I need help

I am finding my 7 1/2 month son very difficult at feeding time, to the point of despair, I'm frightened and really need your help.

He seems to start making a fuss the second he goes into his hair chair (have tried other places with no success) and generally just kicks his legs and whinges. I offer him a savoury purree, a sweet purree, some finger food and then a little stars yoghurt/fromage frais if I think he needs it. Every spoonful is a struggle, I try to distract him, entertain him, but everything I try helps the situation for 1 meal and then I've got to think of something new, to the point where I'm out of ideas and am quickly losing the will to live! I have a terrible temper and am struggling to keep in under control. I love my little boy, he is my life but sometimes I worry what I might do.

Please don't give me any crap about food being fun for now, he takes less than 50% of milk so he needs to substitute this with something. I need help and don't have anyone else to turn to, please whatever you can suggest, I would genuinely appreciate it, thanks xx


  • have you tried sticking on the TV??

    what about some one else feeding him (obv know that you can't do this all the time but as an experiment to see if it's just you he is playing up or everyone??)

    could you stick the highchair in the living room stick on the tv and let him work away himself, you sit out of sight to him but you can see him??

    It can be ssssssoooo frustrating chick my ds1 had this thing about not allowing a piece of food to pass his lips when we were anywhere else but the house?? At home he wasno bother or if giving a bit of jip the tv turned on usually was enough but out and about was awful.

    The only other thing you could do is try him with the food if he doesn't eat it just leave it, if you do it for a day (as hard as it would be) he won't starve to death or anything ans hopefully would realise he has to stop it. I assume that although each mealtime is a struggle you are getting something into him so if he doesn't get anything he may realise he has to knock it in the head??

    Obviously if after a day he's still at it you would have to resort to the 'norm' image

    Hope you get sorted soon xx
  • Please don't think in being smart but is he hungry? I was having similar issues with Holly so I pushed breakfast time back half an hour and its been much better since. I was trying to feed her too soon after her first.bottle and she just didn't want it. Not sure what else to suggest other than changing food to try and find something he really likes but I'm sure you have tried that.
  • This might sound like a really silly suggestion but Cam has a slightly opposite problem in that when he is put in his highchair he gets so excited that he starts banging they tray, pulling his straps, kicking, babbling etc but actually gets so excited that he sometimes is doing too much to concentrate on eating or he is looking down at his straps with his mouth open so it's near impossible to feed him!

    When he does this my solution is to put the kitchen taps on. It sounds odd but it results in his attention being focused on just one thing (rather than straps, tray, feet, bowl etc) and he sits there like a machine opening and closing his mouth.May well just be my strange little monkey that this works on but maybe worth a try! x
  • lmao at the taps and machine motions xx
  • Oh hun - i'm so sorry you're feeling like this.

    It is so frustrating when they don't want to eat and you spend your whole time worrying about the amount that they are eating or trying to get them to eat and the whole things just goes round in circles.

    Jack went through a phase of this a couple of weeks ago and I think it was to do with him teething. You may have already tried this but about half an hour before his meal time I gave him some teething gel and sometimes some calpol if he was particularly bad and that seemed to make the difference.

    I hope it's just a phase hun, take a deep breath and remember that you are a great mum.

    Sorry that I can't be of any more help but I hope things get better for you soon x
  • Hi,

    I was going to suggest hunger as my boy is usually pretty good but if he screams on his way into the chair I know he wil refuse point blankly to eat so will get him out and distract him so he is 'calm' when he starts his food.

    I have often been completely shocked as to why he does it and a couple of things have worked for us....

    Giving him milk to start with (I presume this kicked that initial hunger pang) and then went on to eat his food.

    Teething gel sometimes does the trick

    Giving him some snacks he likes just to calm him....rice cakes, cracker bread, baby crisps etc

    Hope it gets better, and try not to do yourself in....easier said than done but he will probably pick up on your tension too as hubby always tells me when I get a bit frustrated!

  • Thanks for your replies and suggestions. Yes, I've tried the TV and still do use it, as it does normally allow me to get a few spoonfuls into him.

    I was hoping it was a phase but it's been like this for several weeks now, it was just easier in the beginning as I used things to distract him, whereas I'm out of ideas now.

    I'm certain he's hungry because he generally will take one bite of something offered and I doubt he'd do this if he wasn't interested at all. Sometimes too, I'll struggle on for half an hour getting a few spoonfuls into him, to the point where I think he's had enough and then he'll only go and eat a full tubs worth!

    Moonbean - I like your thinking, it will be hard to do but yes, I think I'll have to give that a try, just offer and if he doesn't take it, then leave him with nothing. Have tried others feeding and although it's slighly better (as they have different distraction tactics), he's generally the same.

    flimpo - thanks for that, he loves watching the water from the tap so that'll be the first thing I try!

