At the end of my tether- 10 month old weaning stress!(31 Posts)
Dd has always been a bit of a difficult baby to wean. I've tried so hard, read all the books, blogs, watched the videos, follow the Instagram accounts, and still at 10 months old, she is a terrible eater and mealtimes are becoming beyond stressful.
We've tended to lean more towards blw only because she has reused the spoon a lot. Just doesn't want to be fed, turns her head if I come near her with anything on a spoon. I still try to offer but every morning, the cereal goes in the bin. It's at the point that I just feel like I've completely failed and I'm not sure where I went wrong.
When I put her in her high chair, she arches her back, yaps and cries straight away. I've tried to make meal times not stressful but don't know where this has come from. I offer her food from a spoon but it is always refused before she even tries it. I've given her her own spoon but she just throws it on the floor. So i put down various bits of food- baby potatoes, lots of veg, small bits of meat, egg muffins, pasta etc. She barely tries it anymore- just cries until I take her out of the high chair!
She's now at a point where she only will eat fruit chopped up, rice cakes, cheese.
It's really really stressful to be trying so hard, making food for her 3 times a day and it all gets thrown in the bin.
What am I doing wrong? I feel like she's not getting proper nutrition and don't know where to go from here
Gosh a year ago I could have written your post OP. It is super stressful when other kids take more naturally to weaning but honestly before the age of 1 they don't need food as long as they're still having their milk. Our DS was a terrible eater (and even now he'll go through phases of not eating for 2 or 3 days as a nearly 2 year old). Now I'm much more relaxed about it, he knows how much food he wants and although it's slightly soul-destroying to make him a homemade meal that he then won't even try I'm not as worried by it all now. Your little one with find food when they're ready and you're not doing anything wrong x
Relax, she will try food when she's ready. Try sitting her on your knee at mealtime and let her have a little of what you are having.
And please don't stress about her nutrition, as long as she's having milk she's fine.
It really is just very stressful and frustrating.
She is smart enough to know what she likes and doesn't like. Today was all baby led stuff - I tried to feed her cereal in morning as I do every day and it's point blank refused. She hardly ate any of her savoury stuff (omelette with veg and cheese, pasta, toast fingers) and then proceeded to eat a whole peach and 4 strawberries!
All this stuff takes time to prepare not to mention it's expensive, takes so much planning and I'm back at work now so I'm finding it really hard to worry about leaving her with others when she's not eating properly.
I feel sooo frustrated!! Any other tips on what I can do to get her to eat a bit more? She gets plenty of variety - she just won't take it
Slow down and take a huge breath. She is 10 months old and the bulk of her calories at this age should be from milk. I say this in the nicest possible way but your focus should not be on getting her to fill up on food at this stage. Your focus should be to let her experiment with food. That doesn't just mean eating it, but touching it and smelling it and generally exploring it. Place the food in front of her and let her get on with it. If she only eats a few mouthfuls then that is absolutely fine, she's learning. You say she hardly touched the omelette, veg pasta etc but did she try it? Because if she ate a bite then that's fine. Plus she ate the peach and strawberry which is great.
Don't prepare loads and loads of food and don't put too much effort in as it sounds like you are stressing yourself out so much when she rejects it or only takes a bite.
I know what you're saying about calories and nutrition coming from milk, but she'll soon be 11 months and then almost off formula altogether and has been weaning for months now. It concerns me for when she is off formula and how little she is actually eating.
I understand people say not to stress and worry. It's just disheartening when I've tried so hard to introduce her to so many tastes and textures and am trying to do the right thing by avoid my added sugar and salt. I feel like I haven't taken the 'easy way out' by succumbing to packaged foods, try not to use distraction and tv when she's eating. And feel like it's all just gone wrong! I'm afraid I just have a fussy eater and when she turns one I'll be really stuck despite all my efforts. Ive tried everything- giving food before milk, cutting milk down a bit, giving her her own spoon, her own bowl, doing spoon feeds and finger foods, shown her how to do it by role modelling. And it's just all been to no avail! Every time I leave her with anyone I get texts and calls saying she won't eat and it really is just overwhelming and frustrating
Sorry- I just need to get this out as every day it's just driving me up the wall!
