Why do I even bother trying feed to my kids, asks this #Autism Dad on most days

I realize the title of this post is easily answered by saying something like ummm, because you love them or it’s the law.

Yes, both of those are true but there’s also a reason I asked the question in the first place and only parents with autistic/SPD children will truly understand.

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It’s really frustrating for me because my kids are in a universe far beyond that of just being picky, in regards to food.

Sensory processing issues significantly impact their ability to eat.

I totally understand and I’m not angry with them because it’s not their fault.  At the same time however, it’s also extremely frustrating for me as a parent.

There’s a couple of reasons that this is so frustrating for me.

First of all, it’s extremely difficult and expensive to find things that they will actually eat or that is sensory friendly.

Secondly, there’s so much waste.  I can’t tell you how much food has been wasted because  something tastes funny or different than it used to.

While I don’t experience these problems personally, the way I explain it to parents is like this.

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Asking a child with sensory processing disorder to eat something that is offensive to them would be like me asking you eat out of the litter box.

Yes, it does sound a bit extreme but it’s true.

Kids may be impacted is slightly different ways but the premises is the same.

Again, the truth is, even understanding as much as I do, it’s still frustrating. Food is expensive and wasting anything isn’t conducive with maintaining any type of budget.

With all that said and in all seriousness, as frustrating as it is for me, I always try to remember that it’s even more frustrating for my kids. They’re the ones that actually have to go through this.

I don’t think there’s a day that goes by where I’m not saying to myself, at least once, why do I even bother trying to feed them. 

Some of you will not understand this because unless you’re living it, it’s really tough to wrap your brain around. To most people, it just doesn’t make sense that I would cater to them in this manner and allow them to be so picky.

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The one thing I hear more than anything, from well meaning but inexperienced people, is that I should just make dinner and they’ll eat if they’re hungry.

That’s well meaning but very misguided advice.

If there was one part of Autism that I could cure my kids of right now, it would be removing the sensory processing issues.

Their personality would remain intact but their lives would just be so much more comfortable for them.

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2 Comments

  1. Darcy Dallin

    It’s expensive no matter what you do! My son use to be ‘picky’ & only eat a few expensive stuff. He eats a lot more different foods now but being 13 & going thru puberty plus he never stops moving so now he eats double or triple ‘servings’ while not once actually sitting down to eat! (That’s a waste of time!) We have always just left good snacking food out, so he grazes. I’m glad that he likes raw carrots & he’ll just eat bowls of those bagged mixed veggies.

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