Here are a few tips that I learnt along the way....
You prepare meals
Do not allow your teen in the kitchen during meal prep
Your teen should not go grocery shopping.
Do not negotiate - whatever you serve has to be eaten
Use whatever leverage you have - phone, Internet, tv - whatever they hold dear is to be removed if they refuse to eat, until they have eaten. If they're older and are not financially independent, this is your leverage
Separate the two - Your teen is not the ED
Detach yourself from the situation during meals. Do not get drawn into emotional discussions. THIS IS NOT UP FOR NEGOTIATION
Remember that your teen wants to recover - the ED is stopping them
3 meals and 3 snacks per day (supervised) - do not deviate from this. Add time limits to the meals (as a guide/goal!). Ours (and the hospitals) was 30 mins for meals and 15 mins for snacks. In the early days this could extend A LOT. I made my teen's meal times the same as they'd be at school so that when she transitioned back to full time it would be easier and less anxiety provoking.
High calories are needed throughout refeeding with lots of full fat dairy. Some need as much as 6,000 cals with hyper metabolism, but the norm would be minimum 3500-4000 cals (for you to track not your child), wen needed 4000-5000 every single day, and still do in recovery.
When they know you will not negotiate, I promise you will see the weight lifted from their shoulders... If only for very short periods
BE THE CAGE that keeps ED away from your teen.
Be calm and consistent, consistent, consistent, confident, compassionate but FIRM!
Don't congratulate them after a meal or say 'well done' - just cheer inwardly! Likewise when (for girls) their period returns!
Recommended reading: 'Brave Girl Eating' by Harriet Brown
Be prepared for resistance, and lots of it! You will find your own way to manage this, but NEVER back down. Any compromise is a win for ED. Remember, you have to see the beast to slay beast!
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