Look Curtis. I know you have a right to an opinion and we live in democratic societies which emphasise free speech and personal liberty. But maybe leave your armachair advice regarding so called fussy kids in your lounge room where it belongs. You are a chef, not a paediatric dietitician.
I have experience with so called fussy kids, two of them, and sometimes it’s more than just a battle of wills. As I have made clear in previous posts one of my son’s has autism and the other was born with a rare laryngal birth defect that wasn’t picked up till he was twelve months old, something that would have made eating an extremely uncomfortable experience.
As a result we have our fair share of dinner time battles. Its not for lack of trying. I have certainly dabbled in the baby led weaning, thermo cooker, only home made baby food will do hysteria. It hasn’t really helped.
Your comments made me roll my eyes and chuckle. It was one of those things I would have said before I had childeren or when my first was a small baby. You know the ones, where you wish you could go back and slap your former self.
You see Curtis my eldest sons reaction to change or stress is, for all intents and purposes, to go on a hunger strike. After having to have a medical test once he didn’t eat for a week. Nothing solid passed his lips in that time. He just couldn’t bring himself to do it. It didn’t matter what I offered him, healthy or junk. By the end of the week he was lethargic and weak. I was ready to walk into our local emergency room and would have done had it not been for that Happy Meal he finally picked at (thank you Maccas) And the chocalate milk he finally drank. Selective eating is common in children on the spectrum. And there a reasons for it, none of which are in the child’s control. Considering the average age of diagnosis is four (and for girls it can be significantly later) that’s a lot of dinner time battles to have.
My younger son is more of an ongoing issue. He seems to remember food causing him discomfort so can be very ‘fussy’. I did the whole he will eat if he wants to for the second six months of his life and thought it was more of a sleep issue when he was still breastfeeding every three hours at nearly one. The truth is he was probably starving and that’s how he was getting his sustenance.
While I know you will likely justify your statement with the obvious statement ‘unless your child has medical issues’ (a category which both my childeren certainly fit into) what if parents don’t yet know about those medical issues? Our children aren’t able to tell us what hurts when they are small. They may not be able to communicate their discomfort.
There is also this thing called personal preference. I have disliked the texture of tomatoes and mushrooms since I was two, and at 29 that hasn’t changed despite attempts to overcome it. What makes children any different? If they try a few bites and still go ‘yuck’ is there anything wrong with giving them some peanut butter on toast. Plenty of children in this world go to bed hungry on a daily basis, lets not add to them.
So before you chuck other parents over the bridge, maybe accept for the most part parents really do try their best for their children and trust their instincts when it comes to their child. Modern parenthood, where everyone throws their five cents in online (yes, I do realise the irony of that statement), is like a constant guilt trip that you can’t seem to go home from. Maybe, on account of your influence, reconsider jumping on that bandwagon.
Meanwhile to the Mamas and Papas chucking some chicken nuggets in the oven or ordering pizza tonight because you need some respite from the constant dinner time battles, enjoy your break and don’t forget the garlic bread.