Anger-free ways to keep the peace & neutralize resistance in a picky eater or other strong-willed child
The other day, I noticed a dad with his toddler on a sidewalk. The little tot, about 18 months old, was trying to go in one direction. The dad, towering over her, was looking down at her and moving right in front of her each time she tried to go that direction. She would move to go around him, and he would step over to block her way, over and over. No words were being exchanged. She had no understanding of why her dad was preventing her from going that way. Dad was making no effort to explain the situation to her. His mind seemed to be elsewhere. Naturally, the little girl was getting a seriously frustrated look on her face. Maybe she was too young to understand why she couldn’t go there,…
Food Chaining has a lot of great information in it. It offers parents in-depth understanding of the serious reasons some children refuse to eat. It also offers a logical plan to increase the range of foods even the pickiest eaters will eat. It has a great section about teaching kids on the autism spectrum about food. It’s all about figuring out WHY a child is refusing food and understanding what the child needs to improve her eating.
Then, in a section called “Positive Reinforcement at the Table,” the authors advise us to ignore children completely whenever they won’t eat or they misbehave at the table. When…
“I know I should serve them family style, and usually I do,” Debra, a mom of a picky eater, told me when I visited her house on a Supper Nanny visit. “But since this is something new tonight I knew they wouldn’t want to eat it, so I plated it up.”
Debra was talking about using serving dishes and passing them around for kids to dish up their own food, “family style,” versus placing filled plates in front of each child.
Hmmmmm. When kids might not want to eat is exactly the time NOT to plate it up, I thought to myself.
I was at Debra’s house for the second time to help her figure out what she could do to get picky Jonathan to eat something beyond the ten meals she was cooking. This serving of filled plates was one of the…
One day, Ralph Waldo Emerson and his son, Edward, needed a calf to go in the barn. So the elder Emerson, the great Transcendentalist writer and philosopher, pushed on the calf’s backside while his son grabbed the animal’s head and pulled from the front. They pushed and pulled with all their strength, but the calf resisted with all of his might, over and over.
“How to get this calf into the barn?” Emerson wondered, with his deep, philosophical mind. He thought about all the advice he could think of from his wide reading. He pondered his own ideals of self-reliance, muttering to himself his famous injunction to “trust thyself,” but could produce no insight on the subject. He was stuck.
I just learned of the existence of PediaSure. Apparently it’s been around for at least ten years, but I just discovered it, seeing one of its commercials for the first time. I’m chagrined, but shouldn’t be surprised, to learn that such a thing exists.
There may be some justifiable use of this product, though it’s hard for me to imagine any. For a child who is physically or mentally ill or has genuine, physical sensory problems, I’ll suspend judgment for now.
If it’s for the typical picky child, though, PediaSure is a “solution” that offers false security while aggravating the problem of pickiness in a child. It’s a child’s solution to the problem, not a wiser parent’s solution.
PediaSure will resolve the root problems of pickiness about as well as giving in to a terrorist’s demands or giving a child the candy bar he’s throwing…