struggles....

11.05.2008

Oh where to begin.....Let's see....right now we are still struggling with getting E to eat. We are merely down to a few select foods that he will eat. Oatmeal, peanut butter and jelly, yogurt, blueberries, hmmmmm I think that's about it. He has actually gone back to where he started with food and eating. It is soooo frustrating. Everyone is telling me that it's okay and toddlers do this and as long as he is healthy and gaining weight he will be fine and he will get over it.....Do you know how frustrating it is to NOT feed your child? Do you realize I feel horrible because I can't feed my own son? It is aweful...I feel like I have done something wrong.
I did not start giving E Organic Oatmeal cereal until he was 6 months old. He didn't have baby food until shortly after that. All recommendations by my doctor. I am not doubting her, but I feel like that is why he doesn't eat....someone tell me I am wrong? Any mom out there that knows this pain I am going thru can relate.....if you have not had to experience this you are very lucky. It makes me so distraught to think I put my son to bed at night without dinner because he won't eat what we are having for dinner. I don't want to start making him a separate meal just for him. I don't want to give in to what he wants instead of dinner. It's not like he wants other food...he only wants milk...he begs for milk...he loves it. If he only had that all day long he would be happy. I can't jsut give him milk....I know that...but he doesn't understand that he needs to eat. It is a fight every meal to get him to eat and actually we just stopped fighting with him because we never win, so he then he does not eat. ARGH...someone please tell me it is okay that he doesn't eat well? Please tell me it isn't MY fault? Someone tell me that there isn't anything wrong with him and he is just being stubborn and he will get thru this?
My next issue is E is hitting...for the love of God why do you keep hitting me? He thinks it is funny, but really it hurts because he hits me in my face. He doesn't mean to hurt me, but I think he thinks he is playing. I sternly tell him that we do not hit people and it hurts. He smiles and does it again....I can't take it anymore. Where did I got wrong?
As you can tell I am feeling like a really terrible mother at this point.

Binkie
To top it off let's talk about the binkie....Oh man he is sooo attached to it. I called my mom today while I was at work just to check on E. She told me that E didn't need his binkie for his nap today. She laid him down without it and he fussed for a minute and then went to sleep. Therefore she didn't use it all day long. I was excited about that because he is going to be 2 and I think it is time we get rid of it. As sad as that makes me...I know it has to be done. I hate to do it because it comforts him and makes him happy...why would I want to take that from him? I know I need to get him attached to something else like a blankie.
Tonight as I went to pick E up from my mom's, now he usually has a binkie on the way hom because otherwise he will throw a fit, we get in the car and we are doing okay...we haven't even got out of the driveway and he is screaming and throwing a fit. I tell myself it is okay and he doesn't really need it. I continue on home. Well it is about a 20-25 minute ride home and well for about 15-20 of those minutes E is in the back seat just sobbing and hitting himself in the face and biting his hand. I felt aweful. I didn't know what to do. I didn't have a binkie with me so that wasn't going to solve anything. I know he was just wanting to get his way. I realize that but come on....hitting himself in the face and saying OUCH....I can't take that. He was seriously distraught that he didn't have it. He fussed alittle the rest of the way home, BTW I ignored him while he was doing all of this. I know maybe that was not the right thing to do but I didn't know what else to do. We get home and get him out of the car and I see a slight bit of blood on his chin and lip....for heaven sakes what happened....then I rememebered DUH he was just hitting himself in the face for about 5 minutes. Oh man I felt bad about that.
Tonight I tried to put him to bed without the binkie.....fat chance.....he was yelling "MOM" for like 5 minutes. I thought to myself ok well I think he can have it at night for a little while until we can get thru not having it during the day. Well he only got it at nap and going home. So we will eliminate one thing at a time.
and don't even get me started on potty training...I forsee that never happening at the rate this child urinates.
Those are my struggles currently....and I don't know how to fix them....so anyone please feel free to comment with suggestions or anything that you found worked with your children...I am all ears.
~Until next time...

12 comments:

Mike, Shannon & Lilianna McAvoy said...

i should just call you....that will be much easier :)

Rosjuane said...

Take a deep breath!!!!

Okay so this is what I have to say, and everybody is not going to like it!!

