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

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MargeSimpson
I've tried to get my 16 year old daughter professional help. There are no free programs anywhere near us, or in the same state. I simply dont have the money, and our insurance doesnt cover it.

So, how do I get her to eat! Ive tried magic plate. She just throws the food and crockery at me then attempts to leave the house, kicking biting and punching me if I try to keep her from running off.

I get told by her anorexia, that im a terrible cook, she hates what is for.supper. I asked her for a list of food she will eat that is within budget. She wont do that either.

I am not rich enough to present multiple meals when they get.thrown. Everyone has enough, but not to then provide a whole new meal. 

She requested to cook for herself, then played with the food, immediately throwing it away.

She has poisoned leftovers, making people sick (using face toner liquid)

She will eat stolen chocolate (if I hide it in a cupboard),'a single nutrigrain bar, 18 cheerios and a thimble of milk. But not if I ask her to. I have to ignore it. 

She tells me she loves me, thanks me for trying, but just wants to be left alone.

Ive begged, spoon fed, gone without meals to give her my portion wheh hers  has been thrown, only to have mind thrown too. Ivd cleaned up so much.wasted food.

How do I get her to eat? She is very thin (98 pounds 2 months ago, wont get on the scales since).

Im beyond worried.

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tina72
Hi Marge and a very warm welcome from Germany. So sorry that you need to be here but you will get a lot of help here and so I am relieved that you found us here.
First questions: are you alone with her or is there a dad or any other relative or friend that can help? Are you at home with her or do you need to leave her alone while working? Is she going to school and is there a possibility to have meals supervised there?

First ideas:
You need to stop her possibility to leave the house during meals and at least one hour after that so if needed lock the doors. Have windows locked if she tries to escape there (some kids did try to do that on first floor - they are not sane in that state).
Tell your neighbours what is going on at home in case she screams through a door or a window.
Call your local police and ask if there is a mental health officer (some police stations have special educated staff for that) and if you can call them if she hits and bites you again. A lot of parents had good experiences with that and often it was enough to just take the phone into the hand and mention that you will call the police now...

"I get told by her anorexia, that im a terrible cook, she hates what is for.supper. I asked her for a list of food she will eat that is within budget. She wont do that either."
That is all normal and whatever you serve AN will not like it so make it count. Serve something high caloric, add butter, cream and oil to everything and have all things fried that can possibly be fried. Food does not need to be expensive, it needs to be high caloric. Noodles are cheap, rice is cheap. Do you need ideas what to cook and where to add something? Tell us what you plan to cook for the next days and we can help you with ideas.

Is your d seing a GP regularly? Is is important that her heart and blood are checked. Does your insurance pay for ensure and liquid nutrition? Ask the GP for that.

Do not let her cook or even set one foot into the kitchen. Lock away left owers or freeze them so she cannot damage it. Ask her to help you clean up the ground after she has thrown food. Put away all china and go for plastic plates and glasses.

Try to offer her some incentives. What does she like to have? Does she have a smartphone you pay for? Ipad? Then take it away before meals and give it back immediately after the meal is eaten. Try to eat in front of TV. Distraction is very helpful. Try if she eats when others are around. Some eat better with whitnesses.

Another trick:
If she "steals" food out of the cupboard, put a "healthy" looking fruit smoothie in there and wait if she takes it. Do you have a blender? Then you can put about 400-500 ml fruit and juice into it (can be canned fruit also) and add about 50-100 ml canola oil /rapeseed oil to it. That has no taste and disappears in the blender. Do not let her see that you prepare that, do it when she is in bed or school. If you get her to drink two glasses of that a day you can add about 1000 calories extra with that. Sometimes drinking is easier than eating.

Come here to vent and ask your 1 million questions, here are always nice parents that have been in your shoes. It is a damn disease but it is treatable. You can help her.

Tina72


Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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MargeSimpson
Hello Tina, thank you for the reply.

She will not eat. It gets thrown, or sits there and ignored at best. I try spoon feeding her, her mouth stays clamped shut. I can sit with her, but she just calls me vile names until I leave.

Her stepfather helps. Her bio father is long gone and.doesn't want to be involved. He has more success.

She refuses school and is now 16, nothing I can do about it.

No, we are in the US, and get no free ensure etc. Nothing is free. Yes, she has check ups. 

Ensure just gets thrown if I buy it. I cannot afford it anyway.

Food will not go in her mouth. 

She doesnt care she now has no phone, no tv, no radio, no music. She just stands there and smiles. She is stubborn. Sees it as winning.

I offer her phone, net, tv if she eats. She refuses

I cant physically force it in her mouth.

