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frazzledmum

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Reply with quote  #1 
So, over Christmas we were told to be aware that with a lot of food around and less routine D was likely to be more anxious and so to relax a bit with the eating and enjoy some quality family time. To be fair, she ate mince pies, sweets and chocolate biscuits, but not in great amounts. Her mealtimes have been all over the place (due to being away with family etc) and I have been trying to keep track of what she's been eating -making me very anxious. 
Now we need to get back on track, but as things have been relaxed a bit, she is now fighting hard to keep it that way, saying things like 'That's it, I've had enough' and 'I am not eating anymore' or 'well if you like, I won't eat anything at all'. The best one is 'I am eating freely, like everyone else like Therapist said' (yes he did, but in a context where healthy people don't monitor everything they eat all the time and eat different amounts each day).
I have tried the 'you need to finish everything', 'when you finish, then we can do...', but she is not having any of it. I have also caught her pouring her ensure down the sink.
She also does not want a meal plan as she finds it 'too restrictive' (possibly an ED ploy so she can get away with eating less?), but for me, it is so much harder to keep on top of what she does and doesn't eat without a plan of some description- for those of you who ditched the meal plans, what did you do?
We see her therapist on Wednesday and I am sure she has lost weight again.
She did confide in me that she is very frightened of food, but couldn't tell me what she thinks it might do to her and also to her sister that she is 'allowed to eat the same as the day before but no more, and preferably less. If you can survive on the amount you ate the day before you should eat less today'.
Any advice welcome, and I wish you all the best for a healthy 2018.
tina72

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Reply with quote  #2 
Hi frazzledmum,
I would possibly say something like "now Christmas and New Year are gone and we go back to the plan". You will have to fight this through but ED tries to get you out at the moment and you must show who the boss is. Eating is necessary and the amount is needed.
My d didn´t want to have a strict meal plan and so we did something individual. We have fixed amounts on breakfast, snack and supper and she can choose between 2 (then 3, now more) varieties. Lunch is planned on sunday for the whole coming week. She can choose what I will cook and I choose the amount to plate. Every week includes at least one fear food which is done again in the next weeks.
Without a plan you will not know if she ate enough. She needs the routine of eating regularly and at least every 4-5 hours.
You will get back on track, just be consequent.
Tina72
scaredmom

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Reply with quote  #3 
Hi frazzledmum,

I echo what tina said. The concern I have is that is you have seen her throw away some of her ensure, do you give it to her again? I would suggest that you go  "back to square one" and replate if needed. It sounds like her ED voice is very active with what she is saying to her sister about decreasing the food the next day. I would try to reassure her that you know best what is good for her and that she does not need to be afraid and you will take care of her. That may help her anxiety and show her that you are in charge. I know she does not want a meal plan per se, but you will need to just feed her whatever plan you have in mind. It may help you to have your own plan and you don't need to share it with her...

You will get back on track soon. Persevere
All my support


mjkz

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Reply with quote  #4 
I totally agree with Tina and scaredmom.  The holidays are over and you get back to the way things were prior.  One of the hard things I think about the holidays is letting the schedule get screwy and making exceptions because it is the holidays.  I found it much easier not to make any exceptions.  The expectations were the same no matter what time of year or time of day, etc.
Foodsupport_AUS

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Reply with quote  #5 
It sounds as though her eating disorder has got a lot stronger over the last week. As you say this may be because she has lost weight. Some with an eating disorder like a meal plan because of the order it brings to their lives, that in itself can also be a trap. The trap of no plan is left to their own devices someone with an active eating disorder will always struggle to feed themselves. It requires you to be in charge.

How you go from here is up to you, but it does sound as though you are being hoodwinked by her ED. If at all possible, take charge, insist that you do know what you are doing, you can see she is anxious around food and you know that if she is to get better she needs to eat fully what you prepare. Fake it till you make it. If it is easier for you, you can follow a plan. You don't have to tell her, or you can bring her in on this. That plan has to have room for increasing, as so often requirements increase over time.