1. Eating
I've had this problem with Garret from day one. He has gotten better and I noticed when he's teething is when he won't eat at all so maybe that is part of E's. But I would feed that child whatever he will eat. I have done this with Garret. I know that you do the whole organic thing but seriously if the baby want KFC and will eat that I would give it to him. Whatever works. My child eats a corndog 5-6 days a week. IF that is all he will eat then that's what I give him b/c at least he's eating!! My doctor always said when it came to drinking when they were sick if they would drink coffee and nothing else at least they were getting fluids. Same applies. He needs nutrition even if it's only a little that he gets from a corn dog. I know not very but it's better than none.
2. Hitting
no help mine does it too.
3. Binky
Take it slow and do it a little at a time. Let him do it in his own time. He will do it it just may take a while. Garret made it one night and I put them up. He missed them, never threw a fit for it, but was cranky. It will be hard. Imagine if you were a smoker and were quiting. (That's what Shelley told me).

Potty training.

we are slowly doing that too. Garret is older and we are just starting. If you push it when he's not ready it will only frustrate you both. Garret is a heavy drinker too so he pees a BUNCH!! We go every 5-10 mins. It's kinda like hit and miss. I take him often hoping not to miss it. He had two accidents in his underwear tonight, and then did it in the toliet twice after that. I missed twice and hit after that. He caught on got huge reward. I run through the house dancing carring him on my shoulders. We flushed and told the peepee bye bye, and got 2 peices of candy!! Make a big deal out of it. Take him all the time!! Until he has gotten used to it and tells you all the time. Don't stop taking him every 5 mins until he tells you every single time and then ween him out to 30 min or so. Garret is going to be a long process. I figure 6 months b/f he is complete (durring the day that is) night is a whole diffrent deal. That may take another 6 mths. You are in for alot of laudry. But main thing is don't rush him. He is smart he will let you know when it is time. Wait for the signs. But have Josh start taking him with him to show him how DADDY does it! It's not too early to show him what's going on.

So there is my two cents. Take it with a grain of salt. I'm no super hero.

Jenn said...

I pulled Jordan off her "paci" too soon, and she is still a thumb sucker at age 12. ;)

Also, she would not eat but a few foods. I did everything by the book, and by the Dr's advisement...

The Doc would always say, don't worry, her taste buds will change every 7 yrs...and same as you, as long as she is eating something...

I've always tried to tell him that she is having a texture issue. Now that we are in an area with some extremely excellent Dr's, I'm getting the confirmation that she in fact DOES have a texture issue!

Now we are referred to a nutritionist...even at 12, she still will only eat a few things.

Hers is sensory integration issues, and apparently it is effecting her taste/texture sensitivity. Somehow the nutritionist is going to help her learn to desensitize from it.

Can't wait to see how she is going to get Jordan to eat lettuce and carrots without it coming back up! lol, sry, that was kinda graphic.

;)

I said all this to say, you are doing well to be on top of it, and to have some concern about E's. eating. A mother's intuition is usually very accurate.

I agree with rosjuane on the binky and potty training...no need to push it. It will only stress you and your child. =)

Abby said...

Hey Jaime-
I check in on you and Ethan every once in a while to see how you are doing. It sounds like you are entering terrible two's just like us! I am by far an expert, but I thought I would give you some ideas of what we try for some of these problems.

As far as eating, I too serve a lot of corn dogs! For lunch and breakfast I let him choose what he wants to eat. Usually he will ask for corn dogs. I get to add the sides and he gets a little bit of control over what he eats. For dinner he gets what we get, but usually with applesauce or cottege cheese, his favorites. I keep what he doesn't eat and when he asks for a snack later on in the night I give him left overs. And we have a picnic table in the living room that he eats at much better than at the dinning room table. Or we will all have a picnic on the floor together. But Rylan really does not eat much more than a few bites of things at a time.
Hitting- we use a time out chair. I started it about 3 months ago when he was hitting and throwing things. Finally this week when he hit me after being warned and I put him in the chair he sat there for a minute and said "sorry momma- all done hitting." So it took him about three months, but he finally gets why he was put there!
I dont have much help with the binky. Rylan got rid of his at about 7 months when we left him at my moms house for 3 nights and told her we were trying to wean him from it. She did not give it to him at all and then we just didn't give it to him after that. He kind of forgot about it, but I have a feeling Ethan is too old to forget about it!
The Potty. Ahhh. Ry actually used it 8 times yesterday. We will see what today brings!! He figured out a few months ago when he needs to go. He would tell me he needed to go, (#1 and #2) and then scream if I tried to put him on the potty. So he would stare at me and go and then ask for a new diaper. He has serious control issues!! So, when he tells me he needs to go, I dont ask if he wants to, I ask if he wants to sit or stand. That way he has a say in it. And he gets a gummy bear if he goes and only when he goes. I am not above bribery!

All kids are different. Rylan needs choices to feel like he has some control over the matter. Good luck, and know that this will get better. It cant last forever, right?? Take care!!-Abby

jaime pott photography said...

