F.E.A.S.T's Around The Dinner Table forum

Welcome to F.E.A.S.T's Around The Dinner Table forum. This is a free service provided for parents of those suffering from eating disorders. It is moderated by kind, experienced, parent caregivers trained to guide you in how to use the forum and how to find resources to help you support your family member. This forum is for parents of patients with all eating disorder diagnoses, all ages, around the world.

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 First post and a little background : our first child started anorexia at 11yo - we identified the problem really late, but we were lucky to live in Australia at this time and got a great support, went through the Maudsley therapy with the help of trained staff, and all has been on rails - from weight recovery to back to normal, our daughter left the program after 3 years with slow but regular improvements. She is now 5 years after the first medical appointment and no relapse. Seems to be happy, independant and positive now.

 Our issue is our second daughter (we have two, 14 and 16) started anorexia too during this summer. She is older, knows about anorexia and Maudsley (as she followed her sister treatment). and has a strong character. It's a different experience from the first one for us as we don't live in the same country and there is no Maudsley therapist here (the local hospital basically waits her weight loss to be enough to start an hospital treament over months, asking you in the mean time to help her to get better - with little or no support...).

 Is it possible to do the Maudsley therapy again by ourselves with our 2nd daughter ? (with no Maudsley experts - only regular medical checks) Does somebody has already experienced this ? Should we move ?

    Thanks for reading,


PS: our 2nd daughter is losing 1kg/week (...) - she refused milk based product, meat, anything fat or with too many calories, she is still eating by herself but it brings her lots of anxiety and she gets crazy after she ate a plate of food. She says she wants to gain weight to be authorized to do sports again, but reality is more complicated. Her actual goal is to stop loosing (not yet gaining) weight. There is a few positive points as she sometimes picks little piece of food beween the meals (a few almonds, ...)  + she cooks and eats what she cooks (ok that's also part of her way to control everything, I know). Seems things are getting worse (or up and down) as she gets now also very anxious when we fill her plate or if we cook without her being able to know or to see what we will eat next.


You absolutely can do this on your own, though it is hard, hard, hard.  You do have an advantage though; you have been through this before and helped your younger daughter into recovery.  I recommend that you get the book When Your Teen has an Eating Disorder by Lauren Muhlheim, which is the book I wished we'd had when our family began our journey 10 years ago. Eva Musby has great resources as well.  Not only videos that can help you as you work on nutritional rehabilitation for your d, but there are compassionate mediations that can help you as a caregiver to be as strong and supportive as you can be, in order to help your d.
You will need to take charge of meals and snacks and the resources above can aid you in this.  You will need medical supervision for weights and checking orthostatic blood pressure. 
I'm sure there will be others along shortly who can offer their experience and insight, which hopefully you can sift through and take what you think will be most useful for your family and your situation.

Sending warm support to you.
It is good to not only hope to be successful, but to expect it and accept it--Maya Angelou
Welcome. I am so sorry about the circumstances that have brought you here. Well done with your first d. 
As you have been very EDucated already you are in a good position to feed your child. The book sk8r31 has noted is very good. 

I do think you will require medical oversight for weekly weights and orthostatic blood pressure. 
Is your GP knowledgeable about eating disorders? I would recommend the AED guidelines. I will post shortly.

You ask if you should move. If you could get a reputable ED specialist via Skype or in person I do think that would be the best situation. That way you have a good knowledgeable support system and you will need it. Even if you already are strong from dealing with one child with ED, it is a demanding illness. 
I don’t know your work/life circumstances to know if you should move. That really is your decision. I know for myself I would want all the ED resources at hand if I were to do this again. 
Is your d medically stable? Has she been assessed by a doctor for her blood pressure, heart rate and her weight? 
I always try to ensure medical stability first. 
Sending my best
Please ask all the questions you have. We do wish to help as best as we can.
When within yourself you find the road, the right road will open.  (Dejan Stojanovic)

