Help! I've been spending too much time on the mainstream boards and they've gotten me all confused about the above two topics--food and discipline.
1. Food--what exactly is my 10 mon old supposed to be eating right now? Sadly, he is formula fed, long story... but the short story is he is still getting by far most of his nutrition from formula. He has 3 small jars of baby food a day on top of that and then fingers foods (ie veggie booty, cheerios, small pieces of soft cheese) to play with at dinner time as well as a sippy to practice on full of water. I am trying to introduce more finger foods but he is just not that interested -- will grab at the food on my plate but when I actually let him have it he usually spits it out.
2. Discipline? Someone elsewhere called their baby "naughty" because he is always into things... I admit we have not been great childproofers... but DS is under constant supervision (and if DH or I are not available I will stick him in his pack and play for a bit while I do whatever). So I am actually right there with him when he is pulling books or cds off the shelf or turning the tv on and off or unrolling the toilet paper. Should I be trying to stop him? I mean, I don't let him unroll the whole toilet roll but instead of telling him "no" to unrolling it I will just move us onto another activity, you know. On the other hand I don't want him to grow up thinking it's okay to do these things, I guess I was just assuming he would lose interest after he explored them to his satisfaction. Am I spoiling him?
What you are doing sounds perfect on both issues, to me. My DD at 15 months doesn't eat as much solids as your child, and pulling out the CDs and unrolling the toilet paper are great ways for your little scientist to explore his world.
My baby is nine months old (its our fourth) and I believe discipline starts from birth. But thats just me. I don't necessarily see discipline as negative either.
I have let my babies explore but I will tell them no, distract them or remove them from things they shouldn't be doing or getting into. I think its good to set boundaries when they are little and heading into toddlerhood. JMHO
Hey, if it doesn't bother you to pick up CD's and DVD's off the floor after him, then don't worry about it! It drove me nuts so I stapled cloth to the front of the bookcase so our kids can't get into them. (But neither can I, hahaha!) I think "discipline" at this age is a matter of redirection.
For food... I wouldn't worry about how much he eats. If he's gaining weight and doesn't cry from hunger... don't worry about it. I would definitely move towards a whole food approach and start feeding him what you're eating, with less spices, no allergens, etc. Still using milk as his main source of nutrition, of course.
My dd's 10 months and only has solids once a day at this point. They should still be getting most of their nutrition from breastmilk or formula at this point, and solid food more to explore different textures and tastes. I don't think you need to worry about him getting more solids yet - he'll probably take more at his own pace.
I think what you're doing discipline wise is just fine. I try to let dd explore everything that is safe for her. They learn so much now, I don't want to interrupt that process if I don't need to (I always try to think, "what learning process am I interrupting if I stop her from doing this?"). If it's something that's dangerous, I say to her, "that's not good for babies because it's ___ (hot, sharp, etc.)" and re-direct her to something else. I'm usually right there with her, but I've found that now I can say that from across the room and she'll stop what she's doing and move on most of the time. I don't use the word "no" much, because I prefer to re-direct or explain.
We just remove things that we don't want DS to get into... We took our books and stuff off the lower bookcase shelves, and put DS's books and toys on them. That way he can pull things off the shelves to his heart's content, and he has lots of space for his stuff.
Sounds like you're doing everything the way I did it. Except food, but that's another issue because my dd refused solids until very recently (and even then, it sounds like your little one is eating more than my toddler, lol.)
If you don't mind him getting into certain stuff, then don't worry about it. I don't care about the vhs (we've moved the dvd's since they get scratched easily) but I draw the line at the toilet paper because I don't like knowing that my tp has been on my floor, but that's just me, lol.
I think it's ridiculous to look at a baby's exploring as being naughty. If there is something I don't want G to have, I either make sure he can't get it or remove it from his grasp. I'm sure I say oh that will hurt you or that hurts mommy (if he's grabbing my hair) but I don't usually say no because he's supposed to be checking everything out. I think your doing great!