Ro- Thank you so much for all the advice. I don't think he is teething because we have been doing this every since he started with solids. He ahs never been a good eater. I am sure the teething doesn't help tho. I am sure I could find organic corn dogs. I did for a while try and give him whatever he wanted to eat. But it is always the same thing...like oatmeal, yogurt, peanut butter and jelly, and yogurt covered raisins. I always try different foods with him but he pushes it away he will NOT even try it.

Binkie- So I will take it slow...I hope we can just get rid of it during the day for now...and then just stick with night for a while.

Potty- It is really hard for me to do the potty training thing because I am never home - I work full time...ARGH...soooo that would be verty difficult. Sometimes I feel like I am not even raising my child. I will have to have my mom and the other person that watches him start doing it.

Jenn - I have researched the Sensory Intergration Disorder because my nephew has it...he is 3 yrs old and they started treatment around 2 yrs old because they never knew what was wrong. I keep researching it to see if maybe he has that...but I talked to the doctor about it ONCE and she totally said he does NOT have that. But some of the symptoms it has, I think E does have it. I don't know where to do from there tho....how do you prove you think your son has something like this.
I mean he doesn't really like vomit per se...but he will avoid certain textures such as grass, sand, and certain foods.
I have a problem with just getting him to even TRY the food. He throws a huge fit if i try to shove it in his mouth...I know that's bad and I shouldn't do it. But sometimes I think that he would like it if he just tried it, I don't know maybe I am wrong.
I hate to say that he doesn't eat any raw vegatables because he won't even try them. He will eat frozen or thawed peas. But that's about it. He will eat a few breads. No noodles, no rice, no pasta of any sort. He doesn't really like a solid food with a sauce. In the beginning about 6-10months old he would gag and spit up his food... but I don't force food on him anymore so he doesn't really do it now.
Again...maybe I am just over thinking all of this...who knows..

Here is some of the symptoms of SI:
::I wouldn't say that E has all of these but he does have over 50% of them::
-Signs of SI problems-
The following is a description of some of the commonly seen behaviors in children who exhibit sensory integrative difficulties.

-An acute awareness of background noises YES
-Fascination with lights, fans, water YES
-Hand flapping/repetitive movements YES
-Spinning items, taking things apart YES
-Walking on tip-toe YES
-Little awareness of pain or temperature
-Coordination problems
-Unusually high or low activity level YES
-Difficulty with transitions (doesn't "go with the flow")
-Self-Injury or aggression YES
-Extremes of activity level YES(either hyperactive or under active). YES
-Fearful in space (on the swings, seesaw or heights). YES
-Striking out at someone who accidentally brushes by them.
-Avoidance of physical contact with people and with certain "textures," such as sand, paste and finger paints. YES
-The child may react strongly to stimuli on face, hands and feet. YES
-A child may have a very short attention span and become easily distracted. YES
-A strong dislike of certain grooming activities, such as brushing the teeth, washing the face, having the hair brushed or cut. YES
-An unusual sensitivity to sounds and smells.
-A child may refuse to wear certain clothes or insist on wearing long sleeves/pants so that the skin is not exposed. YES
-Frequently adjusts clothing, pushing up sleeves and/or pant legs. YES

Jenn are these some of the symptoms your daughter has?

Abby - How are you? Thanks for replying....it is very helpful to see what others do. I am just at loss on what else to do. It is really hard being that I worl full time and I can not help with these issues myself.

Jenn said...

Hi Jaime,

Based on your answers you definitely have reason to check into this further.

I'd advise seeing a nutritionist. The nutritionist asked me these questions similar to what you posted here, and she knew immediately that we were dealing with SI.

It was something I had never even heard of until she mentioned it. Yet, I remember that when Jordan was a baby, the Dr. said she had a type of collic that was "sensory overload" type collic, but he just said she would grow out of it and be fine. I just thought I had an overly sensitive/picky eater of a child. =)

You are so blessed to realize this earlier, because here I am with a 12 yr old, and just now getting answers. Since Jordan would only eat certain foods that are mostly starchy, it is now effecting her health. I'm thankful to get answers!

So perhaps you could ask your primary physician or pediatrician to refer you to a nutritionist because you would like to get further help with his eating habits...(maybe put it that way). Or, you may not even need a referral...check your insurance...and then check around to find out who is a good pediatric nutritionist in your area. Then once you get there, you can discuss further with someone who understands this more fully.

These things I'm saying are only suggestions. I'm not saying at all the Ethan has this, but sure does lean that way from your answers.

I'm no expert, but this is what I have learned thus far about it..for each child it is a bit different.

