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4 yr old won't eat her dinner HELP

Posted by on Oct. 12, 2009 at 8:10 PM
  • 6 Replies

OK ever since my dd turned 4 she refuses to eat her dinner. She wants me to feed it to her. That ain't going to happen. She goes to preschool and feeds her self breakfast and lunch. Why at dinner she doesn't want to. I know she is hungry. How do I get my 4 yr old to eat her dinner without having a battle almost every night?  I am so mad that she eats at school fine, but then comes home and won't sit and eat dinner. I have tried to briber her, which I know is a no no in most peoples book, but I am sick of her not eating and me sending her to bed and then she wakes up hungry in the middle of the night. Please help me.

by on Oct. 12, 2009 at 8:10 PM
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Replies (1-6):
jillbailey26
by on Oct. 12, 2009 at 8:19 PM

Stop making a big deal out of it.  Stop bribing, stop feeding her in the middle of the night, stop begging her to eat.  Stop it all.  When it comes time for dinner and she wants you to feed it to her, tell her "no, you must feed yourself" and then keep eating.  If she whines, cries or demands you to, tell her again and maybe mention that if she doesn't eat, fine, but you're not feeding her because she's not a baby.  Stick to your words.  Just keep eating like you normally would and don't pay attention to any act she puts on. 

Most of what she's doing is a power struggle.  Don't give her your power by begging, bribing or feeding her at any other time than dinner time.  She eats (and feeds herself) AT dinner time and that's the end of it.



Jess243
by on Oct. 12, 2009 at 8:20 PM

Perhaps it's her way of getting your attention after being away from you all day. My daugther did the same thing a while back and I never spoon fed her. I know it sounds horrible but if she wouldn't eat i wouldn't beg her. she would wake up in the middle of the night hungry but i wouldn't let her eat until the morning. After a couple of nights like that she figured out that she better eat because it was a long time until breakfast. Good Luck  :)

Jessica

mommy2mason09
by on Oct. 12, 2009 at 8:21 PM

i think that is a good approach. my son is only 5months old so i have awhile before this. however, i will keep this in mind :-=)

Quoting jillbailey26:

Stop making a big deal out of it.  Stop bribing, stop feeding her in the middle of the night, stop begging her to eat.  Stop it all.  When it comes time for dinner and she wants you to feed it to her, tell her "no, you must feed yourself" and then keep eating.  If she whines, cries or demands you to, tell her again and maybe mention that if she doesn't eat, fine, but you're not feeding her because she's not a baby.  Stick to your words.  Just keep eating like you normally would and don't pay attention to any act she puts on. 

Most of what she's doing is a power struggle.  Don't give her your power by begging, bribing or feeding her at any other time than dinner time.  She eats (and feeds herself) AT dinner time and that's the end of it.


Jade1224
by on Oct. 12, 2009 at 8:25 PM

if she is really hungry, she will feed herself. however, i dont know why its a big deal to spoon feed her if she likes it. you already know she is capable of feeding herself when she needs to... i agree with the above post about how your child  might miss you.

but if you believe she is acting out by not eating her dinner then leave her alone and dont give her any attention. if she is hungry she will eat and if not, thats her problem. she will learn to deal with it and this is useful for future situations as well. 

jabs54
by Platinum Member on Oct. 12, 2009 at 8:31 PM

 If it were me I would make her sit at the table, whether she ate or not.  I would tell her "No big deal if you don't eat, but you will be hungry"  Then if she wakes in the night, explain that that is the consequence of her behavior and send her back to bed.

 

anxiousschk
by Member on Oct. 12, 2009 at 8:36 PM

This.

And what the poster in orange said.

I'm sorry...but to the person who said "I don't see the big deal about spoon feeding her.."

SHE'S 4. 

That's a big deal.  If you wish to allow yourself to be manipulated by your child, that's your deal.  I don't agree with it. 

IF she's missing you...then she can have some extra cuddle time, decided upon by you.  If she's hungry in the middle of the night, tough.  She won't starve...it's her choice to be that way, and it wouldn't happen if she would simply eat.  Don't make it a long drawn out convo, just a basic statement and it's done.

Quoting jabs54:

 If it were me I would make her sit at the table, whether she ate or not.  I would tell her "No big deal if you don't eat, but you will be hungry"  Then if she wakes in the night, explain that that is the consequence of her behavior and send her back to bed.



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