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D diagnosed restrictive AN June 2010 age 13.5. Weight restored July 2012. Relapse and now clawing our way back. Treatment: multiple hospitalisations and individual and family therapy.
frazzledmum

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Reply with quote  #6 
Thank you for all your replies. And you have all confirmed what I thought, it's hard to trust yourself when you are being led a merry dance.
Yes, she gets another ensure when I have caught her tipping it down the sink, though she is really not happy about it. Just makes me wonder how many times she has done it and I've not noticed.
Yesterday she was out with her sister and promised to have lunch, it turned out she didn't so I got her to drink another ensure, but then she self harmed, she said it was the 3rd time she had done it. Her wounds are very superficial, but what now? 
I think I am about to seriously lose the plot.....
Torie

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by frazzledmum
for those of you who ditched the meal plans, what did you do?


Like my mother before me, I have always plated the food for the whole family.  WHen D was ill, I plated her meal relative to a different family member - a smidgen less than Person A or a dollop more than Person B.  I had some mental guidelines - lunch was 5 items (caloric beverage, slab of meat the size of my palm, serving of chips or other snack food, fruit or veggie item, and dessert item, with a sandwich counting as two items), but mostly I learned to eyeball it.

Arguing with ED is exhausting.  I borrowed a page from the veterans here and developed a few general purpose mantras: "I'm your mom; I know exactly what you need," "I'm so sorry this is hard; please take a bite," "It isn't normal to x, y, z; please a,b,c," whatever.   It was oddly helpful not to have to think of a response each time, but to just put the record on replay.

Hang in there.  You can do this.  xx

-Torie

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mjkz

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Reply with quote  #8 
Quote:
Her wounds are very superficial, but what now? 
I think I am about to seriously lose the plot.....


You keep going forward the same way.  ED will find any way to get out of eating and self harm is a big one that often pops up.  I found that when my daughter was self harming, I gave her no alone time at all.  She was not allowed to be out of my sight even to use the bathroom and all sharps were locked up.  I never stopped giving her fear foods or any foods in response to self harm.  I made the consequences of self harming make a big difference in her life.  She was not allowed out i.e. with sister for anything without me.  If she is having this much trouble with eating, I would not allow her to have meals anywhere but home or with you.  ED is going to tell you what you want to hear so your daughter (who probably has been completely and at times brutally honest all her life) will say she will eat but she is not able to comply right now.  I truly believed my daughter thought she would be able to do it but when it came to actually following through, she just couldn't.  Better to just not even tempt ED to lie.
frazzledmum

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Reply with quote  #9 
So we had our first appointment since Christmas yesterday. D has lost weight again and were told that they are seriously looking into hopitalising her, especially after I told them about the self harm and some of her thoughts. Dr said it was worrying.

Anyway, today D has said that she really doesn't want to go into hospital as they just want to stuff her with food and she will do all she can to stay at home. As for me, I am in 2 minds. Maybe hospital will kick start her recovery as some people on this forum have found. Maybe now is a better time for her to be in hospital as she will turn 18 in May and then we won't be able to get her there as easily. Maybe there are no beds and they are just bluffing again. Maybe she will eat enough to stay out of hospital and then we will go back to square one.

What do you all think?- I am thinking about the short and long term here.
frazzledmum

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Reply with quote  #10 
So, just had an interesting conversation with D, I asked her what she meant by 'she will do all she can to stay out of hospital this week' and she said she wasn't sure. I told her that even if she gains weight they still might admit her due to the length of time she will have been at a low weight, the self harm, and her blood test results.

Then she said all she has to do is stay out of hospital until her 18th birthday as after that she will not have to do anything or see any doctors. I know from being on here that we can use some leverage (like:go live elsewhere then)to get her to cooperate but didn't feel that tonight was the time to mention it.

I am just worried about the way her thought process is going with this.
Kali

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Reply with quote  #11 
Hi Frazzledmum,

Quote:
Then she said all she has to do is stay out of hospital until her 18th birthday as after that she will not have to do anything or see any doctors. 


I think this says it all, that she thinks she will be able to be treatment resistant when she turns 18. If her team is offering her a bed and thinks that it would be the appropriate level of care, and she is still losing weight at home and self harming, I would advise you to think about doing it sooner rather than later. We signed our d. into the hospital 2 weeks before she turned 18. I have never regretted it.

