Monday, November 30, 2009

Staring Contest

Last week, I made something so awful and terrible for dinner that a couple of my children refused to eat it.

It was so horrid that I have blocked it from my memory.

Actually it was something really boring like chicken, or beef parmigian. I don't remember.

Feeling a little sassy, but mostly tired of kids who won't even try their dinner, I offered to have a little contest. If they won, they didn't have to eat it, if I won, they had to at least try it.

So, I offered a staring contest. Simple, easy rules, easy to see who wins.

I smoked Charlie in no time flat. If you can get past the tears running down unabated, you can totally win, I found out.

He ate his dinner.

Next was Julia. She lasted a lot longer. But I still beat her.

But do you think she conceded the fact? Noooooa.

She claimed she only agreed to the contest, not to the terms of having to eat her dinner.

So after much harassment by her family, she agreed to do it again.
Of course by this time, I had already been through two staring contests and my eyes were weak, weak I say!

It wasn't my fault, I tried my best. But right near the finish line, right as I could see her resolve failing, I blinked.

Yes I did.

I lost and she didn't have to eat the horrible concoction of meat, cheese and sauce that I so frequently torture my children with.

In the end she happily ate a bowl of cereal.

I've completely lost control of my household.

It's sad really. But I usually make myself feel better when they won't eat by proclaiming...

"More for me!"

How do you all handle picky eaters?


  1. I'm still fighting this battle. Our rule is that they have to try everything on their plate and then they can decide whether or not they like it. If they don't, that's fine but they don't get any other food that night. I hate sending little ones to bed hungry but I hate even more their stubborness at trying foods. And more often than not, when they do try it, they like it!

    A question I have for Heavenly Father: why do we spend so much time trying to get our kids to eat and sleep and then as adults, spend so much time trying NOT to do those things? I don't get it.

  2. I love your solution. SO much better than fighting at the table. I usually make them at least try the food in question and then as a reward for a couple bites they'll get dessert. Problem is, we don't have dessert regularly. My theory is you can offer them healthy choices but you can't make them eat it. That only leads to trouble.

  3. My sister makes them try it, then if they don't like it their one and only option is PB&J. Right now, for us we have to threaten Russel with a time out and count down 3,2,1 for every bite. Yes, we coerce eating in our household for now. (But we don't make him if he really doesn't like it)

  4. The one thing I did that worked... They had to try a bite of everything on their plate at dinner. If they did it for a week then on Saturday we could go to Fast Food for chicken nuggets. The real favorite!
    It went on for a long time but worked.

  5. I love it! I get out the cereal bowl, too. I could use a few pointers in this department.

  6. I usually just try to make things I know they'll eat. But when I don't, i remember the time I forced them to eat Curried Butternut Squash soup...that made them literally puke. But I don't ever make them something separate...they can pour a bowl of cereal or make toast.


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