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Old 10-24-2008, 04:49 PM   #6
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Location: Keene, NH
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Re: How do I make her eat?

Hrm.. Well, I don't know..Instinctive response is, "You can't". A lot of the time I feel like "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink," is the same as, "You can offer the kid a healthy meal, but you can't make him eat it!" But it is OK. It isn't our job to make them eat, just to provide them healthy food regularly in a way they can eat it. I read the book called "How to Get Your Kid to Eat, but Not Too Much". This was really good and helped me a lot. One of the main messages was to not to get into power struggles with your kids about eating. It said that if you offer the healthy foods they will eat what they need to eat and don't pressure them or they will often refuse to eat when you want them to. It took a lot of pressure off me thinking it was up to me to get him to eat! I see that when he eats very little on one day he often makes up for it the next day or meal. Some days his stomach hurts or his teeth so he eats very little then, but he will eat all his scrambled eggs the next day. This book said that kids who are pressured to eat often have eating issues and are more likely to end up weighing more or much less than average. Why are you making her sit there for hours? She wants to assert her independence from Mama, which is a healthy stage of growth so they say (eyeroll), so that may come in the form of refusing to eat anything you give her unless she requests it. Try to eliminate the power struggle aspect of this and see if it helps. If she doesn't eat, then the meal is over. Try again later when you would normally have another meal, or offer a healthy snack in an hour.

I think there's a good chance she will eat in a day or less when she gets hungry as long as you don't bug her about it too much. It may help to eat the same foods she does at the same time, too. Have a family meal. My son often prefers the food off of Mama or Dada's plates to whatever we give him on his plate. He might have broccoli on his plate, but if I give him mine he thinks it's better. LOL! I'd say just keep offering her foods that are healthy and do offer her milk or water or juice/water so she doesn't dehydrate, which is much more of a concern. Maybe try a small portion of ramen with some broccoli and carrots and wean her off the ramen a bit at a time? BTW, watch out for the high level of monosodium glutamate (MSG) and sodium in general in most ramen noodle packages.

Good luck!

Mommy to Nicholas Ryan
Born 02-22-07

Last edited by AngelW; 10-24-2008 at 04:52 PM.
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