I’ve made plenty of references to it before, but the Monster is a picky eater.
We’ve gotten accustomed to the fact that his choice of cuisine’s been narrowed significantly over the years. When he was a baby, he ate just about anything put in front of him… but today, our dining out is limited to places where they serve things he’ll eat.
So… a lot of places have had to be ruled out for dining out. The Monster, typically, can be counted on to eat chicken nuggets or fingers, or pizza when we’re out, so that pretty much limits us to family restaurants. (Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing with a child with Autism who is sensory seeking rather than sensory adverse – it means the noise covers up when he starts getting excited, and not too many folks look over at us if he’s getting louder for a while.) We did manage to get to a Chinese buffet last week for the wife’s birthday, since they had both chicken and pizza, but… let’s just say that we’re not about to go out for sushi any time soon.
One of the places that is on our list of places we can go is Red Robin. I mean, okay, it’s a chain burger place, yes. But it’s got a lot of things going for it:
- It’s a family establishment. I’ve yet to be there with the kids and have anyone get annoyed when they’re making a fuss.
- They serve chicken fingers and pizza on the kids’ menu. Plus, they have bottomless french fries, which is good for stuffing both kids full.
- They have enough food selections to keep the wife and me interested, even if we do tend to order the same thing each time (and they have a decent beer selection).
- They seem to be everywhere we go. There are several here in Baltimore, one or two that we know of on our route to/from my parents’ houses, and one around the corner from Sesame Place.
As usual, we made sure that the Monster knew where we were going to eat, and talked about going out to dinner, things like that. And then when we got settled, he surprised us… and asked for a hamburger.
Now, the Monster’s not big on sandwiches. We’ve just only recently, as mentioned a while back, gotten him back to eating peanut butter sandwiches at home (without jelly). He more often than not pulls the hot dog off the bun before eating each. When he was younger, he used to eat hamburgers about the same way. So we asked again if he was sure, and he affirmed that he wanted the hamburger, so we got it for him.
And he ate it.
No ketchup, no mustard, no toppings of any kind, but he ate it like a normal person.
I’m not holding out too much hope that this is the start of a trend, but it’s something at least.