Please Just Swallow Your Food!


Oh, Doodle. I recognize that he’s in a relatively normal development stage of not wanting to eat a darn thing I put in front of him – unless it’s some of my amazing baked goods, we’ll share recipes another day. I mean, seriously, this little man used to eat flippin’ anything. I mean from the grossest of gross to amazingly tasty, any fruit, veggie, grain, hunk of meat, anything you put in front of him he would devour as though it was the biggest, most delicious cookie on the planet. But, seriously, this new not eating real food bit that he’s in is going to make me lose all of my hair.

Maybe I’m being a little dramatic, exaggerating the situation a bit… He does eat some. And I guess I’m luckier than some in that he actually adores green beans. But how long can a two-year-old live off pizza, macaroni and cheese, and peanut butter sandwiches!? Anything else I feed him, any actual “meal” foods at least, gets completely untouched. Not even tried a little bit.

“I don’ wike it!” Just try it, Doodle, it’s really good. “No, I done. Cookie pease?” Perhaps if you finish your dinner we can discuss a cookie. “I DONE! I wanna pway!”

Then, there’s my absolute favorite part! (By favorite, I really hope you can grasp how incredibly UN-favorite it is.) My son, my adorable little Doodle, has somehow turned into a chipmunk. He’s so clever, you see. He knows I don’t want him taking another bite of something when there’s already food in his mouth, so he figures I won’t badger him into eating more until he swallows. Just, in true chipmunk form, he doesn’t. He makes about three or four solid chews – just enough to give it the right amount of mush – and shoves it in his cheek. I mean, for hours this kid will hold it there. Hours! I’ve sat with him bugging him the whole time, I’ve dangled cookies or other tasty treats in front of him, I’ve completely left the vicinity and ignored him, I’ve let him out of his chair to roam around hoping that at some point he might subconsciously swallow. Seriously, nothing will get this little man to give.

What’s weird to me is – ok, I’ll start with I’m a big texture person. It’s a lot of the reason I don’t eat meat. I don’t like crunch in my soft, soggy in my smooth, mush in my crisp. The texture of the main component in my food is the one that I want to be consistent. Except a few exceptions like Cheesy Gordita Crunches or struessel topping on a muffin… mmm, muffins… anyway, so what I don’t get is if there’s a certain foodage that I don’t want to eat, it’s probably either a taste or a texture thing. Either way, putting it in my mouth and chewing it up even slightly would offer me a sense of each of those. If at any time I didn’t like one of those two aspects, I would stop effing eating it. And I wouldn’t think even for a minute to keep it in a nice little pocket in my mouth as a constant reminder of how incredibly awful it was. So why then does my chipmunk-Doodle want to savour for as long as he possibly can everything he doesn’t like?

Things that he used to live for, too. Things that most two year olds would kill for. Chicken nuggets, cheeseburgers, spaghetti, fish sticks, even French fries! It’s just a phase, everyone tells me. He’s just practicing his independence. Yeah, I freaking know that, but it doesn’t make it any less frustrating.


4 responses »

  1. This is probably not what I should have done but when I taught preschool we had a little boy come in with ham in his mouth that he refused to swallow or spit out. So I picked him up and dangled him over the trash can and tickled him so that he would open his mouth and it would fall out. It worked but again probably not the “approved” response. Good luck!

    • Haha, yeah probably not the “right” way to remedy that situation. 🙂 I might do the same if my Doodle wasn’t compliant with spitting it out in a paper towel I hold under his chin.

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