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Ugh :( Five year old autistic child won't eat ANYTHING!

I need suggestions, help, support... anything. Today I got a letter from my SS's daycare saying that he won't eat anything they prepare for him at daycare. He is there five days a week through breakfast and lunch.

Apparently, he NEVER eats there.

Do you have any advice, suggestions?

Answer Question

Asked by girlneffy at 2:08 AM on Jan. 7, 2009 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 3 (27 Credits)
Answers (6)
  • what foods does he eat at home? you may need to start sending his lunch with him. My autistic son had a weird thing for eating frozen peas still frozen LOL just pour them from the freezer into a bowl. I know it's weird but hey, at least he got veggies ;o)
    Is his thing a color, texture, or shape issue? Most autistics have some weird thing. My son's is texture.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:13 AM on Jan. 7, 2009

  • He is a picky eater at home and we struggle to feed him here. The fact that he is NOT eating at daycare is a huge concern even if they prepare him his favorite foods.

    I just don't know what to do :(

    Answer by girlneffy at 2:18 AM on Jan. 7, 2009

  • I agree sit down with the providers and ask what are their usual foods they provide. This way you can see if it's possibly due to texture and things like that why he is avoiding food.

    Also I have heard that some children with Autism do a think where if they learn a skill they only associate it with one place. So like if they learned to potty at home, they don't realize to do it at school. Could be something similar going on with the food. Like he thinks he is only suppose to eat at home, KWIM ? Seems odd to us, but makes perfect sense to him probably.

    Maybe "Front-loading" him about eating at school. so before you go intot he class remind him they are going to serve him some yummy breakfast and in school he needs to eat. Many children with autism need to be prepared like that.

    Oh one more thing visual schedule, does he have one ? Maybe put a visual of eating times for him ?

    Answer by J9Mommy at 2:18 AM on Jan. 7, 2009

  • What do you mean by a visual of eating times?

    Answer by girlneffy at 2:20 AM on Jan. 7, 2009

  • Oh sorry what I mean is does he have a PECS schedule. Many children with autism have visual schedules of what their day looks like.

    So let's say they had one at school. It would show a small velcro card with a plate of food for breakfast, then next would be a card with books on it for reading time or whatever comes next. Make sense ? It would be in order of what the class does. The visuals just help to prepare him better of what is expected and what comes next.

    Thought it might help him realize he is suppose to eat there.

    Also if there is anything that works at home, those tips might help the teachers. So if he only likes to use a blue cup, or have his plate a certain way, no food touching etc...

    Answer by J9Mommy at 2:25 AM on Jan. 7, 2009

  • My BIL is five, and autistic, and he is the pickiest eater I've ever met. I think for him it's a texture thing....I think I would try to figure out why he's not eating first. With autistic kids, it's hard to know what makes them do what they do. Is he uncomfortable there? You are packing his lunch, or is it provided? Is it texture, or what? And, I wonder if it's possible to feed him breakfast at home, at least then he gets some nutrition....Good luck, I know that for an average kid, trying to figure them out is hard enough...I've got two bil who are autistic, and sometimes it's impossible to understand why they do what they do.

    Answer by McGregor at 2:53 PM on Jan. 8, 2009

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