Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Hunger Strike

When Timmy was 1, he would eat just about anything I put in front of him. He would eat chicken, steak, pork chops, hamburger, ground turkey, etc. Then something happened. He refused to eat the meat that I offered him. Being the paranoid first time mom that I am/was at the time, I offered him something that most kids like –chicken nuggets. He continued to refuse all other forms of meat, so I continued to give him chicken nuggets. Fast forward 16 months later, and he is still eating chicken nuggets. He will eat the occasional hot dog and grilled cheese, but mostly he eats chicken nuggets.

I take full responsibility for this.

At his 18 month well child visit, I talked to the doctor about it and she said to keep giving him the nuggets, but that we would re-visit this the next time I was in with him. At his 2 year well child visit, she said no more nuggets. Well, it was his first week of daycare, and decided that I could not torture him with food as well as separation, so we waited.

The wait is over, and the hunger strike is on. I am no longer a short order cook. Timmy gets what we get. We started it this week, and he’s not so fond of this new change in his eating habits. The question is, do I make him sit there until he tries at least one bite, or do I let him get up when everyone is finished? We have been making him try one bite before he gets up, but it’s very unpleasant. He is full of attitude and piss & vinegar about it.


Pea Pod Mommy said...

My kids (not quite two) became picky eaters. They get what they get. There have been times that they have not eaten, and later they are hungry. I explain it to them (the best I can). In the past few months, I have seen a difference in how they eat.

Melissa R. Garrett said...

I have never been one of those parents who can send her kids to bed hungry. I just can't do it. If they don't like what I fix (which is most nights for Jacob) they get a bowl of cereal.

Have you tried Morningstar "chicken" nuggets? My kids love those, and I can feel good that they are getting something that's healthier than frozen nuggets.

I think it's normal for all kids Timmy's age, who were once healthy eaters, to turn a little picky. I've seen it with all of my kids (again, with the exception of Jacob who has always been picky, but he is VERY rigid in what he will eat). In time, I think he will grow out of it and start eating a bigger variety of food.

As far as making him sit with you ~ we make our kids try at least one bite and when they say they are done, they are done. We make them take their plates into the kitchen (Bridget included) and then go somewhere else to play. With three kids, my husband and I need the alone time without the kids. It really ruins our evening if we make them sit and they just end up yelling and screaming.

But like all parenting issues, you gotta do what works for you ;-)

Bonita said...

Hi Crissy!
Thanks for visiting my blog!

Mealtime can be such a challenge. Our rule is they have to eat at least one bite. If they choose not to they can leave the table when they meal is over. However, when it's time for a snack later on we bring out the food (or plate) they didn't eat. There were many tears but they soon figured out it was easier to eat that one bite than to be hungry later.

Hope that helps!

we are reilly said...

This is always a hard discussion at our house too! Our 2 year old daughter likes to eat 'on her own time' and 'at her own place' (meaning snacking throughout the day on healthy items, but at the coffee table).

I need to crack down and start enforcing some rules. But, one thing I decided that I would do differently than my parents, is to not make my child(ren) 'clean their plate'. I had to do that as a child and now I over eat, which is not healthy! It's a hard topic and you have to decide as a family what is best for you.....

We keep the dinner plate at the table and our daughter can come and go as she pleases while my husband and I are eating, but when we're done her plate goes away too.

Anonymous said...

I am going through the same thing - only with fruits and veggies. Peaches used to be so good at eating everything we put in front of her including fruits and veggies of all kinds. Now she wants things like pasta, cheese curls and chocolate.

I have no ideas. In fact, if you figure it out, let me know. :o)

onemotherslove said...

My son (now 3) turned picky eater when my daughter was born (he was 2.5 then), and is SLOWLY starting to try something besides noodles & cheerios. Wish I had more advise to give - just hang in there & keep trying!

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Mike said...

Hey, Did our George rub off on him at Christmas around that time. George is just now eating more food. Still loves Wendy's nuggets.