Do I just accept the lying and ignore it?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by gcvmom, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    difficult child 1 skipped lunch again today and lied about it. I'm at the point where I feel like maybe I just shouldn't ask anymore because maybe it's putting too much pressure on him.

    But the problem with that is that his mood is affected, his focus and attention are affected, his school work is affected, his health is affected -- so many things depend on him eating.

    His excuse today was that he was in the bathroom most of break and lunch. I don't know whether to believe him or not. It could very easily be another lie. And it could be the truth, or even a partial truth.

    Sometimes he just isn't hungry because of his ADHD medications and he's not someone who will eat if even if he's not hungry.

    I didn't send lunch with him today because he didn't like what I sent yesterday and I need to go grocery shopping. 1/2 way to school, I realized I didn't have my wallet, so I told him I'd leave money in the office for him and to go there to get it at break. I reminded him AGAIN when he got out of the car and he acknowledged it. I dropped an envelope off around 10am, well before his morning break. So yeah, part of me is also annoyed that my efforts went for naught.

    And it looks like he's been picking at the skin on his knees again.

  2. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    It sounds like it might be time to put this on his shoulders and take it off yours. I see your point about it effecting him, but he's 15 and going to have to start dealing with it. I'm not sure how to accomplish this. Can you get the school to somehow help with natural consequences, without it effecting his grades or behavior too much? Would giving medications at different times or breaking them up into more frequent but lower doses temporarily help?
  3. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Does he have an IEP? Just wondering because we have a student in my class this year with an IEP and our Special Education assistant or Special Education teacher always makes sure he eats breakfast, has a snack, and a lunch at school. He often doesn't want to eat but then his day usually goes down hill.

    Maybe they could help and at the same time take some of it off your shoulders. Hugs.
  4. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I stopped making lunches for Miss KT when I found them in the big garbage can outside. She was tossing them out on the way to the bus stop. I also stopped taking her special requests for lunch items when we'd go grocery shopping. Why buy stuff just to have it tossed?

    She got $10 a week for lunch money. Period. There was always something to make a sandwich with, usually fruit and/or yogurt, and, as I reminded her frequently, "You're no better than the rest of us, and we take our lunches. Deal with it or don't eat." And yes, she was an impossible poophead after school, because she refused to eat breakfast, and was too stubborn to eat lunch, and then I would remind her, "I'm sorry you chose not to eat today, and you're starving now. It is NOT MY PROBLEM. Either cook for yourself, or wait until I fix dinner." Then I usually had to send her to her room because I didn't want to hear her whining and nagging.

    I agree with klmno, put it on him. Then refuse to listen to him complain.

    Good luck and lots of strength to you. It was not an easy battle with Miss KT, but she did eventually learn to eat.
  5. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Another thought on this, although it probably applies more to girls than boys, focusing on a kid's eating habits and whether or not they eat can contribute to eating disorders- either too much or too little eating. My mom is very dysfunctional in general but the way she handled my lack of eating kept making it worse. Based on that experience, I honestly do think it's best to not keep it a "parent issue" by the time they are a teen, except in extreme circumstances.
  6. Josie

    Josie Active Member

    I have a similar problem with difficult child 1. She is not supposed to eat gluten or milk and it affects her mood and school work and makes everyone in the family walk on eggshells when she does. If I ask her if she did eat something, she never admits it. It is so obvious when she does that I don't even ask her any more. Then I impose pretty serious consequences that she doesn't like for the behaviour that results, in hopes that it will not be worth it for her. I admit that sometimes (OK a lot of times) I do say if she hadn't eaten whatever she ate, she wouldn't be facing this consequence.

    I can't see asking the school for an IEP for her for this reason because in the end, she is the one that needs to know how it affects her. Better that she learn this lesson now, than later in life when the consequences would be worse.

    I have also gone to great effort to make her a girlfriend treat so she wouldn't be tempted to eat something else and have her not eat it so I can relate to your annoyance over him not eating it. But I do feel that I have to do my part for her so she can follow her diet more easily.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2010
  7. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    He has a 504 plan, but it doesn't really mean much.

    Even on days when I make something for him that he likes, I frequently find the lunch uneaten.

    I just may put the responsibility on him. But I struggle with the realization that he just won't eat. Because he doesn't FEEL hungry at school, and add to that the social distractions, or if his IBS or Crohn's is acting up and his gut feels the slightest bit wonky... On Monday he called me to say he didn't feel well and wanted to come home. It was lunch time. I asked him if he'd eaten yet, and he said no. I told him to eat something first and then if he still felt bad to call me. Lo and behold: Turns out he felt crummy because he hadn't EATEN!!! :hammer: He felt fine after that. So HOW do you deal with someone like this??? It's feeling like a damned if you don't, damned if you do situation.

    I still haven't called the psychiatrist about our lovely little meltdown the other night. He's back in the office today finally. I guess I should see if they can get him in for an hour-long appointment some time soon.
  8. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    He's just going to have to learn this one on his own, I think. We can't manage every aspect of their lives that age, no matter how hard we try.

    difficult child doesn't eat lunch. For the first 6 weeks, I sent a lunch with her to school. She ate some of it and I would then find unopened granola bars, baggies of fruits and veggies, etc, in the garbage. So, I told her she needs to make her own lunch. She's not interested. I know it effects her. Hypoglycemia runs in the family and while hers isn't as volatile as mine, not eating does effect her behavior. But, I can't force her and it's just something she's going to have to want to do on her own.