Rice, noodles, potato, sausage, tacos...I provide food but she will not put it in her mouth.

If I could get her to eat, I could easily give her.6000 cals a day. But she won't eat.

I will not call cops on her unless it's someone other than myself she hurts.

To be frank, the day she turns 18 she is out of my home.
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MargeSimpson
The only food she steals is chocolate. I leave a selection hidden for her. But figure a tiny nibble of that gives her enough energy to not eat enough, if you know what I mean. She has only a few m and ms, or a piece of chocolate. Not bars of it.

She doesnt care about healthy eating. 
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MargeSimpson
In order to be able to afford to feed, house and clothe the rest of the family, she needs to eat what everyone else eats.

I have celiac disease, so do not bake but there is a selection of cereal, granola bars, chips, bread, cakes and cookies, nuts, dried fruit and candy.
A typical menu would be
Cereal, milk, apple.
Granola bar
Homemade tacos, rice and black beans / pasta, sauce, zucchini. Cheese/ veg or baked beans, eggs, baked potato. ALL GOES ON THE FLOOR or on me.
Cookies and a yogurt, piece of fruit.
Kids then supplement with whatever is available. Pb and j sandwiches and glass of milk with an apple sauce.

She will eat none of it apart from a tiny amount of cereal, milk and one bar. I cant get her to eat, try. 

I have coconut oil to add to food for extra calories, but she rejects it.

No-one in this family can afford expensive fruit smoothies. Fruit is whatever is cheap and in season. She wouldn't drink it.anyway.

Ive bought her requested food, which she still throws, and to be frank I cant afford, she knows this and goes back to whining what I can afford isnt good enough.

One day last week she ate a single chicken sausage and veg. She then got very angry and are nothing the next day.

I can't afford fancy food, or wasted food, or offer multiple suppers.
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scaredmom

Hi MargeSimpson, 
I welcome you here, although I am sad you needed to find us. 
ED's are difficult yes, and there is still good treatment.
The thing about ED is that you have turn things upside down a bit. For example, you cannot offer her something IF she eats, you TELL her she can HAVE X WHEN she eats. The expectation of eating is always there no matter what. 
I am concerned about her and your safety, to be honest. You say she has poisoned food. How do you keep her away from it now so that does not happen again. She will not eat. You say you will not call the cops unless she hurts someone else but you?? I actually think if ANYONE and I mean ANYONE is not safe in your home, calling the police is the right thing to do. In fact many here have had to show ED that they are really serious about the safety in the home and even the threat of calling the police and following through have helped compliance. 

I think you cannot ask ED for any input, sorry. It is hard and you will need to be the therapist, police and doctor at the home. 
I understand how expensive it is and some have had to wash the food (ie meat off) if thrown and present it again. 

I wonder about IP for her. It sounds a bit to much to be doing at home, right now. 
I understand about the insurance issues too. There is program in the states UCSD that offers a 5 day program to help get things started. I heard that there was a scholarship, so to speak to get some financial help with it AND that they do figure out financial plans to help.
Let us know where in the US you are and I am sure someone can help guide you to some professional help too.

How much does she weigh? How long have you been dealing with ED? Does she have AN? Are there other children? Do you have other family support?

I know this is a strain on yours and her relationship. It does get better, we all just have to find the right path for us. No two journeys are the same, but we can help with ideas of what to try. We like helping people to fill their tool boxes to "fix" ED.
Please ask all the questions you have. And I do hope you find the support and information you need.
XXX

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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MargeSimpson
She is perfectly safe. I've given up work and constantly supervise her. Locks on the kitchen door. She has no access now to poison food again. 

She doesnt really hurt me. Im fine. Just upset at her behavior.

There is nothing in my state, and I cant afford for her to go out of state.

Ill look into more practical help. Im not a bad mother.

Thanks for everything.
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MargeSimpson
She hovers around 105 to 95 pounds and 5ft tall. 
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scaredmom
No you are absolutely not a bad mother!! It is a hard, hard place to be. 
Do you have a team of ED professionals involved? Some can be helpful and some not. 
Would they consider inpatient treatment? 
It might be helpful to know where you are located so that others near you may offer specific advice about places you may wish to look into...
Please take time out for yourself too. You need to keep healthy. 
XXX
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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MargeSimpson
There is no money for a co pay. None. I will not get in debt even if anyone would loan me the money, which they won't. There is no money for out of state travel

Ill make some more calls and find other options. 
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djlee1
Marge, if you can give us a general idea of where you’re located, it may help us give better suggestions. Is there national healthcare where you live? You said your insurance won’t cover treatment - can you appeal this?

