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Thread: Baby led=disaster in high chair

  1. #1
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    Sep 2006
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    Unhappy Baby led=disaster in high chair

    Did I get your attention? I'm not really doing baby led. The last week or so I've been handing the spoon to my 8.5 DS during meals. Well.....last night and this afternoon we had an all out war in the high chair. HE WANTS the spoon ALL the time. This afternoon he ate half his lunch he was so upset. SCREAMING and CRYING! Is this what I get for trying to let him have some independence?

    He wanted out of the highchair and did not want to eat anymore. I caved after letting him scream for 2-3 min and gave him the spoon. It scares me for one thing choking, gaging on the spoon. The second is when I give him the spoon , he's so interested in it he won't open his mouth to continue eating when I use a different one. Then finally after took him out of the chair and I calmed him down he freaked when I tried to put him back in it with the sippy! So I completely gave up and nursed him .

    My husband cannot understand why I'm changing things on him and I think he's right. If I help him sleep ( co-sleeping, nursing to sleep ) why am I trying to teach food independence so young? What should I do now? I feel like I have turned things upside down on him?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Baby led=disaster in high chair

    Wow! You're already experiencing tantrums! You've got a LO that knows what he wants, that's for sure!

    I'm not sure about all the points to baby-led, but what kinds of foods are you feeding? Are you putting chunks of food on his tray, or spoon feeding him? Of course your LO is going to be only interested in his spoon. It's HIS!! If I were to pass along advice, it would be to go to finger food, and let him feed himself that way. He can still have a spoon to play with, if he wants, and he'll get enough to eat. If you want to spoon feed something, that's fine, but don't expect your LO to have a long attention span with it. Once they get a glimpse of what they can do for themselves, forget reeling them back in! My DS never wanted to spoon feed, so I'm lucky if I can get a container of applesauce into him (and he LOVES applesauce). But, if you give him chunks of food, he's all about eating and feeding himself.

    Does that help at all?

    Lisa

  3. #3
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    Oct 2006
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    Default Re: Baby led=disaster in high chair

    Try giving him his spoon at other times besides eating time to just play with. Maybe that will help get it out of his system and free up eating time more.

  4. #4
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Baby led=disaster in high chair

    At 8.5 months solid foods are really just an experiment in tastes and textures. If you are still nursing, he is probably getting the bulk of his nutrition from your milk. So don't worry about him becoming malnourished. I'd say, if he wants the spoon, give it to him and let him explore feeding himself. I'd give him a spoon of his own to play with and alternate your spoonful of food with his. Also-you may want to take the utensils out of the picture and try the finger food route, sweet potato, banana, avocado etc.

    If he screams so much in his highchair, take him out. My daughter is 18 months and still does this occasionally. We take her right out and gradually she has learned screaming means the meal is OVER.

    And remember, next week you could be dealing with an entirely new scenario. He may only want to be spoon fed. They are always changing.

  5. #5
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    Sep 2006
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    Default Re: Baby led=disaster in high chair

    Well, I started by giving him grapes cut in fours and he kind of swiped them off the tray. On day three of that he managed to get a piece in his mouth and gagged. Scared me half to death. I started with the grapes and then moved on to cereal and fruit puree.

    Once I gave up on grapes ( too scary), I moved on to avocado.First I was cutting them up into tiny chunks and a few days later decided bigger pieces were better. All he really did was smear it into a big mess and it all ended up in the scoopy of his bib. He did get a tiny morcel in his mouth and kept it in there for the longest time. So I finally gave him some puree to swallow it down 'cause he started trying to spit it out. Drooling and such. After all this playing I move on to his cereal and meat mixed with veg puree in the evenings. The organic frozen stuff in the supermarket.

    During all of this new discovery I hand him the spoon with cereal and puree so he can try. He was doing quite good at it, then we he has made a HUGE mess I help him finish. I usually only give him the spoon towards the end. WELLLLL, NOW HE WANTS IT FROM THE GET GO!!!!!! So, that's the whole story. I just got off the phone with hubby and he wants me to go back to the usual and wait until he's older to let him help himself. I don't know what I'm gonna do at dinner time!

  6. #6
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    Apr 2006
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    Default Re: Baby led=disaster in high chair

    Baby Einstein makes a package of 2 spoons that are very round. One actually says "baby" and is smaller and the other one says "parent" or something like that and is bigger. You can give the smaller one to your DS and let him play with it while you put some food on the bigger one and feed him? You could do this with any spoon, but these particular ones are nice and round so we have less concern about Aaron poking his eye out or something with it when he's whipping it around!

  7. #7
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    Jul 2006
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    Default Re: Baby led=disaster in high chair

    I think you need to make a decision. Do you want to do baby led or purees? Either way you go, it's fine, but stick to one plan for now, then you can go back and forth. My opinion(if that matters) is to go back to the baby led. It sounds like he wants to do it himself. In the beginning Mia ate nothing but MAYBE a crumb or taste of the food. I gave her "french fry" pieces of banana and avacado to start, then moved on to squash, potato, cooked apple and pears. She is just now at almost 10 months able to eat grapes and I give less than quarter size pieces. The pieces of grape I give her are usually about the size of a pencil top eraser. In the beginning, she smeared her tray with food, squished between her fingers, dropped it over the sides, and gagged on what she did get down. All of that is part of the experimenting process the PP talked about. Good luck.

