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

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I’ve been on this forum for a few years (daughter diagnosed with anorexia, did FBT to restore eating) and am always thankful for the advice and help that I have received that has helped me to get my daughter to the place she is at now. The place she is at now is 18 years old, a freshman in college (lives 1 hour away and chooses all meals herself) She continues to gain weight, mood great, eating very large variety of foods. Truly, one of the only times I see remnants of ED and that panicky behavior is when I try and serve her a hamburger or sauce with meat although she willingly eats other meats. There is also slight hesitation to drinking a glass of milk but she asks for it and I see her working herself through drinking it. My question is whether to leave this alone or deal with it. My husband says, weight is consistently up and she eats just about everything and to leave it alone. I and am always in search of true recovery. Are there things that may never go back to the way they were?? Should I go through the fight again. I know it may seem minor but it’s a reminder to me that something is still there telling her she cannot eat the darn burger. 
Well done! 
I think your gut and your eyes are telling what you need to work on.
My opinion that is ED and I would myself try to work on it.  Here is an article I thought of when I saw your post today.

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)
As long as there are small signs of ED left you know that ED is still lurking around your house and one small blimp and he will put a foot through an open door and bam you can see a relapse then. I would trust my gut and work that down. The more often you serve this hamburger she will get use to it and can eat it without problems in future and this means ED can go and die...😁
We do that also. No fear food left here at the moment but I serve it again and again and I think I will do it until she is 30 or 40 😂...
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
Congratulations to you that your d had come this far. She is clearly doing very well and the fact that she still has anxieties is pretty normal at the age and stage she is at. 
Is college going well? Does she have friends and does she appear confident and well in herself?
I would be tempted to say how happy you are to see her doing so well, comment that she still appears to have some difficulties, that is great that she is fighting the fears and simply reassure her that it will all get easier with time. 
She might still not be able to speak openly about the illness. My own d only started being more open in her twenties. Which is part of the maturity process too .
Let her know that you are there for her in any way you can help. 
Personally I would not be too heavy handed at this stage, more reassuring. Though this view may differ from others .
Believe you can and you're halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt.

Hi Gubs60,

It sounds as though your daughter is doing really well. 
It is a little tricky once they move away from home so the fact that her weight is ok and she is eating a variety of foods is really where you want her to be. 

I'll tell you a little story about one of the things we experienced. I was of the mind that increasing variety of foods, being fully nourished, weighing enough and a good state were the goals. For a long time ice cream was a big fear food and we just couldn't get her to eat it and not for lack of trying, although cake, pie, chocolate, etc were fine. I had just about given up and was telling myself that one could live a perfectly fine life without ice cream, when one summer evening we were walking after having a nice dinner out, and when we saw an ice cream truck she asked for ice cream. Since then ice cream has been fine. I did wait until the ice cream came back to her instead of forcing it since in so many other areas she was doing well. So, maybe it will take a little more time for the hamburger but just because she won't eat it now doesn't mean that she still won't eat it in 6 months or another year as her recovery moves forward. But for the time being, celebrate her success and support that. She has moved away from home, is in college and is managing well even though there may well be some very last remnants of the ED floating around. She has made a big adjustment, is feeding herself and is a new social environment and that is an amazing achievement.

You could try laddering up to the hamburgers for example.
First serve her steak. Then try serving meatballs and spaghetti. Then try making hamburgers at home by grinding the meat and serve her some steak plus a "slider"—a small hamburger on a small bun beside the half portion of steak you can serve. Then maybe have a complete dinner of different types of fun sliders including some with chicken and some with small pieces of steak and some with ground beef. There are lots of recipes online for slider ideas. I'm a big fan of laddering since it worked well for us.



Hi Gubs60,

We have a "nose" for ED, don't we? That will never leave us 😀.  I suggest you keep an eye out for it, but encourage, rather than force. Because you say you can see your daughter working her way to conquer the fear food. My girl has a long way to go then...

And thank you @Kali, I love the laddering you suggest.  Mixing the fear food amongst such a variety of flavours, a great approach!

Thank you @Enn for the link to the article.  So many delicious ideas. I grew up in a cuisine where meats regularly came with sauces made from cooking it, such as gravy or mashed vegetables - part and parcel of the meal, nothing went to waste.

While there, I had a look around Laura Mulheim's page and (slightly off topic) found something truly scary: a Weight Watcher's app designed for kids!!?!  I wanted to cry in despair. But good on dr Mulheim to campaign against it.

All the best,

Mum's Kitchen

14-y-o "healthy living" led to AN in 2017 and WR at 16. Current muscle dysmorphia.