    I understand difficult child 1 has other health issues at play, but at 15 what are you going to do about something like this when it's happening outside of your home?

    That said, there should still be consequences for his behavior that are a direct response to his not eating. He chooses not to eat so he is responsible for his behavior.

    Broken record time.
  9. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Can you send something that is a 'picky' food - you know like a little bag of peanuts that he can kinda snack on - even if he isn't hungry.
  10. aeroeng

    aeroeng Mom of Three

    We give the older two a golden opportunity. We give them $5 a day for food. They can use it on food or keep the money and make their own lunches. We even supply the bread and stuff, all they have to do is tell us when it runs out. We do demand that they can not buy candy or junk food, and do not waste anything. Because they are teenage boys they are constantly hungry so they frequently both buy and bring. (The 14 yr old is 6' and growing; the 16 yr old is 6' 3" and growing). There are times when they just don't eat anything until they get home, but then make up for it later. When easy child was on Concerta he did not eat much at lunch, but made up for it after school and at dinner. He remained a healthy weight.

    Sometimes I feel this is too extravagant, but because it is a good deal on their parts they take full responsibility and I we don't end up in a fight about it. I think situations where you can just let go and make them responsible are the best. They will need to learn to manage their own food after high school anyway. But with food allergies or eating disorders the rules do change.
  11. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    I can stand the lying either--

    That said, this is a kind of a tricky situation.

    I suffered from the worst IBS for years. And I used to dread eating because I was never confident that it wouldn't lead to more pain agony and spending the rest of the day in the bathroom. Better to be hungry than sick...

    on the other hand--skipping meals was not good for me either. I certainly knew it. It affected my overall health, my mood, my concentration...everything.

    So what's the solution? Eventually, I was able to get over the general stress of meal times. It was not easy. And sometimes, even today, I will still worry about whether or not it's a good idea to eat (like if I'm at someone else's house, for example).

    I say, make food available. Something that you know will not trigger any unpleasant symptoms--something safe...and leave it there in his locker at school (obviously nothing perishable) and have similar safe food at home for an afterschool snack. And stop asking about it.

    By you worrying about it, you may be inadvertantly causing more stress about eating...which he wants to he lies about find out and you worry....etc etc etc

    Just my thoughts...

  12. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I had serious weight problems as a child. As a baby it was projectile vomiting (I once got a cousin who came to meet me from 20 feet away. My dad measured because he thought it was a riot.) As a kid I was either not hungry and eating 2 peas for dinner or I was starving and ate everything in site. I graduated high school at five feet tall and 79 pounds. It is painful to be that thin.

    My body did not register or receive hunger signals. The endocrinologists never figured out why. Has he been checked out by an endocrinologist to see if it is him or the medications that cause this? It wouldn't help the lying but it would rule out a number of problems.

    For the lying you need to decide what basket it is on. Maybe give him a fine for tossing his lunch (the cost of the materials at LEAST) and game time or other books or even cash. depends on what motivates him best. If you do that you will need to be super vigilant because he will toss it at school or almost anywhere. You will have to be as consistent as you can possible be.

    Or you can decide to ignore it. Then you will get cheaper stuff for lunches and just ignore his mood when he goes to school. It will put the responsibility on HIS shoulders. Won't be easy but it IS doable. Maybe tie his next day's money to whether he ate today. If he skips breakfast and lunch then he gets less money. If he is grouchy and cranky because he didn't eat, well, that is his problem and will result in less of his money.

    I hope you can find a solution soon.
  13. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Thanks everyone :)

    He made his own lunch today -- consisted of a pb sandwich and that's it. :( He said he didn't feel good this morning when I woke him up (that's another self-care issue we'll tackle another day). I pointed out the bags and boxes of snack foods on the floor by his bed and said that maybe that had something to do with it. Then I asked him what he planned to do. Then after a little moaning and grumbling, he got up. He was running late already. Got dressed, took his medications, put his patch on, made the sandwich. Then I mentioned that he hadn't eaten anything yet for breakfast -- he growled that he didn't have time. So I suggested he take one of the giant Costco muffins we have -- which he did and put in a sandwich bag. We get in the car and he just closes his eyes and wants to sleep, complains he's sore and tired from lacrosse and having to get up for zero period 4 out of the five days this week (one of them was extra for missing homework). I remind him that he has time to take a few bites of the muffin so that he doesn't feel like crud ALL morning. And I said that he probably also wouldn't feel so exhausted if he ate more food during the day. So he grumbles and takes a few bites by the time we get to the school.

    I pick him up in about an hour before taking him to lacrosse at 2:30. I'm toying with the idea of making him a tuna sandwich so he doesn't collapse at practice :) I'll wager he ate only half the sandwich he made this morning and probably none of the muffin. He sure seems to be one of the learn-it-the-hard-way types the older he gets. It's a shame, because he'd suffer a lot less if he'd just listen to a few of the adults in his life.
  14. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    P.S. Since I had difficult child 1 make his lunch today, I decided to try this out on difficult child 2, who is a much more cooperative kid anyway. He had been talking yesterday about what he wanted for lunch today. So I supervised from a distance and he went about preparing his meal. He really did a great job, and I congratulated him on it :) So maybe I'll learn a little something from the older one, like how I probably should have started him on this sooner.