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Feel like BLW isn't working - need some backbone/tips please!

(19 Posts)
IsItMeOr Thu 17-Sep-09 12:22:28

Started BLW a couple of weeks ago, a few days before DS was 6 months. He can sit up by himself and reliably get things in his mouth, so we thought it was the right time to give it a go.

He seemed to love it the first few times, and even on day one some little bits of broccoli had obviously gone in as they came out the other end. But for the past few days he seems to get frustrated very quickly and start crying. It didn't help that something I gave him on Tuesday (courgettes?) clearly didn't agree with him, so he couldn't get to sleep at lunchtime at all. Today I gave him babycorn, tomato quarters and ripe pear slices, but he seemed to get really distressed when he managed to break off a tiny piece of babycorn in his mouth and didn't know what to do with it.

DH and I have begun talking about whether it would just be easier to try him on jars (he still isn't a good sleeper and we are feeling exhausted/down).

I'm wondering whether we should just leave it for a few days and then try again with BLW.

Or try offering him something like yoghurt off a spoon and see if he takes to that.

We have minimal energy to devote to weaning, so tbh a big attraction of BLW was that we thought it would be easier. Also liked the idea that DS is in control of what goes into his mouth and stomach. But we're buckling...

nellie12 Thu 17-Sep-09 14:40:07

have you tried bananas and bread and butter. Bread is good because they can suck on it. (every meal not ideal but you get the picture) Yoghurt goes down well in our house too. I would try things like boiled carrots -they are a bit sweeter. and potatoes.

In fact the easiest thing is to keep a little of what you are making for yourselves separate so there isn't any salt etc in it and hand it over when you are eating and leave him to it.

I dont think mine was ready for more than one or two meals at this age and still wanted lots of milk. hth

penona Thu 17-Sep-09 14:56:04

My sis did BLW, so my experience comes from her (I didn't but wished I had after seeing how lovely her daughter eats). I know it took longer than pureed weaning to get to three meals a day ie she had more milk for longer than mine. BUT she just ate whatever the parents ate so it was no bother really to wean her.

I did the pureeing/jars route. I can't tell you how very depressing it is to spend hours cooking up some gourmet pureed thing, only to have it tipped on the floor. It literally made me cry. Mealtimes have always been a big stress for me.

Once I started just giving them a portion of our food, life got alot easier. I enjoyed it, and (tried!) to not care whether they ate or not (they are 2 now).

If you haven't got alot of energy, don't waste it chopping and pureeing! It will demoralise you totally!!

penona Thu 17-Sep-09 14:58:26

PS, my sister did do a little bit of spoon feeding 6-9 mths, yogurt mostly, or something from her plate (soup, mince, mash). But stopped once her DD could use the spoon herself.

I think the main advantage to BLW is not preparing separate meals. I cannot emphasise enough what a total pain this is!!!!

DuchessOfAvon Thu 17-Sep-09 15:04:43

This is really early days for you and him. A lot of babies take until around the 8-9 month mark to really get to grips with food and be eating any meaningful quantity.

Keep giving milk as the main food, try him with food as a play activity when he's not too tired or too hungry. Its about exploration at this stage.

I'm not convinced about food and sleep - but he's your son. If you want to try spooning some yoghurt then its up to you.

BLW IS easier - especially if you give your food. But you have to feel happy and confident with it - there is no point in it making you feel miserable!

greensnail Thu 17-Sep-09 15:09:58

Its really common for BLW babies to get frustrated in the early days, while they're trying to work it all out - it just shows how keen they are to do it, and with lots of practice it will get better. Its the same with learning any new skill, really frustrating until you get the hang of it. For us it lasted for a couple of weeks, then DD started to really enjoy mealtimes.

For a lot of babies food makes very little difference to sleep, so try not to think that he'd be sleeping better if you were giving purees, as this may not be true.

I often spoonfeed yoghurt (or try to, DD usually wants to do it herself). So no harm in spooning in some yoghurt at the end of a meal, if that would make you all feel happier.

cara2244 Thu 17-Sep-09 15:27:37

I BLW but give him yoghurt after dinner from a spoon. Greek yoghurt is a big hit here.

Sleeping, I can sympathise as my BB didn't magically start sleeping through at 6 months like they're supposed to....
We co-sleep now, these days from about 4.30am, so at least that way I get some sleep and don't feel like a zombie.

IsItMeOr Thu 17-Sep-09 17:25:10

Thanks for your kind words - I can see why a few people read my post as saying that I thought he would sleep more if he ate more solids - I don't think I believe that either. The reference to sleep was more about the amount of energy we had to put into weaning in any form - but I think you're saying that it's not really easier to go down the jars route.

I saw a 14mo being spoon fed yoghurt last week and did wonder whether I would still be doing that in 8 months time if we go down the spoon feeding route. It's so hard to know what to do for the best - I want a crystal ball please!

cara2244 Thu 17-Sep-09 20:05:29

Ah, I see now about the sleep!

BLW is definitely easier as you don't have to make anything special. There's still a lot of mess though.

The main thing, especially in the early days, is that you get to eat, which should help you deal with the tiredness. I found at the beginning my diet became super healthy as I was always wanting to give BB fruit, smoothies, veg, homemade stuff etc.

