Really struggling! Sorry very long.

Oh, we're done with all that vegetable-steaming and mess, our children are cutlery-wielding, spaghetti-chomping angels... at least some of the time.

Really struggling! Sorry very long.

Postby Spanner » 03 Jan 2008, 14:31

I know until they're one it's just for fun, but believe me I'm not finding it fun at all! Ok, Charlie is 9 and a half months now so we've been doing this for over 3 months now and he still doesn't really eat much. He also has a strong preference for sweet things to the extent that he is ignoring nearly all other offerings. A typical day:

Breakfast - raisin wheats soaked in milk - he LOVES these and will sometimes eat up to 10 of these. He might nibble some fruit or a toast finger. Banana always gets eaten. Sometimes I have spoon fed porridge but he'll only take it mixed with fruit or yoghurt (and I think he's seen through this now as he refuses this too).

Lunch - Various things offered - sandwich, rice cakes with something on, omlette fingers, sweet potato wedges etc etc. He used to generally eat rice cakes but lately just crumbles them. Today he ate nothing.

Dinner - Similar to lunch. Try to offer a bit of meat (e.g. homemade chicken nugget) and veg or pasta. Completely random whether he has anything but generally carbs are preferred. Quite often has yoghurt spooned in (which he loves).

He ignores all veg (even sweet potato which he used to like).

Maybe a breadstick or something offered as a snack. MIL has given rusks/toddler biscuits (whatever they are) which he really likes. Chocolate coin and half mince pie given on Christmas day went down well too!

I have tried changing the timing to see if hunger makes any difference but it hasn't helped. I've tried eating with him, getting on with the washing up and ignoring him, eating a bit of his food then giving it back, eating with other babies but it doesn't make that much difference. I have even tried a bit of spoon feeding mush but unless it is yoghurt or fruit he nearly always cries when this is attempted.

I know it shouldn't really matter - he loves milk and has 4 8oz bottles every day plus he generally sleeps through. His weight has always been good. So why am I getting so hung up about it?? I think I am just getting a bit despondant at the lack of progress plus I see other babies happily tucking in to finger food (same age, traditionally weaned) and I get a bit fed up of being the only 'different' one. Plus I love food and cooking so kind of expected Charlie to enjoy food too - he certainly has an appetite for milk! I also want him to get all the nutrition he needs as he gets older - sometimes I wonder if milk really is enough - why do we get told to wean at 6 months at all if they don't really need it?? (Controversial to say that here!) I know in other cultures they don't do it, but does that necessarily make it the best thing for optimal health? Especially as I had to give in with breast feeding at 5 months.

Also I'm going back to work and although childminder seems fine with it I am sure she will start to worry when he doesn't eat anything! I am trying to convince myself that it's ok but I don't want her to think I'm depriving him!

Anyway, have gone on waaay too long. Any advice? Anyone in similar situ?
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Postby Aitch » 03 Jan 2008, 14:49

well, milk isn't exclusively enough, from what we understand, although other cultures aren't as weird about food as we are and let nature take its course more. certainly according to the WHO milk is the primary source of nutrition, but they do need to be doing a bit of nibbling, which Charlie is.

tbh it doesn't sound like there's much you can do about it, you're absolutely stuck with a baby who doesn't much like food at the moment and loves his milk. if he's on formula then there are loads of extra iron and vit supplements in there.

he doesn't like being spoon fed, he doesn't eat much apart from (vit-fortified) raisin wheats... he's only 9 months old so you can't sit him down and tell him that you're unhappy about it, you can't give him a star chart or stick him on the naughty step... so all you can do is stress or not stress about it. it's kinda nothing to do with you, you're doing everything you can, putting it all in place for him, perhaps you just have to wait it out as calmly as you can? did you read th FAQ on the blog? seems like Charlie's not that unusual, from what they say...

are boys less greedy, do we think? i wonder?
Last edited by Aitch on 03 Jan 2008, 15:15, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby AB&M » 03 Jan 2008, 14:51

Charliesmummy, I really feel for you. It can be so hard to have courage in your convictions every single day. If you tot up what Bruno eats at home with me, it isn't much either. He loves carbs and often will just have a bit of bread - I need to get some soups in so at least its flavoured bread!

Bruno & Charlie are about the same age although we started at 5 months so he's had a bit more practice.

I don't know what the answer is apart from perseverance. If you've tried increasing his intake with mush to no success then he just doesn't want food I guess. If you really are worried about the nutrition then you could go down the vitamin route. I'm not bothering as I formula feed and maybe I'm a bit too blase but I'm assuming the vits in there are enough.

Over Christmas, without a kitchen and no nursery to go to, Bruno has had a very poor diet but by not feeding him much solids I've brought his milk back up to an acceptable level - he was only taking about 12oz a day before Christmas and now he's back up to 25-30oz.

I bet Charlie will suddenly surprise you one day and go back to eating. You know what they say, its just a phase :wink:
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Postby Aitch » 03 Jan 2008, 15:16

(over christmas, dd has had an ATROCIOUS diet and she'd 2... :scream )
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Postby ches » 03 Jan 2008, 15:59

I think Johnny's about 3 weeks older than Charlie, and until about 3 weeks ago, would hardly eat a thing in my presence. Reports were that he ate at nursery, but I do wonder. These last 3 weeks, though, he has taken to it, and reports from nursery were of increased appetite.

