In the case of my 8-year-old, I’d say that would have been a fair criticism – we started wrong with that kid, began her food career with items from boxes, marketed specifically for toddlers – starches and fats and vitamin fortification pressed into clever, kid-friendly shapes.
At a certain point, around the time our older child was 18 months, we realized that chicken nuggets beget only cravings for more chicken nuggets.
Until she met cookies, at which point we realized she could eat just fine, thank you very much. I suppose I hadn’t yet learned The Great Parenting Lesson: that children are infinitely complex, and they don’t lend themselves – ever – to simple formulas. And frankly, if we took this approach, it would come as no small relief to concerned relatives, who worry that a thin child can never be healthy, and (“No,” says our pediatrician, simply).
To any and all future parents, allow me to save you several years of frustration: If you do . (You’re welcome.) “Just serve her what the rest of the family eats,” says our pediatrician, noting that she might be below the general weight curve, but that she is gaining some weight. I’m not the first person to struggle with a neophobic kid.
Food neophobia is especially common in small children.
As the effects of aging catch up to us, we may begin to feel like our days of adventure are over, preferring to remain in comfortable, familiar surroundings.Some people are bigger risk-takers than others, and there is no crime in preferring a comfortable routine.More serious neophobia is a true phobia that can become life-limiting.It appears to be about three-quarters hereditary, and one-quarter environmental.It is related to other personality attributes, like shyness.
So we shifted her diet, ultimately convincing her (for real) of the joys of the kale chip.