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Need advice for my 20mo (PIOG)

Posted by on Jul. 24, 2013 at 12:43 PM
  • 18 Replies

 My youngest dd is 20 months old and I have a couple of concerns that I am looking to get some advice on.

First is her eating habits. She is incredibly picky and won't even try new things. The rare occasion I get her to try something new she either immediately spits it out or, if she does manage to swallow it, will begin gagging. She does it with food and drinks. The only thing she will drink is water and breast milk (straight from the breast, refuses it in a cup). For food, she refuses to eat any fruits or veggies in any form. She will eat some meat (usually only chicken or hamburger), she loves cheese, cereal (I try to limit this to cheerios but she has occasionally been allowed some of the other sweeter cereals like lucky charms), nutrigrain bars, toast, pb&j, mac&cheese...I think that's pretty much it. I offer her whatever we are eating at every meal. I'm usually lucky if she'll take a couple of bites unless it's one of the foods I listed above. Only drinking water, you would think that would be a good thing, but when I need her to drink something to help her out with another issue (i.e. apple juice to help if she becomes constipated) I'm out of luck and trying to find other ways to help.

The other concern is sleep. At 20 months old she should pretty much be sleeping through the night. She does not though. She will still wake at least once or twice and usually nurses from that point until we get up in the morning (this can be HOURS). To make matters worse, her sleep schedule will not stay reasonable. She fights taking a nap all day long, usually not going to sleep until 7:30pm-8:00pm. She'll treat that as a nap, wake up 2-3 hours later, then wants to play again for another 4-5 hours before she's finally ready to go to sleep for the night. I. Am. EXHAUSTED! I have a 4yo as well, work full time from home while taking care of both of my girls, take care of the house, run errands, etc. I'm not getting to sleep until anywhere between 2am and 5am pretty much every night. Lately my dh gives in and ends up taking her for a drive because that seems to be the only thing that will get her to sleep at night anymore (once she gets sleepy enough). Any other efforts we make just don't work. I have run out of ideas! A friend and my sister both recommended the kids sleepytime tea. I tried it last night but couldn't get her to drink it (I tried to allow her to drink it herself and when that didn't work I tried using a syringe to give it to her and she ended up gagging. I got about 2 small swallows into her which was pretty much useless).

I would love to finish weaning her but between the sleep issue and the food issue, I worry about taking the breastmilk away completely. I am seriously at a loss at this point. My oldest dd fought her naps at this age but slept great at night and never had the food issue so this is all new. HELP!

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by on Jul. 24, 2013 at 12:43 PM
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jhslove
by on Jul. 24, 2013 at 12:48 PM

Okay, maybe I can help:

1) The food issue, I wouldn't worry too much about right now. It's very, very common for kids to suddenly get picky around that age. As long as she's not underweight and she's not eating a lot of junk food, just keep offering her a varied diet and don't stress too much. My 22-month-old daughter just finished with a phase of refusing vegetables for a couple of months. We just kept offering them and she's starting to eat them again. If you're concerned about adequate nutrition, maybe talk to your pedi about a kids' vitamin in the meantime? Also, when you wean from BM you would put her on cow's milk, so there's some protein and calcium in that.

2) On the sleep issue, has she EVER slept through the night? It sounds like she's both overtired and relying on sleep crutches. A lot of the things that work to get newborns to sleep (like nursing) aren't as effective for toddlers. Does she have a bedtime routine? And if so, can you walk us through it?

jackiewal10
by Gold Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 12:55 PM

I don't see an issue with her food "issues".  That's normal toddler behavior.  And the only issue I see with her sleeping is that she thinks her bedtime is a naptime.  It's actually normal for a child of that age to still wake at night.  NO, not ALL kids still wake at night at that age, but that fact that she does is not abnormal.  I would try to get her to nap in the late morning.  Even if that means that you have to take a drive for a while to get her to sleep then.

rebeccasmommy09
by Bronze Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 1:42 PM

 On the food, she has ALWAYS been this way. She has never eaten fruits or veggies from the time we started offering solids around 6 months. That's why it's so concerning to me. The pedi has said I could give her a vitamin if I wanted to. I haven't yet mainly because she does still nurse some so I figure she's getting the additional nutrition from that. Once she's fully weaned I probably will start the vitamins. She also will not drink cow's milk. I've tried it multiple times and have even tried chocolate milk (that's how I got my oldest to start drinking cow's milk). She still refuses it. The milk is really not concerning me so much though since she will eat cheese and sometimes yogurt (she LOVES cheese, lol).