Is your daughter getting any treatment currently? 

From what you’ve described, I think your daughter likely needs intensive treatment. I understand finances are a big concern. If I were you, I would be phoning treatment programs “near” and far (I know you said there are none in your state) and enquiring about scholarships. 

You said you you are not willing to go into debt. I’ll be frank: your daughter’s life - and quality of life - are at stake. Yes, treatment is very expensive and there are no guarantees. But the alternative is fairly grim. Since you are not having success refeeding at home, I would be looking for alternatives (i.e. inpatient/PHP programs).
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debra18
Columbia University in New York has a research program that is completely free
 
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MargeSimpson
Thank you. Im looking into inpatient options for her. I clearly cant do this at home.
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LaurieW
Marge - I am so sorry to hear what you are going through.  I'm guessing you are in the US. Our medical insurance system is no doubt a nightmare, which adds a layer of difficulty and stress to finding treatment for our suffering children. 

If your girl is medically unstable (heart rate too low or electrolytes out of balance, for example, is a common issue, especially if she is purging) she needs to be admitted to a hospital to be stablized. This is a life-threatening situation. I am glad to hear she is being monitored by her GP.  

For what it's worth, we found our insurance company more receptive to covering a long residential treatment after my girl was medically hospitalized a few times and her docs insisted residential treatment was medically necessary.

Keep posting and asking questions.  You will find a lot of great info and support here.
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tina72
She is perfectly safe. I've given up work and constantly supervise her. Locks on the kitchen door. She has no access now to poison food again. 

She doesnt really hurt me. Im fine. Just upset at her behavior.

There is nothing in my state, and I cant afford for her to go out of state.

Ill look into more practical help. Im not a bad mother.

Thanks for everything.


That is great that you can be around 24/7.
You are for sure not a bad mother or all of us are. You did not cause the ED, it is a biochemical brain disease like diabetes.
Can you tell us in what state or near what town you are?
Do you have a church that could help? Sometimes churches have funds that can be used to help in such severe situations. Your d will need to go to hospital if she does not start eating at home. She could faint and get severe heart problems.

I did not mean to buy expensive smoothies, you can do them at home with the fruit and juice that is cheap at the moment and available and add secretly oil to it. You just need a blender, maybe you can have one from a neighbour? Maybe worth a try to wake her up very early in the morning (ED is still asleep then in many cases) with the drink in your hand and just say "drink that now" and let her roll over.
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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MargeSimpson
No, I cant afford a blender, and nor can my neighbors. Think what you guys consider trailer trash. Thats us.

we cant afford berries to make smoothies from, we drink water from the faucet, not expensive juices. I dont buy soda, in favor of better healthier calories.  She will have to eat what we can afford, and we are plenty fat enough. No one is going without because missy isnt prepared to eat mac n cheese, or sandwiches and demands fancy smoothies because of a disease which is due to her own vanity. 

This weeks fruit is 69c per pound apples. Two per person per day. Ild love to be rich. Im not. Ive a disabled husband and other children. My other kids are healthy, happy and well fed. My house is clean. We are good peopls, just damned poor.

Ive watched too much ensure, fancy meals cooked specially for her be thrown or defiled. No more pandering. It dont work anyway.

If it isnt good enough for her, then I guess I'll have to find other options for her. Which I intend to do on monday, via her primary health provider. She needs inpatient care, and ill find it for her. 




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tina72
Marge, to be poor is nothing to be ashamed of, we are all not rich but I understand that your problems are way harder than ours. It must be hard to feel not judged in your circumstances but be sure we do not think so, we just try to find out how to help you.

"which is due to her own vanity"
Your d did not choose to have that disease. It is a genetic disease and nobody is to blame for. You would not blame her for having diabetes, same here with AN.

"She will have to eat what we can afford, and we are plenty fat enough."
That is great because fats are most important. The problem is if you do not get her to eat at home (which happens quite often) she will need to go to hospital soon. Does she eat anything that you offer?

"Which I intend to do on monday, via her primary health provider."
That is a good idea. I think IP would be needed here. Insist on it and be the sqeaky wheel if they try to send you home again. Do not leave without any help. You need help and they must give you that help or she will go down the rabbit hole very fast.

Please keep us updated. We think of you. We are with you in spirit.
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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sk8r31
Hi Marge Simpson,

An ED is a difficult mental illness.  It is not caused by vanity...this is not something your d is 'choosing'.  EDs are biologically-based brain illnesses.  I am wondering if you are able to read the short FEAST Family Guides, which give some very good info.   They are in pdf format, and can be read on the computer, or downloaded to share with others.

