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  Solids – Baby trying to take charge
I find meal time a real trial because baby really wants to be in charge of the process. She keeps getting hold of the spoon and smearing food everywhere. It seems as though more gets messed and wasted than actually eaten. Please help me cope with this!

Baby wanting to be in charge is going to be a situation you will encounter increasingly often from here on. The only way to survive is to adopt clever strategies. You need to start be giving baby a little spoon of her own. If you are lucky then that will be enough to keep her busy while you get a bit of food in her mouth. Putting a little bit of food onto the high chair table for her to get engrossed in can also provide an excellent distraction.

If that is not successful, then perhaps baby could have some finger foods of her own to engross her while you get the odd mouthful in. If you are really unlucky, then baby will insist on feeding herself. In this case, you may resort to a large plastic sheet around the feeding station, and remind yourself that your baby will master the skill of feeding herself very quickly!

The one thing that you should not allow is that meal time becomes just another game. Either baby allows you to feed her, or feeds herself, and if neither of those things are happening you should bring the meal to a close. Do not get cross with baby. Employ every ounce of patience you can muster in order to prevent feeding from becoming a battle.

See also:

Solids - Amount

Solids - Avoid in first year

Solids - Best age to start

Solids - Changing her mind about a food

Solids - Feeding chair

Solids - First foods

Solids - Getting started

Solids - Keeping clean

Solids - Is baby ready?

Solids - Rice Cereal

Solids - Salt content of food

Solids - Using a bottle for solids

Solids - Very short feeds

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