INCREDIBLY fussy toddler

(34 Posts)
LydiaMax2 Mon 30-Dec-19 18:48:22

When I say incredibly fussy..... all he will eat is peanut butter sandwiches, some fruit, sometimes cheese, sometimes yogurt and obviously anything sweet (which we are seriously strict on).

Has anyone been through this? He is currently 2, and was a brilliant eater from 6m-12m, but since then he's been so fussy.

ANY advice and tips from anyone that's been through similar?

OP’s posts: |
Goldfish703 Mon 30-Dec-19 20:47:10

What’s the best night light for my 6m yr old now he is in his own room?
There is just sooo many on amazon difficult to know which is best!
Thanks Katie

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 03-Jan-20 10:10:54

Yes, we had one very fussy toddler too. Huge handhold as it can be so frustrating can't it.

Here are sone of the tings that helped us:

I serve the pasta and sauce separately on the plate.

Nothing has to be eaten but they can't removed food, it stays there but there is no pressure to eat or try it.

We did not encourage or console them to try anything.

We did not praise or rebuke.we didn't even talk about the food, we just chatted about other things.

I found that my DC would sometimes eat better if it was just us eating if they had something to listen to, so either a simple audio story or some soothing music.

Remember that they probably don't need as much to eat as you think they do. There is a good guide to portion sizes here.

Cut down on the milk and snacks. At 2 I think they need about 300 ml of full fat milk a day if they're not BF.

If they have refused a meal or snack, it's safe to assume they're not hungry and clear away when everyone else has finished.

Never, ever, ever offer an alternative.

Have you read My Child Won't Eat too? Sadly it was out of print when we were in this stage with our DD but it's supposed to be quite good.

Good luck OP smile

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 03-Jan-20 10:12:08

@Goldfish703. I think you might do better starting your own thread either in Chat or the Parenting Section smile

LydiaMax2 Fri 03-Jan-20 10:41:22

@JiltedJohnsJulie thank you so so much for the advice. Honestly it's nice just to know I'm not the only one going through/been through it!

I think I am definitely going to give that book a try - the reviews look good.

The part of advice you've given I really struggle with is the part about not offering an alternative, as I really do think he'd just go hungry and be awake all night because he's not eaten! I'm such a feeder and it feels wrong not giving him food that he'll eat after refusing sad

I breastfed until he was 18m, and since then he's refused any other milk. I did speak to my health visitor, and she said it's quite a good thing as it shows he's not filling up on milk.

Do you have any meal ideas that worked for your little one?

Thanks again for your help smile

OP’s posts: |
ReturnofSaturn Fri 03-Jan-20 10:45:40

I hear ya OP.
Mine is the same, he turns 2 this month.
It's draining and I dread mealtimes.

Tableclothing Fri 03-Jan-20 10:47:43

I've heard that it can take 14 tries of a food before a child decides they like it, so like Julie said, I would keep on offering things with no comment whether they try it/like it or not.


ReturnofSaturn Fri 03-Jan-20 10:49:21

I've also tried many many times the not offering him anything else and letting him go without, then giving him the same meal next day etc
Hasn't worked and I have to cave in the end as he can't go without nothing for days on end sad

ReturnofSaturn Fri 03-Jan-20 10:51:01

I can't even get him to try anything. That's the main problem.

2020yeah Fri 03-Jan-20 10:55:47

I've been through this. My DD was the fussiest child ever. Now she's quite good and will try things. DS is 2.10 and in his fussy phase. I kept offering, but always put a bit of something they would eat on the plate too, so even just bread and butter and a couple of strawberries or something. Eat together as much as possible and keep your toddler in the high chair if you can, so they don't wander off. Don't get upset or start a fight. Its very normal for toddlers to become fussy then suddenly your 5yo is eating a full Christmas dinner, pepperoni pizza, salads and halloumi fries smile

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 03-Jan-20 12:07:28

If you are worried about him going hungry, try putting something on his plate from the group of foods you know he'll eat, but only a small amount.

So if you are doing spag Bol, I'd put the past and sauce separately on a plate with maybe a small piece of cheese on the side too.

You really have to stop with the alternatives though. He's never going to eat what's in front of him when he knows that if he refuses, Mummy will cave in and give him something he likes better smile

LydiaMax2 Fri 03-Jan-20 18:35:54

Thank you all so much for your advice.

So we have just finished dinner time. We had a pasta dish and we all sat around the table to eat. Put the sauce, pasta and cheese in different compartments of his plate and put it down in front of him. Immediately he was having none of it but neither me and my partner said anything and ignored his tantrum and cheese throwing until we'd both finished, I cleared the table and got him down from the high chair.

I will try this every evening and keep you updated. Think I'll stick to his sandwich that I know he'll eat for lunch so that I know he's not going to starve...

OP’s posts: |
JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 03-Jan-20 19:52:52

Sounds like a great plan Lydia. It might take a few days until he realises that this is what is going to happen from now on.

