Crying while eating solids?

Danielle - posted on 12/03/2009 ( 27 moms have responded )

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My little girl started out as a great eater, but every other day or so at just one feeding she will just start crying bloody murder less than 1/2 way through the meal. She has never done the turn the head away to signal she is full. We try to calm her down and then resume feeding but she won't keep eating once she has worked herself up, so we just clean up and are done for a while.

I THINK its just her way of saying she is done or full, but the people I have asked said they have never seen that. It happens with her favorites oatmeal and squash, not just when we are introducing something new.

Anyone else had this reaction from their little one?

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Jordan - posted on 12/19/2009

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My son cries also when he's eating solids, but not because he's full. It's because he'd rather have his bottle instead. I just think that is so crazy! He has been getting better about it but it's just so stressful at times.

Jean Marie - posted on 12/20/2009

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When my son cries or fusses during feedings it is usually because we are not feeding as fast as he would like, especially if he is very hungry or likes what he's being fed. Although we try to pace him, he tries to hurry us until he's almost full. When he's done eating, all is good.

Julia Kat - posted on 12/13/2009

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My son did it for a little while. It seemed to me that he wasn't getting his food fast enough like he did with his bottle, the constant flow of food into his little tummy. It's tough to continue feeding once they are too upset. If you think this might be the concern, don't stop feeding solids, but perhaps feed her less, then finish it with breast/bottle. If she refuses the bottle too, she's probably just not hungry anymore.

Other possibilities is her highchair or whatever you've got her in. My boy is a big baby, but he still doesn't fit into it quite right and will slouch and it presses his ribs if he falls to the side so we use receiving blankets on each side to keep him in an upright position.

It has gotten to the point that he continues to fuss if I take too long to make him a bottle, but if I sit him into the high chair he keeps quiet and content the entire time while I make him some oatmeal. And through the entire feeding he is happy and just waits patiently for each spoon full. When he is getting full, he takes the spoon away from me completely and plays with it.

Be patient, all behaviors eventually change. Try different things, process of elimination. :) Good luck!

Pamela - posted on 12/03/2009

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My daughter does that too. I don't know if she wants it faster or is done either. She doesn't turn her head away, so it is hard to tell. ????

Cityc - posted on 09/29/2013

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My daughter does this too! she does this insistent whine/cry which I am thinking means 'feed me faster!' cause when I raise the spoon up with the food and stops crying to open her mouth wide for the spoon. If I feed her quickly, she calms down but I'm worried she won't realize she's full... so I use measured amounts and wait a bit after to see if she wants more.

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Indah - posted on 12/14/2009

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Last week I tried to feed my baby with cereal and banana. With the cereal, she took it very well but with banana, she was fussing until I put a bit water on it then she was ok. I figure maybe it is too thick for her to swallow but then after a while with banana, she start crying again...I try to put breast milk, but she still crying. Then I stop feeding her. Turn out she was full and just want to sleep.
so, the point is that I am still not sure or able to understand what she really want as it always change but will try to feed her and look for more cues. And will try the high chair too. Thank you for the idea.

Bethany - posted on 12/14/2009

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Why would a baby cry when they needed to pee? I get that they may cry when they need to pooh and can't.

My daughter cries when she is fed too. I was guessing that she wanted to be nursed instead of eating with a spoon.

Heather - posted on 12/14/2009

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yes, my daughter does the same thing! we were thinking maybe she banged her knees on the underside of the tray on her chair, cuz she likes to kick her legs while sitting in her chair, but it happened a couple of times now. full blown tears and crying for no apparant reason, so maybe that is just the way she says "I'm done", as she doesn't turn her head away either. she calms down right away and is her usual jolly self once we get her out of the chair. scared us the first time she did it, cuz she sounded hurt, but when she did it again, we figured that was her way of letting us know she's had enuff food. she takes the bottle afterwards though, so it must just be that she is tired of the food and doesn't want anymore.