Here is a good web site to explain further, and at the bottom of this webpage it has some links to letters from moms who have been through it too...http://www.kid-power.org/sid.html Here is another site...SI is also known as SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder) http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.com/sensory-processing-disorder-checklist.html (this has a broader checklist)

When Jordan was young, any loud noise would upset her. I'd try to keep other toddlers for friends, but any regular toy that made any noise they played with, would keep her screaming every time the noise went off (like the old mc donald toy that does the animal noises...she would freak over it!). She is more Hypo sensative in some ways...everything always and still does have to be touched or put in her mouth!), but she has these by your check list:

An acute awareness of background noises YES
-Fascination with lights, fans, water YES (she was so intrigued by our light fixtures!)
-Hand flapping/repetitive movements No
-Spinning items, taking things apart No
-Walking on tip-toe No
-Little awareness of pain or temperature Yes (she has had back pain with her spine condition, and never complained about it!)
-Coordination problems YES - (she is forever running into things daily)
-Unusually high or low activity level YES - (LOW activity level. She did not learn to ride a bike until just last yr b/c she would get too frustrated)
-Difficulty with transitions (doesn't "go with the flow") Sometimes
-Self-Injury or aggression No
-Extremes of activity level YES(either hyperactive or under active). YES
-Fearful in space (on the swings, seesaw or heights). YES
-Striking out at someone who accidentally brushes by them. No
-Avoidance of physical contact with people and with certain "textures," such as sand, paste and finger paints. No but she is overly wanting contact, which is the other extreme. and YES to the texture issues
-The child may react strongly to stimuli on face, hands and feet. YES
-A child may have a very short attention span and become easily distracted. YES
-A strong dislike of certain grooming activities, such as brushing the teeth, washing the face, having the hair brushed or cut. YES (but she doesn't mind her hair being cut, just does not like it brushed much)
-An unusual sensitivity to sounds and smells. YES!
-A child may refuse to wear certain clothes or insist on wearing long sleeves/pants so that the skin is not exposed. YES!!! And SHOES...I have difficulty finding shoes that will please her and she hates close toed shoes unless they are soft boots.
-Frequently adjusts clothing, pushing up sleeves and/or pant legs. YES

Also, she could not handle fireworks until she was like 8...even then, she kept her ears covered. My son on the other hand, he loved them from an early age. Jordan did not like sand on her hands, and vomits anything up with a weird texture that hits her pallet. The issues above are still challenges for her...especially the clothing and textures.


All I can say is...a mother knows her child! Listen to your heart (and your child queues) about it. If you aren't getting answers for your concerns, try a different avenue. That doesn't mean you ditch your Dr, but your concerns should not be left without answers that satisfy. =)

Here is an example of a mom (ME) knowing there is something wrong, and no one listening:
I had dealt with Josh's issues concerning ADHD for yrs. Our family Dr, and our school teachers told me that Josh did not have ADHD (because they said he was too smart, and just being lazy). It took coming to a larger city with much more "in tune" physicians...their new pediatrician spent 3 hrs with Josh and she was like...he DEFINITELY had ADHD "why didn't your physician address these things!!"...and I considered our Dr. to be a very good one in a lot of ways he was. But now we are getting answers.

Josh's ADHD, Jordan's scoliosis and SI...it is a bit overwhelming for it all to be hitting at once, but we are thankful for answers and help. Josh most likely has SI too b/c he has almost all the symptoms, and it usually goes hand in hand with ADHD. We will find out when they do the full battery of psychological testings for him. (when we come up with the $1500 that is!!! We have to pay for private testing because we are home-schoolers.)

Praying for you and Ethan! Jordan has an appt with her nutritionist next Thurs. I'll be glad to share what I learn as we go...keep us posted on how you are doing.

Lisa Kelly said...

Hi Jaime, I can relate so much to the eating thing. Fraser is 6 1/2 and eats peanut butter sandwiches for every meal. He sometimes changes it up with a hotdog (is that what a corn dog is?) and will eat chicken snitzel on occasion. IN the past year or two he has progressed into eating more fruit which is a nice relief but several years ago a paediatrician explained to me that he wouldn't starve himself, and that if all he ate was peanut butter sandwiches everyday, he'd be fine. I decided right then and there to stop battling with him. He will now eat on occasion some raw muchrooms and some lettuce and sometimes he'll try frozen carrots. I just serve up his sandwich at the table and might add something from our meal on the plate and if he eats it he does, if not that is okay too. I completely understand your frustation, it is so tough, especially if many of your friends children are eating well. Don't beat yourself up about it, make your home more peaceful by just letting it be, he will eventually eat everything, it might just take until he is 18 to get there LOL.

