Make One Dinner

Make One Dinner

06/14/2024
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Don’t make multiple meals for dinner.

You want to have salad for dinner. Your partner wants to have hamburgers. And your child only wants macaroni and cheese. If you’re a parent and haven’t found yourself in this situation before, then it’s only a matter of time before you do. Not everyone is going to agree on what they want each night for dinner, and if you have a picky eater, then you’ll be tempted to make multiple meals.

Some kids are better than others - they’ll try most anything that you put in front of them. They may not love it, but at least they’ll try it. Most kids aren’t that great though (especially younger ones), and there will be nights where you’ll simply have had enough of their whining about food. They will refuse to eat what you prepare, and they’ll scream for what they want, and just giving it to them is the easiest way forward.

There’s nothing terribly wrong with making a meal for your child that is different than your own on occasion - you may want to reward them with one of their favorite foods, and it may be something that you don’t like. This only turns into a problem if you’re always giving into them and making them a separate meal from the one that you eat. Don’t make a habit out of making them something different.

The first problem is that you’re going to turn your child into a very picky eater by only giving them the foods that they like all the time. If you don’t make them decide between going without dinner and trying something new, they’ll never learn that there are other foods that are good besides the ones they already like. As they get older, it will be harder for them to want to try new foods.

The second problem is that you’re going to burn yourself out trying to make multiple meals throughout the week. If you’re always trying to make 2 or 3 different meals every single night, then you’ll find that you don’t have any time to do other things that you may want to do. You’ll be using up all of your free time on meals for the family rather than on finding time to keep yourself rested and happy.

While you shouldn’t make more than one meal for dinner, you should let your partner or child make a meal of their own if they want to and are able. Obviously, you shouldn’t let them eat whatever they want all of the time, but if the request is something reasonable then let them go for it. If your partner wants something completely different, then they can make it themselves - no reason you should make the family meal and something for them.

Have your child help to make dinner when you can. It may take a little bit longer to get it done, but your child will also be more invested in the meal. They’ll remember cutting up the vegetables or mixing up the meal. You can talk up how delicious the meal will be as you prepare it, and when it comes time to eat, they’ll have the memories of working with you on it. It can go a long way in helping them want to eat it.

Don’t make multiple meals for dinner - let your child choose to eat or not, but don’t give in by making them something separate from the rest of the family.

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