Danielle - posted on 12/10/2009

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it might be because the rice/formula mix is thicker and she might not like it or something i found out -they couldnt suck it out of the nipple!

Danielle - posted on 12/10/2009

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my 6mth old just startd doing that as well he startd off a good eater unlike his twin sister who refuses everything. but the other day he wouldnt stop crying and it wasnt his hurry up i want more cry it was louder so i gave him his bottle and he calmed down and fall asleep i thought maybe he was just tired of doing the hard work lol

Danielle - posted on 12/10/2009

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I am glad to see others have had this issue. Nope no turning the head away or any other signals she is full or doesn't want it.

She actually gave me the closed mouth and turned her face away this morning for the first time... to a starter sippy cup with water! LOL

I really think it was the fact that she had been sick, couldn't breathe through her nose well and possibly a sore throat. It just took a few feedings after that before she really got the hang of it again.

Indah - posted on 12/09/2009

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I tried giving her cereal in the bottle but she does not like it and keep crying. Whats weird is she was ok 3 nights before and just crying a bit the day after. But not last night.
I tried giving her the cereal mixed with formula. I do not know what is her problem because during the day time, she is okay with the formula alone. Is it possible that she could taste the rice/oatmeal cereal and she just does not like it? Or it is because someone else need to feed her bottle?

Karen, how to teach 5mths baby a sign language or potty training?

Karen - posted on 12/09/2009

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My little one whimpers when she doesn't want any more but she will also purse her lips, look away and push the spoon away. I would stop feeding as soon as she starts crying. Right now, solids are more to get used to eating real food rather than for nutrition so she doesn't need to each much. Also, you want to establish a good relationship with food at this age to last the rest of her life. If eating is unpleasant she may have bad habits later. However, if she's crying when eating her favorite foods, she may be trying to tell you something else - does she need to pee? we are doing infant potty training with our little one (since 5 months) and she will whimper/cry when she needs to pee. It's common to need to pee/poop when moved from laying on the floor to being upright such as in a swing/high chair. Another consideration is that she may need some milk or water to wash the food down. People who teach their babies to sign said mealtime was much more pleasant for baby when baby could sign for a drink, then the baby would drink and keep on eating. Hope that helps!

Sarah - posted on 12/09/2009

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iv had trouble with emma feeding even when it was milk she would just scream and have since found out that she seems to do it when she needs the toilet! i have started giving her more juice to drink and it seems to have done the trick.

Penni - posted on 12/09/2009

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I can't be sure, but our baby used to get that way even with her bottle, and we figured out she is gassy. We give her Mylicon now before every meal (it is safe to do that) and she eats very happily. Hope this helps! Good luck!

Karyn - posted on 12/08/2009

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Quoting Fiona:

Please don't think it is all about the food. Some children are very determined, even as little babies. If she had a bad experience eating solids one day, (maybe she was sick, tired, tirsty or just plain not very hungry) and then someone tried to make her eat eventhough she was crying and turning her head. Children remember and it can take ages to change their mind, that eating is ok.

My daughter was very fussy and she is 3 now. When I start my 5 mouth old son on solids next month i will use the advice of a nutritionist who's had 4 children.

I will-
-Try not to get frustrated when he is not eating.
-Try not to worry about the mess
-I will let him explore the food for himself- (put his hands in the bowl, don't worry if he tips over the bowl, let him put food all over his face and eventually he should taste it).
I will give him the same food for four days in a row ( this is to test if he is allergic to the food and to get him fully used to the taste and texture)
Start with rice cerial, then fruit, then vegetable.
When he has tasted all those foods separtely then mix two fruits together etc.

With a bit of luck your child will accept food soon. Just have fun with her, babies don't need to eat much solid food before they are 1, she just needs to see the food, smell it and play with it numerous times until she will understand that it is fun to eat.


