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Fussy eater causing a majoy headache for me each night at dinner. HELP!

I have posted on here before about my dd being a fussy eater and people have given suggestions on how to sneak veggies into homemade pizza etc. However, she is 2 now and is refusing to eat dinner. She eats breakfast and lunch, but when it comes to dinner she won't eat. I have tried to bribe her with dessert, but she just gets upset, doesn't eat, and it ends her being hungry with no dessert and in tears. I have tried to put one familiar item such as noodles on the plate, in addition to what we are also having. She will only eat the item that she likes, noodles, and won't try the new foods.

My question is this... am I asking too much of her to eat dinner each night? I just want her to try a bite or two of what we are eating. I know I can get her to eat each night if I give her foods she likes, but I want her to start eating foods that we eat too... not just nuggets, pasta, mac/cheese, pizza, etc.

Please help!

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 9:24 PM on May. 31, 2011 in Toddlers (1-2)

Answers (5)
  • as long as she's eating her other meals and snacks, i wouldn't make a fuss over her occasionally skipping dinner and avoiding a food battle. my kids are strong-willed and sometimes won't even eat the food they like at dinner, but they know they won't be eating til the next mealtime either. my oldest started doing this at 2 also and i'd try to explain on her level that she wouldn't be getting anything else. then i would offer her her dinner plate a few times before bed, sometimes she'd change her mind and eat and others she didn't. they also know they have to try what i make, but they don't have to like it (something i started doing around 3.5-4) and if they don't like it they can have a pb&j or yogurt with fruit.

    Answer by tnm786 at 9:28 PM on May. 31, 2011

  • I think you fix her a plate with what you want her to eat. You tell her that's all she is getting. If she refuses to eat it, you put it in the refrigerator. When she says she's hungry, you drag it out and heat it up and offer it to her again. If she gets hungry enough, she will eat it. This is nothing more than a battle of the wills, and it's a battle you must win or you will spend the next 18 or so years fixing 2 meals every night. Be tough. Don't be mean, but you have to be firm. This is what she eats or she doesn't eat at all. She won't starve, I promise.

    Answer by NannyB. at 9:29 PM on May. 31, 2011

  • you could also involve her in making her plate, let her choose which foods you put on it? maybe that will help her feel like she has more say-so in what she is getting?

    Answer by MommyYeoman at 10:02 PM on May. 31, 2011

  • With my son we offer one meal... he gets what we are having on his plate with no special accommodations... and he can choose to eat or not. If he chooses not to eat at least half of what is on his plate (which usually isn't very much to start with) then he doesn't not get a snack or dessert later. We will put his meal in the fridge if he's a poor eater... if he complains later that he's hungry we will re-heat it once... if he doesn't want it at that time we throw it away.

    I'd say for the most part my son is a really good eater because we don't allow him to be picky. He of coarse has a few foods he doesn't care for but he'll eat most things because he knows he doesn't have another option coming if he chooses not to eat.


    Answer by AmiJanell at 1:42 PM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • trust me, i feel your pain... my little girl will eat anything but, if it's evening, she's tired and won't eat... it's ok - sometimes she just isn't hungry. dinner isn't supposed to be as large of a meal as we sometimes have... i offer my little one the meal i am having and if she doesn't want it, she doesn't have to eat it. she really would start screaming if i tried to make her eat it!!!! LOL and then, we get ready for bed (bath, pj's) and then if she didn't have a good sized dinner, i do offer her a snack (healthy one - yogurt, cheese, raisins) we don't do "dessert" in my house - i believe that if you pair the two - dinner w/dessert, you're setting yourself up that children will not eat their food and actually be hungry just because they are thinking dessert. just my opinion... and even if we ate out, i don't buy dessert because of the price - we could get a cone or something on the drive home!

    Answer by Sweetpea78c at 4:05 PM on Jun. 1, 2011

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