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7 year old granddaughter refusing to eat

(13 Posts)
ruthiek Sat 30-Apr-16 17:36:00

My lovely gd is 71/2 and has been on the chubbier side for a long time , but suddenly in the last few months she has become very fussy over her food and talks about getting fit all the time because of this she has lost a large amount of weight and she is so emotional . I have mentioned it to my son , and daughter in law and they are concerned but not sure what to do. It doesn't help that dad and mum don't seem to be on the same page over this and as they are divorced I don't like to poke my nose in too much but I am so worried .

Cherrytree59 Sat 30-Apr-16 18:53:53

My MIL said to my DD who I think was about 8 yrs old that she was getting chubby. In my opinion she was not over weight, but had a bit of a tummy.
At the time she was in a swimming club and did 2 dancing classes.
I was in charge of her meals so new exactly how much she ate. Treats were limited to the weekend
But those few words upset my DD so much that she said she wanted to go on a diet only problem was that meant she hardly ate anything!
I sat down with my DD and discussed her meals
We talked about the fact that food was her fuel for the day like Petrol in a car.
With the help of books (no computer!)
She picked out the healthy food she enjoyed and she agreed that if I cooked them she would eat the meals I prepared for her.
At the weekend I let her help with some cooking which she enjoyed
I think what it did was give some control over her food.
DH reprimanded his DM. But the damage was done as it is still a very upsetting memory for DD.
Perhaps a similar approach might help Ruthiek

ruthiek Sat 30-Apr-16 20:10:22

Thank you it is such a worry , the spark has gone out of her

Ana Sat 30-Apr-16 20:18:46

Have they had some sort of 'talk' at school about fitness etc? Or perhaps like Cherrytree's DD, someone has suggested to her that she's a bit plump? It's so sad that children of that age can be made to feel bad about their own bodies.

Must just add that my own DD was quite chubby at 6/7 but naturally lost the puppy fat by 9 or 10. Try not to worry too much.

LullyDully Sat 30-Apr-16 20:28:07

I am wondering if this is a reaction to being bullied about her weight by someone at school.

Iam64 Sat 30-Apr-16 20:31:23

I wonder if mum and dad could talk with her teacher. Schools are often a good source of information about children's relationships and emotional feelings. Depending on the outcome of that, a trip to the GP may be in order. Even little girls of 7 can become so preoccupied with their physical appearance that they begin to control their diet. I do hope things settle down for her and for all of you.

FarNorth Sat 30-Apr-16 20:49:14

If she has been bullied, it's likely that that will still continue, even if she has lost weight.
It's a pity that her parents are ' not on the same page'.
Maybe she would confide in her Gran, ruthiek, if you can raise it subtly.

ruthiek Mon 02-May-16 11:15:24

Thank you all , my son saw it at first hand so hopefully something will be done, she was worried he would make her eat something so cried . It's so awful what we put our youngsters through

harrigran Mon 02-May-16 12:00:11

My GD is quite large and takes clothes 7 years ahead of her age, she swims dances and does karate. Meals always have a good selection of vegetables and/or salad yet she remains big, some children are genetically larger.
If your GC is being bullied it will be at school and the head should be notified and followed up. At GD's school they seem to be bending over backwards to keep a nasty little bully in the school and I want to know why, DIL says the little bully talks like her mother so mother must be a piece of work too angry

Nonnie1 Mon 02-May-16 15:03:04

Young girls see and hear so much more these days then we ever did. They are still immature but overloaded with info they really do not need.

When my daughter was 14 it was a fashionable 'thing 'in her year for girls to be stick thin. Since she was already very petite it did not take much for her to become underweight, to the point where her teacher contacted me and said she was worried by my daughter's appearance.

I took her to my doctor for something else, but had mentioned it quietly to the doctor before we went in... who told her that her BMI was 16, and she openly asked her do you like looking ill ??

It shocked her that someone had openly said something negative since I had not.
I was afraid she was becoming anorexic and did not know how to deal with it, but the doctor's comments rude as they were made her snap out of it. I always think we were on the edge of something really bad and managed to escape it.

I think the most damage can be done by thoughtless remarks made with good intentions by family. It can make the child do exactly the opposite out of sheer damnedness and then it can all become too late.

In my daughter's year there were some girls who were anorexic, and seeing this also helped her to realise it is no picnic being thin.

Hope that makes sense.

mrshat Mon 02-May-16 17:42:27

Youngsters seem to be learning all about 'Healthy Eating' in schools now. My GD is nearly 7 and is very aware of healthy foods - unfortunately, at 7 they don't really grasp the difference between 'good' fats and 'bad' fats etc. She is starting to get anxious now if there is butter and/or cheese and even the tiniest bit of 'fat' on meat. It worries me that this 'Healthy Eating' is not being taught at a level for 6-7 year olds to understand. She is quite a bright little one too - maybe that's the problem!
It might be worth having a chat with the school about this.

ElaineI Mon 02-May-16 19:13:38

RuthieK - just a thought but if she has lost weight and off food perhaps the GP could check her over in case there is a medical cause?

Newquay Tue 03-May-16 15:04:05

Yes Elainel I thought that too-perhaps having a word with doc first about concerns so he/she can (try) to be sensitive.
Our DGS, 7, has recently been banging on about food and exercise. He's stick thin but hoovers up food. I know they all have a reasonably healthy diet so don't get involved really-if he wants an apple instead of a biscuit in the afternoon after school so be it.
But Ruthiek yours is in a different league I think. I would speak to school to see what's going on there too so that they're aware.