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Help! My Baby Won't Eat!

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Notes from a New Mom: I have a 1-year-old who only wants to drink her bottle and eat sweet potatoes from a little pot. She does not like anything cut up small so she can pick it up with her fingers. I have tried everything from mango to peas to carrots.

baby eating
The other day, I came home from the park (where I usually feed my baby her lunch) and thought, Crap -- I'm the only one with a 1-year-old who's still giving her baby food from a little pot. Everyone else has cut-up fruit and vegetables!

I'm trying, but my daughter just won't eat it! If I put peas in front of her, she mushes them and throws them on the ground. Same with potatoes, carrots or any type of fruit. She likes sweets and her milk -- and she does eat oatmeal at night -- but that's it. Eating time is a complete and utter struggle -- and the kitchen floor is a total disaster when I'm done feeding her. 

Here's the other thing (and I know how terribly bad this habit is): If she is distracted by the computer or TV, I can manage to get a few bites in her mouth. Other than that, though, she shakes her head violently when I try to feed her. So I put on "Barney" (I know, I know -- she's too young) or have her play with the iPhone applications (I know, I know -- even worse). But what am I to do? She doesn't want to eat! 

Anyone out there have the same problem -- and if so, what have you tried that worked? I can't force food in her mouth ... or can I? Moms out there, please help! 

next: Maybe Polygamists Are Doing It Right ....
10 comments so far | Post a comment now
ag September 25, 2010, 11:14 AM

Take a deep breath and let it go. It’s becoming a game for her, where mommy will do anything to get her to eat but as soon as she eats the game is over. She will eventually eat, it’s just a phase. But if you’re really concerned, take her to the pediatrician to ease your worries.

DB September 25, 2010, 11:41 AM

My daughter was the same way. Now, she is 3, and she eats everything just fine. Every child is different. Relax, you are doing a good job. If Barney helps, then let Barney help. She will outgrow this. If she is growing well, and you are giving vitamins, then just keep trying with no pressure.

nadja September 25, 2010, 12:07 PM

Don’t let ANYONE make you feel bad. The only way I got a whole meal in my daughter when she was smaller was with Yo Gabba Gabba.

KS September 25, 2010, 5:41 PM

Sometimes kids get so used to having the pured texture that switching over to solid food can be quite a shock for them. You can buy infant spoons that have different textures on the bottom of the spoon. If she has some sort of sensory processing issue that may help.

After four babies one thing I found that worked for me was to not make a big deal out of meal time. If they ate what was offered great. If not, well another meal or snack time was just around the corner. When it was time to make switches such as table food or ending bottles quick and fast worked best for us. If the jarred food is no longer there for her to eat then she will have no other choice than to expand her tastes.

Rebecca September 26, 2010, 11:18 AM

I’m in school to become a Speech-Language Pathologist, and there are SLPs who specialize in feeding and swallowing. Your baby sounds like a great candidate for that. Insurance should cover this. Go get an evaluation done by an SLP. You’d be surprised!

Rebecca C September 26, 2010, 1:24 PM

Maybe putting cut up fruits in the oatmeal that she already eats?

More importantly, just remember that this too shall pass. :)

Anonymous September 27, 2010, 8:27 PM

Hi, I’m having a similar problem myself. My son is a year old and he will use his hands and eat finger foods - when he feels like it. So I can relate to the frustration - but I agree with the above poster. Don’t sweat one meal. I’m more concerned with him getting the proper nutritions rather than being right on track with feeding himself. :)

Hayley October 4, 2010, 10:27 AM

Ive been going through this for a year and a half!! My son only eats.. peanut butter, toast, yogurt, grilled cheese, and apple sauce… no other fruits and veggies. Its extremely concerning and stressful! So I completely understand.. i keep hoping one day soon he will just grow out of it… still waiting….

Beth January 20, 2011, 11:46 AM

Oh, I can completely relate. I just felt like such a failure not being able to get my daughter to eat like everyone else! I recently found this website that has a lot of suggestions about why some kids don’t eat and what you can do about it. My daughter is getting better, I hope you find as well!

Cheap Conveyancing  February 15, 2011, 3:29 PM

I’m so happy to read this. This is the kind of manual that needs to be given and not the random misinformation that’s at the other blogs. Appreciate your sharing this best doc.

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