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Help! My 23 month old suddenly refuses to feed himself!

First of all, my son has autism and has quite a few odd little quirks about him. It's what makes him who he is. He's been feeding himself since a little before his 1st birthday and now he's almost 2. He refuses to feed himself! This has been going on for the past few days and I'm guessing it's some kind of phase or something? What can I do to get him to feed himself again? I've tried not feeding him and just leaving the food there thinking he would eat it when he got hungry...but that's not working. It's 1:30 here and all he's eaten is a few pieces of cereal. And I can't let him go like that because in my eyes it's cruel. So, what else can I try? Thanks!!

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Asked by Anonymous at 2:33 PM on Oct. 25, 2009 in Toddlers (1-2)

Answers (3)
  • Try offering him a variety of food and if he still doesn't take it then let it go for a little while, it may seem cruel but he will eat when he is hungry.

    Answer by KalebsMommee at 4:02 PM on Oct. 25, 2009

  • Also forgot to ask, is he drinking alot? Could he be filling himself up on drink?

    Answer by KalebsMommee at 4:02 PM on Oct. 25, 2009

  • At this age, he's probably getting his 2 year molars which are incredibly painful. Have you noticed the "bumps"? When ours went thru this several months ago, he pretty much went thru days/weeks of soft food, wanting things cold that normally I would heat, we had oatmeal for supper sometimes just to make sure he was eating SOMETHING. Even if he drank more milk than normal, it was OK, because I didn't want him to be hungry. Maybe try some shakes, or letting things get cooler, popsicles, and if necessary (we did) use Ibuprofen to numb the pain, and he should be able to eat better. We sometimes allowed popsicles (those really cheap ones) before he ate so that it would make his gums feel better, then he could chew better. It's a phase, and you can take comfort that he will NOT starve himself.

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 6:18 PM on Oct. 25, 2009

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