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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Frazzled
Hi, I knew as soon as I posted a positive thing that I would jinx myself. Today my daughter came downstairs upset and told me she is tired of trying to be healthy and tired of being borderline ED. She said she wants to be like she used to be before the ED. She ate half of a candy bar and a ice cream bar outside of her normal eating time. She is sad right now like she just had a break up. Hopefully she is breaking up with her eating disorder but may be wishful thinking on my part. Anyone experience this before?
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Enn

Frazzled, 
When you say she wants to be like she was before  ED, does that mean she does not want ED? 
Either way, what you describe is absolutely normal, Yes, really! 

The trajectory of Eds is never upwards and upwards. It is like a mountain trail, up and around and maybe be a bit. backwards around the corner etc. 

I do not think you jinxed it, I do not think this is "bad". It is just part of ED. Remember even when they shed most of ED stuff, some things will and can pop up with stressors. 
I hope I understood what you meant.

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)
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teecee
Yes...the frustration at not being recovered yet despite the eating really torments them. My D feels frustrated at ‘waste.’ She feels she has ‘wasted’ time during her setbacks and ‘wasted’ times when she could be happy. She has certainly felt ‘bad’ and ‘sad’ for many things....shame, guilt, anxiety ....all those negative emotions come to the fore but she chooses to carry on going. I am in awe and long for the day when she will be free. I think it’s quite normal for them to be sad with the situation but it’s great that she actually chose to eat those things 😊👍🏻💕
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Frazzled
Enn wrote:

Frazzled, 
When you say she wants to be like she was before  ED, does that mean she does not want ED? 

 




Hi Enn, Yes, she meant she is tired of ED. She finished her entire shake without any cues today also. I am quite perplexed and wondering why the change. I sure hope it turns out to be a positive thing and helps her recovery a little bit. 



teecee wrote:
Yes...the frustration at not being recovered yet despite the eating really torments them. My D feels frustrated at ‘waste.’ She feels she has ‘wasted’ time during her setbacks and ‘wasted’ times when she could be happy. She has certainly felt ‘bad’ and ‘sad’ for many things....shame, guilt, anxiety ....all those negative emotions come to the fore but she chooses to carry on going. I am in awe and long for the day when she will be free. I think it’s quite normal for them to be sad with the situation but it’s great that she actually chose to eat those things 😊👍🏻💕


Thanks Teecee, I do believe she is very frustrated and sick and tired of the ED. She also feels guilty and feels that she has lost some of her childhood because of this. It is so hard for them...and us. Thanks for responding. It’s nice to know we aren’t alone in this battle. 
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teecee
Agreed. My D has written a blog and in it states she doesn’t want to get 5...10...20 years down the line and see she’s wasted much of her life being unhappy when she could have been living a happy life. She recognises ED made her lonely and sad and is trying to finally climb out of the hole. 
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Torie
That sounds like good progress.  ED often beats them up for eating - my guess is that's what you witnessed.  That's okay though - as long as she puts on the weight, the brain healing will follow and she won't be traumatized during / after eating any more. xx

-Torie
"We are angels of hope, of healing, and of light. Darkness flees from us." -YP 
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MKR
Hi @Frazzled,

It does sound like your daughter is tired of the regime ED put her under.

As for the grieving... if she had been into "healthy" eating, then the restricting might have felt like an achievement during the ED. She now needs to let go of those "achievements". I guess they are like points scored in a game, and when the game is over, there is a deflated feeling.

I agree with others that she might grieve the time lost to ED. But surely there have been lovely moments that she will remember and you can highlight them for her.
Mum's Kitchen

14-y-o "healthy living" led to AN in 2017 and WR at 16. Current muscle dysmorphia.
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Barberton
I know it's difficult in these times, but would distraction be the key? The distraction of taking a walk in nature. The distraction of walking through an art gallery (when we can). The distraction of learning a craft. When they are feeling sad/low it can be hard to encourage them to get up and move/interact. But in my heart, I think kind and gentle encouragement to engage in the world around them has to have a positive benefit and help them to turn the focus outward instead of inward. 
D fell down the rabbit hole of AN at age 11 after difficulty swallowing followed by rapid weight loss. Progressing well through recovery, but still climbing our way out of the hole.
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melstevUK
Hi Frazzled,

It is a good sign when they express being tired of the ed demands and regime of trying not to eat.
At the same time, it is often felt as a loss - because there may have been some good things which came out of it, like compliments on their looks, for example - and a sense of purpose in controlling something - and to be well they have to give up everything about the illness, including any positives which they may have experienced.

The recovery road is never straightforward but an open expression of wanting to be rid of it is a big step in the right direction.  Just be prepared in case there is a big kickback because guilt may well come racing back and she may struggle to deal with it.  Calm encouragement and a reminder of how much richer and more interesting life is going to be when she can finally let the illness go once and for all are useful ways to respond.  It is always tempting to panic and go into a tailspin if suddenly things appear to be going backwards.  Just try and keep a level head and be supportive and nudge her through to the next stage.
Believe you can and you're halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt.
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