It started out, as one might expect, with French fries.
We thought nothing of it at the time – no big deal, it’s just a little ketchup for dipping. Little did we know that we were complicit in providing her with this powerful “gateway” food.
Soon it was a bit more ketchup for her fries, then a bit more. And before long, she was dipping a whole lot more than just French fries. First it was chicken fingers, then hot dogs and hamburgers, then it was vegetables and . . . sorry, this is hard for me . . . then it was pizza.
“Please Mom, just a little more? Just one more shot? Please Daddy? I just need one more dip. I love you!”
Then things just escalated. She wasn’t even eating the French fries anymore – they had become little more than a carrier – just a way for her to scoop out a big red blob of the day’s fix.
She’s been “riding the red dragon” for almost three years now, and if we don’t get her help soon, I can’t even imagine how many gallons of ketchup her and those “friends” of hers are going to go through at her sixth birthday party.
We considered making her go cold turkey, but she’d just find a way to dip that too.
We even thought about taking her to one of these transitional treatment centres – you know, the ones that get them off the ketchup but get them started on tomato juice – but I’m just not sure that’s better!
We’ll keep you updated on our progress as we tackle this challenge. Until then . . . you would be wise to hide your tomatoes.
Before I had kids I thought that children should eat well-rounded, balanced meals. I did not realize that a three year old eating anything is in itself a victory.
Four french fries dipped in 8 tablespoons of ketchup? Victory. Peanut butter toast dipped in ketchup? Victory. Ketchup with a spoon? You’d better believe it . . . that’s a bloody victory and don’t ever let anybody tell you different.