Baby Led Weaning

Growing healthy babies with healthy appetites

It's Just For Fun Until They're One

Shee-yit. What now?

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13 Responses to “It's Just For Fun Until They're One”

  1. Anonymous says:

    This is probably the wrong place to post this, if so I appologise. But I really need some support of some kind. Mya baby doesn't seem to want to eat anymore and I think it is my fault. I started weaning my daughter just before 6 months. She hated any kind of veg and ate every kind of fruit. The HV said that this was not good enough that she needed a more varied diet. Round about this time I found this site and at 7 months I started BLW. I was so excited about it and was really enjoying it. Mealtimes had always been so stressful before because I was constantly trying to get baby to eat carrot puree and she hated it and would scream and get so upset and I would cry etc etc – not nice.
    So we were baby led weaning, she still hated pretty much all veg but would eat asparagus if it was smothered in houmous. She would eat all fruit, cheese, pitta pockets. I started offering mac cheese, spaggetti, noodles all sorts but she would just throw it on the floor. I started to lose my nerve and spoon feeding started creeping back in. I used to always make sure she had at least one thing at a meal that she would feed herself and I would feed her yougurts and porridge (messy stuff) with a spoon. Then as I was worried she wasn't getting enough veg I started buying jarred foods. Which she refuses completely.
    So now I have a 9 month old who will only eat frutapura, porridge, lumps of cheese, cheesey pitta, cheese on toast, cheesy piece, philly on ricecakes, quorn fillets and any kind of fruit you can put on her tray.
    I feel like a failure, but I don't know what to do. I will make her dinners up and she will just moan and fling it on the floor and then I panic and give her a cheesy sandwich and a frutapura. Sometimes I just give her cheese for an easy life as i know she will eat it.
    Please help, I have really lost my way, meal times are stressing me out again and i just don't know what to do. I still breastfeed appros 4 times a day and 2-3 times through the night!

  2. Anonymous says:

    blimey, you must be knackered, Melf, you poor thing. I've got to go and get dinner now but i'll be back in a bit. it'll be fine in the end, don't worry.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Any wise words, I am really struggling??

  4. Anonymous says:

    What a tough time this sounds like. You've both had a load of worry and stress, and a mum's worry for her child can be such an intense feeling.
    You say that this is your fault – but each and every day you've done you're very best for your baby – where is the blame in that? It's hard not to blame yourself, but your worry and stress can so easily be picked up by your baby, who knows you so very well. It's great to hear that your baby is still getting lots of breastfeeds, because these really will provide a substatianal nutrtitional contribution. I imagine that when you breastfeed, you feel nothing like the stress and worry you feel at mealtimes allowing both you and your baby to chill out. I hope you can find a way to model mealtimes on that.
    I can't tell you what to do – no-one can – but here are a few options for you to consider.
    Mealtimes as they stand have become miserable times so stop them now! Change the pattern and give your baby a chance to forget the behavioural rut she's found herself in. Can you make tyhe whole experience feel different? If you've got a high chair, shove it away in a cupboard out of sight for a while. (If you're baby is about 40 weeks old, then changing something for a fortnight is like a year or two for you and me – a big gulf!) Ditch any feeding bibs or bowls you've been using. Go to a different room, or even out to the garden! Try sitting your baby on the floor, or in a bouncy chair – anything that feels really different. Try a different time of day too – when she ,might be peckish but not starving, and more willing to experiment.
    Forget about actually eating food right now, just try a bit of play and exploration: a pile of bright, clean fruit and veg (peeled or as they come), bread and cool pasta loaded spoons of yoghurt, whatever, and *play* – roll fruit to your daughter, balance it on your head, play peek-a-boo around a piece of bread – have fun! Babies will tend to put toys to their mouths – who is to say what is a toy and what is food? And if it goes in her mouth, don't make a big deal, but have a go yourself, with big smiles…
    Hopefully, you can rekindle a sense of fun and inquisitiveness in your baby – messy, I know – but it might be worth a try…
    Dr Tanya Byron has done some things similar to this with toddlers (check out her 'House of Tiny Tearaways' book – your library may be able to help) – I don't see why some of it shouldn't work with younger babies, but really I'm talking as a mum of two (first one mush-fed, second BLW) and as a grownup who was an *appallingly* fussy eater.
    Wishing you all the best

  5. Anonymous says:

    Hi Melfi,
    Until Aitch comes back with some wise words… She is eating some food, and still drinking plenty of breastmilk. So she's not starving, and she's getting vitamins, etc from fruit, and shedloads of good stuff from you. In other words, you're doing pretty well.
    Veg – how about giving her stuff really just to play with? Don't think about whether she's eating any, and have fun – make sure your floor is cleanish, and just chuck it back on her tray with a laugh. Also – sweet potato and squash type things may appeal if she likes fruit, as they are pretty sweet, especially roasted.
    She will be ok on the diet she's on just now, as breastmilk is the most important thing she can have, so take a breath, enjoy what she does eat – as she sees you relax, she'll relax too, and may well take more stuff as she and you grow in confidence. More soon – imagine Aitch and others will have wise words soon…

  6. Anonymous says:

    You chose the perfect place to post this query because the title is true!
    I back up the other ladies, turn feeding time into play time.
    Don't worry if nothing goes in, she has breastmilk!
    Don't give her anything that requires a spoon or take her into the garden (or on a big messy mat) and put it in front of her in a bowl and let her get her hands in, rub it in her hair, on you etc just generally make a BIG mess! One of the biggest causes of fussy eating is being too neat with food as a baby. I was wiping something off off Tinkerbelle's clothes as she was eating one day and getting in her way. I suddenly thought “what sort of message am I giving her that her clothes are more important than her food?! Do I really want her to grow up with that message?”

