Tuesday, January 13, 2009


My little four year old has Reactive Detachment Disorder. It's been tough, and I especially have a hard time. He was a very hard baby, but has grown into an adorable little boy. He still does things that drive me insane, but he is very cute.

One of the things he struggles with is food. As he has gotten older, it has gotten worse. Sometimes I get so frustrated that I get mad. He's constantly coming to me asking me "Why does Heidi get an apple?" Why does Seth get cheese?" etc..... At first, I would just say, "Because they wanted it. If you want it too, just ask." But he doesn't get it. He still comes to me multiple times during the day asking why so and so gets this or that. ARGGGGG!

So, I thought, "Let's try something different." I put out a plate in the morning with a large orange, an apple, a big pile of grapes and a large handful of corn chips. I told him, "These are for you! You can have anything on this plate whenever you want, all day long. Don't eat it all at once."

Can you guess what happened? Yep. He started eating at 9:30 am and by ten, it was all gone. As he was eating, I lectured him about saving some for later, and that he wasn't getting anymore. These were his snacks for the whole day. It didn't matter. (and before you wonder, yes, he gets three meals a day besides snacks)

Of course, at about 2 or 3 pm he came in asking for a snack. I told him "no." That he'd already eaten ALL his snacks. "Tomorrow, you should save some."

I felt bad, but I want him to learn a lesson here. He acts like he's always starving. Like he'll never have another meal. We did "play therapy" during the summer but it didn't make a dent in the food side of things. I hope it gets better. We'll try again tomorrow.


Tash said...

im right with u there...i have a feeling our kids will struggle with food issues there whole lives...and to think all because some parents, cared more about drugs...than there kids..how sad :( good luck let me know if it works i might try it out lol

S'mee said...

Oh Mel this sounds so exhausting! Has he been tested for Prader-Willi Syndrome?


D-i-l is somewhat familiar with this and works with children afflicted all sorts of trials, and this reminded me of one of her kids. Maybe looking over the list will either confirm or deny it, but one less thing to wonder about; and perhaps some answers.

Josi said...

That is frustrating--what exactly is reactive detachment disorder? I don't think I've heard of it before.

Amy said...

I know that with my youngest we were always encouraged to respond quickly if he was hungry (starting life at 1 lb 15 oz does that) but as he has gotten older he has associated "hungry" with anything he wants, needs or feels. It has been kind of hard because it is definitely not a thing I want to have him continue with his whole life. It has mellowed somewhat as he has gotten older. Good luck!

Lisa said...

I think that is a great idea. Maybe you could break it up and set it out twice a day, rather than all at once? That would be more work for you, but might teach the lessons (granted a little more slowly).

You're a good Mom, it is good that you pay attention to this and not just let him eat when he wants you.

I admire your verve.

Yolanda said...

What a cute kid!! And what a wonderful mom!!