I Bribed My Son to Eat Dinner

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He even liked the duck (my favorite). I think it sometimes comes down to power. It's not that all the picky kids don't like the food; they just need to exert their power. (Yes, some do have taste and texture reasons.) But, he's the youngest and often one who does exert his power over his older brothers and peers, but I guess it's my husband and me he needed to feel a bit of control over. When I handed out the money, he even remarked that it wasn’t enough since he was turning six he should get six -- so I made it $1.61 (1 dollar, 1 quarter, 2 dimes, 1 nickel and the one extra penny). I think he likes many of the foods he’s off right now, but he’s choosing to eat/not eat what he wants.

As a child I remember going to some friends’ homes where the mom made my brother and I eat the overcooked zucchini and squash. Big-seeded, mushy, thin-cut vegetables are not appealing to many young kids. I held my nose and choked it down. My brother sat at that table all night. He exerted his power at the time, and finally they gave in after 11 pm. Both of us wouldn’t touch them for years. Now, it’s a different story. I think if the vegetables are cooked right they are more appealing, but it’s not a guarantee that they’ll pass muster. Also if you push too hard, if you aren’t flexible, it can backfire. It’s a fine line and not an easy thing to decide. Being firm yet flexible. Not giving in every time, but understanding when you must bend the rules. So making sure the alternatives aren’t full of sugar and that his dietary needs are met. Thankfully my son still loves his broccoli; he's been eating it every day.

And sometimes, you just have to do what you can to make sure your kids get what they need (not always what they want) to remain healthy… even if it resorts to bribery.

 

My Kids Really Eat This …and yours can too!
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Photo Credit: stone-soup.

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