What Your Toddler’s Picky Eating Says About You
Toddler eating rules tend to follow the same trinity: no “weird”colors, no foods touching, and nothing of particular textures. For those of you knee deep in these 2-year-old neuroses, making frozen peas every night and worrying about your kid possibly turning into one, a expanded palate may be in the future — one day. But exactly what effect does making grilled cheese every night have on you?
1. If your kid will not any food that has touched another food
You don’t even dare use the “grownup” plates because many a perfectly good toddler dinner have been sullied by a SINGLE grain of rice touching a carrot or some such nonsense. ALL FOODS, and you’re super strict with sitters about this, MUST go into the child partitioned plates or else dinner will consist of another round of raw vegetables and yogurt. Your in-laws look at you like you’re crazy but they’ve never had to prepare lunch twice in a row because some water from the steamed vegetables dared touch the accompanying sandwich.
2. If your kid will not eat vegetables
You anticipated this struggle but you greatly underestimated its tenacity. You heard the chuckle, chuckle wink, wink joke about kiddies not eating anything even remotely green, but holy hell, your kid literally does not eat a single vegetable. You didn’t get all that concerned until you one day got to playgroup and saw all the children gobbling, GOBBLING I tell you, raw carrots, celery, and hummus platers. WTF. You’re now going through all sorts of vegetable hiding methods, bargaining with lollipops and TV shows. A 30 minute cartoon is a fair exchange for two carrots, right?
(photo: LOL Celebs)
3. If your kid must have nuggets
Damn the day you first plopped these into your grocery cart. Damn it, it was ONE time. ONE TIME. Who would have thought that from that first tantrum-y bite you’d now be timidly buying these things every week, your little one asking every day if “nuggets” are happening. Of course, you’ve downplayed this habit to friends and family, citing yourself as one of those “bad moms” who lets their kids eat frozen chicken nuggets “twice a week.” Oh yes, you’re so naughty.
4. If your kid will not eat anything that has any flavor
You have a bonafide bland taste tester in the house. If there is even a hint of any flavor in any food, your kid will quickly find it and hit the reject button. You’ve tasted more noodles with butter and plain white rice than you could ever hope for, telling him or her time again that “it’s fine, it’s fine. There’s nothing in there.” But your child insists that he or she tastes “something.” It tastes “funny,” “weird, ” “strange.” Oh well, at least their vocabulary is growing.
5. If your kid will only eat sugar
Every time you succumb to a cupcake or a mountain of ice cream or cereal that has just about the same sugary content as candy, you recite that this too shall pass. Articles about the rise in toddler cavities keep you up at night as you count the times you’ve been lax about teeth brushing. Sometimes, when you reach in the fridge for more apple juice, you turn the label away — just so you don’t have to physically see the sugar content.
6. If your kid doesn’t eat more than five things
When recounting meal options to babysitters, nannies, or other relatives, you’ve done the mental list and made sure the fridge is stocked with edamame apple slices, peanut butter, string cheese, rice, and good god, it hits you, your child does not eat anything else. While you have years ahead to expand that palate, you dream of the day that you can one day just prepare a family meal without also remembering to quickly fry up a grilled cheese.