Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Northern California
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This is my first time posting on this board, although I've been lurking and reading the good advice here for a while...
I have a 3.5 year old who is perfectly capable of feeding himself, but often at dinnertime I find myself feeding him. And by that I mean that he'll sort of get distracted or disinterested and I'll remind him of the food in front of him by scooping up some guacamole and offering it to him. (I would never force food on him or anything like that!)
He often will have 1/2 the meal fed to him. Sometimes he asks me to feed him. In some ways I think he likes the comfort of being fed. It's been our style to give him the source of comfort that he needs and asks for, such as letting him sleep with us until he seemed comfortable to be on his own and gradually potty-training.
In any case, there is a teacher at the Montessori preschool that he attends--a very experienced teacher--who has made me think twice about this. Today she came to me and mentioned that she has been needing to feed him his lunch every day and it's taking too much time, etc. And that maybe he doesn't like what I'm sending to school with him. Well, that's when I confessed that he often likes to be fed, no matter what he is eating. And she said that I should stop feeding him and that he is old enough to feed himself. Which--of course he is! I know that, he knows that, I just don't find it inconvenient to be a part of his meal and have just been assuming that it's fine and he won't want to be fed forever, no big deal. With things like this, I always think to myself that he will grow out of the need to have that extra comfort and he always seems to.
The thing is that he has always been slow to make the "big boy" leaps. I mean, he talked really early but was slow to start walking without holding on to something and only was brave enough to go down a slide by himself just recently. Each time he takes a leap forward he seems to want a little extra babying in other aspects of his life, you know? Anyway, right now he is potty-training and I'm loathe to take something away that might give him comfort.
Any thoughts on this? Should I follow her advice and go against my instincts?