    Lisylou61 - I'll definitely give the teething gel/calpol beforehand, as it could be teeth related.

    Lisao - yep, I've tried waiting a bit longer, today we were an hour later than normal. I do try different foods all the time and wonder if that could actually be the problem. Maybe I just need to find something he loves and stick with it!

    Yummymum - fortunately he doesn't scream (poor you) but he will always eat a bread stick and milk. But one I offer either of these, he then only wants that and will not take anything else.

    Really do appreciate the suggestions and comments. I'm having a really rubbish day, feel so low but it has helped just writing about it and getting some feedback, thanks xx
  • aw hope you feel better soon chick its awful when you have those down days image

    hope you get things sorted xx
  • Oh Lawso I totally sympathise with you and it all got to me a bit last week too. Jasmine moans in her highchair and can start to winge from the word go even if I know she likes the food. She seems to change day by day - some days she will eat lumps some days she will spit them out , some days she will eat finger food, some days she won't. The only thing that really distracts her is singing and the cat !! To be honest I don;t think there is a magical cure - apparently a lot of babies are like this and there are sooo many fussy toddler eaters out there. I stress about how much solids she eats as I struggle to get 8-10oz down her of milk now - we've gone down to 2 bottles a day - 1 on waking and 1 to go to bed. I would stick to things you know he likes and if he won't eat it then I would do a trial of getting him down from highchair and see if he's interested later. I also do snacks for Jasmine Am and PM as we do no milk and she tends to eat these better than meals - no idea why ! If it is any consolation my neighbours must think I'm murdering her every mealtime as highchair is near open pattio door !! Take Care L S XX
  • i am no help at all - just hope that one of the above works x ps how much milk does lo drink - tobys milk intake has just taken a nosedive ahhhhh
  • hi, it was around this age that ds started refusing anything that came from a spoon, have u tried just finger foods/blw? i also found with ds that if he had somehting he could feed himself he was much more likely to let me spoon feed him at the same time...also, is there any chance he could be teething/sore gums? if he's going for the food and then refusing it it could be that the sppon is hurting his gums?

    also wanted to add, and please don't take this the worng way, i'm really not trying to offend so hand on herat hope that i donet, but "I have a terrible temper and am struggling to keep in under control. I love my little boy, he is my life but sometimes I worry what I might do. ", have u spoken to ur hv or gp about this, perhaps u ahve a touch of pnd (not syaing this has anything to do with the weaning issue at all) but whther its pnd or an already existing anger problem it does need looking at. sorry if ur already doing this, but don't be ashamed (not that u are), many many mums feel this way, and sometimes its just that they need someone to vent at a little bit, rather than keeping schtum about the little things, the millions of little things, that culminate in one big thing, iyswim? if u genuinely are worried about what u could do (rather than just a turn of phrase) then u really do need to seek some advice/councelling etc as it will greatly benefit the both of u. hth

    hope u find a solution soon xx
  • I really feel for you!!

    I was a really difficult eater as a baby and carried on till in my teens (not to upset or worry you!!) and my mum spoke to the doctor who told her to try changing the whole eating "situation" by not putting me in the highchair, just putting finger foods within my reach wherever i was playing and picking bits up herself and eating them while talking/doing anything that was completely unrelated to food as he thought i was maybe sensing my mum's worry and stress at mealtimes and was perhaps thinking that there was a reason to be upset and stressed at those times.

    Abi has started to do a really whingy put-on cry just lately when in her highchair and the only way i've found to stop her is to give her a spoon to hold herself,occasionaly dipping it in the food and giving it back while i use a different one to feed her.
  • Thanks everyone for your replies, my wonderful little boy has just eaten a marvellous tea!! How things can change in a day. I placed him in the high chair (normal whinges started) but moved him to near the sink, turned the tap on and had a great start. He did get a bit bored of that half way through so I gave him a plastic bottle to play with and that did the trick - all savoury and pudding demolished, result! I do worry that tomorrow it won't be new any more and we'll be back to square one.

    Sandygiz - how I wish I could have a magic wand!

    Summer76 - he takes just over 500ml of BM, which although I know is enough, it's a long way from the 1300ml he was drinking prior to weaning.

