Welcome Your Thoughts On This Situation Thanx

11 Replies
mlm056 - July 9

hi, I welcome your thoughts on this situation as I know it will be unbiased..while if i pose this to friends/family, I will get a biased answer. My DH has 2 children from a previous marriage -- 11 and 13 yr old. My DH and I have a 1 yr old son. The 11yr and 13yr are horrible eaters. Only carbs and sweets-- will not touch veggies or fruit. They live with their mother and visit every other weekend. When I say only bread and sweets -- I am talking 100%. Their list of foods is short so I will share: white bread only, waffles, sugary cereal, pizza with only cheese, french toast, oh, chicken nuggets (only fried), popcorn, jello...plus anything sweet you can think of. This is their entire selection of food, day in and day out!! I am trying to instill a healthy lifestyle for my dh and ds.. I bake all the time, low fat, low sugar, make babyfood etc.. we refuse to have junk in the house. When the kids come to visit, we do not have any of their select food items here as DH and I refuse to have that garbage in the house and are trying to instill a healthy habit for the older kids while they live here. Do get me wrong, I don't serve up liver and onions! I go easy on them... pasta, baked chicken, sliced apples, pizza that is homemade, frozen yogurt vs icecream, cheerios vs Captian Crunch, whole wheat bread vs white etc.. the kids refuse to eat and call Mom crying!!! saying they are hungry (our pantry is brimming with food -- just not junk) these kids won't even eat an orange or apple!! Long story, DH's ex wife just called -- she said we are harming the kids and going forward she is going to send them to our house with food (bags of Mac and Cheese and white bagels) so they won't go starve! Now I am at my wits end as I want my DS to learn by example, I don't want the junk in my house and feel that this woman is stepping over her boundary.. into our home. Am I overreacting... feel free to be honest.. like I said, that's why I am asking here and not friends as they would side with me! My DH is just done with arguing with her... she is a tad off her rocker as she feels that the kids are just fine in the health department because they get protein from peanut butter and eggs in the french toast. How would you handle the situation??? Thank goodness for this forum... I've been going out of my mind!

 

kimberly - July 9

I totally agree with you. Being a parent of a child who has a weight problem I see now the importance of instilling healthy habits while they are young. My oldest son is overweight and him and I are dieting together. I have to share that he is doing great! He has lost 13 lbs. so far! I have decided that junk food in our house is a thing of the past. I like the healthier foods anyway so it won't be much of a change for me but a big change for dh and my boys. I think America has gotten fat because of the choices we give our kids and the lack of knowledge people have about what good foods are. I feel the only way all of us can over come this epidemic is to change the way we live. You are making the right choices for your family and they are now a part of your family so I would stick to your guns. Do the kids have an issue with their weight? If so even the more reason you should try to get them to eat healthy. My stepson is 19 now so he is not at home with us anymore, but he told me the other day that he is now a neat freak because of me. What I am saying is these habits stick with kids for their whole life. I wouldn't feed them the food she sends I would have them eat whatever you are making. Like you said it is your home. Just send the food back with them. I know that will definately create problems but it is their health you are talking about. Has your dh mentioned he don't like their diet to her? If he hasn't he really needs too. He should have a say in how his children are eating. Conflicts like this can get messy so I wish you luck!

 

lin7604 - July 9

i agree with you, it is YOUR home! You make the rules not the kids. She should know that it is better for them, help incourage the better eating and that yes it will take time but they will get used to it. Just try one new thing every visit! It's the same when you are a toddler just being intoduced to foods, it takes a while, sometime several attmepts before you like it! I think she should be more supportave to you and your healthy living and encourage the kids to eat healthier. I mean if whole wheat bread is too much for them, then do 60%, it's not that big of a difference! i know my ds right now is a extramely picky eater he is 20 months and i keep at it, i am just glad he loves fruit! how can you not it's sweet and full of natural sugar....

 

mlm056 - July 9

Kimberly, fortunately the children are not overweight -- at this point. That being said, we are taking them in to have their cholesterol levels checked tomorrow. When did your son start to have his weight issue.. was it in his teens? Also, does any one never give their children veggies? I've never heard of such a thing... how can children possibly get all their nutrients without veggies and meat/ or meat subst_tute?

