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Let's Discuss Forcing Children To Eat - Page 3

post #41 of 130
Quote:
Last night she snubbed roasted chicken and mashed potatoes because it had gravy on it. Oh well...she got something bland later..No big, dont want it dont eat it but I"m NOT cooking you something different. She doesn't get "rewarded" by getting something Yummy delish if she snubs supper. She gets something bland and nutritional, nothing more nothing less.
See, I don't understand this logic. I completely understand your reasonable boundary of not wanting to cook a whole other dinner, I get that. Why can't your daughter have something that she thinks tasts "yummy delish" just because she wasn't down with gravy? Why does it have to be "bland" but nutritional? That makes it almost like a punishment. I wonder if you can't come to an agreeable solution. Things she can get herself out of the fridge, single serve yogurts, cheese cubes, veggies and dip (whatever is easy and nutritious AND not *bland*) where you don't have to cook something else.
post #42 of 130
At our house, if you don't eat what's for dinner you can always have fruit or bell-pepper strips, and you can have a yogurt or whatever you might normally have had for dessert -- if we have ice-cream or cookies that night, you can have a scoop of ice-cream or a cookie, you don't have to eat a required amount of dinner to get dessert. I'm not going to cook anything separate, though, and our dessert servings are not really big enough to fill you up if you don't eat any dinner.

About the "she'd eat nothing but cookies" concern ... if you let them do this, a lot of kids probably would! That's where "the parents decide what and when" comes in.
post #43 of 130
When I was growing up, my father forced me to finish everything on my plate. Dinner times were horrible for me because not only was I forced to finish grown up sized portions under threats of beatings, me and my mother had to sit in silence as my father berated us. I was allowed to leave the table as soon as my plate was cleaned so I always ate as fast as I could.

When my mother was in the hospital giving birth to my brother, my father took me out to dinner. When they brought out my dinner, which he had ordered off the children's menu, he told the waitress it wasn't enough and ordered another dinner for me. That was before I took even 1 bite.

To this day I have food issues. I can't tell when I am full unless I happen to over stuff myself, then I am miserble for the rest of the night. I keep trying to pace myself to eat slower but unless I make a conscious effort on each and every bite, I still eat at lightning speed.

I did not want to do that to my kids. All of my daughter's meals are the correct sized portions for her size. We sit down together for each meal talking and just enjoying each other's company. She eats at her own pace and I will not get up from the table until she is done, no matter how long it takes her to eat. She eats until she knows she is full. It is very rare that she cleans her plate. I never comment on what is left on her plate or if she has eaten everything.