Some are just like this - my DD was. I couldn't believe it - I treated weaning in exactly the same way I had with her brother who ate anything and everything.
She was stubborn - wouldn't open her mouth for the spoon. It is amazingly stressful, and unless you have been through it, you won't understand.
Mine wouldn't take a bottle, or formula, or drink expressed milk either, so that really added to the fun.
All I can say is that it did improve gradually. By 2 she would eat food - not healthy, or balanced diet, but was eating. By 4 she would eat a variety of stuff, but was still pretty fussy. She is 15 now, and still has a limited range of foods, but is willing to try new stuff, and will eat something from each food group.
I know it is difficult, but try not to stress. Maybe your DD would be better out of hte highchair? Mine did better sitting on my lap. Just keep offering things. If you just offer her some of what you have, then not so much will get wasted.
My little girl is two next month and is a great eater (and always has been to be fair) but she HATED the high chair. We found she enjoyed meal times so much more sat on the couch with us or sat on our lap at the table and she would eat a lot better/more. When she was big enough, we bought her a kids table and chair from Ikea and she sits and eats every meal there now. Maybe try her without the high chair? It's not ideal and can be a pain in restaurants, but it made a massive difference to us.
Have a read of My Child Won’t Eat. It won’t make your child eat, but it will stop you stressing about it, which will only be making things worse.
@albus55 thanks for the suggestion - this morning I sat with her on the living room floor and we attempted to share a pancake. It wasn't particularly successful but a couple of bites is better than nothing.
I know I'm stressing- but it's really tough not to. Will have a look at that book too
@Alicia870 That's some progress though! Does she go to nursery? Again seeing other kids eating made a difference to my daughters eating habits
Do you sit and eat as a family? If she sees you eating, she’s more likely to want to try what you’re having.
Please try not to stress about it. Babies are smart, she won't let herself starve.
Just offer foods you know she will eat for the next couple of weeks, take the pressure off yourself.
Then try again, just with finger foods. Also, try having her at the table when you are eating too. It might encourage her to eat.
As hard as it is, try not to stress about what she is/isn't eating. She will pick up on this.
Try to take a very laid back approach. If she eats, great..if not, no biggie. Try again next time.
I suggest you stop cooking for her, make what you want to eat but in very slightly larger quantities. Then sit down and in front of her, put some of your food on her tray, plus a bit of fruit if that's what she'll eat. If she's only having small bites you really don't have to worry about salt and sugar. It takes the stress out of planning, and she might be a bit more willing to try 'your' food.
This is assuming she's still gaining weight and producing nappies ok. If not you need professional advice.
Huge hug as I was you and it’s monumentally stressful! A few things that might help:
- she doesn’t need to magically stop formula at 12 months. We are all allowed to be different. She won’t fail in life if she has it a little longer
- she knows you are stressed so she is stressed. Do whatever it takes to remove the stress. For me in the same situation it was bulk purchase of Ella’s Kitchen for a few weeks alongside any bits that I was eating that were easy to offer.
- give her back control, offer her what she’s interested in, take a breath and move on when she isn’t. She will not starve herself.
- childcare providers are all trained in witchcraft. Your child will eat two helpings of things she wouldn’t even lick at home.
- as with sleep/teething/crawling/tantrums/random viruses this too shall pass. I guarantee your 2 year old won’t be existing solely on formula. My DS was 18 months before he’d eat 3 meals a day at home (11 months at nursery due to witchcraft). He’s a great eater now.
It can be so so hard. The thing that helped me was when a dietician said 'it's not your job to make them eat, it's your job to provide the food. It's their job to decide if and how much they eat'.
My son (1.5) has gone to bed with no dinner before. I provide him things that I know he likes with a mix of things I'd like him to try. If he doesn't eat it then I take it that he's not hungry 💁🏻♀️
When my DD was 10 months I could have written a post exactly the same as yours. It's hard work preparing all the food for it to be rejected and then all the milk to be drunk. We also did baby led weaning.