As Aitch says, you can stress or not, but that's about all you have control over. Keep offering with a smile and I'm sure Charlie will be eating you out of house and home sooner than you expect. :)
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Postby realsLINshady » 03 Jan 2008, 18:36

Small went through a VERY picky phase around 9 months and very frustrating it was too! I tried to find the reassurance I got given on the blog but the archive search-thingy didn't retrieve it.

I just kept offering her food and she took what she liked. I figured that as long as she was gaining weight, was active and alert and generally in blooming good health, then it was all OK & she was just taking her time! She certainly had & still has a preference for carbs - but I'd guess that energy foods are what they need above all others - in terms of quantity. She took very little protein when she was younger - even now, she tends to do one big load up on protein once a week and not really want to touch it again. Fruit & formula will be providing vitamins in the absence of veg for the time being. So ... this was my rationale for keeping chilled until she decided that food was OK!

He might be a bit teethy - it certainly knocks Small's appetite? And is he moving and active? Small's appetite certainly increased at each stage of increased mobility.

Keep the faith - it sounds like you are both doing really well.
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Postby twirlygirly » 03 Jan 2008, 18:44

It is stressful isn't it?
Ruby didn't start eating a reasonable amount of food til a week before she was 10 months, and compared to some other babies her age doing blw she still wasn't eating much. She now eats really well. It all happened at once and she seems to love her food!
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Postby AB&M » 03 Jan 2008, 19:21

I reckon this eating thing is a bit like the over development stuff. It just works overnight.

At the moment, Bruno is desperate to crawl. Really trying to figure it out and he's so upset he can't do it yet. Its been weeks and it was the same with sitting up on his own.

I just know that one day it'll just click and away he goes and I really do think that will be the same thing with eating. He does a bit, some days even amazes me and one day it will be like, whoa where's the real Bruno gone 'cos we've got a HUNGRY monster!
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Postby Spanner » 03 Jan 2008, 20:27

Thank you for the reassurances! I kind of knew it all really but sometimes it's nice to hear someone else say it. It's very true Aitch - it's not really like I can do much about it except choose not to get stressed about it. I think I need to spend less time trying to think of tempting ideas and cooking them, only for them to be ignored - this is one of the most frustrating things.

I don't really think it's teething as this doesn't seem to bother him too much (2 so far without much fuss). He did have a tummy upset about 3 weeks ago, before which he seemed to eat slightly more (I think). He is getting more active but doesn't seem hungrier because of it.

I must say Brunoandmum that it's very true how some things happen all at once. For months we have been trying to encourage Charlie to roll over with very little success - he just wanted to sit or stand all the time. Then suddenly last week he started doing it and now there is no stopping him (especially during a nappy change :scream ). And now he is doing all the getting ready to crawl stuff too. I'm sure he was just 'ready' to do it and would have done it at that point no matter what we had tried to encourage. I guess one day this will happen with food too.

The only thing I sometimes wonder is whether things would have been different if I had done the whole puree thing from 6 months and not given him any option to choose. I keep wondering if I have made him into a fussy eater by giving him a choice about what he eats? And I know as DH says, that this is nonsense really but I will never know! If only you could have a glimpse into the future and see your little angel happily eating a meal aged 5 it would make it easier to keep the faith!
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Postby Aitch » 03 Jan 2008, 20:53

actually, i think Nigella Lawson says in How To Eat that she made up all her purees in advance not because it would have been difficult for her to mash family food but because it would be less disheartening to see it rejected.

i thought that was a really good poiint, actually, so from a BLW perspective i've purposefully never made anything to 'tempt' dd, in fact it's an absolute dead cert that the harder i try with a meal for us all, the less likely she is to eat it. so she gets what we're having, truly. but we eat rawther well, i must say... <pats tummy> :wink:

just try to enjoy your mealtimes, that's all you can do really. :D
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Postby MoBo » 03 Jan 2008, 20:56

charliesmummy, you have my total sympathy. we are in a very similar situation and i'm finding it really hard too.
Fin is 8 and a half months and eats mainly bread, fruit and yoghurt. He's even started to refuse the trusty rice cake, which had been so handy for sneakily spreading mashed veg on. And i know exactly how frustrating it is to try to cook new things only to have them rejected (without even trying them grrrr).
We were out with a group of puree'ers today and they all tucked into huge bowls of mush while Fin had a few spoonfuls of yoghurt. That got me down so it's good to come on here and know we're not the only ones. But it doesn't stop you wondering if you're doing the right thing even though you know there's not much else you can do. <big sigh emoticon>
so i guess my only advice is hang in there and hope that one he'll wake up with a strong desire for veg. we'll be doing the same thing
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Postby Aitch » 03 Jan 2008, 21:01

but seriously... if you want to give them puree or mash on a spoon, just do it. you're in charge of this stuff, we're just typing words onto a screen, you're the one in the house with the baby. :bsmile
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Postby rachelm » 04 Jan 2008, 10:58

just wanted to say that Ellie eats much better when she is with older children who are eating or when hubby and others are eating too rather than just me and her at the table. - could you trydifferent eating situations?
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Postby wildhairedwoman » 04 Jan 2008, 13:21

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Postby raylis » 04 Jan 2008, 14:44

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