I want her to look back on our family meals as something she enjoyed while growing up.
post #44 of 130
I used to nanny a five year old who was a little bit picky (normal for 5 IMO). Her parents were very controlling about food. One morning I was told to make her eat the leftover fish from the previous night's dinner for BREAKFAST. Her mother wasn't the....greatest cook and most leftovers looked quite unappetizing to me so I understand why often the children were not enthusiastic about eating.
My mom was force fed as a child and therefore never did it to us. But I always liked what she made, and ate a lot. My dd is not picky yet, but I have no intention of EVER making her finish what's on her plate- she can eat or not eat, I do believe in sitting together for dinner but you can just sit and talk w/out eating. There will always be plenty of choices, I won't make more than one dinner but we usually have several side dishes, and there's always fruit, veggies, crackers, cheese, and yogurt in the fridge for a backup.
I don't think force feeding is in line with AP. at all.
post #45 of 130
my ds has always hated eating food. at 3 1/2 I've finally given up trying to force him to eat. He's given appropriate portions of good food at each meal. If he eats it he can have his choice from the "candy" drawer. If he doesn't... no treat. Works well.
post #46 of 130
I never serve dessert. We rarely have dessert type treats, but when we do, they are served in the morning for breakfast. That way I have the energy to deal with kids who have extra energy, rather than dealing with meltdowns at bedtime when I am too tired.
post #47 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by edamommy
my ds has always hated eating food. at 3 1/2 I've finally given up trying to force him to eat. He's given appropriate portions of good food at each meal. If he eats it he can have his choice from the "candy" drawer. If he doesn't... no treat. Works well.
That is still forcing him to eat food his body may not need. A healthy child will know that they need, ie-more fruit, less carbs, more protein, etc.
post #48 of 130
my stepmother was famous for making you sit there until it was done.
I once wasn't eating my mashed potatoes fast enough or i didn't want them so she told my father and brother to grab a handful of potatoes and plop them on the top of my head. They did, i had potatoes in my hair for weeks!
post #49 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaInTheBoonies
That is still forcing him to eat food his body may not need. A healthy child will know that they need, ie-more fruit, less carbs, more protein, etc.
lol! no, it's not forcing him to eat! His body doesn't WANT to eat anything! I provide what his body SHOULD eat and he makes decisions from there!
post #50 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain crunchy
See, I don't understand this logic. I completely understand your reasonable boundary of not wanting to cook a whole other dinner, I get that. Why can't your daughter have something that she thinks tasts "yummy delish" just because she wasn't down with gravy? Why does it have to be "bland" but nutritional? That makes it almost like a punishment. I wonder if you can't come to an agreeable solution. Things she can get herself out of the fridge, single serve yogurts, cheese cubes, veggies and dip (whatever is easy and nutritious AND not *bland*) where you don't have to cook something else.
: Also, I don't have yogurt cups(too high in sugar and dyes), but we do have Bideena with yellow bean dip, frybread with Mojape, and many healthy foods that are considered non-American, iykwim.
post #51 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by edamommy
lol! no, it's not forcing him to eat! His body doesn't WANT to eat anything! I provide what his body SHOULD eat and he makes decisions from there!
But only HE would know what his body needs.

For example: I ask my kids before I make dinner what their body's need, and they will all 'listen' and then say we need eggs and salsa! If I don't have eggs and salsa, then I at least know they need protein, and I will let them know we are out of eggs but we have plantains, black beans and tomatos. They will almost always say, "Yes! That's what we want!" I always have one kid who says they don't want that....my pasta boy. He needs more carbs than the girls, so, I always have angel hair pasta, or cous cous available for him.
post #52 of 130
I try to gauge my daughter's reaction to the things I cook and we go from there. If it's a dish I know she likes and she just doesn't feel like eating it, fine but that's supper. If it's a new dish and she tries it and says she doesn't like it, I have an alternative. Breakfast and lunch are entirely up to her. I try to throw in a couple choices that I prefer, but she mostly gets what she wants. I've noticed that this way, probably 80% of the time, she chooses healthy options so I try not to worry about the other 20%.

I will never make her sit at a table for an hour, alone or me across from her, and tell her nothing will happen for her until she finishes food. I think it's horribly mean.
post #53 of 130
Thread Starter 
I have to say, I have seen plenty of kids who will only eat crackers and milk. I think certain foods are addictive and they will keep going for those ones. I *have* known kids who will hold out for 20 hours when they are accustomed to those salty crackers and hormone milk. Seriously, and that is what they will grow on alone for years. I think it's our responsiblity to make a variety of healthy foods available (which IMO does not = fish crackers and worse - though, aint nothin wrong w/fish crackers *sometimes*).

And dharmamama, I don't "see" you very much (and you probably don't even recognize my screen name ) but over the years it is very rare that I read a post of yours that doesn't resonate w/me. Just thought I'd share.
post #54 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaInTheBoonies
But only HE would know what his body needs.

For example: I ask my kids before I make dinner what their body's need, and they will all 'listen' and then say we need eggs and salsa! If I don't have eggs and salsa, then I at least know they need protein, and I will let them know we are out of eggs but we have plantains, black beans and tomatos. They will almost always say, "Yes! That's what we want!" I always have one kid who says they don't want that....my pasta boy. He needs more carbs than the girls, so, I always have angel hair pasta, or cous cous available for him.
My kids must be abnormal then? If I were to ask DS what he wanted for dinner, he would say - cookies, ice cream, candy and popsicles? Sorry. Its the sad truth . .. . .
post #55 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain crunchy
See, I don't understand this logic. I completely understand your reasonable boundary of not wanting to cook a whole other dinner, I get that. Why can't your daughter have something that she thinks tasts "yummy delish" just because she wasn't down with gravy? Why does it have to be "bland" but nutritional? That makes it almost like a punishment. I wonder if you can't come to an agreeable solution. Things she can get herself out of the fridge, single serve yogurts, cheese cubes, veggies and dip (whatever is easy and nutritious AND not *bland*) where you don't have to cook something else.
LOL She can't open the fridge by herself. Hell I have difficulties opening the fridge!

