Houston we have a problem. Oatmeal, which has been the only deterrent is losing effectiveness. He now just stalls until there’s no longer a point. The only thing we would have left to do is adjust it so that if he doesn’t finish in a predetermined amount of time then it gets pushed of to the next meal. The problem with that is he will choose not to eat. It will then become a power struggle.
Before anyone says that rewards work better then consequences be aware the rewards or incentives DO NOT work. Gavin exploits the situation and then we have to stop. For example if we reward him for getting his meltdown under control then he will begin having the meltdowns just to be rewarded for stopping. So consequences it is then.
I feel torn because part of me wants to push the oatmeal and win the power struggle. We will provide him with a healthy (oatmeal) and he can make the choice to eat it on not. He will only have oatmeal as an option until he actually eats it. We only give him a small bowl so it’s reasonable.
On the other hand he could take it pretty far. How far are we willing to take it? The other issue is if he doesn’t eat the oatmeal (thus skipping the meal) will that encourage him to consume non-edibles? We already struggle with that.
If we decide to pick this battle we would have to see it through. He would need to understand with no uncertainty that we mean business and that we will not back down.
I wish just one thing with him would be just difficult and not impossible.
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