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.

Join these conversations already in progress:
• Road To Recovery - Stories of Hope
• Events for Parents and Caregivers Around the World
• Free F.E.A.S.T Conference Videos

Visit the F.E.A.S.T website for information and support.

If you need help using the forum please reach out to one of the moderators (listed below), or email us at bronwen@feast-ed.org.

Need to talk with another parent? F.E.A.S.T. parents offer peer support via:

My poor kids are suffering at the hands of ED d! She is kicking them, scratching and throwing things at them like a toddler when she does not get her way!
I keep telling her it is not acceptable. My 12 yr old son is trying his best not to retaliate, and can’t help himself sometimes, which is bad, as he will shove and she is so much weaker now and flies at the slightest push.
I am trying to coach him to walk away, as he is so much more rational than she is! (Ha, who would ever think pre teen boy rational, goes to show how ED d 16 has become so irrational!)
It is especially hard as I watch her twin develop emotionally while she seems to get less able to manage any emotional regulation. I thought it would be with food only, but it is spilling out to everything!
Any tips??
Sorry Nicstar4 I don't have any tips but I can sympathise as my D also loses the plot totally over things when they don't go her way or work the way she wants even when it isn't related to food.

There doesn't seem to be any emotional regulation at this stage of the game. This can apply to not being able to do her hair to her satisfaction or a piece of clothing not fitting just right.  My D has other OCD's that preceeded ED and I'm now just finding out how badly they affect her with the exaggerated non rational thoughts of ED.
This is so hard, I know 😣. I still remember when d had her outbursts we would hide outside and console ourselves, gathering our strength and bravely went back in, sigh.

It might be a good idea to give everyone a break from ED, not all at the same time, unfortunately. I took non ED to the shops one day a week, while her dad took her Sundays to the movies, or beach or just for lunch. In the evenings, my h and I agreed not to talk about ED at all. It was hard to think about something other than ED, but after a while distracting ourselves from ED got easier.

Sending you lots of hugs 🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗
D became obsessed with exercise at age 9 and started eating 'healthy' at age 9.5. Restricting couple of months later. IP for 2 weeks at age 10. Slowly refed for months on Ensures alone, followed by swap over with food at a snails pace. WR after a year at age 11 in March 2017. View my recipes on my YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKLW6A6sDO3ZDq8npNm8_ww

It's shocking to witness the verbal and physical violence dished out by our children while in the grip of ED.  And it's so sad that ED wreaks such havoc in the relationships within our families.

I think I recall that Torie had some success simply refusing to accept the physical violence.  Perhaps she'll be along soon to say more about how she managed to do this.  We only ever managed to remove ourselves physically and emotionally from the angry meltdowns.

We are doing FBT and early on our therapist advised us to give our son, a couple of years younger than our ED d, a role in meals, family activities etc, as per the FBT model.  If we had to do that time again, I would do this aspect very differently.  I would make every effort to protect my s from ED by keeping him away from meals, meltdowns, ED tantrums.  I would shield him as much as possible from my d's ED anxieties, thoughts, wicked words, and physical anger.  If we had relatives nearby I would even consider moving him to live with them until the worst of the refeeding was done.  The damage done to my s and d's relationship during refeeding has been one of the most devastating aspects of the illness.  We've worked extremely hard at healing their relationship but we have a very long way to go.

I wonder if it's possible, even though you all live together as a family, to put some distance, physical and emotional, between your ED d and her siblings?  I guess the challenge is to do this without isolating your d and while maintaining normal family routines.  Can your therapist help the siblings with coaching them not to respond?  With de-escalation methods?  With walking away?

It's a tough one.  Good luck.
Hope x
Thanks for advice. My gut is to minimize the chaos that the kids have to witness. The therapist has recommended to have time with each kid, that is our special time. I get to do this most days. But spreading myself between them all can be exhausting.

Hopenz I can totally understand the need to send to relatives, sadly mine are all in UK so feel your frustration. I take the youngest one to friends houses and his school has been amazing , offering support and counseling...but he refuses to go saying he has a phobia of psychologists😂 luckily they’re trying to find ways to encourage him to see them at school.
I have got closer than ever to ed d’s twin who is going away with the school for 3weeks on Sunday.
My eldest is now away at uni, but checks in with us when he can.
I feel ED is just ramping up, and know there is more ahead.

I think I will be hiding out when raging ramps up, as removing myself from the drama helps me not to get drawn in and traumatized.

Everyone in bed. Peace in the house!
I know your d is going through hell, but even so, violence is unacceptable.  A number of forum members have had good success contacting the police during a time of calm and informing them that a mental health issue is causing a good kid to be violent and discuss with them how they can help.  Some police stations will send an officer to the house during a non-violent period to speak with ED-kid.  That sometimes helps.  Other stations have a dedicated mental health officer.

At any rate, your d needs to understand that violence will not be tolerated.  You might tell her that you will call the police if she becomes violent after that, and if you tell her that, you need to be prepared to follow through with the phone call.

Sucks so much that we even need to think about these things.  Hang in there. xx

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