Food+more food+time+love+good professional help+ATDT+no exercise+ state not just weight+/- the "right" medicine= healing---> recovery(--->life without ED)
When within yourself you find the road, the right road will open.  (Dejan Stojanovic)

Food+more food+time+love+good professional help+ATDT+no exercise+ state not just weight+/- the "right" medicine= healing---> recovery(--->life without ED)
Hi there! We've  been doing refeeding (magic plate style) in our own for a few months now. Defenitively not easy but possible at least in our case. I don't think it would have been possible without this forum (I've read lots and lots of posts, all hall of fame, etc), Eva musby's book, videos, all tooth fairy has posted (an amazing quantity of resources), Tabitha farrar blog and videos, Dr. Pebbles blogs and many of other resources found in this forum. Also my husband is totally on board and I do have a very flexible job. My d had of course many " meltdowns" and I have been kicked and punched but nothing as severe as other kids and no compulsive exercise so far (knock on wood). So I think it really depends on your circumstances. I weight d at the pediatrician and also have support from another pediatrician who lives in the same country although not in the same city as us and is a member of FEAST so I feel supported. I hope this is somehow helpful
13 yo d started to eat "healthy" September 2018. We found ATDT and started refeeding at home march 2019. WR+ cushion June 2019.
I have found inner strenght, patience and compassion that I did not know I had.
Never retreat, never surrender
keep feeding
Thanks for your answers and support. I have some book on ED but not those ones - just bought the ebooks.
scaredmom, our daughter is medically stable (our first child was far more down 5 years ago when we realized her ED...) but her GP does not seem to be very aware - she is suppose to do the follow-up anyway (they actually do blood pressure, heart rate and her weight). I will try to provide her the guide very diplomatically. 
I believe I should find a remote expert, you could be right - I will start with our former Maudsley expert.

 I keep reading the forum.

Maybe you can have skype support from your former Maudsley experts? All you need is a GP that controls her health and tells her that she needs to eat what you serve and have a start. You know what to do. I would try it alone if needed. Nothing to lose in my eyes!
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.

I can't believe I asked this question three months ago ...  thank you all for your answers. It took us nearly 3 months to put things in place, our daughter can see a child psychiatrist, she started horse therapy (equitherapy), keep seeing her GP every week, and has a checkpoint at the hospital every month - we couldn't reproduce exactly the magic plate and the details of FBT at home, but we found a balance where she was eating sometimes more sometimes less. We even have skype sessions with our former Maudsley expert each Sunday since 3 weeks (she is doing micro-nutrition).

But here we are, every child is different, and we haven't been able to find the triggers to help our 2nd daughter to regain weight as we did for the 1st one, she is older, stronger will, hard to convince, violent if we ask too much. She is doing good but not good enough obviously, or we have been too slow.

Today the hospital asked us to hospitalize her, weight loss and other factors. They put in place the 'classic method' : weight contract, rest, no phone, limited contact with a first period with more isolation (no hospital school, 1 visit per week, ...). She should get there once they have a room available.

She is now very sad, feels like we abandon her or get ride of her. I believe every parent who eventually put her child in hospital had the same backslash from her. It's difficult to find the right words.

Hi Cyde,

You are right that every child is different. 

It is very hard to have our kids in hospital but it seems as if she needs it to get moving. 
You have been valiant in your efforts and really have worked so hard. Her ED seems to need more help and the team sounds quite prepared to ensure she gains weight while hospitalized.
Of course she (and you) are sad. This is a difficult time, I am sure.
Underneath it all I feel your d recognizes she needs more specialized care. 
I hope you are not feeling as if you are abandoning her. It is the illness that needs more help and you are doing what she needs to get better. 
I think you are brave and have a good plan in place.

How are you feeling? How can we support YOU? 
When within yourself you find the road, the right road will open.  (Dejan Stojanovic)

Food+more food+time+love+good professional help+ATDT+no exercise+ state not just weight+/- the "right" medicine= healing---> recovery(--->life without ED)