 

lin7604 - July 9

i try all the time to give my ds veggies, it's so important! He won't eat them unless they are cut up real tiny in his chicken noodle soup, so i put tons of them in it! He used to eat it all up till 14 months adn now won't eat any if they are on his plate???? he's almost 21 months now.

 

kimberly - July 10

My son is 9 years old right now. I would say he was chubby at 5 years old and has gotten a little heavier each year. I had him in football last year and he lost lots of weight doing that but gained most of it back soon after. His thing is sneaking food and snacking on it when I'm not aware. Even if I buy say fat free pudding, he will sneak 3 of them and eat them all at once. I know because I find the evidence. I have made lots of changes to help him, I hide all the snacks and only keep healthy ones at home, so if he does find them atleast it is healthy. I also bake more and have been trying new fruits and veggies with him. So far he hasn't really been bothered by the change. He has noticed a change in his body and seems happy about it. His biggest problem has always been my dh and his poor snack habits. Dh is thin and don't gain easily so he use to bring in lots of junk food and it was just to convinent for my son. Dh is now on board and he has been lots better about not bringing junk into the house. I have always liked healthier foods so it isn't new for me . I have also always served healthy foods it has just been the snacks that were a real problem and his portions were too big.

 

countrymom401 - July 10

It would suck to be the evil stepmom who never feeds the kids...LOL just kidding but your situation sucks. It is hard to believe that any mother would let her kids eat all that c___p all the time. They are so used to eating it that they don't know any better. At your house they are not high on sugar all day so it must be like having withdraws. Moody and temper tantrums. It is hard to install healthy eating to kids that age as well. If I were you I would try to meet them somewhere in the middle. Buy white bread for them it really won't kill them I never ate brown bread till was an adult. If they want to live off pb sandwiches all weekend let them. What ever you do don't let them undermine you by bringing there own food. But give then healthy choices and let them decide. I would even go as far as calling her up and asking what the kids like to eat at home. She must cook somethings that are somewhat healthy. Maybe get a recipe off her if thats what it takes. And tell her that no way is she to pack food for them.

 

in the woods - July 10

I think the mother of the children is the one who has the right to make or break the children' diets. Just think of your own kids, wheter you'd allow someone else to demand changes in what your kids eat. Not saying junk is good. Just that stepmother forcing her rules on the pretty big kids, will always be the bad one. Their mother herself has to wake up to a diet change. In the absense of that, their father is the second in line on the authority level. It has to be coming from him - wheter "in my house, you eat only this", or meeting them in the middle, but it is he who has to be firm.

 

mlm056 - July 10

In the Woods - thanks for the other perspective. After a night sleep, I am feeling better about the situation. I am going to follow my DH's lead... I am hoping we can meet the kids in the middle without their mother packing a bunch of food for them each weekend. I think it really sets a bad example the Dad isn't capable of feeding you etc. Also, I really don't want to have to cook up her groceries for the kids and then make a separate meal for DH, DS and I. Again, if DH allow her food to enter the house, I think I will simply ask them to prepare it. I don't want to feel like a short order cook! Agreed, though, that the 'evil stepmom' isn't the one to be the enforcer... will leave that to DH... let's hope he sees my side of it!

 

bbmax - July 10

To be honest since they just visit I would keep a few things they're used to eating just to keep the peace. Their primary caregiver is the mother. Also a lot of teens go through phases where they live on junk. My brother was the same and now he's older and eats healthy.

 

Crystal83 - July 11

I think it's up to your DH to talk to his ex about this subject, they need to compromise and maybe allow a couple of things in the house. I know when I was in that age range I ate a LOT of those things too. I also ate lots of fruit and veggies, but I know I loved mac and cheese, pizza and I would not even go near whole wheat bread it had to be white, now I love whole wheat bread...these kids are probably going to resist any change when it comes to this, so it's probably best to let up a little. You are trying to instill good eating habits into your LO at an early age so I don't think you will have much to worry about in regards to the older 2 setting a bad example. Your DH should maybe ask his ex why she isn't trying to help her kids to eat healthier as well. Good Luck!

 

schreck - July 12

I agree they do need better eating habits but you aren't going to change them over night. Try making a game out of trying new foods. You could try a fear factor theme or guess that food. Keep a few of their healthier food choices in the house so they can't say there is nothing to eat. Try whole grain white bread, give them peanut b___ter to dip their apples in, ect. I hope you find some way to teach them better eating habits.

 

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