My 4yr old refuses to feed herself how can i get her to feed herself

Castella - posted on 07/10/2009 ( 7 moms have responded )

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Every time i put food in front of her she will either play with it or pretend to fall asleep until i start feeding her then she will happily eat all her food, i'Ve tried bribing her singing to her and it works for a day or two then back to the same story but if she is away from home she feeds herself with no problem.

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[deleted account]

Then you need to stop feeding her. She does it for the attention and because she can and you will. If she eats fine without you at other places then it is not a matter of whether she can or can not. It's that she won't and so you do it for her. And if she throws a fit, which she probably will, do not give in. Explain to her that she is 4 and is old enough to do it herself, that she can do it herself and that you will not feed her anymore. Give her a time line, 25 minutes or whatever to eat, and if she doesn't then she is done. Take the food away and have her get down from the table. Explain that since she choose not to eat she gets nothing until the next meal. She may be hungry but it won't take her long to start feeding herself. YOu have to stand your ground and really make up your mind that you are going to get this behavior to change. She is old enough that she will not let herself starve so don't worry about that. It will be hard, but if you really want this to change you have to make it happen.

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Clare - posted on 07/10/2009

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dont let her leave the table until it is eaten , every time she moves away from it place her back in her seat , she will get fed up before you

Dawn - posted on 07/10/2009

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Try giving her chop sticks. My son loves the challenge, it's something different and fun.

Kirsten - posted on 07/10/2009

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I had the same problem with my 4 year old. She went through the same phase. I tried everything. What worked in the end was every time she did anything for herself my husband and i Praised her, she loved the positive attention. The same went for when she was eating and if she didn't feed herself there was no praise. She soon learnt that she was getting no positive responses and wanted us to be proud of her so she started feeding herself. I hope this works for you, every child likes their parents to be proud of them :D:D:D Kids like doing new and exciting things - i say make learning to do things such as feeding themselves exciting :P xoxox

[deleted account]

Then you need to stop feeding her. She does it for the attention and because she can and you will. If she eats fine without you at other places then it is not a matter of whether she can or can not. It's that she won't and so you do it for her. And if she throws a fit, which she probably will, do not give in. Explain to her that she is 4 and is old enough to do it herself, that she can do it herself and that you will not feed her anymore. Give her a time line, 25 minutes or whatever to eat, and if she doesn't then she is done. Take the food away and have her get down from the table. Explain that since she choose not to eat she gets nothing until the next meal. She may be hungry but it won't take her long to start feeding herself. YOu have to stand your ground and really make up your mind that you are going to get this behavior to change. She is old enough that she will not let herself starve so don't worry about that. It will be hard, but if you really want this to change you have to make it happen.

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