I don't know much about the hitting, I guess I would just instantly and abruptly stand up and walk away, no words, just the removal of yourself and your attention each and every time. Try it, and make sure to leave the emotion out of it. No yelling, nothing, just shut him off from "you" for a few minutes.

Now for the binky (or dummy as well call them here in Australia), Fraser had his until he was 3 1/2, Liv had hers until the same age. It's easier to get it off them when they are older and are more easily reasoned with. If he only has it for bedtime and for if he is really tired or unwell, I don't really see a problem. I think he is only two and it isn't hurting anybody. There are so many other things to worry about with these trying toddlers, don't make more headaches for yourself I say.

Take care of you, and you are a great mummy!!!!!!!

jaime pott photography said...

Jenn - Thank you for the links. I was at work today opening the mail and I opened something from an Infant and Toddler development place. It had a flier in it about what programs they offer and what they can do to help with certain things. Guess what was on there? Sensory Intergration Evaluations and Intervention. I have already called them to find out more. Of course the lady wasn't there that deals with this so I just left a message. I can't wait til she calls me back. I would just love for him to be evaluated for it.

Thanks so much everyone for reassurance. I know you all realize how hard it is. I think I am just done with it ya know? I really just need to know if there is something wrong with him or not....If not then great I will just brush it off as he is being a 2 yr old.
THanks again.

Shamay said...

OK, so the feeding thing is not your fault. And Grayer had the same struggles. Did you know that when we flew to Vietnam for 3 weeks, we took an ENTIRE SUITCASE of Gerber and goldfish because heaven knows, at 2.25 years old, he would eat nothing but pureed food. Ridiculous. I would check into the infant and toddler program if you have one. It is amazing what they can do in a short period of time. We still sometimes have to make him a separate meal (he won't eat pasta AT ALL). But it gets a little better each day, each food. Don't blame yourself - it's not you.

And we still give Maiya her binky at sleep and nap time. The pediatrician said it doesn't really hurt them till they are like 3 or 4. So we tell her that the binky is tired and has to sleep all day. When she's in her crib, she can have it. Then we don't allow them anywhere else in the house. She adjusted pretty well to that idea.

Maiya has turned a bit defiant since she turned two also. I tell her not to touch the cat (because she's almost killed him a few times by accident) and she will put one solitary finger up, look at me, place it solidly on the cat and pronounce "TOUCH!". And off to timeout we go. Sometimes, three time outs in a row for the same offence - JUST.BECAUSE.SHE.CAN!

ARGHHH!!!!

Shamay said...

Also Jaime, the spectrum of SPD or SID is so large. They could have some or all of the symptoms. Check into your county for an Infants and Toddlers program. If you can't find one and you can't get a referral from your doctor, try another doctor. It is so worth it. I can't tell you how much better our lives are because he can eat now. Still no pasta, still has a fit of something messy or wet gets on his skin. Still freaks out if a hair or something gets on his lips. But he eats. Hallelujah, he eats.

You know your son better than your ped does.

Another idea, when my ped isn't paying attention to what I'm telling him or dismissing it, I video tape the behavior. They sometimes feel differently seeing it on tape. Tape the worst possible meal if that is what it takes to get a referral. My Ped dismissed Grayer's eating issues as 'pickiness' too and even told me to starve him - he will eat. Guess what? He didn't. For 3 days. (Yes, I fed him enough to survive). Talk about feeling like a bad mom. It was when we had the Infants and Toddler program to our house to evaluate Maiya and they happened to see Grayer at lunch time and said "We can help you with that" that we finally found the help we needed.

You'll live through this and he will to. Don't beat yourself up, Jaime, he's two and you're a good mom.

jaime pott photography said...

Thanks again everyone. I will definately wait to hear back from the place I called. I hope she has some insight for me. Even just to put my mind at ease.

Thanks Shamay...I did find a program in our area...just today actually....I know all that you went thru with Grayer. I know it isn't easy...I just want my son to eat. LOL

Rosjuane said...

I wanted to add b/c I forgot that the timeout thing works good with g too. I don't do it alot, never with A. I could talk to her or spank and she was good. That doesn't work at all with G. He is defiant and the timeout works great. I've never been a big timeout girl I'm old fashion spanker when I need too. I don't beat my kids but when it's called for that's how I displine. With G it just makes the fit worse. So I sit him in the chair and wait till he's through crying then wait 2 min (give or take) and tell him he can get up. He gets up like a diffrent child. His whole demenor changes completely. I'm a push over when it comes to him (he's the baby), and I don't do it enough, but when I do it works like a charm. Good luck. Hope everything works out. You are not over-reacting just being an excelent mom.

Etsy Love!

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