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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, dd1 has been refusing to eat for many days in a row now, and will be sooooo cranky and weepy all day because of it (and her whining drives me up the wall) and then, right at bedtime, she says she is hungry. So we feed her. Which of course delays bedtime and she can barely eat even though she's hungry because she is so tired. I don't know what to do. I have tried, in the past, to coerce her to eat, and it works enough that she'll get something in her stomach at least, but I am tired of this and I don't think it is the best idea in the long run.... this morning I told her she didn't have to eat and that the food will still be there all day and that I wasn't going to ask her to eat and that she can tell me when she's hungry... (which is pretty much my tactic in general these days) and I explain over and over why it's important to eat a little here and there throughout the day instead of all at once before bed... just now she was whining and crying about something she wouldn't usually have a problem with and I explained that it might be because she is hungry (to which she said "no I'm not!"). I don't know what to do..... I need advice. How long can this possibly continue? I want to ride through it with as much equinimaty as possible, but my patience is really wearing thin, and whining is one of my major buttons.....and at times I end up yelling because of it, and then of course I feel terrible, dd feels terrible.... ug. Any help would be great. thanks.
 

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Wow, that's tough. I wish I had some advice, but I'm sitting here thinking and I've got nothing.<br><br>
I'm sure someone else will come along with wonderful advice. The only thing I can say is, she won't let herself starve. Maybe she's coming down with something? Ds acts positively horrible when he's getting sick and we don't usually put it all together until he's actually sick.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">:
 

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i have to admit sometimes i get really grumpy and irritable and even a little depressed and then after i have eaten i am so much happier and dont even realise i was hungry.<br><br>
think some people are less in tune with their hunger symptoms.<br><br>
maybe you could have her pick out 3 snacks that she would like to eat and lay them out on the table and tell her that she can have 1 bite every half hour and then set the alarm for every half an hour. maybe 1 bite would seem less overwhleming to her.<br><br>
it is a tough one.
 

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It looks like she is 3.5 years old. This is old enough that she can be involved with the food preparation. Perhaps if you put your heads together and find a quick and easy dish you make together, she'll feel more ownership of the dish and eat it. Something as simple as a fruit salad would be a good start. That's the only idea I have. My dd is 5 and eats well, if not some odd things at times (she had pickles and milk for breakfast today <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> ), so she's pretty good where food is concerned. But when she has her rare moments of not eating, that are not illness related, I've found that getting her involved with the food preparation always works.<br><br>
Good luck!!
 

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I agree with the food prep thing. I used to have issues with DS eating (especially when he was nursing..he weaned right before his 3rd birthday). Maybe some cheese quesadillas? I let DS "help" shred the cheese, and then he can spread it out on the tortilla...then I cook it. It's quick, and he loves to help. Plus, he'll try new things that way. You could also try making healthy cookies or some other favorite food. I make vanilla honey cookies (only sweetened with honey). My DS loves them, and they are pretty healthy (I use butter, free range eggs, and sprouted spelt flour). There's also my DS's favorite, banana muffins! He loves to help me smash the bananas and add the ingredients (again, only sweetened with honey). He loves them so much he calls them cakes. There's also fruit cutting. Try putting out some bananas and a butter knife and let your DD go to town. There's a pretty good chance some of that banana will end up on her mouth. I have also used toothpicks on little pieces of fruit and cheese, so that it's more fun to eat (they use the toothpicks to pick up the food).<br><br>
My DS will also use food to stall going to sleep. He doesn't have a set bedtime, and he still does it when he's super sleepy. I'm glad it's not just my kid. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
thanks... I do put snacks at her level, I loaded up a plate of lots of different stuff that she could just grab, and she ate a little, absentmindedly.... I think what is going on, underneath it all is that she feels out of control somehow... she didn't initially have such a reaction when dd2 was born, but I think somehow that might be underneath it all, and so she is trying to control something..... she barely ate dinner last night and then, at bedtime, guess what? "I'm hungry." So we told her she could have a piece of bread, and she barely ate it.... it's not like we let her go to sleep by herself either, we snuggle with her, read a story, and then dh or I will sing her to sleep. And I have also tried to include her in meal preparation... in fact the other night she said she wanted pancakes for dinner so we made them and she helped, and then she didn't want to eat them. I am just so frustrated. And she does go to daycare two days a week, and she eats there, so it is definately some kind of control thing for her.... which I would be perfectly happy to endure for as long as it takes (not that I have much of a choice I guess), if it weren't for the fact that she wasn't obviously starving and getting so cranky and whiney...and yesterday I even had my mom take the baby for an hour so dd1 and I could get special time together, and she played and seemed in great spirits, but as soon as dd2 returned it was over. And when dd2 is sleeping I try to give her my full attention (much to the dishevelment of the house), and on weekends dh or I will try to really focus on her and play one-on-one.... I'm not sure what else we can do! Ideas? i really feel for her, it must hurt terribly to be the center of the universe and then have a baby come along and disrupt that, but I'm not sure how to make it better... and I do try to include her in helping me with the baby, getting diapers and things, but she always says "I don't want to." The funny thing though is that she seems to have genuine affection for dd2 and gives her hugs throughout the day.... maybe she is just mad at dh and I, for having a baby? I don't know... thoughts or input would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Will she drink? At the risk of being thrown out of the AP club <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/duck.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Duck">: could you fill up a bottle with a smoothie or something just to get her something? That might help her feel more 'babied' and thus more in control.<br><br>
If it goes on for more than a week, I'd check with her doctor about low blood sugar. the daughter of a friend has issues with that -- and there's a short window in between when she feels hunger and when she needs to eat. If she goes too long before eating, then she feels a bit nauseous and doesn't want to eat, but needs to.. and there's a whole cycle.<br><br>
And as someone who is majorly cranky when I'm hungry -- try to get PROTEIN into her, and a little bit of fat. That stays with me longer and helps the most. Avoid simple carbs.
 
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