Anyway, I dont want to encourage her snubbing food that is offered to her. I want to teach her to be POLITE in company. Like if we go to a relitives to eat, she gets offered food. I'm trying to teach her NOT to be a food snob. KWIM?

*sigh*

Remember that huge thread in TAO about food and Classism? Yeah, trying to instill in my DD that you at least *try* something that's offered, no matter what.

ETA: She's always liked gravy. She's never had an issue with Salsbury steak, Stews, or any other gravy containing meal. She has always been down with it. it was that one night last night that she didn't want what was offered and decided to be a snob about it.

There are certain things that I physically cannot eat without getting ill. Boxed meals for one. But if I get offered a boxed meal at someone's house, I'll take a token few bites so I dont offend and encourage my DD to do so as well.
post #56 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by TripMom
My kids must be abnormal then? If I were to ask DS what he wanted for dinner, he would say - cookies, ice cream, candy and popsicles? Sorry. Its the sad truth . .. . .

mine too, he always says "fish crackers" with is gold fish.

and if there is none of that he goes straight "cereal"


i guess he doesnt have enough grains?

post #57 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoshua
mine too, he always says "fish crackers" with is gold fish.

and if there is none of that he goes straight "cereal"


i guess he doesnt have enough grains?

Mine always wants Peanut butter and Jelly, canned ravioli or her daddy's spagetti.

She always snubs my cooking for some reason. Guess I suck at teh cooking skillz....

(acctually I'm an exceptional cook she's just doing it to push buttons)
post #58 of 130
In reference to Edamommy's son, this is one of the exceptions that Hollybear's mom referred to in Post 21.

I know another child who doesn't recognize any hunger cues. He drinks a "chocolate milkshake" his mom makes him every morning (it's really a high protein shake with fruit and veggies, etc. disguised in it). He also eats a chocolate energy bar. Then he goes all day without food except chocolate milk for lunch, and he often doesn't drink that until his afterschool program. At dinner he has another shake and energy bar.

If his mother didn't require these things, he would NOT EAT A THING all day. When he does get hungry, he drinks, as he doesn't recognize it as hunger. He only eats chocolate flavored items. Chocolate is the strongest flavor there is, and I think that his body is only recognizing that strong a sense.

He has other sensory issues, and this just goes along with them. But as HBM mentioned, there are exceptions, so when someone like Edamommy mentions one of them, please don't go arguing with her. She is obviously preparing what should be an age-appropriate portion of nutritious food for her son and then he decides whether to eat it or not.
post #59 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaInTheBoonies
A healthy child will know that they need, ie-more fruit, less carbs, more protein, etc.
How about more processed sugar? I think that processed sugar is unnatural and not needed by our bodies. I think it is downright harmful to them. Those are some of the reasons that I don't allow my kids to eat whatever they want, whenever they want it.

I have said it here before and I will say it again: I think that trusting our bodies is exactly the right thing to do ... until we introduce processed sugars, additives, preservatives, and etc. to our bodies. Those things are unnatural and, I believe, mess up our bodies' normal functioning. I eat them occasionally and I let my kids eat them occasionally, but I see it as my job to be the gatekeeper against things that harm them.

Namaste!

Ps. Thanks MamaAllNatural!
post #60 of 130
The key for us has been to have healthier choices (cookies that I can read all the ingredients in ) and the like. Also NOT making cookies, ice cream, crackers etc out to be special. She asks for crackers every day for a week, then she gets them- ya know what? After a week she's sick of them and won't eat them for a month

-Angela
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