  8. #8
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    Oct 2006
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    Default Re: Baby led=disaster in high chair

    we have 2 stubby flexible spoons that lo cant stick all the way in the back of his mouth....one for each hand if hes getting 'bossy' then i will fill a third spoon with the food.....either spooned into his mouth if he wants or.....put it right on the tray.....he drops one of the two and picks up the one with food...right into his mouth! then he will suck on and gum the spoon for a bit...

    at the same time, throw some avacado/bananna ect chunks on the tray too.....he can pick some up....spoon some....whatever....
    ~To the world you might be one person, but to one person you might be the world~

  9. #9
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Baby led=disaster in high chair

    It is totally natural and Right for your son to want his spoon, and to want to feed himself. Its also totally normal for him to gag himself a bit with it when he sticks it too far into his mouth. The gag reflex, while it can scare a mom, is a GOOD thing. It means your baby is healthy and doing great, and it means that when a chunk of food that hasn't been chewed properly or for that matter, a toy or any little piece of dirt you may have missed when you swept the floor, will be "gagged out instead of choked on when baby puts it in his mouth....which the inevitably will do no matter how much we try to protect them.

    Gagging is NOT choking. When baby puts a spoon a bit too far back in his mouth, and he gags, he learns how to use the spoon, and learns not to shove things that far back in his throat. Injury is pretty unlikely, as you are supervising him, and he is seated and buckled in a high chair or booster seat(he can't fall while the spoon is in his mouth)...So while gagging can scare MOM, it really doesn't hurt baby, and actually helps him learn better how to eat by himself etc. Rubber covered spoons are really helpful when baby wants to feed himself, as they are soft, and baby's teeth have a soft surface to chew on.

    Most ped.s recommend starting baby on finger foods at a 6 mo. appointment(so did our ped.). By 8 or 9 mos., many babies have mastered the pincer grip/grasp where they can pick up a small food item like a cheerio between their index finger and thumb. This is a very necessary skill, and little finger foods help develop that skill. Finger foods also help baby practice chewing and swallowing other textures and help with hand eye coordination and other very necessary motor skills.

    Baby feeding himself isn't just about the food/nutrition...its about also about baby learning all those necessary skills too.

    Lots of babies don't want to be fed purees with a spoon at the age your LO is. My oldest son refused pureed baby food at that age, and would not eat it ever again for that matter. It could be that your son wants to do it himself....it could also be that he doesn't want purees all the time anymore. In fact, purees aren't necessary at this age for lots of babies.

    Feeding a baby is a very messy job. Especially when they get to the point where they want to do it themselves. It can be very frustrating, but we as mothers need to let our babies do it themselves. That's how they learn. We need to use our good judgment about what foods they feed themselves, and what size pieces they're allowed, and clean up after them when they're through. My youngest DS is 10.5 mos. old, and like your DS, wants to feed himself and use his own spoon EVERY time. He makes the biggest mess. I sweep my kitchen floor after every meal, and I'd mop it after every meal too, but I've realized that I need to relax and only mop once a day, LOL. Many times, after dinner in the evening, our son is so full of food that we have to take him right to the tub. But honestly, this can't be helped until he develops the dexterity to be a little more precise with his movements of the spoon....and he can't learn that dexterity until he practices his skills and builds up all those muscles he's learning to control.

    Finger foods that are good ones to try at this age are: cheerios, very very thin banana slices or thirds, crackers, thin strips of toast, very soft cooked green beans in like 1 inch pieces, halves of thin carrot rounds, small slices of regular potatoes or sweet potatoes(french fry size), small peach dices, pasta (as long as the shape is small...small pieces of linguine worked well for us at that age) small dices of well cooked chicken or turkey...seperate the grains a bit if you feel its necessary...even well cooked green peas.

    You can also let baby feed himself with a spoon or his whole hand, foods like mashed potatoes, regular oatmeal(with lots of different fruits cooked in) brown rice, and many many table foods you make for yourself...just be careful of too much sodium or sugar, and the list of no no foods for under 12 mos...like no strawberries, nuts, peanuts and peanut butter, seafood, honey, and a couple of others.

    I know it can be really frustrating, and I don't blame you about the grapes...I don't serve those either, as they seem to be pretty firm, and my 10 mo. old with just one tooth doesn't seem to handle really firm textures yet, but you need to follow your child's lead, and not take it that he's trying to throw a tantrum, but that he's trying to tell you he's ready to do some of this on his own, even though it is messy and it doesn't look to us like much got in baby's stomach.

    As long as you nurse or serve EBM before solids until 12 mos. of age, you can relax and if after trying to feed himself, you don't think he got enough, offer some more with a spoon fed by you, and if he refuses, he doesn't want anymore and has had enough. That's why its the best decision to feed solids only after Breastmilk for the first 12 mos. ...the solids are primarily practice and for learning new skills...and shouldn't make up the majority of their nutrition just yet.

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