She has never slept through the night. We've gone through phases where she'll sleep most of the night and only wake once or twice, then other times she's waking constantly (or just never fully getting into a deep sleep and nursing all night long, switching from one side to the other every 20min-1hr). We don't really have a bedtime routine for her since we can't seem to get her to stay consistent even with a routine. For my oldest, we'll pick up the toys in her room, get jammies on (for both girls) and read a story (my youngest will sometimes sit and listen to the story, other times will continue to play on the floor), then lights out. I used to be able to lay in the dark with my youngest and nurse her to sleep but that doesn't seem to work anymore. I will say, nighttime is always a busy, stressful time for me at least. Lately, because of the lack of sleep, we've been sleeping later in the morning so I'm not starting work until around 10am and therefore working until 6:30pm. Then I immediately have to make dinner, get everyone fed, clean up the kitchen, then bedtime. I'm trying to get back into a better (and earlier) routine sooner rather than later because my 4yo will be going to school in a couple of weeks so I really need to get her to bed by 8 and us all up by 7:30/8:00 in the morning (lately, by the time we actually turn the lights out it's 10pm).

Quoting jhslove:

Okay, maybe I can help:

1) The food issue, I wouldn't worry too much about right now. It's very, very common for kids to suddenly get picky around that age. As long as she's not underweight and she's not eating a lot of junk food, just keep offering her a varied diet and don't stress too much. My 22-month-old daughter just finished with a phase of refusing vegetables for a couple of months. We just kept offering them and she's starting to eat them again. If you're concerned about adequate nutrition, maybe talk to your pedi about a kids' vitamin in the meantime? Also, when you wean from BM you would put her on cow's milk, so there's some protein and calcium in that.

2) On the sleep issue, has she EVER slept through the night? It sounds like she's both overtired and relying on sleep crutches. A lot of the things that work to get newborns to sleep (like nursing) aren't as effective for toddlers. Does she have a bedtime routine? And if so, can you walk us through it?

 

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rgba
by Bronze Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 1:44 PM
Are you cosleeping?
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rebeccasmommy09
by Bronze Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 1:45 PM

 My concern with her eating habits is that she has NEVER eaten fruits or veggies since we started offering solids at 6mo.

I try to get her to nap all day long. We'll take drives or I'll try nursing her while laying down or rocking in the rocker, I'll try pacing with her (that used to work)...sometimes it works, most times it doesn't. The problem is I can't spend all day doing these things to get her to nap. I have work I have to do too so I'll spend 15-20 minutes at a time then I have to give up to try and get some work done (if she's going to sleep by that point I'll continue on but usually she is still wide awake).

Quoting jackiewal10:

I don't see an issue with her food "issues".  That's normal toddler behavior.  And the only issue I see with her sleeping is that she thinks her bedtime is a naptime.  It's actually normal for a child of that age to still wake at night.  NO, not ALL kids still wake at night at that age, but that fact that she does is not abnormal.  I would try to get her to nap in the late morning.  Even if that means that you have to take a drive for a while to get her to sleep then.

 

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rebeccasmommy09
by Bronze Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 1:48 PM

 Currently yes. She usually starts out in her own bed but once she wakes up we'll bring her to bed with us. We have coslept since birth (we did the same with our oldest).

Quoting rgba:

Are you cosleeping?

 

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Retrokitty
by Silver Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 2:08 PM
For food it could be a sensory issue.
If I try to eat fruit it litterly makes me gag. Its not the taste but something about fruit makes me super sick. I can eat some like watermelon but it leaves my stomach feeling funny.

For the sleeping issue my son was the same way for awhile. I litterly had to lay down with him, hold him down and give him a bottle. I would rub his head and sometime run my finger over his eye lids so he would close them. It works but it still takes 30 minutes to an hour to put him down for each nap. We also have to cuddle him for his entire nap (DF works on his laptop once DS is asleep) However, he sleeps at night because of it.
The only other thing I can think about is talking to your doctor about giving her some maletonin. It would have to be quite a small dose but it may help if she's having trouble falling asleep.
rebeccasmommy09
by Bronze Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 2:17 PM

 I've wondered about maybe a sensory issue. I've tried different forms though (we tried baby food, raw, steamed, mashed...). Most of the time I can't even get her to try it and I don't want to force it in her mouth. I expect that would create a whole new issue for her. :(

I've been thinking about maybe talking to the pedi about melatonin. I'd hate to resort to supplements but if I can't find anything else that works I may have to. That's why I came here first hoping someone else had experienced this too and had some ideas for me to try.

Thanks!

Quoting Retrokitty:

For food it could be a sensory issue.
If I try to eat fruit it litterly makes me gag. Its not the taste but something about fruit makes me super sick. I can eat some like watermelon but it leaves my stomach feeling funny.

