How To Get Your Kid To Stop Eating His/Hers Nose Boogers

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How To Get Your Kid To Stop Eating His/Hers Nose Boogers

Yeah, you read that right. But don’t go vomit just yet, it’s a serious topic.

You see, motherhood is not always pink and shiny. Even when the subject is a cute little girl in a cute purple skirt.

We went for a walk a few days ago. We were on our way home when I noticed that it was kind of quiet. I was enjoying the warm sun when I realized Maya wasn’t talking up a storm next to me. That meant something was wrong.

I looked behind me. She was standing still about 20 feet away with a weird expression on he face.

“Come on Maya, what’s wrong?” I asked.

“I am just eating my boogers mommy,” she replied.

“You WHAT??? Yuck, Maya! Disgusting! Awful! Don’t do that!” I said while fighting a gag reflex.

“But why?” She asked innocently.

Now… I am a firm believer in giving kids (in all ages) the same respect and treatment that you expect as an adult, and as an adult I would not expect someone to give me the because-I-said-so answer when I ask why. I also believe that kids have to understand what’s the reason behind a rule; otherwise they won’t follow it. So even though I REALLY wanted to say “because I said so,” close the subject, pretend like it never happened and keep walking, I stopped myself and thought for a moment.

How in hell should I explain a 3.5 years old not to eat her nose boogers in a way that will make sense to her?

How To Get Your Kid To Stop Eating His/Hers Nose Boogers

And then it dawned on me…

“Nose boogers are the garbage of our nose,” I said. “Do we eat garbage?”

“No,” said Maya. I could see her brain was working….

“Are you a raccoon?” I added to help her understand better.

“No, mommy! You are silly, I am not a raccoon, I am Maya!” she exclaimed.

“Right, you are Maya, and we are people, and we don’t eat garbage, ok?”

“Ok, but remember that after winter Spring comes and the flowers will grow and we can pick them and take them home and then our home will be beautiful?” So the rambling resumed, and we kept on walking.

For now it works, she didn’t do the yucky thing again, but if she will, I’ll just remind her that she is not a raccoon.

I was debating if I should post this, after all she might get married one day, and if her future husband reads this things might get messy….

But if you are expecting a baby anytime soon, I feel obligated to give you a sample of what you are getting into. If you are already a mother. you probably nodded while reading this and maybe the raccoon analogy will help you one day. And if you consider having kids I hope you decide that you should because they really are cute and awesome!

Most of the time…

Besides, let’s be honest here for a minute shall we? We all sampled our boogers at one time or another….

I know you did too!

Try to remember,

Or if you rather,

Go ask your mother!  πŸ˜‰

How To Get Your Kid To Stop Eating His/Hers Nose Boogers.

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31 thoughts on “How To Get Your Kid To Stop Eating His/Hers Nose Boogers”

  1. Some…ahem…food for thought.

    Turns out, there may be a solid scientific purpose behind the eating of nose boogers in young’uns. Turns out, according to a biochemist in Canada, boogers have a flavor designed by nature to tempt kids to eat them, because eating boogers helps introduce external pathogens in small amounts to the body to train the immune system.

    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/05/13/nose-picking.aspx

    It’s still gross, but it might be just what nature intended! πŸ˜‰

    1. Yep, we follow this line of scientific thinking. We also believe in bodily autonomy. I find it amusing that you wouldn’t tell an adult, because I said so, yet you’re happy to tell your child a bunch of rubbish to shame her into not picking her nose! It’s her nose, her boogies, let her be. You can kindly give her the information that’s accurate, you can also tell her that society frowns on nose picking and eating and leave it there. If you’re not appreciating her habit, look the other way. It doesn’t really affect you, and after all, would you shame an adult to not do the same, or would you politely just look away?

      1. I remember when I was growing up that I always wanted to make my own decisions. If an adult will try to force something on me, I’ll do the exact opposite on purpose (especially my mom). But if they will come and talk to me like an adult and give me suggestions, I will consider them and sometimes follow.
        I try to remember this when I talk to my kids. I agree with you very much.

