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Really irritated by sons eating habits

Our 10 yo son has terrible noises coming from his mouth while eating. It literally sounds like a pig chewing cud. Because we eat family style and have my parents over for dinner almost every night, this is a habit I'd like him to stop soon. My husband says to leave him alone because he himself made noises as a kid while chewing food, and just outgrew it. But I feel like if I ask him to slow down while chewing his food, the noise stops. However, my husband says it sounds like I am picking on him everytime I bring it up at the table, and sometimes my son gets teary eyed. I really am at a loss of what to do now.

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Asked by Anonymous at 12:44 AM on Feb. 20, 2010 in Tweens (9-12)

Answers (6)
  • Some kids make noises when they eat and dont even realize it, so I agree with your DH maybe just leave it alone for a while. Your son getting teary eyed should be a clue that he really doesnt have control over it. One of my boys used to make the weirdest grunting sound when walking around the house doing things, when i asked him why he did it he had no clue what i was talking about. We let him be since it was obvious he wasnt doing it on purpose and he did grow out of it.

    Pointing it out at the dinner table especially if he isnt doing it on purpose could feel to a 10 year old like you are picking on him. Sounds like your DH is in tune with your son, maybe let DH take the lead on this one.

    Answer by 3_ring_circus_ at 12:49 AM on Feb. 20, 2010

  • butterflyI would talk to his pediatrician. You may want to make sure that he's not having a problem breathing while he is eating. It wouldn't hurt to "google" noises while eating either. Not trying to alarm you, but it wouldn't hurt to check it out.

    If he does slow down when he eats and the noises stop, it could be that he is just chewing to fast. Instead of telling him to slow down, maybe take the approach of "Let's Try An Experiment".....and then offer up...."slow down a little" or what do you think would work to help you eat quieter? If he is part of the solution, then he won't feel like he's doing something wrong. Give lots and lots of praise when he does better. Let him pick desert....etc. Good Luck.


    Answer by PSCreates at 1:39 AM on Feb. 20, 2010

  • Perhaps addressing it BEFORE the meal when it's just the two of you will help him avoid the embarrassment of being singled out at the table. Just remind him about his manners and eating slowly and not making noise because it ISN'T POLITE. He doesn't want to be rude in front of his grandparents for sure.

    Trust me when he is older and starts dating he (and SHE) will thank you for intervening and teaching him proper eating manners.

    Answer by Allergic2Stupid at 1:41 AM on Feb. 20, 2010

  • Instead of 'telling' him to eat quieter have a secrete signal. A nudge under table or a certain phrase in conversation. He is doing the noises with out knowing just let him know and see if it improves. Set up signal with him sometime other than at dinner table

    Answer by higherboundmom at 11:53 AM on Feb. 20, 2010

  • Does he still have his tonsils & adenoids? Does he snore when he sleeps, or have any other sleep issues - sleeping many hours but seeming like he hardly slept? If you answered yes to any of these, but especially the first, take him to the doctor - it could be that. My DD was the same way, a very noisy eater, but once we had her tonsils & adenoids taken out due to sleep apnea, her eating noises really calmed down. Another thing, instead of telling him at the dinner table to slow down or eat quieter, have a private, one-on-one talk with him at a different time - be sensitive, ask him if he realizes he's a noisy eater, ask him to slow down a bit. If he's eating fast because he's really hungry, give him a small appetizer/snack about half an hour before mealtime - even a small part of the meal - so he's not feeling the need to eat fast because he's so hungry.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:53 PM on Feb. 20, 2010

  • Does he do it on prupose like playing around ? if he does then tell him if he can't eat right then he can't
    sit at the table with you anymore he's going to have to eat by himself from now on. because no body likes hearing those horrible while they eat at the table. But if he's not it something that just happens , then talk to your doctor and see what can be done about it . if possible. Because your right he is getting bigger and older now and it doesn't look or sound right any more. good luck;) if its something he'll grow out of ,then let the doctor confirm that with you too,

    Answer by incarnita at 9:12 AM on Feb. 21, 2010

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