Just now I was writing a post and about to publish and I wanted to link back to previous content, but there wasn’t any content on the topic I was trying to link to! I can’t believe I’ve never posted on the Division of Responsibility before – shocking!
For me it really is shocking because I teach about it so much that I can’t believe I haven’t expounded on it here. But have no fear, you’re in luck because today is the day. Now I will have content to link to!
What the heck of the Division of Responsibility (DOR)?
It’s only the best advice you’ll ever get when it comes to feeding your children. I wish I could say that it was coined and created by me, but not a chance. That would be Ellyn Satter who is the dietitians/parents/pediatricians guru for all things feeding. Here is the DOR in a nutshell:
Parents have responsibilities when it comes to feeding their children. They are:
- determine the WHAT of feeding. WHAT will you serve?
- determine the WHEN of feeding. WHEN will meals and snacks be?
- determine the WHERE of feeding. WHERE will you feed your kids?
Children have responsibilities when it comes to eating. They are:
- to decide HOW MUCH to eat
- to decide WHETHER or NOT to eat
As long as the lines of the DOR are kept meal time is a happy affair.
When the lines are blurred
You will know when you aren’t following the DOR because you will feel out of control. Meals might look something like this:
- You cook one meal and the kids eat cereal.
- You cook four meals – one for each kid.
- You let the kids choose their meals and snacks.
- Kids go the the fridge whenever they want. They ruin their appetite and skip dinner.
- Kids eat meals in their room.
- Kids eat meals in front of the TV.
- Your kids eat a total of 5 foods, the same 5 every day.
- Veggies don’t end up on your kids’ plates because they don’t like vegetables.
- You have to fight with your kids to get them to eat.
- You have to punish or reward your kids to get them to eat.
When the lines are clearly defined
Your mealtimes will look something like this:
- Everyone will be sitting at the table.
- There will be a variety of foods available, but only 1 main meal.
- Kids will be allowed to eat what they want and leave what they don’t.
- Kids will eat until they are full.
- Everyone will come to the table hungry.
- No one is punished for not eating. Their consequence is an empty belly.
- No one is rewarded for eating.
- Conversation is light and pleasant.
- Everyone has at least one fruit or vegetable on their plate. They don’t have to eat it.
- There will be at least 1 food on the table that each child will recognize as something they like. For one kid that might be milk, another it’s bread, another hot dogs and still another sliced apples.
I’ll write much more on this and on the topic of Feeding Your Family and Loving It in the coming weeks.