Monday, May 19, 2008

Calling all Mommies.....

Okay moms. I am calling for H.E.L.P.

My youngest little man, Ethan, is a pretty easy child on most fronts. You would think that by child #3, I would have everything down and hence, not need to be asking advice on something like this; yet, here I am, finding myself facing something that is new territory for me as a mommy.

Ethan will be 16 months old on the 31st of this month, and he is having an absolutely terrible time transitioning to 'normal' table foods. He is still eating jarred or mostly pureed food, like yogurts or refried beans (soft things). Colin and Cameron--and I do realize that each child is different--both began eating some table foods in the 9 - 12 month range; and were eating only table foods shortly after that. I always thought that 'once they get a taste of real food, they don't want to eat the jarred stuff anymore!'

However, that is not proving to be true with Ethan. He is giving us the hardest time.....meal times have just begun to get out of control. I mean, I really am starting to dread them. Ethan doesn't cry fact, the most he does cry is when he is in his chair at the table! I have tried offering him MANY different foods, and he just cries and cries. However, when I finally give in and give him a jar, or some yogurt, because I know that he has to eat something, he stops crying (mostly) and eats.

He does like some table food; he will eat triscuits (how weird, huh? He loves those) or sun chips, cheerios or any kind of breakfast cereal, refried beans, some rice, some cooked hamburger, green beans (sometimes), yogurt, eggs, and cheese. But I am so limited....he just cries and cries if I offer him anything else. Today at lunch it was spaghetti (cut up really small, of course) that we fought over.

He won.

Another really weird thing....even with the foods he does like: when I put them down on his tray, he cries. I have to actually pick the bite up, put it in his mouth while he is crying, and wait for him to chew. Then, he realizes, "Oh, I actually do like this...." and will eat the rest by himself! It is just awful, and is really wearing on me.

I am at my wits end here. I know this may seem strange to some of you, especially if you have good eaters (and my other two have been!) but I am really struggling with this, and would appreciate any advice you are willing to give! :-)


Shelly said...

Bless your heart. I hope that you are able to get something here that will help you. I can't imagine wanting him to start to eat table food yet knowing he has to eat something. I was wondering if maybe he just realizes that the food he is use to eating is in the jars? What about trying to put the table food in a jar and feed it to him out of that for a while. Maybe he has a more sensitive mouth and the foods are an ok temp to what the other boys eat but he can't handle them or spices? I have no idea, just throwing out some ideas. Again, I hope you get something helpful.

Unknown said...

hey dev,
if he wants the soft food for now what do you think about just pureeing his dinner??? I was talking to my aunt who has watched probably 100 children by now and asked her how long I should give luke the jar food? she said it didn't matter cause food is food and we eat food that is mashed up at times too. will he eat stage 3 of baby food? luke never would touch it! don't worry. if he is hungry he will eat. maybe he knows he is the baby and still wants to be treated that way? who knows

. said...

Man, that stinks, I loved it when my kids started eating big people food, it made dinner much easier! Have you tried a baby food mill? ( you can get them in local stores for about $10. Maybe if you grind up what you are eating he will like it better since it is mushy and you can slowly add a few cut up pieces to the mash and keep doing that till you are no longer using the mill?

Or what about giving himself silverware so he can feed himself? Sounds kind of silly but my little guy will try almost anything if he has it on his fork!

Good luck, let us know how it goes!

jillybean said...

I don't have a great deal of wisdom for you, but I wanted to let you know that Lauren is being quite picky herself these days. She is almost 15 months, so she is just a little younger than Ethan. Just today at lunch I was beside myself when she again would not eat what I had ready for her. I don't know if the "professionals" would agree with this, but today I just waited about an hour and tried again and that time she ate. Sometimes I think she needs to be a little hungrier so she isn't as picky. For me, that means that I'm going to try to eliminate the crackers or cheerios in the highchair while she waits for me to make the meal.

I thought it pretty ironic that you wrote about this today when I was feeling so frustrated myself. Like I said, haven't had a lot of experience or success, but today, an hour later, she was ready to eat her food. That was reassuring to know that she wasn't going to starve and I wasn't going to have to feed her applesauce and oatmeal yet again. :)

The Boe's ~ said...

Oh I had to crack a smile...sorry!
My "third" boy is the exact same way (is it b/c they are "momma's boy"):) ...all this advice was very helpful to me as well--so thanks :) Jaden is almost one, Saturday, so hopefully it'll get better. I'll be praying for you guys--its a tough transition to get through but all worth it!!

Thanks for praying for Cheyenne, they are definitely needing it right now!

Kara said...

I don't have much advice...Caden is my picky one and he is old enough now, we MAKE him try everything on his plate. Carter will eat almost anything so we haven't had to tackle this yet. I agree with making everything a puree, that way he is getting variety and nutrients, but softer textures? What does your ped say?

Julie said...

I'd go with just pureeing his food and see how that goes. It's probably not a texture thing, if he eats stuff like cereal and crackers. Another good idea is the giving him silverware one. The Jib LOVES to eat with a fork or spoon. Maybe you could puree his dinner AND give him a spoon to eat it with?

I wish I had better advice for ya! Good luck!

Edlow said...

Okay! I am am a PRO at this! My middle child was a bad eater like this and we actually went to an physical therapy to do these little mouth workouts to train her to eat better. I will save you the 800 dollar insurance bill and give you our cheat sheet.:)

The best thing was that Jocelyn chewed on this stick like a toothbrush that was all bumpy for about 10 minutes before we fed her ( sometimes they also used different varieties of vibrating toys that could be chewed on) What this did was encourage chewing/nawing, stimulate the nerve endings in her gums, and get her mouth salivating before I tried to give her food. We would sit there while she chewed on the vibrating toy for about 10 minutes, and then like a miracle she would eat the food... I know it sounds crazy but we were doing her therapy at texas Children's hospital in Houston. It is one of the top children's hospital in the country , so this is not just some wacky advice from some backwoods texas DR LOL when we were at home, I would put her in the High chair and let her chew while I plated all our food, and by the time it was on the table and the prayer was done, she was ready to go!