Great advice!!! I have just started my son on rice cereal in the last couple days, and the first time he seemed to like it, but since then he's just not very interested. Today when I give him his cereal I will let him play with the bowl (which he usually tries to do) and not stress over the fact that he's not really eating it. Thank you for this advice.

Indah - posted on 12/08/2009

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My baby is 5 month old and she did exactly the same thing. I thought she is weird or I am just the mom that cant understand what the baby want. So happy to find out that it happened to others too. I am so confused whether she hate it or she just want it faster like what Pamela said. She keep open her mouth though. And she hates water.

Jessica - posted on 12/08/2009

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My 6 month old does that sometimes too and I can't figure it out. He will cry and I would assume that he doesn't want to eat at the time, but then opens his mouth for more as soon as I take the spoon away! I guess I don't have any advice but I'm just as confused as your are! I usually continue it for a while and then stop for the time being... I'd hate to keep feeding him if he's already full if you kwim.

Fiona - posted on 12/08/2009

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Please don't think it is all about the food. Some children are very determined, even as little babies. If she had a bad experience eating solids one day, (maybe she was sick, tired, tirsty or just plain not very hungry) and then someone tried to make her eat eventhough she was crying and turning her head. Children remember and it can take ages to change their mind, that eating is ok.

My daughter was very fussy and she is 3 now. When I start my 5 mouth old son on solids next month i will use the advice of a nutritionist who's had 4 children.

I will-
-Try not to get frustrated when he is not eating.
-Try not to worry about the mess
-I will let him explore the food for himself- (put his hands in the bowl, don't worry if he tips over the bowl, let him put food all over his face and eventually he should taste it).
I will give him the same food for four days in a row ( this is to test if he is allergic to the food and to get him fully used to the taste and texture)
Start with rice cerial, then fruit, then vegetable.
When he has tasted all those foods separtely then mix two fruits together etc.

With a bit of luck your child will accept food soon. Just have fun with her, babies don't need to eat much solid food before they are 1, she just needs to see the food, smell it and play with it numerous times until she will understand that it is fun to eat.

Danielle - posted on 12/08/2009

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She cries with new and old foods, but it is probably a good idea to start stepping up the variety!

I will talk to our doctor about the constipation and the water, and YES she did have other cold symptoms so a sore throat could really be it. Also I stated nursing before solids even if she acts like she wants them!

Thanks everyone!

Tiffany - posted on 12/05/2009

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HOnestly, she might be sick of the same thing. EXPECIALLY since u said she doesnt do the whole crying thing with NEW foods. It might be her way of telling you, keep the new foods coming.. I like it. How old is she? If shes old enough... try giving her new stuff on a daily basis.. never the same foods. I mean would u like eating the same 2 -3 meals all the time?

Wendy - posted on 12/05/2009

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My boy started doing the same last week.... Saw the doctor and thought that he may have a sore throat so just to leave it for a few days then start up again. Which I did and now he is back to 3 feeds of solids a day

Lindsey - posted on 12/03/2009

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does your daughter have consitpation problems??? sometimes my little girl cries while eating solids, but because shes trying to poop and cant.

Eleisha - posted on 12/03/2009

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Maybe she is thirsty, do you offer her water. I know that people say 6 months is too young for water, but my LO has been having water since she started solids. She used to grunt and groan after a few mouthfulls and I too thought she was full but I then gave her some water and she polished the whole meal off.

Louise - posted on 12/03/2009

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I had this with my first child. He started doing it when we moved house. It was because of the big change in his life. He settled down after a month or so, but started again when his brother was born. If you keep calm and just go with it, it passes quicker. The sooner they feel safe, the better they settle into routine.

Kate - posted on 12/03/2009

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My little guy sometimes fusses to let me know he's done; he also at times turns his head away. I'm not positive, but I have a theory he turns his head away when he's full, and he fusses when he's just tired of the whole business and wants a rest. Either way, when he's done, we're done, and it's fine...

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