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

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Posts: 15
Reply with quote  #26 
Thank you for the information and encouraging words.  I just have to keep on telling myself...just keep swimming. 😉

Posts: 15
Reply with quote  #27 
Originally Posted by scaredmom

Hi wakeuplifehappens,

I am so sorry you needed to be here. I am also glad that you found us. You and your S have had a really hard 5 years. I am very concerned that your son is so underweight. Please look on this site for state and weight. He needs to gain weight for his brain to heal. Many of us here have seen our happy children yell at us while in the tight grip of ED. My D when she had gained a lot of weight, started to come back and be the lovely, happy and kind girl she used to.

If he takes meds or not, I think your first mission is to have him gain weight- a lot of it. My D also had OCD issues when really ill and now all gone! The brain needs to heal. Are you in charge of feeding him? I would advocate for Magic plate, that is you prepare the meals (very high calorie) and you plate them and he just has to eat. If he throws the food, plate it again. (use plastic plates to save your dishes if need be.) He should be gaining at least 1 kg per week.  Look up high calories here on this site. Please take the advice given above about adding cream,oil cheese, butter to get the calories up without increasing the volume of food. That may make it easier for him to eat what you give and then as he gains, you can increase the volume of food. He may really fight you, it is ED and not him, you need to go through the fire to get to the other side. It is the only way and you can do this. We are here to support you. 

There is hope that he can recover. Please keep feeding him.

Many of our children have needed upwards of 6000 cal + to gain weight to restore to health and then some for brain healing and puberty and normal growth. Please be aware that many professionals set the goal weight too low for brain healing. My D is 9kg above the first target weight/percentile for her age and it was when she got well above the first goal weight (WR) did she really become herself again.

Do you have help? A family member or friend to help out with distracting him during meals or after? Do you have time for self care? Is he going to school? Could you consider keeping him home to ensure he is eating appropriately? Some have had to initiate, Life Stops Until you Eat. LSUYE. 

Please look up toothfairy's and deenl's posts, they both have  boys with ED. Their stories may be helpful for you and your son. 

Please ask all the questions you have, we are all ears.


Food+more food+time+love=healing--->recovery


Posts: 15
Reply with quote  #28 
Thank you, I do have to get better at not letting him in the kitchen.  I thought he just wanted to hang out and then I realized he was just trying to control what and how I was preparing the meals.  I really just what my kind, friendly, smart and happy son to return. I have a hard time when I realize when he is just getting one over on me...I am too trusting for my and his own good. :/

Posts: 15
Reply with quote  #29 
Originally Posted by toothfairy
Hi there,
I am so sorry to read all this.
Yes you are right to be worried, his  BMI is only 15.6 . 
He needs to be re-fed and we will try and help you with that.
Here are some tips another parent shared , I hope you find them helpful.

1. You prepare meals

2. Do not allow your child in the kitchen during meal prep

3. Your child should not go grocery shopping.

4. Toilet before meal and no toilet for at least an hour afterwards.

5. If purging is suspected, use an open door policy in the bathroom, or have them count or sing whilst in there. And no flushing

6. Do not negotiate - whatever you serve has to be eaten

7. Use whatever leverage you have - phone, Internet, tv - whatever they hold dear is to be removed if they refuse to eat, until they have eaten. If they're older and are not financially independent, this is your leverage

8. Separate the two - Your child is not the ED

9. Detach yourself from the situation during meals. Do not get drawn into emotional discussions. THIS IS NOT UP FOR NEGOTIATION

10. Remember that your child wants to recover - the ED is stopping them

11. Your child needs your permission to eat. They need you to stand up to ED as they do not have the strength to do so themselves

12. 3 meals and 3 snacks per day (supervised) - do not deviate from this. Add time limits to the meals (as a guide/goal!). Ours (and the hospitals) was 30 mins for meals and 15 mins for snacks. In the early days this could extend A LOT. I made my Ds meal times the same as they'd be at school so that when she transitioned back to full time it would be easier and less anxiety provoking.

13. High calories are needed throughout refeeding with lots of full fat dairy. Some need as much as 6,000 cals with hyper metabolism, but the norm would be minimum 3500-4000 cals (for you to track not your child)

14. When they know you will not negotiate, I promise you will see the weight lifted from their shoulders... If only for very short periods

15. BE THE CAGE that keeps ED away from your child

16. When food is eaten be mum / dad again and have cuddles if they'll let you

17. 24/7 supervision - I slept with my D for 4 months - this will protect against them purging through vomiting or exercise. Many patients will exercise alone at night for hours on end when nobody else is awake.

18. All sport may need to stop in the early stages, and
for those who compulsively exercised this could be long term.

19. Be consistent, consistent consistent!

20. Don't congratulate them after a meal or say 'well done' - just cheer inwardly! Likewise when (for girls) their period returns!

21. Learn from others. I found this website with stories of other parents journey through recovery to be extremely helpful - http://www.maudsleyparents.org/familystories.html

22. Recommended reading: 'Brave Girl Eating' by Harriet Brown

23. Be prepared for resistance, and lots of it! You will find your own way to manage this, but NEVER back down. Any compromise is a win for ED. Remember, you have to see the beast to slay beast!

24. Making decisions / choices is extremely difficult for them (painful to watch). This is true in areas outside of food too. If you've tried to hand over some control of a meal or snack and notice that they are struggling, that is an indication that it is too soon and that you need to be making those decisions for them.

25. Sometimes distraction helps during meal times. That can come in the form of games,TV, music. Whatever it is you control it and it only continues with eating.


Hope this helps! Best of luck!
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