An Open Letter to Picky Eater Parents

May 21, 2012


Dear Parents of Picky Eaters,


I am sorry for your troubles. I know how sick and tired you are of…

1.) making alternate meals like macaroni and cheese, chicken nuggets or pizza because your picky eater won’t eat the BBQ chicken, sweet potatoes and asparagus you made for the family. 2.) avoiding restaurants you love like Indian, Thai and Sushi because your picky eater will not eat a thing on the menu. 3.) putting on a Broadway show with all the singing, dancing and toys to get your picky eater to taste one little bite of steamed broccoli. 4.) bringing food with you to your friend’s homes since your picky eater will certainly eat nothing that they serve. 5.) dealing with a complete behavioral meltdown at meal time when you attempt to serve something new to your picky eater.

Your life doesn’t have to be like this. Your picky eater has all the power. And this needs to stop.


The truth of the matter is kids become picky because parents make them that way. You must take control of the situation with appropriate scheduling, meal preparation and behavioral guidelines and have an appreciation and understanding that missing meals and snacks is not harmful.


Feeding your child should be a pleasurable and fun experience. When it’s stressful and sad, then it’s time to get help.

Thinking of you,


About Melanie Silverman

Melanie is a pediatric registered dietitian nutritionist (RD) and a board certified lactation consultant (IBCLC) working primarily in pediatric nutrition for well over 15 years. She spent seven years as a clinical dietitian at The University of Chicago Medical Center in the neonatal intensive care unit, pediatric intensive care unit, adult and pediatric burn units, and high risk pediatric follow-up clinic. She also served as an adjunct faculty member at Loyola University Chicago. Melanie has presented at state and national meetings for the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN), March of Dimes, Prader-Willi California Foundation, Texas Prader-Willi Association, Oklahoma Prader Willi Syndrome Association, Foundation for Prader-Willi Research (FPWR) in the United States and Canada and the Prader-Willi Syndrome USA (PWSA). She worked hard for her Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry and Spanish from Indiana University and a Master’s degree in Clinical Nutrition from Rush-Presbyterian St. Luke’s Medical Center. A member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, California Dietetic Association, Pediatric Nutrition Practice Group, Women’s Health Group, Nutrition Entrepreneurs and an active member of the International Lactation Consultant Association.