Mom of Picky-Eating Twins

by Mary
(IL)

I have 12-year-old identical twin girls who have been picky eaters since they were 3. We've seen countless doctors, therapists, and OTs. Nothing has worked. They each eat only 5-10 things and none of them are good for them. Gagging, etc. isn't a problem because the food never even touches their lips. I'm going crazy!! Can anyone help?

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Jan 21, 2014
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Getting results
by: Anonymous

This is really hard so buckle up and hang in there. 1st - NEVER let them hear you talk like they aren't likely to change. If they have heard you, let them hear you talk about how smart they are or how brave, and how they can do whatever they put their mind to. Now we come to what ever they love to do or have. We want something from them and they want something from us. (Mom can I play video games? Sure you can - after lunch when you choose to take a bite of one of two new foods I will give you a choice of.) This is when rewards don't work - something they always get to do anyway can be allowed after they start taking a bite of a new food. Additionally a reward could be offered if a bite of the same new food is taken every day for 15 days. There's something about 15 times that helps the integration. Realize you must speak in the most delightful tones. This is not a punishment and your tone must not sound like it is. Hang in there. There is a reason treatment often works in a treatment center and doesn't at home. We are often too tired to stick to a plan. It's ok if the children are fine with not getting the other things they want for awhile. They will eventually want something like a sleepover (this might be worthy of a week of tasting - but maybe for the first try they could have something big like this and after that a week would earn it) They need to see you have confidence in the eventuality of them overcoming obstacles. If you don't believe, they wont - so fake it if you have to. Think about Helen Keller. Her mother would have let her graze off of others plates forever giving her sugar cubes to comfort her. No it's not the same. The point is the obstacles she had to accomplish were hard. Her teacher believed in her and she came to believe in herself and then voluntarily worked at doing hard things. She had an amazing life and enjoyed the challenge. Good luck!

Jan 03, 2012
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picky eaters
by: Jen

I can empathize with you as it seems as though our 13 yr old daughter would prefer to eat only apples, oranges, or popcorn -- scurvy won't be a problem here! Seriously, we have fretted too. My mother used to say, as long as they are eating something, let them eat it, as long as it isn't harmful.

We have used Pediasure, Ensure, Carnation protein drinks/bars, cereal bars, and the like, with varying degrees of success. My daughter has disliked milk, yogurt, and cheese since she was a year old.

You might try jars of baby food, such as the pureed fruits and desserts, at least they are nutrient fortified. Also, gummy chewable vitamins will help ensure necessary nutrients.

I hope some of these suggestions help you out. In the meantime, best of luck to you. You can also try V-8 juices, for fruits & vegetables.

Jan 03, 2011
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find anything that works??
by: Anonymous

Wondering if you found anything that works? I'm at my wits end with my 8 1/2 y.o. DD - UGH. I've tried rewards and she could care a less saying oh well guess I'll never get that. I've done every trick in the book and nothing. If you've gotten any good advise please - I beg you - share.

May 27, 2010
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Peer Pressure- Can It Help?
by: Anonymous

I have a 11 yo and she is ruled by what ever her peers are doing. She is also very limited in what she eats, but when she sees her friends eating something at school or in their homes- she is More willing to try it -even if it is only once.

So,if you haven't tried this, maybe you can ask the parents of your DD's best friends to help.

Ask them to have your darlings over for dinner or to take them out to eat. See if the best friend can help your daughters "try" new things. The friends can do this in a cool way, without pressure- saying "I'm trying this and if I don't like it, well that's OK. At least I know now that I don't like it." Or however they talk-LOL. Or maybe the snacks can at their friends house can be something that your kids are willing to try and that their friends eat. Once my DD was at her best friend home, (who is Chinese) and both the girls ate Chinese stuff and both said yuck to whatever they had-LOL.

Maybe the friends can take the girls to a salad place like - "Sweet Tomatoes" and have her friends get salad and the sides. Pizza type things are there, along with other things that preteens like, such as pasta and baked potatoes.

Also the boy across the street(my DD's friend's brother) only eats about 7 things and doesn't like to try new stuff. The parents found out that he really, really, wanted a trampoline. And the reward for eating 2 bites of pineapple (which he found out that he loved) got him his trampoline. So, if you can make the reward greater than the resistance or fear, sometimes this works. Ipods, New Moon movies, etc can be a persuasion-(yeah,I know it can be expensive)


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