Lunchtime Lies

Today’s mum needs some help with a lunchtime issue – have you any suggestions?

I’m an adoptive mum of a 7 year old boy and his 5 year old sister. My son came to us with quite a bit of baggage which as you all know isn’t uncommon with looked after children. My daughter was pretty much as normal as you could get – easy going, polite, attentive and no emotional or developmental issues.Lunchtimes

Fast forward to now…My daughter for the past month now has been doing whatever she can to avoid her sandwiches. It’s gone from just leaving bits – which is absolutely fine, to eating just the bread and not the filling…to just before the Christmas break, telling us she’s eaten her food but to find out she’s binned them and lied about it. Even on days where we’ve asked her what filling she wants, if she hasn’t left it in her lunch box, she’s binned them. Yesterday was the one that really made me furious – she’s thrown them down the toilet & again told us she’s eaten them.

So I could do with advice on what to do as she’s coming home starving and I’m clueless where to go from here?

So how do you stop the lying? How do you make sure your children eat their lunch? What encouragement can this mum offer her daughter?
If you can help, then do leave comments below – you might help someone else too.

4 thoughts on “Lunchtime Lies

  1. Mrs Family of 5

    I have no advice but i’ll be watching this closely because my almost 7year old has done this since she started school on and off. She chucks them or swaps them for crisps/chocolate/cake etc and lies, I tend to only find out by accident or by tripping her up and pretending I already know something so she tells me etc
    Good luck, I totally get how frustrating this is x

  2. Kat on_the_edge

    Hi I feel for you both. Our daughter has food things going on too and there are times when she just will not eat. Not to starve herself (she’s only 5) but as control.
    When she started school, the rule for reception and year 1 is that they must stay school dinners, not sandwiches. This filled me with dread.
    For the first half term, she’d come home starving, having only eaten a spoonful of food (for many reasons coming home at lunch was not an option). Then after speaking to the TA that was on her table (they call it a ‘family service’ with a key worker on their table to gently encourage them to try new things etc, it transpired that a child on the same table ‘clashed’ with her. This explained the control around food, the anxiety, the meltdowns at home.
    She moved tables and is doing well. Very proud that she ate a spoonful of peas and a spoonful of corn plus a fishfinger the other day. It doesn’t seem much, but to our family it’s huge.
    Could it be anxiety about another child? Could school dinners with a key worker at the table be a solution?
    Good luck. I really understand how upsetting and frustrating and downright worrying this is.

  3. Sally

    Both of our children did exactly the same as your daughter and still do sometimes. They are much older and so can employ more sneaky tactics! The best strategies I have found are this:
    1. Don’t panic
    2. Ask school to quietly and without fuss supervise them eating their lunch
    3. Empathise and explore – ‘I understand that you’d rather be eating something else, or sometimes you don’t feel like eating at all. Perhaps it’s not nice to eat at school when it’s busy and noisy?’ etc
    4. If she comes home having not eaten lunch try your very best not to get frustrated. Try instead ‘Goodness you are really hungry. Perhaps it was difficult for you to each your lunch today? Would you like a banana?’.
    Over the years I tried nagging, guilt-tripping, threatening, rewarding and none of it worked.
    It is a super-frustrating issue to deal with and sadly seems common in our children, but it will get better.
    Good luck!

  4. mumdrah

    Maybe she doesn’t like sandwiches?

    We had this battle for seven years. The day i found 26 mouldy packs of sandwhiches under her bed in a box i realised something had to change. I don’t give her sandwiches any more, and she loves her lunch. Nothing else worked; talking to school, talking to her, chosing different fillings. We have to be so tricksy – find our way around oroblems rather than solving them head on. Good luck!


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