  2. I had to chuckle a little at this post. I love your analogy! I will keep this in mind when speaking to my son, who is the same age as your daughter.

    Erica
    We Three Crabs

  3. This is a great post and too close to my own home! I have all boys and just the other day we had an event like this happen. Instead of it being a teachable moment it turned into laughter….I just hope I don’t encounter it again in church or something!

  4. Ah! Ick! I have been fortunate enough not to be raising a booger-eater–not saying they’ve never *picked* their noses, just that I’ve never seen them *eat* the fruits of their labor! My niece on the other hand… Well, let’s just say that I’ll be sharing this (along with Lauren’s comment) with my sister-in-law! πŸ˜‰
    ~ Christine

  5. My kids don’t eat them (at least not that I’ve seen) they just wipe them on the wall!!! UGH! You’d think after scrubbing walls clean multiple times they’d stop. But no. And my girlie is the worst one of the bunch. ick. Thanks for sharing (maybe) via Family fun Friday.

    1. My friend told me it is not going to work with boys because they don’t “see” garbage as girls do. I told her that if her son decides he wants to be a raccoon and eat his boogers then I will tell him he is going to have to sleep outside because raccoons don’t sleep in beds inside the house. And that it is really cold outside. And that he can’t have any toys because raccoons don’t have toys. And so on…. You get the point… Good luck!

    1. Yes, I do the same things about germs. My girl doesn’t like to wash her hands. I tell her stories about good germs and bad germs all the time, it works.

  6. OMG, so happy to find your blog post. Thanks a lot for your advice about the garbage, i will try with my two monkeys very soon.
    I recently download a small kids book from amazon about a little sorcerer who eats her boogers. At the end of the story we find out that because of this behavior she has a big toad in her throat! We laughed a lot together but he asked me about the toad today and i noticed that so far he does not grab in his little nose πŸ˜‰ . Here is the book http://goo.gl/fdFmnz

    Thanks again.

  7. My husband and I were HORRIFIED this morning when our 4 year old son looked at us and picked him nose and **gasp** ate it and laughed. We FREAKED. “But Wesley picks his nose and eats it.” He said. (Wesley is a boy at his preschool). We just kinda stuck with the “freaking the F out” method for this morning. If it happens again I will take you approach! Thank you for sharing!

  8. When my daughter was about 2 years old, I used to keep a box of tissues by her bedside so she would have something to wipe her boogers on (besides the wall) but I ended up removing the tissues from her room because she was just tearing them to shreds. I couple weeks went by and I asked her “hey, where are you putting your boogers now?” And she told me “between my toes! “. Like “duh, isn’t that what they are there for?” Lol!

  9. Oh my goodness. Seriously, doesn’t anyone find anything PRIVATE any longer? I’m sure your daughter will so appreciate that you posted this on the internet with a big picture of her when she’s sixteen and her friends find it. How thoughtful and considerate of you.

  10. LOL.
    I never ate mine nor do I recall my daughter doing either. Thank goodness! My sister on the other hand used to stick rocks down into in her ears and stuff hamburger in her belly button. Ugh. Weird.

  11. My son is 6 and I catch him eating his boogers all the time. Whenever I catch him and tell his older brother we would laugh and he would be so embarrass and cry, yet he do it time and time again. I just read your post and explain to him the same way you did to your daughter so let’s see if it works.

    1. It’s a habit, and most of the time it takes time to change habits. I found that I had to keep reminding my daughter over and over for a while but eventually she stopped. I guess it’s just part of growing up, no big deal. I think it’s important to not let them feel like they are less than others for doing that or that they are wrong, just find an explanation that they can grasp in their minds on why not to do it, laugh about it and go on. Before you know it this stage will pass too.

  12. I caught my grand doing it. She cried when I told her it was gross. I explained that it was waste that her body was removing, Just like poop, I then asked if she’d eat that. She was kinda shocked, so now we say nose poop should go in tissue .i pray it works!

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