Yellow, yellow and more yellow! How long can this go on? We’re going to look like a piece of sweetcorn at this rate! Our household consists of special needs and a yellow diet!
You’re probably wondering what on earth I’m going on about……
Well, let me explain.
Our son has special needs and our diet is suffering immeasurably.
Healthy eating kind of family…
We’ve always been a healthy eating kind of family with the occasional naughty treat. The kids were weaned on homemade baby food. No jars of artificial food in our house! I steamed veggies, mashed or pureed them and froze them in ice cube trays like the perfect mother. So much so that, I remember a wedding that we went to when the kids were little. To try and make life easier for ourselves we took a couple of jars of a famous brand baby food. Would they eat it? Would they heck lol.
So, what I’m trying to say here is that both kids (yep they are twins) were raised the same way. We were so proud of the fact that they’d rather have fruit than sweets.
Fast forward to today….
Gone are the days when we’d sit down as a family and eat a healthy, balanced and multicoloured dinner together!
Why oh why has this happened?
Let me tell you.
Special Needs and Sensory Processing Disorder!!!
Certain textures became less and less tolerable. More and more tastes are becoming unacceptable. Everything is becoming compromised.
It’s frustrating. What makes it even more difficult is the fact that our son doesn’t actually understand why this is happening. He can’t actually put into words why he won’t eat mashed potato (just using this as an example as there are so many things that he won’t eat). He just knows that it’s wrong.
Meals for our son consist of:
- sausages (always the same brand and flavour)
- chicken nuggets (always the same brand)
- burgers (always the same brand)
- sweetcorn (always the same brand)
- potato waffles (always the same brand)
- potato croquettes (always the same brand)
- white bread (always the same brand)
- pasta without ANY sauce
- NEW addition – brussel sprouts! yippee its GREEN! (doing a little happy dance – don’t judge me….)
Do you notice a pattern….?
We’re currently waiting for a referral to a nutritionist as we are concerned over how lacking his diet is. I know what we should be doing but I’m finding it difficult to work within the constraints of the sensory issues.
Behaviour and diet….
Behaviour is directly linked to the diet. If he’s hungry (low blood sugars) he finds it impossible to control his behaviour. If artificial sweeteners creep in, especially aspartame, there is a very noticeable deterioration in behaviour. Too much sugar and things quickly get out of hand.
Through much trial and error, research and talking to others, we’ve established that sensory issues mean that the slightest difference in a meal can be noticed. The difference means that it’s wrong and will therefore not be eaten. You’ll notice that the list above consists of things that don’t really have much room for variation.
We tend to cook by throwing things in a pan. A little bit of this and a little bit of that. This means that every meal, even though it’s still mince and pasta, will be slightly different. To us, it’s not something that we notice but, to our son, it makes things “wrong”. I use the word “wrong” because he can’t actually put into words what the problem is, he just describes things as “wrong”.
When things change, he finds it very difficult to cope and it will often result in a major meltdown and nothing being eaten.
Basic human need
Sometimes I just want to tear my hair out……..maybe that would be a good way of getting rid of the grey……only kidding as that’s what hair dye is for lol plus, I’d end up bald – not a good look for me.
All joking aside, it is a situation that is becoming extremely difficult to work with. As mother’s we want to provide our kids with everything possible for a healthy and balanced life. A healthy diet is crucial for a healthy life and, to be completely honest, I feel very much like I am failing. My head tells me that I’m doing everything possible, within my means, to provide this basic human need but my heart is breaking as I fall short of the mark.
The Mum Conundrum