Eating like a Bird

When I was little, my mom and dad used to call me “The Bird.” I would go around and beg for food from them, making this “uh uh” sound until they fed me. I can get my own food now, but sometimes if my mom has just made a cheese quesadilla, I find the “uh uh” noise is back. We’re always our parents children, right?

Reading the story today about Alicia Silverstone feeding her son mouth to mouth like a baby bird, I was caught by all the remarks of people saying “gross” and “eww.” Maybe it’s just the mom in me, but I’m not grossed out. In fact, it takes a lot to gross me out.

The story references a 2009 research paper that says chewing up your baby’s food first before feeding it to them can actually boost your child’s immunity. A conflicting comment in the article says Silverstone could pass germs or dental disease on to her baby. Give me a break.

Okay folks- honesty time here. How many of you have never, ever bitten something in half for your child when you didn’t have a knife? Or even when you did have a knife but decided it was quicker that way… How many of you have ever shared a drink with a child? Back wash city! What about eating off the same spoon? It’s ludicrous to think parents aren’t going to share germs with their kids at some point. Hell, they share enough with us!

Is pre-chewing your child’s food disgusting? I’m reserving judgement. I’m a big fan of the “ten second rule” and if that’s disgusting, so be it. Interested to hear your thoughts.


22 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Wendy
    Mar 28, 2012 @ 17:15:47

    I was raised by a village. One of my many traditions and customs includes feeding the baby, OMG! is that ok? Yes, I do the same and my children have beautiful healthy disease-free teeth and great nutrition!


  2. Melody Ham
    Mar 28, 2012 @ 17:22:05

    I did that with my grand -daughter. Untill her teeth came in and she bit my tongue one. ouch. its not gross. its love you are feeding them food that they can’t shew up yet. so you have to do it for them. I think its cute and loving. Good job momma


  3. Tara
    Mar 28, 2012 @ 17:22:31

    I kiss my son on the mouth and have been the receiver of some very sloppy kisses from him. I’ve definitely bitten bites off for him and he’s shoved things in my mouth trying to share also. I am not grossed out at all. to each their own. I am certain she is not harming him, in fact I bet they share a serious bond. she’s a very earthy kinda girl, she’s vegan n I’m not shocked or anything. I hadn’t considered feeding my baby in this way before but maybe I would in the future? idk doesn’t seem like it should be a huge deal.


  4. Maria
    Mar 28, 2012 @ 17:44:27

    There is a huge difference between sharing a spoon, biting off a chunk and actually chewing a mouthful of food to give another person. It’s especially inappropriate to have a child retrieve food out of anyone else’s mouth, even a parent. Remember a parent’s #1 goal is to raise a healthy and functional child to survive on their own in society (adulthood). This is socially unacceptable behavior so why partake it in? The child is now and forever labeled the child who ate food out of his mother’s mouth….


    • Mom Land
      Mar 28, 2012 @ 20:37:45

      Maria, that is true. Bear Blu ( I think that’s his name ) will probably forever be labeled for that. But, then again, he’s also a celebrity kid so he was bound to end up in the tabloids anyway…


  5. Elizabeth
    Mar 28, 2012 @ 17:50:17

    I did this ALL the time with my three kids! Would you rather they choke on a piece of steak cut to large? Or choke on a fish bone that could easily be found by running it first through my teeth? It’s bonding, my kids were all breast fed and it was only natural that they continued getting food from their mom.


    • Mom Land
      Mar 28, 2012 @ 20:38:55

      Elizabeth, Hadn’t thought about the fish bone thing! But we have had our share of food that was too big. You think you cut it up small enough, but even my six year old still gags on steak sometimes.


  6. Becky
    Mar 28, 2012 @ 18:26:43

    I chewed my son’s food more than once. I don’t think it’s gross. Even if it is, I’d rather do something gross than have him choke to death when he’s learning the chew and swallow mechanics.


  7. Jenny
    Mar 28, 2012 @ 18:36:38

    I don’t find it gross. I did that with my son when he started eating solids. Still do sometimes ifit has a tougher texture like some pizzas. I plan on doing it with my twin daughters when they’re ready. My family has been doing it for a very long time. My parents did that to me and my siblings. My family will continue to do it, even in public. Bravo Alicia!


    • Mom Land
      Mar 28, 2012 @ 20:40:35

      Jenny, I thought it was brave of her too to share that with the world. I feel bad she’s being so made fun of for it. I was especially annoyed when articles referred to it as “dangerous.” Really?!


      • Jenny
        Mar 28, 2012 @ 21:17:43

        I agree. It’s not dangerous, if anything their immune systems will get better. What did families do before there was jarred baby food? Before western civilization? They chewed their food for babies/toddlers.

      • Mom Land
        Mar 28, 2012 @ 22:07:29

        Exactly. We seem to have forgotten our roots.

  8. bill
    Mar 28, 2012 @ 20:03:08

    At first blush it seems gross but when you think about it i’ve done way worse.


  9. Tiffany
    Mar 29, 2012 @ 08:22:29

    I don’t think its gross at all. I’ve chewed food for all my babies when they were first starting solids. And as far as the 10 second rule, in our house we’ve said (only somewhat jokingly) its a 5 second rule, 10 if we just swept the floor, 20 if we just mopped too!


  10. Ruth Ann Kunnuk
    Apr 01, 2012 @ 16:04:12

    This is not new news at all. People in the villages have fed their children this way since the beginning of time. What else could they do? No Gerbers, No food processors, no blenders or grinders and no store down the road. Makes good sense for healthy and safe eating for babies after mother’s milk.


    • Mom Land
      Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:05:26

      Ruth, That’s kind of where I was coming from. I feel bad she’s gotten so much negative feedback for doing something that seems so natural. In fact, I just bit off a chunk of a hot dog at Costco this weekend and fed it to my toddler. Then, I looked around, wondering if anyone was watching me. Never worried about that before…


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