    Wowbaby - I'm not easily offended and prefer people to be straight with me so thank you for doing so. Honestly I don't think it's PND (although I realise most people say that before being diagnosed). It's nothing new, I've always had a terrible temper, was worse when I was younger but I've never hurt anyone (other than myself), I'm more of a door clasher, stomp around, that kind of thing. But it's real, it frightens me and honestly, I don't know what I might do - more by accident, what if I stormed past my DS's highchair and knocked it over or slammed a door with him behind me, that kind of thing. You are right all the small things accumulate and make me feel so crap sometimes. I do believe that I need some help with anger management but I find it impossible to ask for help. Appreciate you picking me up on this though and would welcome anyone elses thoughts. Yes, he could definitely be teething/sore gums. I do offer finger foods, sometimes he takes them well, others not so well and I also feed from my finger, again with mixed results.

    JennyLG - seriously till you were in your teens, just kill me now! Of course I'm joking but my word, your mum deserves a medal. Have the tried the second spoon so many times, it has no effect whatsoever.

    I feel so much better for having talked it through on here, I always get wonderful support and can't thank you enough xx

    [Modified by: lawso on August 02, 2010 09:19 PM]

  • Ha Ha - Glad the tap worked lawso! Fingers crossed tomorrow's meals go well too! xx
  • I know, thanks flimpo, would never have thought of that myself, it's definitely my new tactic . Thanks again xx
  • hiya, I remember weening/food could be such a battle sometimes, i really hope that it comes together soon, im not looking forward to it second time round cos like some have said you end up worrying all the time that they've had enough etc.. Theres some good suggestions hope that some help you, sorry i dont have much about the food to say.
    As for the anger,you said if anyone had any sugestions to let u know? A few women i know from when dd1 was little had cognative behaveral therapy (excuse spelling sorry) through the docs. It was really helpful,i wish i'd had it at the time but i was very good at hiding my anger from most people, i too used to and occasionally now, slam doors, break hairbrushes (that was the last victim,its oh's too cos it was him who i was annoyed at,threw it on the tiled floor) and i remember just feeling so so angry with everything and mainly myself really, i was however depressed when i was at my worst, im not saying you are, but i did sort of grow out of it, i know i still sometimes get mad but i guess its alot more "normal" mad now rather than pretty much everyday. I dunno what clicked, but dd1 started listening to me much more when i was calm and explaned things rather than shouting (i feel so guilty).
    Anyways i'll shut up now cos im rambling but i think your doing an amazing thing admiting how you feel, its the best way to get over things,talking.
    Hope you dont mind me picking up on mainly this.
  • image no problem! x
  • we find having the tv on helps, also when we do our one finger food meal, i put it on his tray, sit with mine and ignore him, i think seeing us eat and not fussing over his eating he just seems to get on with it

    we also find if we leave him too long between feeds he screams and wont take anything which leaves us in a catch 22, he has also begun to suffer really bad with trapped wind since he has been eating himself which has sometimes ended in sick everywhere :roll:

    just tell me to zip it if you have tried it but what about mashable, is it that he doesnt like the texture? LO isnt that keen on puree and is much better on mashed food??
  • Hi Lawso, sorry to hear you're having problems at meal times. Hugo isn't the best either - he HATES being strapped in to ANYTHING so the highchair, the pushchair and any highchair in a restaurant all prompt yelling, growling, strugging and screaming.

    I'm not sure how your house is laid out, but we have the highchair in the kitchen which also houses the washing machine and (of course) kettle. I have found that Hugo will be mesmerised by the washing machine if it's on and also the kettle as we have one with a see-through panel so he can see the water bubbling up, and also it glows a blue light when it's on. If either the WM or kettle are on, he'll be quiet and really good at taking food off a spoon. If it is just the 2 of us, he really acts up wth me (not all the time, just often enough to keep me on my toes!)

    So if it's possible to multi-task, can you do a load of laundry at breakfast time and boil the kettle for a cup of tea (perhaps several cups of tea worth!) at lunch? Obviously redundant advice if you don't have a WM/kettle where Tom (?) eats.

    Hope you're feeling better about things.

    Peeptoe x
  • Thanks HappyMrsG, I do feel guilty when I do shout and apologise profusely to my little boy (and OH). Fortunately those times are few and far between. Although I do feel my temper rising on a daily basis, 95% of the time I keep it in check and even at meal times, I keep the atmosphere light hearted and happy (despite what I'm feeling inside). I know some would say, you can tell but honestly I've put a front on for so long, I'm an expert at it and with the exception of my OH, no-one knows the real me. I don't want my little boy to be brought up with my temper flares, so may look for help but who would you turn to?

    Piggypops - I'd never tell you to zip it. I've tried mashable, I tried more lumps, less lumps and he's so temperamental, I don't actually know what he prefers. I like the idea of leaving finger foods and letting him get on with it, will try that for sure.

    Peeptoe - I like that suggestion and yes, I can definitely try the washing machine/kettle when he gets bored of the tap LOL xx
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