food can become a terrible battle that you will never win.

As well as learning about actually eating, enjoying a meal is a social occasion that most of us enjoy together. Is she joining in with family meals? Are you sitting down together for food? My youngest was the easiest weaned of the lot. He sat in his high chair and looked at what everyone else was having, and made it plain that he'd have the same.

TheHandmaidsTail Fri 21-Jul-17 13:56:12

Provided she'd growing and gaining weight don't worry.

DC1 ate everything she should when she should as per the books.

DC 2 and DC3 barely touched food until 12 months and DC3 at 2 still went straight back to milk if not feeling 100%. Don't panic!

Kr1stina Fri 21-Jul-17 14:02:03

It doesn't matter. All that food you are trying to get down her has less calories than BM.

Is she a tired lethargic sickly child with no energy ? No I thought not.

Just chill. Let her play with food on her high chair when you eat meals. If she's not eating much by next summer you can worry about it then.

RumpledStiltskin Fri 21-Jul-17 14:02:24

When did your little boy start eating Tractor? I was doing well at counselling myself 'she'll get it in her own time' through months eight and nine but I'm starting to lose perspective now.

I'm not particularly doing BLW - I'm doing anything and bloody everything to try and find something that works! She doesn't eat toast - goes in, gets slavered on, comes back out barely chewed. It doesn't seem to be that she doesn't like stuff, it's like she still hasn't twigged she's supposed to swallow it after tasting it. Anything that does go in gets dribbled out, and most of it just gets smooshed about.

Kr1stina Fri 21-Jul-17 14:04:54

She might just be a " do it myself " child and won't eat much food until she's able to feed herself more efficiently.

Rinceoir Fri 21-Jul-17 14:16:27

OP it's really stressful I know. My DD ate nothing at that age. I went back to work when she was 11 months old, not eating and refusing EBM/formula. I was so worried. She was incredibly slow to wean- we went on holidays for a week when she was 17 months and she ate a handful of raisins and very little else. She dropped down the centiles; we were referred to dietetics and paediatrics who were baffled at her refusal to eat.

But she did get there eventually. She gradually started eating more at her own pace. At 3.5 she loves to eat- she still has a small appetite, and is a little small for her age. I have no real advice other than to try to relax.

TractorTedTed Fri 21-Jul-17 14:18:40

I guess about 9 months - as in, some food finally crossed his lips, rather than any great quantity. Once he started eating, he seemed to get the hang of it a bit more, and started trying a few more things.

I suppose by about a year he was eating tiny quantities of proper 'meals.'

RumpledStiltskin Fri 21-Jul-17 14:20:54

Many thanks for all your responses. It's good to hear from a few people that 12 months isn't unusual for finally 'getting it'. Interesting point about peer pressure at nursery - I have been getting anxious about this as she's never taken a bottle and is about as good with the sippy cup as she is with food, so I'm worried about how on earth she'll sustain herself at nursery all day! I'm hoping she'll respond to what the other kids are doing but it's hard to hold your nerve when you can't be sure!

SheepyFun Fri 21-Jul-17 14:32:07

I've been where you are OP, except that DD used to gag on anything that went in her mouth, and vomit (the previous milk feed) if she couldn't spit the food out. The vomiting stopped at about one, though her enthusiasm for food was still very limited.

I saw dietitians, who advised restricting her milk intake. This led to a very grumpy child, and no more food eaten (first saw a dietitian at 15 months). We kept offering her food, but also allowing her her milk. I think she was about 3.5 when the majority of her calories switched to coming from food rather than milk.

At 4.5 she still drinks a lot of milk, and eats a pretty restricted diet. However she eats much much more than she did at 1 or 2. I used to be very stressed about it, now I worry much less. She's a healthy height and weight (at one point she was drinking so much she was overweight; she now has watered down milk, which has really helped). About half her milk intake is toddler formula, which is fortified with vitamins and minerals, and her development is otherwise fairly normal.

As a baby, DD absolutely refused to be fed, and wasn't at all keen on putting food in her mouth either. We were advised to try chocolate buttons and quavers to persuade her that eating could be enjoyable. I know how frustrating it feels; I keep telling myself that when she's a teenager I'll probably wish I was mainly worrying about what she's eating (eating disorders aside).

SheepyFun Fri 21-Jul-17 14:33:50

BTW, DD is slightly better at nursery, but still refuses a good fraction of the meals there (or only eats, say, the rice, but not the sauce with it). But she's at the far end of the scale on food refusal!

thunderyclouds Fri 21-Jul-17 14:37:19

She'll be fine at nursery. Both mine ate full meals there when they were still on mouthfuls at home. They also used sippy cups quite happily. Babies are more adaptable than we give them credit for.

RumpledStiltskin Fri 21-Jul-17 14:49:40

Gosh Sheepy that must have been worrying. I think I know that we don't have an extreme problem on our hands, it's just that my ability to counsel myself into calm has steadily depleted since we started out all chilled and relaxed atmosphere six months! I keep reading threads on here by people worried they're not making any progress after four weeks of weaning and thinking "ha!"

RumpledStiltskin Fri 21-Jul-17 14:51:00

* at, not atmosphere. Was that really the more likely word, autocorrect?!

Kiwi32 Fri 21-Jul-17 14:57:26

My son was/is exactly the same! Except he started nursery at 8 months and ate there just fine. The little sod! He is now 15 months and this morning I danced a jig because he ate a bowl of porridge! First time I've got a proper breakfast down him! I would say we only hit some semblance of 3 meals in the last month or so. He is all about doing it himself, will not tolerate being spoon fed. It's honestly not you! He'll be ok! Hang in there, I know how frustrating it is.

LapinR0se Fri 21-Jul-17 15:00:29

Every 3 hours?! That's a newborn breastfeeding schedule. No wonder your baby isn't eating much.

The only solution is to cut down on milk but if you don't want to them weaning will definitely be slow.

sunshineandrainbowsparkles Fri 21-Jul-17 15:10:45

They are just exploring between 6-12m and their main source of food is their milk still, it's more important to establish happy relationships with food and a variety of tastes at this age, rather than the amount they actually eat.

RumpledStiltskin Fri 21-Jul-17 15:37:14

Lapin Two hours was her newborn schedule. It extended, but given that she's bigger, moving, and not eating, I don't think it's surprising that she needs that much. I can't starve her into understanding what food is for.

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