Jacob's Eating Disorders and Feeding Therapy

This has been one of the biggest parenting struggles so far. And I need to document our progress. Maybe one day when He is eating me out of house and home I will look back and see how far he has come.

Jacob has had eating issues from the beginning. I was determined to breastfeed for at least 6 months. I BF him til I dried up at 3 months. I was disappointed to be cut so short. We started him on formula and he was shortly thereafter put on prevacid and carnation good start. When it was time to start solids, he was so finicky. That is when the oatmeal started. Looking back this post was the beginning. He would not try anything new. It has been oatmeal or milk 3 times a day. Worried about his nutrition so I added in carnation instant breakfast and V8 fusion.

Since then, 2 years later, the little guy has battled through a lot. He is a HUGE kid. He is 2 and wears mostly size 5/5T. The above pic, shows how much he needs more meat on his body. I have taken him to a couple of Dr.s and my BFF is a Speech Therapist/Feeding Specialist at Primary Children's Hospital. The Dr.s keep telling me that he is growing and looks healthy. Amy has done some therapy with him and has given me therapy to do with him. We have tried rewards, threats, love, fights...everything.

We are now to the point where we eat dinner/meals as a family as often as possible. He has to eat 3 bites of what we are eating (we started at 1bite) It is such a process.
He used to be sent to the garage and have a good cry. Fighting to even get 1 bite chewed and swallowed without gagging or throwing up.
The first 4 times he ate mashed potatoes, he threw them up. Twice immediately and twice that night in he bed.??
So getting a bite down has been the first hurdle.
Now he gets to play with a special fire truck when he gets his bites down.

I can't figure out what it is that has him gagging? Is it the texture? Is is the flavor? Is it hurting him? Why doesn't he gag when he is eating something sweet? Oatmeal, poptarts, granola bars, chocolate, apples, grapes, yogurt? I have put the 'why' on the shelf for a little while and see if we can't just get through the bites.
There are little victories, like the day he ate a small (5 bites) bowl of mac and cheese. And other days when it takes 35 minutes or more to get one bite down. He almost always will say "mmm yum it is so good" but will never want the next bite. He now has tasted beans, noodles, chicken, steak, lettuce, spaghetti, peaches, pears, strawberries.
He very rarely gets more than 3 bites. Most recently, he did eat an entire dino chicken nugget. (It took more than 45 minutes)

You can tell he is trying so hard. BUT seriously it is so FRUSTRATING, it is such a mental deal for this little guy. Finally in the above video, by 1 min and 54 secs he gets the noodle in and gags a bit but chews it. He did eat another one after we shut the video off.

I can't wait for the day he asks for seconds.


Lindsey said...

Oh, my. Poor thing! And when I say "poor thing" I mean Jacob. And you. And Jay. How frustrating.

I do have to say that I did laugh right out loud when you said "How is it?" and he said "Good" with that grimmace on his face. So funny!

lifeinredshoes said...

OK Sara, I know you are no dummy so forgive me if that's the way this sounds:)
What if you make this a "non issue?"
Fix his plate just like the others, nothing special. Every one sit down just like usual only no one say a word about what Jacob is eating or not eating.
When everyone, Jacob included, is finished just clear the table and go on as usual.
I know this sounds so simplistic, but just ignore it, he's not going to starve to death.
These problems rarely last into adulthood, and somethimes they are the product of an inner power struggle.
I'll move on now, good luck.

SKH said...

oh believe me we have tried that. And one doctor told me he is stubborn enough to starve himself. I came from that same school of thought that don't feed him anything accept for meals and he WILL eat what is on his plate. I used to roll my eyes at other kids who made requests. But there is something more to this and we are just working through it. Our current therapy seems to be working. He sits down to eat with us and eats what we are eating. As a mom you just have to listen to your insticts right?

Emily Oman said...

I would like to know why you are blogging on your vacation?!?!?

lifeinredshoes said...

Oh Sweetie, I hear ya on the strong willed child issue! Good luck, you are a good Mom:)