I've had the same thoughts about disciplining and food. On the food side it sounds like your dc is eating just fine. I've come to realize and from reassurances from several other mamas that every baby is different when it comes to solids. Ds is taking his time and only in the last month is eating solids daily. He's eight and a half months. Even now it's pretty touch and go on his interest. He's got the pincer grasp down but doesn't seem interested in putting food to his mouth nor gumming anything even though he's had six teeth since six months. So we puree all and try not to worry when all he wants is nursies.
I've started thinking more about discipline because I can tell ds is starting to understand some words. Like others I try to redirect his attention. But I will tell him to stop or "no" and explain that "it hurts mama" or will "hurt Quinn". I'm not sure what to do lately about him screaming. He recently started really screaming constantly (can't tell what he wants). When I'm sure he's really fine, I've been kind of ignoring it and trying not to respond to him when he screams. Dh has been telling him no when he does this. I'm sure he's just trying to communicate, but I had a couple of hair pulling out days because of it, and I'm not sure if he's old enough to understand no or non-response. Any suggestions?
yep, your ds is eating about as much as my 16 month old is. sounds totally normal for that age. keep making finger foods available, but don't worry if he doesn't always want them. he'll figure it out eventually. my DS wanted finger foods or for us to feed him with our fingers from 7 mo to 10 or 11 mo... then he wanted spoon feeding to 15 mo., now he's starting to want finger foods again and to start trying to spoon feed himself.
as for discipline - there are some things where i've decided we either need to make it safe for him or babyproof it off limits, some things where i've decided it's ok if he destroys it. it's the things inbetween that are problematic. generally i like to let him explore and try to live by the rule of if it's less than $20 of damage let him do it... but we'd go through a lot of toilet paper that way... so some things i am trying to teach him my expectations. i think it will just get easier as they get more verbal - at 10 mo. he probably doesn't understand too clearly, so i'd focus on redirection. i also spend a lot of time modelling - on the TP example: i talk all the time about how TP is just for wiping, and i show him that i take it, wipe and put it in the toilet. if he is trying to unspool it while i'm on the toilet, i pretend that he's trying to get me some TP and i ask him to hand it to me and then i wipe with it and then when i don't need anymore tell him i'm all done, it's enough TP, and then i lean my leg against it to stop him from unrolling any more and try to get him interested in something else!
i think when you tell him no and then redirect him, you are showing him that it's not an acceptable activity, and then you are helping him to find an acceptable activity. the simple act of getting him away from the "misbehavior" is teaching him what you do and don't want to see happening in your household. i don't think it's spoiling him to help him find something better to do - it's modelling an important skill - if you can't do one thing you want to do, find something else and cheerfully move on!
That's actually a lot of food for a 10 month old. Taking more finger foods will come later. Now he is just curious about what you are eating and wants to explore. His solid intake may wax and wane over the coming months, too. The curiosity for food seems to come and go with some. What he wants now may be totally different come 2 weeks, etc...just follow his lead and offer good choices. The majority of his cals should be from bm or formula now, anyway.
"naughty" is hardly how I would characterize you son's natural curiosity of the world around him. By allowing him to explore safely and with supervision, you are not squelching his natural desire to take part in the world around him and figure out how things work. Good job.
Thanks everyone. I probably should have also said that I do the explaining thing someone else mentioned when he's going for something I don't want him to, ie the Xbox controller "That's not for babies, it's could break easily and then daddy would be sad" or pictures on the wall when I'm holding him "that's glass, if it breaks it would be sharp and could hurt you" and then we move along to something else. and since he leaves the cds in the cases I'm not too worried about them getting scratched but do stop him after he has 4 or 5 on the floor by telling him he already has those to play with ... about the only time I say no is when he bites, which I think may be a teething thing, so I say no, that hurts mommy, and then give him something he can bite.
That's a big relief on the food front, too... I dunno, some of these other boards I read, you'd think these kids were all wakling and talking and eating pizza by 6 months and I just need a reality check now and then!