It helps if you have a few quick and easy recipes up your sleeve - pasta, scrambled eggs, toasties, that kind of thing.

cara2244 Thu 17-Sep-09 20:08:52

Also, don't worry at 6mths if he's missing meals. BB woldn't eat for a full week when he was 6.5 mths - just before his first tooth came through.

plimple Thu 17-Sep-09 20:16:51

Nothing to stop you using a spoon for messy stuff like yoghurt or mash and using hands for easily pickupable food.
I started my DD with spoons of mushed food, added handheld, let her use a spoon. By 1 she could feed herself with a spoon/fork when needed and use hands for finger foods.

accessorizequeen Thu 17-Sep-09 20:17:28

It's really worth sticking with it. You will feel so pleased when he is feeding himself happily whilst you eat your meal too! And you haven't done anything else but make extra of what you're having. I have twins, they're nearly 1, but when I started I used to do a huge load of roasted veg for them at least twice a week so I always had something already done and they found them very easy to hold and chew. Most BLWers end up offering things off a spoon, but you may find after a certain amount of independence he won't take it!
Worth remembering there are other advantages to BLW like developing independence, better attitude to food and jaw development which may help with speech later on. Might keep you going as it did me smile It's not always going to be easier than purees, but has lots of benefits that make it worthwhile. I did 2 dc's the 'normal' route and 2 blw, I'd choose to do blw again definitely (not that I'm having any more...)
There is a BLW site and forum, you might get some inspiration/help on there?

IsItMeOr Thu 17-Sep-09 20:51:52

Ooh accessorizequeen - I'm liking your idea of cooking up a big batch of roasted veggies. How long does it keep after you've cooked it/how did you store it to stop it going soggy?

The other thing I've tended to try is to save a little bit of what DH and I have as our evening meal and give it to DS for his lunch the next day. But that doesn't leave anything for me to eat, so I think I've not quite got my head around things yet!

I've also just been doing lunch for DS at the mo, plus a snack (generally if I want him to be entertained while I meet a friend for coffee - a breadstick or cucumber chunk seems almost magical!) so I was thinking perhaps I should try to introduce breakfast next and then work up to dinner in a week or so.

I think I mainly just had my confidence shaken by him not seeming to enjoy it very much at the mo. He does get really frustrated that he can't run already too though, and obviously I wouldn't get down about that, as he's clearly not ready to do it yet. I think I need to remember that he's just practising the eating skills right now...

accessorizequeen Thu 17-Sep-09 22:51:24

It's only been a few weeks, just relax and go with his flow. He'll get the hang of it soon enough.

Things on toast that he can suck off easily might work well if he's frustrated by other things (houmous although mind the sesame, dairy lea/philly if you're up to dairy or banana). It doesn't sound like he's ready for another meal from what you've said - you don't have to stick to standard HV-speak where they're on 3 meals a day & 2 snacks by 7 months (I used to get anxious about this with dc1 & 2).
Potato is grand for easy eating AND filling. Potato wedges etc still a favourite with my two because it's like mash on the inside! Re: roast veggies (parsnip in particular is fab because they can chew for aaages and it goes all nice and mushy) about 3 days in the fridge I think.

IsItMeOr Fri 18-Sep-09 10:32:05

Just wanted to say thank you to everybody who posted. Was just the support I needed, and will be persevering with BLW for now. Have bolognese for him to try today, so I think it is time to break out the bigger bibs!

moosemama Fri 18-Sep-09 11:03:31

Hi

Dd (8 months this week) is BLW, she is generally a good eater with the ony things she's turned her nose up at being watermelon and nectarine. However, I just thought I'd mention that she had exactly the same reaction to babycorn. I think, not only does it have a very unusual texture, but no matter how you cook it, it tends to still remain quite firm and as they then can't mush it easily, it doesn't slip down so easily as some of the other foods.

When we were starting out, dd ate mountains of cucumber, avocado and banana. I think these were her favourite as she found them easy to squish in her gums. She also had a strong liking for the organix plain baby rice cakes, again, I think because they dropped to pieces and mushed up easily. I second what others have said about roast veggies as well, dd absolutely loves roast dinners.

I wouldn't worry about how much is actually going in at the moment, at this stage he is just investigating textures, smells and tastes rather than actually eating. Dd has only just started eating what I would consider whole meals worth of food in the last couple of weeks. Prior to that she would have some porridge for breakfast and often not be interested in lunch but might have a few mouthfuls for tea (before donating the rest to the dogs grin). She has taken quite a long time to start dropping feeds compared to friends babies who are also BLW as well though. As long as he is still getting plenty of milk and is otherwise happy, just take your time and he will be fine.

Ooh bolognese - lovely! Great fun to smush around, wipe in yer hair and cover yer clothes in - never mind actually eating it. wink grin

IsItMeOr Fri 18-Sep-09 12:48:26

Thanks moosemama - yes, you called it on the bolognese, went everywhere except his mouth grin. The carrots were very popular though, and DS does seem to like cucumber and avocado. Banana didn't really seem to grab him the first couple of times (he couldn't pick it up) but I'll give it another try tomorrow. He's been enjoying mushing ripe tomatoes and strawberries, but they seem to have given him a bit of a rash around his mouth from the acid I guess, so I'm leaving them for a few days.

moosemama Fri 18-Sep-09 14:02:04

Pleased to hear its going better today isitmeor.

The tomato and strawberry rash is fairly common I think, I've avoided them myself as ds2 always got a rash around his mouth when he ate them.

Yes, bananas can be slippery little devils. I believe some people give the banana still in the skin to help them grip at first. I think some people half peel it then chop off the top half of the skin leaving the bottom half for them to hold while the eat the top half of the flesh.

IsItMeOr Fri 18-Sep-09 16:38:13

I did try making banana cornets the 2nd time - nearest thing I've got to creating art, DH most impressed - DS had broken the top bit off within a millisecond so that was the end of that! Will try again when have less ripe bananas.

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