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Chasing Babies... Growing in Grace: Getting MY Toddler to Eat

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Getting MY Toddler to Eat

Ok... this is going to make some of you more experienced mommies chuckle a little bit, but please, for my sake, do it so I can't hear you. I'm running on low levels of sleep and may take things a little too seriously!

In the last couple weeks (beginning right around the time our little girl was born ~ related??? I don't know) I have been going mad at meal times. Yes... I am the same Babychaser who brought to you the 8 strategies on how to get your toddler to eat, but things haven't been going well! I've found myself saying and doing things I swore I'd never do... right down to letting myself get frustrated. Ok... I take into consideration that I'm tired and therefore less flexible in general, but still.

So... DS won't eat. He liked it yesterday, but today, not so much. I find myself working very hard not to make rules I don't want to enforce (i.e. just one more bite, eat your fruit, you HAVE to eat this first). I don't want to start those food wars. Most likely, he will get through this little food fickle faze (ok... I know that phase is spelled with a "ph", but I had to go with the "f" this time... and you may as well use a "z" when you are deliberately spelling something wrong!) without my threatening his life. He did it again last night... just didn't want to eat. So I let him not eat. He was plenty ready for breakfast this morning!

Ok... so my Works for Me Wednesday tip! Sometime early last week, we were having one of our troubling (read: frustrating) meal times and I just kept hearing all my advice on getting toddlers to eat roll through my head. I was feeling pretty lame! He would not eat, except occasionally from my fork. Then he stopped eating from my fork. He was pushing it away (a behavior issue we are working on) and often getting it on me or the floor (not ok in our home). Before doing anything that would not have been becoming of the Proverbs 31 woman (you know... the one who has kindness on her tongue), I gave up and gave the child a fork!

Now, let me tell you... I've been wondering when my toddler would be ready to start using silverware. I have almost asked you all several times for your advice. Apparently he's ready! He ate his whole meal with that fork. It took longer, sure... he isn't real coordinated with that fork. I help sometimes, and sometimes I let him battle it out. Sometimes he holds the fork in one hand and shoves food in with the other.

What am I saying??? If you have tried everything and can't get your toddler to eat, try giving him the fork and letting him try it for himself! Just don't go far... those forks can be dangerous! :) Hey, it's working for us!

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At March 19, 2008 at 12:49 PM , Blogger Irene said...

That reminds me...I went through a similar phase with Julia when she was your son's age. She would scream when I tried to feed her and once I just let her do it herself and I learned that was what she wanted. She wanted to do it HERSELF. Lately I have been trying it with my 14 month old and he appreciates the opportunity. He still loves mommy feeding him, but I see a little glint in his eyes when he gets to make a BIG mess using his spoon:)

At March 19, 2008 at 5:39 PM , Blogger Michele said...

We sometimes have similar issues with our toddler (15 mths). She definitely has phases! Sometimes she wants to feed herself, and sometimes she wants us to feed her. For awhile, she would only eat if she could hold the spoon. Then she only wanted finger food.... it varies. Mostly, it just has to be HER idea! :)
Michele :)

At March 19, 2008 at 9:24 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My little one was the same way. It was her way or no way. Just recently, though, she has been asking me the "feed the baby sister" (she will be 2 in May).

I guess the only thing you can count on as a parent is that when you think you have something all figured out they will change things on you.


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