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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, anyone have to deal with this and have any advice? I did put a call into our Ped and waiting a return, but looking for what has worked for others.

We have recently caught DS2 (dx speech apraxia and articulation disorder) hording food. He will sneak food (usually junk food) out of the kitchen (we have a door to their playroom and to the living room from the kitchen). We discovered this about a month ago, and we thought we had it under control when we found his hiding spot.

But he has now got new hiding spots, and keeps doing it. He either takes the junk food and puts it into the hiding spots, or he takes things he has snuck (like his brother's hot coco mix and the cup it was in - had it ready for him just needing to add water when he came in from playing outside) and hiding them.

I know we have mealtime issues with him eating, and for a long period of time (and to a huge degree still) he is extremely picky and will only eat certain foods (mac n cheese by kraft is a huge fav, but wont eat the homemade stuff). I am not sure he is even really eating at school, because he will hide the food or move it around to look like he has eaten and he is not fond of most of the foods.

But right now, mostly concerned with the hording. We think it may have been going on for several months, because we have found things missing/gone and we thought the other parent had either finished off or given it to the kids (ie I know it is bad for me, but I am craving golden oreos so being pregnant I will indulge at times - I went to have some a while ago, and knew there had been a ton left, but I just figured DH had polished them off - he has bad bad eating habits and will not realize how much he is eating until he has consumed an entire pizza or package of cookies). But when we discovered the initial hiding place we talked and realized that was not happening (the other parent eating it or giving it to the kids).
 

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I don't have any direct experience with this, but a friend of ours has although his situation has a different fact pattern than yours. His daughter whom he adopted from China at the of two years old, started hoarding food shortly after she came to the USA. At first, he and his spouse thought it was because she was underfed at the orphanage. But it turned out to be a deeper problem (for her anyway) than hoarding food. She started hoarding other items in her bedroom closet and elsewhere in the house. She never played with these things she hoarded. She didn't eat the food she hoarded. She would just put them in a pile somewhere no one could see them. She is a highly verbal, intelligent child, but couldn't explain why she was doing this. They thought it would get better with time. I wish they had gotten her help earlier. She's now a preteen. She's in therapy for depression and RAD.
 

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Carter has hoarded food. We were stunned when we discovered it because it's not something you expect to see in a kid who has ready access to food whenever he needs it! But under his bed we would find all kinds of food - loaves of bread, cans of beans, plates of leftovers, etc.

We could never explain it or understand it, and he hoarded pretty regularly when he was 3-4 years old. It was so strange, though, that he didn't really mind when we went to his room to reclaim the missing butter or spaghetti sauce or whatever. Eventually, the behavior disappeared with only a brief reappearance about a year ago (he's 7 now).

So, I know that's not really helpful at all, but there it is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It is helpful, because we may never know why, but he is 4 almost 5. We know he has been doing this since before Christmas.

What I have a feeling is going is that he is a very picky picky eater. I honestly do not think he is eating lunch at school, because most of what is served is stuff he wont eat at home. There are 15 kids in the class, and no one really watches if they eat or not. When the kids feel done, they just go throw the stuff away. I am sure if it is something he likes, he will eat it...

So, when he comes home from school, he really has not had anything from morning snack, except maybe a very small snack in the afternoon at school. Then I give them a snack when they get home, but it is close to 2 hours after that before dinner. And it is during that time we often find him eating something we have no clue how/where he got it.
 

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My daughter has a Tupperware type container that has her name and a bunch of stickers on it. She is allowed to fill it - generally she will limit it to crackers or cereal - and keep it in her room. We have talked about mold, and bugs, and she throws out any perishables from the day before. I don't know if this will help your child. For us, it has been a lifesaver, to work with her instead of against. It fills a real need, even if I can't understand it.

FWIW, my mother is 90 YO and hoards food. Always has. She must have food, generally chocolate, in her room. And she can't sleep in a hotel room without bringing in a bag of groceries.
 
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