Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Prisoner's Diet

I am guilty of judging mothers of picky eaters. If a child only eats 3 things, 2 of which come from a box or a cellophane wrapper, I blame the mother. I always thought that a picky eater was the fault of the parent. Those parents must not offer enough wholesome varieties of food. They must be lazy and not too intelligent if they feed their children macaroni and cheese every meal.

Then I had a picky eater of my own. And I realized that IT IS NOT MY FAULT.

My child has a prisoner's diet. She eats toast, cheese, and water. I'm lucky if she'll eat some bananas or grapes. She won't touch vegetables, meat, or any other foods. My child eats like she's in jail. And I feel responsible.

She hasn't always been this way. When we started table foods, she would eat anything. If I put it in front of her, she would gobble it up. Everyone would comment about what a good eater I had on my hands and I would beam with pride. I felt like I had something to do with her being a good eater. After all, I offered her a wide variety of organic fruits and vegetables, I baked whole grain bread, and I gave her plenty of opportunities for new tastes and textures. I ruled at having a good eater. Now, I fail. I fail miserably and it's driving me crazy.

I try not to get too upset over her poor diet. I continue to offer her lots of different, healthy options. Those options always end up on the floor, but at least they were offered, right? I have come to realize that having a crappy eater is not my fault. It's not anyone's fault. She is a person with her own likes and dislikes. Who happens to dislike everything but bread, cheese, and water, but whatever. Just because my child doesn't eat any fruits or vegetables doesn't mean that I am a bad parent or that I am lazy. It just means that she is picky. And hopefully it is a phase that she will outgrow. One cannot live on bread and water alone, can they? Not without everyone judging the mother, they can't.

I thought that if I let her hold the spoon herself, maybe just maybe, she would eat some yogurt. She loved the spoon. Not so much the yogurt. 


  1. Ahh my oldest went through the SAME thing...and then he hit 15 months. And he has yet to STOP eating. I think its just a phase they all go through. P.s.--Im guilty of the SAME judging thing. I used to judge moms of picky eaters. Now...not so much. All mine would eat was hotdogs. Hotdog after hotdog after hotdog. Disgusting, really.

  2. You could see if she likes Carnation Instant Breakfast drinks. My kids are so picky, and sometimes downright refuse to eat, so we give them that and they can get the calories and vitamins they need.

  3. Thank you for writing this!! I, too, used to judge those moms, and now I, too, have a picky eater :( I do think it's a phase that they will outgrow, and I'm so done judging other mommas!

  4. My oldest will at least try everything we put in front of her and sweet daughter #2 automatically says she doesn't like it (even before she has tried it). I too was one of those who said my children won't be picky eaters...isn't parenting a humbling experience!!