  7. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for all your encouraging post and ideas. I will definately try making meal times more fun although I am worried about how I am gonna stop stressing about how much she is eating.
    I know that I say that she is still breastfeeding, but when she if breastfeeding she is never on for very long. 2 or 3 minute maximum.
    So I am now going to worry that if she is relying on that for nutrition, that she is not getting enough.
    I guess I am just a natural born worrier?!?!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Hi there,
    I think babies get pretty efficient at breastfeeding as they get older – I know that the Nome's feeding times shortened quite a lot as she got towards weaning, and apart from the evening, she's only on for about 5 mins, if that (in fact, probably closer to 3…) – and she's a big girl (99th centile) and has always been a big feeder. As long as you're still offering milk, she knows it's there if she's hungry. Is she well otherwise?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Babies will feed for less and less time as they get older, it really is nothing to worry about they will still get what they need. Mother and baby just become more efficient.
    If you are really worried about how much you are giving, then speak with your HV and ask her to weigh your LO before and after a feed. They are reluctant to doo it normally, but if you want a little reassurance, I don't see why they won't.

  10. Anonymous says:

    …but, for all you know she may really have been having 'just a snack' that time – it might be hard to know if it was a typical feed…?
    Another option is to continue to keep track of her wet nappies – by this age, bf babies can have big gaps of time between poos, but regularly wet nappies are still a good sign: liquid in – liquid out!
    If you keep the playtimes separate to mealtimes, then you might find it easier to chill out, because they're not 'part' of her usual nutrition?

  11. Anonymous says:

    I too have a fussy eater, and I havent gone back to purees and he is still fussy – so its not your fault. Some babies just are fussy or have a small appetite. Euan is almost 11 months, and at some meals he doesn't eat anything at all – even things I know he likes. We have been seeing a paediatrician because his weight dipped quite a lot when he was about 5 – 6 months, but he never thought it could just be down to poor eating. And his weight is back on track now despite him still being a poor eater.
    I have decided not to get stressed about it, as I have noticed if he is really hungry he will eat quite a lot. It is just that he is usually not very hungry. My mum tells me I was the same, I have always been a small eater. So I just give him the food and it is up to him if he eats it. I try to always make sure there is something on his tray that I know he likes, along with something either new, or something he has rejected in the past. He is gradually starting to include more variety. It's slow but we are getting there.
    Hope some of that has been helpful.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Hi Melfi,
    sorry i totally forgot about answering you… glad to see you've had some useful advice on here. i agree with everything that's been said (although as someone who never managed to breastfeed effectively i'm not sure about the weighing thing. what are they measuring exactly? if the fat content of the milk is up would that weigh more, is that the point?)
    i'd really just ask yourself if, had that HV not told you that the fruit the baby was eating 'wasn't good enough' and rather undermined you, would you be worrying as much now? do you have any reason to be stressing about this? is she ill? listless? pale? sickly?
    because if she's fine, really, then that's such a great position to be in. the rest of it can all get better, and you've got a few months before you have to even really start thinking about what she's eating. that's not to say that you should just fill her up with shite, of course, but aside from perhaps the salty cheese which you don't want to overload on, it looks not too bad to me. especially the fruit, for goodness sake.
    i agree with clovis that sweet potato might be good to try because it's sweet, also my daughter absolutely loved (frozen) peas when she was that age. what about that? particularly when she was teething, she loved flipping them all around her highchair tray.
    Play seems to be the thing, also, and you trying to chill out about it. honestly, your breastmilk is the best thing for her right now, but could some of the stress be coming from the fact that you want to cut down a bit? (which is totally fair enough, if you did, you've done a sterling job so far). if so, then funnily enough the best way for you to encourage her to eat more is to relax more, in all likelihood. hah! no pressure, then.
    i know someone on another board who basically left food lying on the floor for her picky son to find, and i do remember when babybear decided she didn't like her highchair so we used to give her lunch as a picnic. we still do, often. Have a look for a photo Morv put up of Boomer, when she went through her 'i'm only eating standing up, thanks' phase.
    i think i'm rambling now, but basically don't forget that food is fuel at the end of the day, so as long as the baby isn't getting sick then you're fine for the next while. babies change their minds, so don't give up on veggies, for example babybear wouldn't take carrot for months but now if you cut it into thin slices she can't get enough.
    and remember, the great advantage of finger food is you can give it to her in her buggy, on a park bench, lying on a rug etc etc. so maybe picnics are the way forward, when the rain stops?

  13. Anonymous says:

    If you weigh a baby before and after a breastfeed, then take the first reading (in lbs and ozs) from the second one, it tells you how many ozs of milk baby has had. 1 fl oz = 1 oz
    Tinkerbelle went through a stage where she didn't put on weight in a month, my HV was going mad and eventually decided to try this. She gained 2oz, weed and lost it again, lol

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