help! I'm raising a milk addict.

during the course of raising wee ones, how many of you have had to deal with a picky eater at one time or another?

MEEEEEEEEE! (frantically waving arms) I have!  no, not over there, over HERE.  yeah, me.  the one typing this.  

unfortunately, we haven't been exempt from this issue.  this household has certainly had its fair share of food trials throughout the years.  I've often wondered how the kid (the picky eater at the time) even survived, they ate so little.  fortunately, it seems to be a phase that most kids eventually grow out of (or maybe some never do.)  but still, it's always tough when you're faced with it, like I am once again.

(btw, if you're one of the select few that hasn't had to deal with this issue, then go jump in a lake, would you?  but before you jump, I do have one small request.  could you please email me your secrets?  thanks in advance.)

currently, about the only "food" Rowan will touch is milk. (is that even considered a food?) okay, maybe he'll eat a few other things, like cookies (duh), ice cream (dar) and mac and cheese (dur), but for the most part, all he cares about, or wants, is milk.  and he'll stop at nothing to get his fix, including pouring it himself (can you say disastrous?) or persuading one of his siblings to get it for him.  lately, I've been refusing his requests, but that leads to these most horrendous kicking and screaming fits.  it's driving me crazy.  

I've tried a few different strategies to get him to eat more at meal times, but to no avail.  these have included everything from reverse psychology (don't you dare touch that broccoli stalk. I mean it), to positive reinforcement (much cheering if he tries something new) to simply ignoring him.  I even tried the power of suggestion, where I played up a slice of apple by waving it in front of him while making yummy, smacking noises: "mmm.  this is sooo good.  does Rowan want a taste?"  honestly, I might as well have suggested that I whip out the kitchen shears and snip off his tongue.  he clamped his mouth shut and emitted the worst sound ever made, a sound I can't even describe except it made me want to scoop out my eardrums with a grapefruit spoon rather than hear it a moment longer.  "milk!" he screamed.

rewind to last week.  I had this grand idea that maybe if I disguised the food, I could trick him into eating it, you know, because he won't know what's underneath the disguise.  am I sneaky or what?  so I whipped this up:

I set the plate down in front of him and said, "look Rowan!  a Christmas tree!  do you want to eat it?"  immediately his eyes got all big, and I thought maybe, just maybe, he'll bite this time.  he looked at the plate, then back at me and exclaimed, "presents!  santa!  I want miiillllkkk!"

all hope quickly vanished.
ARGH.  I know he’ll grow out of it, someday, maybe.  but right now it makes me nuts at just about every meal.  at this point, I think it's turned into a mind game: control (for him) versus battle of wills (for me), more than anything.  eat this or else!

so do any of you have any tips, tricks or menu ideas that have worked for you?  I'm at the point where I'm willing to try anything.  or do I just let it go and pray it passes over?  do I just not care?  like so what if he's a strict adherent to the all-dairy, all-white-with-a-little-orange-in-it diet?  I'm guessing he'll survive, just like the rest have.

but, will I?



Anonymous said...

Tips...ideas?! I don't! I will be watching this post for some though! :) This sounds like my 7 year old. Any "normal" meals ie: spaghetti, chili, lasagna, etc is NASTY! He doesn't really like milk either! But go figure....he will eat veggies by the truckful! Especially green peppers! I don't get it but as long as something is getting in him I am happy!! Good luck! - Rachel

Anonymous said...

This has been a constant battle for us since our first child was about 18months old! I read so many self-help books and still have no helpful tips for you. I'm not leaving a comment because I have some great tips, just that your not alone in this battle! And I will be checking back to see all the good tips and tricks others might suggest. I'm not one bit consistent. Some nights I'm a drill sergeant screaming in their faces that if you don't eat your supper then... and other nights I offer them a healthy meal and what they eat they do and what they don't they don't. Kara
(I can't seem to leave a comment with any other profile besides anonymous.)

Barb Makela said...

How about adding protein supplements to the milk? Something like Carnation instant breakfast? That way he gets the protein.. What do I know??? I'm not a mom!!! : )

1crown3tiaras said...

This is how our oldest is. he is going on 10 years old and he is STILL picky!! we have to give him an expensive vitamin drink that the other kids don't get just to make sure he is getting what he needs!

1crown3tiaras said...

btw.. i LOVE this tree:)

Anonymous said...

ALL of my kids have gone through this picky stage where it was milk, milk, milk. I used to ask my pediatrician if it was possible that a kid was getting too much milk. Amazingly enough one of them now many years later doesn't really care for milk. The older my kids get, the more things they are willing to try so I don't so much worry about it - I still put everything on their plate. If they eat it, great! and if not, oh well! and some days my youngest will eat a certain food and the next time I offer it, he doesn't like it. can't win! I do make sure they get vitamins every day though. i had one kid that as long as she was told it was chicken, she would eat it. She thought she only liked chicken so every meal I told her it was chicken and she would eat it. Weird kids I tell you. joleen

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...seems to me I remember you going through the same thing with Jake. I'll never forget him begging for milk all the time. And he turned out just fine. Maybe if you try to give Rowan milk just at mealtimes because it sounds like he is getting filled up on milk and isn't hungry for food when it comes time to sit down for a meal. I don't know...good luck. Becca

jessica said...

actually Jake ended up with lactose intolerance. I've made a conscious effort to not give Rowan milk, but then then I can't always be there to stop the other kids from giving it to him. apparently, no one want s to listen to his screaming fits.