Monday, December 6, 2010

Getting your toddlers to eat

O.k. I think Dave and I have been very good/lucky about most of the obstacles you face raising a toddler. (at least with this kid:) - let's see what happens with number 2.

We magically avoided biting/hitting/tantrums (for now) She is very well behaved 98% of the time and always has been, she potty trained in less than a week and we have been able to stick together on the little discipline we have to impose on her.

We are very very careful with ultimatums and we make sure that if we threaten her with something and she doesn't follow through that we follow through with the punishment. It's hard because most of the time we'd rather just forget about it to make it easier... however, we don't want her to think that she can get away with stuff.

This brings us to our biggest and most disappointing failure to date....


We waited too long to force her to eat regular food. For dinners, we had still been giving her something different up until about 2 - 3 weeks ago because we didn't want to deal with the hassle of sitting down to a nice cooked dinner and having to fight with her about what to eat.

That was our fault and mostly selfish because we wanted to eat in semi-peace... so now that we are making really good dinners every night, and trying to force her to eat it - we have tears and yelling at every dinner.

We try to bribe her by giving her a little bit of something we know she likes and making her try what is on her plate to get more and that sometimes works..... but for the most part I think we are failing miserably.

I know some people send their kids to bed hungry if they don't eat what is for dinner and up until now I had been afraid she'd wake up during the night hungry and to be honest, didn't want to deal with it - but at this point I realize we have no choice and have to make this right.

She doesn't like meat. I think it's a texture thing. She puts it in her mouth and then spits it out and says... "No this, take it away please". She eats pasta, but it has to be a certain shape or it appears to freak her out and she won't even put it in her mouth.

She won't eat mac and cheese, and hates vegetables.
We even tried to let her pick out vegetables at the store like my friend suggested, but that doesn't seem to be working. She eats plenty of fruit and likes yogurt and cheese, but won't drink milk.

Help me. I'm at a loss. I know a lot of you say that your kids are picky eaters at this age, but this isn't picky - this is down right resistance.

The only thing I noticed is that she has a play food set that includes peas and I think that sparked her interest in eating peas - because she will eat those sometimes... So for Christmas, I bought her a vegetable play set and am looking for some other foods to try to help, but I am not sure that will be enough.

What do you do and how long did it take until your child started to actually comply?

I'm pretty bummed about her lack of eating - especially since as a baby she ate EVERYTHING....
Suggestions welcome:)

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