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my 4yr son just started this after thanksgiving, he use to eat his breakfast and lunch at school, now he won't touch it. and when the teacher asks him to eat he takes 1 bit and throws up. they use to send him home but now they just send him for his nat. I don't get it ,he eats at home, its the same thing I send to school. anyone have any thoughts?

why won't my son eat when he is at school


Asked by northcarolinama at 9:40 PM on Feb. 27, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

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Answers (11)
  • Maybe he became sick for real one day after eating and now is afraid that anytime he eats in school he will become sick? Just a suggestion. That is a long time for him to go with nothing.

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 10:00 PM on Feb. 28, 2009

  • I would make sure that their is no serious issue going on like verbal abuse or something.

    Is the food he is eating school food or do you send it for him. If it is school food maybe he has developed a dislike for it.

    Or he could be having a little bit of anxiety. It can start at any time and for any reason. Maybe being away from you. Or maybe a teacher frightened him?

    If you are talking about school food, why not try a lunchbox and allow him to tell you something cool he wants in it.

    Just a suggestion, you didnt say if it was home or school food.

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 9:46 PM on Feb. 27, 2009

  • have you talked to him? my step son gets in trouble when he makes himself throw up. i don't think its funny and its not healthy.

    i would try to find out why he isn't eating at school. is he unhappy with something at school? are kids picking on him? if they were sending him because of it before, maybe thats why it started - that he wanted to come home for some reason. if he won't talk to you about it, see if the school guidance counselor can talk to him. also, make sure you are talking to his teachers to know if anything changed at school when this all started. did anything change at home?

    Answer by aly38914290 at 9:47 PM on Feb. 27, 2009

  • he has alergic to dairy so I send him with food from home. I don't think he's being picked on by other kids he's the biggest in his class, (he's over 4 feet tall) and he thinks his teacher is the best thing on this planet. I have asked him about not eating and he just say "cuz' I'm sicky"or "it's going to make me sick" my worry is more the fact that he is in school from 7am to 2pm and he's has not eaten or drank anything during that time.

    Answer by northcarolinama at 9:55 PM on Feb. 27, 2009

  • Just a thought, he's trying to see how much he can get away with. My son try's the same thing with me. He's trying to see if he say's it will make him sick or if he says he is sick if he will get special treatment, from you ,or the teachers. I make my son eat what he says he doesn' t like. He tried that with my husband and I , we made him eat it, then we made him eat it again for lunch the next day, when he forced himself to puke, we gave him another helping. Maybe he saw another kids get sick, and get treated "special" and he wants that kind of attention.

    Answer by yuriahasmommie at 10:07 PM on Feb. 27, 2009

  • Not just because he isgetting treated special, but could he be getting sick because he knows that the teacher will send him home. Maybe there is something he is trying to avoid and he can if he goes home at a certain time each day. I would talk to the teacher about his participation in class and if he seems happy to be there.

    Answer by LovetoTeach247 at 10:28 PM on Feb. 27, 2009

  • i agree with yuriah. although if he makes himself sick - make him clean it up. and then finish his plate. my step daughter has recess right after lunch. see if the teachers can keep him from participating in recess when he doesn't eat. and then when he gets home don't give him a snack. i know that sounds like you are starving him, but he will learn that he better eat his lunch becuase it will be all he gets until dinner

    if he brings home the un-eaten lunch, then i would tell him he could have that if he starts asking for a snack.

    that is what i would do at least. i don't like wasting food. and i hate it when my step kids would make themselves sick. their mom would let them get away with that crap and it drove me insane. after my ss cleaned up his puke one night i made him go straight to bed. i was so upset.

    Answer by aly38914290 at 10:32 PM on Feb. 27, 2009

  • This child has anxiety about something and definitely cannot eat if he throws up, if you force him, he will just have bigger problems later on, including an eating disorder. He must be taught how to deal with his anxiety, perhaps just eat one bite and see if it stays down, then later another one etc, best though, to talk to a qualified therapist.

    Another point, wait til bedtime, turn off the lights , crawl into bed with him and talk about light things and see if the conversation can gently be switched to why he thinks he throws up when he eats, is there anything bothering him, is he scared of anyone, anything at school, etc, kids are more able to talk in this relaxed atmosphere.

    Answer by mommios8 at 2:11 AM on Feb. 28, 2009

  • My first thought is fear or stress of some sort. Perhaps they have some smell in the kitchen area that makes him ill. They have to disinfect the tables. Maybe the smell makes him sick or maybe they sprayed the table and it got on his food and made him sick one time and now he fears it will happen again. Can you go eat lunch with him one day and take a fresh lunch with him, put down a placemat and eat with him?

    Answer by admckenzie at 10:58 AM on Feb. 28, 2009

  • I would go to school and check maybe it is the table soap or somthing or being watched by the other kids maybe you could get him over the thing that makes him nervice

    Answer by goatmom4 at 6:18 PM on Feb. 28, 2009