For the sleeping issue my son was the same way for awhile. I litterly had to lay down with him, hold him down and give him a bottle. I would rub his head and sometime run my finger over his eye lids so he would close them. It works but it still takes 30 minutes to an hour to put him down for each nap. We also have to cuddle him for his entire nap (DF works on his laptop once DS is asleep) However, he sleeps at night because of it.
The only other thing I can think about is talking to your doctor about giving her some maletonin. It would have to be quite a small dose but it may help if she's having trouble falling asleep.

 

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whoodathunk
by Bronze Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 2:27 PM
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I'd say you need to be a little more in charge.  She never ate fruits & veggies as a baby?  That' doesn't make sense since she's a baby, strapped in a high chair, doesn't pick her foods and has to take only what's offered.  it sounds like when she didn't like it, you let her not eat it.  She's learned that she is in charge instead of you nad you need to switch that back.  She will eat what you give her if you don't give her an alternative.  If she's eating a few bites of your food, I say that's a great start!  If you want her to eat better (some people are content with what she's eating and if you are then don't worry about it), then just offer her what you're eating.  Give her a plate, make sure she's strapped in her chair and enjoy your dinner while chatting about likeing the peas and get excited when she's doing as she should.  Fix her plate so the veggies make a smiley face or the chicken is cut with a cookie cutter to make it fun.  Let her help toss the salad or mash the potatoes.  She'll be more likely to eat if she helps.  

The sleep issue with drive most anyone nuts!  She's overtired at bedtime and has not learned to self soothe back to sleep.  I'd offer her a bottle of water but nurse before bed and not during the night or you will begin to resent that time because you NEED sleep!  I'd insist on a nap.  My daughter would scream and cry that she wasn't tired and didn't want a nap until she passed out.  She was just afraid of missing something.  I think she was a little older, but not much.  Eventually the fight became too much and she'd eat dinner and fall asleep right after but would stay down for the night.  

With a little work, you can switch things around.  Everyone will be happier when she's sleeping through the night!


Quoting rebeccasmommy09:

 On the food, she has ALWAYS been this way. She has never eaten fruits or veggies from the time we started offering solids around 6 months. That's why it's so concerning to me. The pedi has said I could give her a vitamin if I wanted to. I haven't yet mainly because she does still nurse some so I figure she's getting the additional nutrition from that. Once she's fully weaned I probably will start the vitamins. She also will not drink cow's milk. I've tried it multiple times and have even tried chocolate milk (that's how I got my oldest to start drinking cow's milk). She still refuses it. The milk is really not concerning me so much though since she will eat cheese and sometimes yogurt (she LOVES cheese, lol).

She has never slept through the night. We've gone through phases where she'll sleep most of the night and only wake once or twice, then other times she's waking constantly (or just never fully getting into a deep sleep and nursing all night long, switching from one side to the other every 20min-1hr). We don't really have a bedtime routine for her since we can't seem to get her to stay consistent even with a routine. For my oldest, we'll pick up the toys in her room, get jammies on (for both girls) and read a story (my youngest will sometimes sit and listen to the story, other times will continue to play on the floor), then lights out. I used to be able to lay in the dark with my youngest and nurse her to sleep but that doesn't seem to work anymore. I will say, nighttime is always a busy, stressful time for me at least. Lately, because of the lack of sleep, we've been sleeping later in the morning so I'm not starting work until around 10am and therefore working until 6:30pm. Then I immediately have to make dinner, get everyone fed, clean up the kitchen, then bedtime. I'm trying to get back into a better (and earlier) routine sooner rather than later because my 4yo will be going to school in a couple of weeks so I really need to get her to bed by 8 and us all up by 7:30/8:00 in the morning (lately, by the time we actually turn the lights out it's 10pm).

Quoting jhslove:

Okay, maybe I can help:

1) The food issue, I wouldn't worry too much about right now. It's very, very common for kids to suddenly get picky around that age. As long as she's not underweight and she's not eating a lot of junk food, just keep offering her a varied diet and don't stress too much. My 22-month-old daughter just finished with a phase of refusing vegetables for a couple of months. We just kept offering them and she's starting to eat them again. If you're concerned about adequate nutrition, maybe talk to your pedi about a kids' vitamin in the meantime? Also, when you wean from BM you would put her on cow's milk, so there's some protein and calcium in that.

2) On the sleep issue, has she EVER slept through the night? It sounds like she's both overtired and relying on sleep crutches. A lot of the things that work to get newborns to sleep (like nursing) aren't as effective for toddlers. Does she have a bedtime routine? And if so, can you walk us through it?