Daybydayagain Sat 04-Jan-20 19:23:08

DS is similar too except he does eat yoghurt, some fruits and things like weetabix. He’s been fussy for 8 months now. I share frustration with a pp that we can’t get DS to even try things but I’m trying to put up a couple of new things each day so he gets used to having them on his plate and hopefully one day will try them.

I’m following this to pick up advice too. It is reassuring to know others

sparepartalways Sat 04-Jan-20 19:26:03

We have the same
He’s surviving on milk , biscuits, toast, yogurt, cucumber

ReturnofSaturn Sun 19-Jan-20 10:58:40

Wondering how you're getting on OP??

At my wits end with my boy. He went without lunch and dinner yesterday as he wouldn't eat what I gave him.
And he's just done the same today and he's still not giving in sad

I'm going to have to cave tomorrow and give him something he likes, I mean how long can you let em starve.

This has literally had me in tears and tearing my hair sad

LydiaMax2 Sun 19-Jan-20 13:00:01

Hi @ReturnofSaturn
So I haven't had many signs of improvement yet, however I have since had a routine 2 year check with my Health Visitor who was very helpful.

So firstly she weighed him and he is (surprisingly) the perfect weight and has followed his centile line, which really does show how little a 2 year old needs in order to grow and be healthy. I bought the book 'My Child Won't Eat' which I haven't finished yet, but it really explains this.

The HV basically suggested giving him his usual breakfast (he used to have 3 wheetabix, so she suggested reducing this to 2), and his usual lunch that you know he will normally eat. This gives you a bit more leeway with dinner, as she said 2 decent meals for a 2 year old is sufficient really!

With dinner, she suggested doing what @JiltedJohnsJulie said and offering whatever you are having and if they don't eat it then don't make a fuss, just take it away when the rest of you are finished and don't offer anything else. Don't talk about the food (apart from how yummy yours is) and don't tell them to try it, just leave them to it.

I haven't tried this for long enough yet to tell if it works or not, however I feel a hell of a lot more relaxed about it now and I hope you feel a little better too.


OP’s posts: |
HaggardMumofToddler Sun 19-Jan-20 13:06:20

I think this is common. I’d just try not to worry as it’s likely he will outgrow it. Don’t stress. Continue to offer food as usual, including the things you know he will eat. Alongside vitamins, we use haliborange. I always offering DD toast in the evening if she has not eaten much as I’d rather her not go hungry. She can also eat as much fruit as she wants. I’m not bothered about the not offering something else, as it’s not like we’re cooking another meal.

One day he will surprise you and start eating normally. smile

Daybydayagain Sun 19-Jan-20 14:37:37

It’s helpful to read the advice from your HV @LydiaMax2. Has it impacted his sleep at all? I’m nervous of DS not eating in the evening in case he stops sleeping. DS has his review in a couple of weeks so hoping for good advice from our HV too.

Hoppinggreen Sun 19-Jan-20 14:44:21

You’ve had some good advice but I would add that some children WILL actually go hungry rather than eat something they isn’t want to/can’t
My DD was like this, as an inexperienced mum I listened to my GP and my DD went almost 3 days without eating until I cracked and gave her a yoghurt
Some kids are “fussy “ I agree but some genuinely can’t make themselves eat things they isn’t want to, to the point of being sick if you really force it. If you do have one of these rather than. “Fussy” child your approach needs to be different
My DD started eating properly aged about 10 but even more recently she went on a school trip where they refused to make her a plain cheese sandwich every day rather than one with salad and mayo on and she hardly ate for a week.

LydiaMax2 Mon 20-Jan-20 00:56:13

@Hoppinggreen that is really good advice and a good point. I know it definitely wouldn't work for everyone, however in this case with my little boy it is clear that he is just being fussy.
It's little things like I'll make him a sandwich with a different filling like avocado (will only usually eat peanut butter), but disguise it by putting peanut butter around the edges.... he ate it no problem until he saw a bit of green of the avocado and stopped right there, even after eating and enjoying the previous bit.

OP’s posts: |
LydiaMax2 Mon 20-Jan-20 00:59:44

@Daybydayagain my little boy has never been a great sleeper, but I can't say I have seen it get any worse.

I would be really interested to hear what your health visitor says, and if the advice is the same.

I hope it gets better for you, as I know how much it takes over your life. May sound dramatic to some, but I'm sure you get it!

OP’s posts: |
managedmis Mon 20-Jan-20 01:00:20

DS lived on scrambled eggs, peanut butter toast, bananas, baby bolognaise, biscuits and apple sauce basically until he was 3. We tried everything. He would go hungry instead of eating something different. Ever so slowly he began to eat a greater variety of foods around aged 3.

managedmis Mon 20-Jan-20 01:02:00

You’ve had some good advice but I would add that some children WILL actually go hungry rather than eat something they isn’t want to/can’t


Totally agree. 'Oh , he won't starve himself!!' - not sure I agree tbh.

ReturnofSaturn Mon 20-Jan-20 01:03:18

Thanks for that post OP.

Yes I need to stop stressing so much about mealtimes. Just hate the thought of him going hungry, I think it must be programmed in us as mothers to want our offspring well-fed!

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