We kept offering and we had major improvements at 12 months and 14 months. Now at 15 months she eats a small meal 3 times a day and that's great. If she likes the food she will also let us spoon feed her. My MIL says my husband didn't eat a lot as a child and some people just aren't big eaters.
All I can say is keep doing what you are doing, it paid off for us. Solidarity though it's massively frustrating.
Im reading this thread as I've in the same boat and come on for tips! My daughter now 8.5 months was ebf and happy to try anything and drink from all types of cups etc. But always refused the bottle. As a single parent I was keen to get her off the boob so sent her overnight to my mum's and then joined the next day. Had 2 weeks of spoonfed solids but still refused bottles. Developed tonsillitis so I was syringing my milk into ella's fruit pouches! Now she's the opposite and loves the bottle and I supposed the comfort/intimacy so has regressed to night feeds etc. I didn't really mind as I was so worried before with no milk and she's recovering the trauma of no boob being sick etc. But at the last check up the doctor was very unkind and said im giving too much milk (she was bf on demand) and said not to give a bedtime bottle and no bottles in pyjamas or bedroom and all this crap! The poor thing has tonsillitis again and my kind gp said just water down the milk which has increased her appetite somewhat. She also now refuses spoonfeeds or any stuff she thinks is baby stuff. Refused hummus looking at my salad but accepted the same hummus off my plate 🙄 she also only wants dry stuff she can grip so nothing too soggy. It's a huge pain in the butt and honestly im not bothered if she's having a bedtime bottle at 7 at this rate lol. She loved soft fruits and now doesn't but that may be the sore throat. It's hard not to offer lots but I was like jesus this kid is getting a hotel breakfast buffet every morning I can't maintain this! Sorry no advice just sympathy! But honestly being in this boat is better than previously when she was refusing bottles, everyone was like but that's great she's fully weaned at 7 months and I was stressing thinking how was I going to manage a healthy nutritionally balanced diet while im eating a cardboard frozen pizza myself lol
@Trixyvix it's definitely stressful.
Been a few weeks since this post and while a lot of it is still relevant in terms of struggles, she did have a couple more teeth come through and I'm assuming that had us going through a really rough patch with eating.
I think her teething really affects her diet as her poor gums are so sore. It really is up and down but at the minute she's eating much more quantity. I've tried to offer much less of the foods she usually accepts like fruit and cheese, and try to let her get hungry by not allowing her to graze on rice crackers etc.
Eating from spoon still not happening but she has definitely started to eat mote of her main meals tho I do find finger foods can get very repetitive after a while.
It's been the hardest part of parenting for me so far. 🙈🙈
Yes this lady cut her 2 top teeth this morning. It's no wonder we would be the same too just wanting milk. Poor things
You don't need to stop the formula at 12 months if you don't think she is ready to. Remove that arbitrary milestone from the equation if it's causing you worry.
I've weaned two children, one was like your daughter one wasn't. It's luck of the draw.
Maybe stop going to so much effort though and just give her a few spoonfuls on her tray of whatever you are eating. Spaghetti bolognese, rice and mild chilli, beans on toast, roast dinner etc all can be eaten with fingers and if she's not going to eat much regardless then you don't really have to worry about salt levels.
Teething always reduces how much my DS eats significantly.
Agree with PP - ditch the spoon. She doesn't just need to have finger food, all food is finger food! DS was a spoon refuser so we never bothered pushing it and he just ate everything with his hands - at about 1 he started to get interested in using a spoon and from about 16 months he would eat all his meals using one. Food is different coloured bowls is a hit here too - those section plates or just on the tray are a big no no.
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@Daffodil2018 thanks for asking. Marginally better but still have a picky fuss pot on my hands! I'm finding the range of foods she will eat still is limited but thinking that's mostly because she won't eat from a spoon so there's lots she just can't eat with her hands. breakfast she usually eats nothing! I give her fruit but she eats so much of it I try to limit it a bit.
Although I did try her today with an angled spoon, made sure a suction bowl was planted t the table, covered her in a plastic bin and let her go at it and she did actually give some Shepard's pie a go which is usually a complete no no!!
She's so independent so just wants to do it herself.
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