 



Retrokitty
by Silver Member on Jul. 24, 2013 at 2:49 PM
That doesn't make sense. Even a 6 month old baby knows what they like and don't like. My son to this day will not eat beans (he's 15 moths)
He would not eat beans at 6 months, not at 8 months, not at 9,10,11,12,13, or 14 months. If that's all I feed him he will not even touch them. A long with a few other foods. Since 6 months he would eat everything on his plate except the stuff he doesn't like.


Quoting whoodathunk:

I'd say you need to be a little more in charge.  She never ate fruits & veggies as a baby?  That' doesn't make sense since she's a baby, strapped in a high chair, doesn't pick her foods and has to take only what's offered.  it sounds like when she didn't like it, you let her not eat it.  She's learned that she is in charge instead of you nad you need to switch that back.  She will eat what you give her if you don't give her an alternative.  If she's eating a few bites of your food, I say that's a great start!  If you want her to eat better (some people are content with what she's eating and if you are then don't worry about it), then just offer her what you're eating.  Give her a plate, make sure she's strapped in her chair and enjoy your dinner while chatting about likeing the peas and get excited when she's doing as she should.  Fix her plate so the veggies make a smiley face or the chicken is cut with a cookie cutter to make it fun.  Let her help toss the salad or mash the potatoes.  She'll be more likely to eat if she helps.  

The sleep issue with drive most anyone nuts!  She's overtired at bedtime and has not learned to self soothe back to sleep.  I'd offer her a bottle of water but nurse before bed and not during the night or you will begin to resent that time because you NEED sleep!  I'd insist on a nap.  My daughter would scream and cry that she wasn't tired and didn't want a nap until she passed out.  She was just afraid of missing something.  I think she was a little older, but not much.  Eventually the fight became too much and she'd eat dinner and fall asleep right after but would stay down for the night.  

With a little work, you can switch things around.  Everyone will be happier when she's sleeping through the night!



Quoting rebeccasmommy09:

 On the food, she has ALWAYS been this way. She has never eaten fruits or veggies from the time we started offering solids around 6 months. That's why it's so concerning to me. The pedi has said I could give her a vitamin if I wanted to. I haven't yet mainly because she does still nurse some so I figure she's getting the additional nutrition from that. Once she's fully weaned I probably will start the vitamins. She also will not drink cow's milk. I've tried it multiple times and have even tried chocolate milk (that's how I got my oldest to start drinking cow's milk). She still refuses it. The milk is really not concerning me so much though since she will eat cheese and sometimes yogurt (she LOVES cheese, lol).


She has never slept through the night. We've gone through phases where she'll sleep most of the night and only wake once or twice, then other times she's waking constantly (or just never fully getting into a deep sleep and nursing all night long, switching from one side to the other every 20min-1hr). We don't really have a bedtime routine for her since we can't seem to get her to stay consistent even with a routine. For my oldest, we'll pick up the toys in her room, get jammies on (for both girls) and read a story (my youngest will sometimes sit and listen to the story, other times will continue to play on the floor), then lights out. I used to be able to lay in the dark with my youngest and nurse her to sleep but that doesn't seem to work anymore. I will say, nighttime is always a busy, stressful time for me at least. Lately, because of the lack of sleep, we've been sleeping later in the morning so I'm not starting work until around 10am and therefore working until 6:30pm. Then I immediately have to make dinner, get everyone fed, clean up the kitchen, then bedtime. I'm trying to get back into a better (and earlier) routine sooner rather than later because my 4yo will be going to school in a couple of weeks so I really need to get her to bed by 8 and us all up by 7:30/8:00 in the morning (lately, by the time we actually turn the lights out it's 10pm).


Quoting jhslove:


Okay, maybe I can help:


1) The food issue, I wouldn't worry too much about right now. It's very, very common for kids to suddenly get picky around that age. As long as she's not underweight and she's not eating a lot of junk food, just keep offering her a varied diet and don't stress too much. My 22-month-old daughter just finished with a phase of refusing vegetables for a couple of months. We just kept offering them and she's starting to eat them again. If you're concerned about adequate nutrition, maybe talk to your pedi about a kids' vitamin in the meantime? Also, when you wean from BM you would put her on cow's milk, so there's some protein and calcium in that.


2) On the sleep issue, has she EVER slept through the night? It sounds like she's both overtired and relying on sleep crutches. A lot of the things that work to get newborns to sleep (like nursing) aren't as effective for toddlers. Does she have a bedtime routine? And if so, can you walk us through it?


 




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