I hear what you are saying with regard to the difficulty of managing this illness without good health insurance and on a limited income.  There are most definitely others in similar straits who have successfully navigated these challenges too...though no one will claim it is easy. 

I do hope that you are able to tap into resources that are low-cost or even free for some of the clinical trials.  I do know that some programs offer scholarships.  If you indicate your geographical location, then forum posters may be able to help you identify good resources in your area.

Sending warm support, 
sk8r31 
It is good to not only hope to be successful, but to expect it and accept it--Maya Angelou
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MargeSimpson
Nothing will persuade me that this isnt vanity, with a dose of feeling superior to her obese friends, rebellion (fighting with momma is cool), her wanting to be special. 
I dont doubt self starvation made her crazy. But this started out of vanity.

She used to be sweet, kind, hard working, loyal. Talented artistically. I miss her.

This is not an illness like diabetes. It's a choice she made which hurt everyone. 

We werent planning on my husband having a stroke. Everyone else pitched in, apart from ms. I wanna look like Taylor Swift. 
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MargeSimpson
I've already had professional help identifying in state ip care. Nothing. 

But they will have to come up with a place. 
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tina72
"She used to be sweet, kind, hard working, loyal. Talented artistically."
All of these kids are so. Kind, smart, no problem kids. Until ED moves in.

"This is not an illness like diabetes. It's a choice she made which hurt everyone."
I understand that it is hard to get that but in 2017 they found the genetic code for Anorexia and it is a gen defect on gen 12 and we do not need to discuss that, that is scientific standard now. I understand that it is hard to believe as they seem to be so selfish and do not stop to hurt everyone around but that is really the damaged brain who makes them act this way. Not all patients start with self restriction and starvation. There are boys here that got Anorexia because of over-exercising in a sports team and I know a boy who got anorexia after having a stomach infection and loosing 4 kg in a week because of that. They are not selfish, really not. They did not know what will happen when they started that diet thing.

In the 1940s they had a project in US army called the Minnesota Starvation project. They made healthy young male soldier eat less and be undernourished for 6 months and they all showed symptoms of Anorexia. So most of the symptoms you see now are caused by malnutrition and starvation. If she eats again and re-gains the lost weight your nice, sweet, smart d comes back. I did not believe that, too, in the dark days, but the proof is walking around in my house here.
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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tina72
I've already had professional help identifying in state ip care. Nothing. 

But they will have to come up with a place. 


What state are you in? Maybe there are parents here from your corner of the world that have ideas who to phone and where to ask?
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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MargeSimpson
a first round of the study, the team analyzed DNA of individuals from 192 family groupings. At least one of the family members had to have a diagnosis of anorexia nervosa, while one or more other family members had to display some kind of disordered eating, though not necessarily anorexia nervosa.

..noone else in the family has disordered eating. I have diagnosed celiac disease. No eating disorder. No purging. We are grateful for our food.

Its not proved, its a hunch.

The kid needs to accept Jesus back in her life. 

County services, first thing monday. I appreciate the insights. 
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tina72
It is not a hunch. It is prooved since may 2017.
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/06/170612094212.htm
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/05/170512081332.htm

In many families there is anorexia or ED that you did not know. We found out after my d was diagnosed that the sister of MIL had anorexia and that the sister of my father and his mother had that, too. It was just not diagnosed with that name then.
In IP my d met a girl who we found out is a great cousin to her (grandd of a cousin of my d) that we did not even know before but we found out as the name was very rare here and it was the same name as my grandmas birth name. Also Anorexia. By incident? Surely not.
It can jump over generations so you do not know wether a cousin of your grandma had that gen for example. It has nothing to do with guilt.

"The kid needs to accept Jesus back in her life."
If it were that easy we all would have started to pray more, believe me. Jesus did not give her that disease. It is nature. He cannot help her to eat.(No idea why this is written in big letters now, I did not chose that ;().
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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Kali

Dear Margesimpson,

Jesus is not going to help your daughter get well. We can agree to disagree on that. Good, evidence based treatment and full nutrition will help her get well. Eating disorders are not a choice. They are biological, brain based mental illnesses with the highest mortality rate of any mental illness and you are wise to be concerned.  

Here are a couple of places you can get in touch with for treatment grants and free treatment.

Free, excellent residential treatment:

https://www.columbiapsychiatry.org/research-clinics/eating-disorders-clinic

Treatment grant application from Project Heal

https://www.theprojectheal.org/apply-for-a-treatment-grant/

Please look into these options if you would like to.

Kali

Food=Love
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