Sorry you find yourself in this situation but I'm sure some other parents will be along with good advice soon.

Kali





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beans

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Reply with quote  #12 
Hi Frazzled, I am no expert, but I know this ED demon talks a good talk. It will attempt to negotiate and manipulate. You daughter has limited insight right now but is also very smart. Don’t listen to her thought process. Please listen to you gut and not the disease.

Also, if my daughter self harmed our DBT therapist suggested we go straight to the emergency room. If she refuses we call for an ambulance.

My girl is turning 16. I want to do everything I can do for her now. 18 comes up so fast.

You are in my prayers, Beans


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mjkz

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Reply with quote  #13 
Honestly things will change when she turns 18 so if you can get a bed now and get her to a good place prior to that, I'd jump at the chance.  You can still get treatment for a YA 18 and over but there are a lot more hoops to jump through and it is much harder.
Foodsupport_AUS

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Reply with quote  #14 
Quote: Anyway, today D has said that she really doesn't want to go into hospital as they just want to stuff her with food and she will do all she can to stay at home.

Her ED is being very honest with you here. She will do all she can to stay out of hospital, but what she really needs is the stuffing with food. Her ED is trying to avoid this as much as possible, to divert you from that magic age 18 when it really will be harder to obtain treatment, and you will have a lot less say in this.

So if she really wants to avoid hospitalisation she needs to eat as much at home as she would in hospital. She needs you to be able to keep her safe from the self harming. If that is not possible, she really would be better off there.

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D diagnosed restrictive AN June 2010 age 13.5. Weight restored July 2012. Relapse and now clawing our way back. Treatment: multiple hospitalisations and individual and family therapy.
Torie

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Reply with quote  #15 
What the others said.  Your d needs 3 meals every day and 2 or three snacks ... enough calories to gain 1/2 to 1 kilo each week (1 to 2 pounds).  If that can happen at home, great, but if you can't keep her from cheating things down, off to hospital for her would be my vote. And if she needs hospital, the sooner the better.  xx

-Torie

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"We are angels of hope, of healing, and of light. Darkness flees from us." -YP 
tina72

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Reply with quote  #16 
If she just want to avoid hospital because she things they will stuff her with food than ED doesn´t want to go to the hospital because ED thinks that you are weaker and will not take refeeding that serious than in hospital. So ED will need to learn that at home she will be stuffed with food the same way as in hospital...[wink] She must see that not eating is no option. No way.

If she thinks she can do anything she wants after her 18th birthday you might need to tell her that this might not really be true. I don´t know anything about the legal situation in your country but here in Germany there are legal right that you lose your self-determination right if you have a serious mental illness and harm yourself so seriously that you could die. Here the court will get her to hospital and get her tube feeded if needed because of an emergency case for example. My d got 18 this week and we had to sign a legal contract with her that we are in charge if she is that sick that she cannot make healthy decisions. So if your d gets adult this year, try to inform yourself what possibilities you have. Here nobody is legally allowed to let himself starve. If you have a mental illness, you lose the right to make decisions very quickly.

So please try to get as much weight on as possible to give her a more healthy state when she turns 18. I am glad that my d is WR for 6 months now and knows that we saved her life and is compliant about keeping us in charge for health decisions. Set yourself a time line. If you don´t see any change in refeeding up to than, take the start at hospital. If you are in good hands, that could help a lot.
Send you a big hug and a lot of power!
Tina72
Torie

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Reply with quote  #17 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tina72
So ED will need to learn that at home she will be stuffed with food the same way as in hospital.


LOVE THAT!  xx

-Torie

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"We are angels of hope, of healing, and of light. Darkness flees from us." -YP 
frazzledmum

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Reply with quote  #18 
Thank you for all the replies.
I phoned the EDService and told them what D had said to me so they can take it all into consideration when making the decision to admit her or not, as I felt they should know what her thought process is. She now refers to the Dr as 'The Spymaster' so she still has a sense of humour.
To be fair to her, she has eaten more over the past couple of days (large pieces of Christmas cake!) so she is proving she can do it when it suits her.
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