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

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I killed my previous thread as I got bored with always moaning; and I have been struggling with the atdt thing of seeing all the good advice we have struggled to enact.

But I thought I would come back to canvass opinion on something I am pondering: D is coming home from IP soon. Although WR, her behaviours are still the same or worse than before admission (including wanting to control what her sister wears and thinking her sister is fat). I have realised that I can not put my other (younger) children through this again so we are seriously considering renting a second house close to our home.  I and my D would live in the other house and everyone would move between the two. But we could protect the others from being exposed to the behaviours all the time, we could more easily have different meals, D would not have to deal with other people eating around her, or leaving food in the kitchen or other rooms etc etc.

Any thoughts? Has anyone else done this?
Currently no light; only tunnel 🙁
I haven’t but I seriously thought of it too and promised sibling to do that if we were back to same high stress refeeding to protect sibling. 

Hi - this is something we also contemplated but D turned a corner and we were able to move forward.

I think we all need to do whatever we need to do to survive this illness and protect siblings as much as possible. My only worry would be not having someone right there to take over. I lost the plot quite a few times and H would take over but perhaps you could have a plan in place for these times? 

Good luck - whatever you decide xx

Hello, that's wonderful to hear that your D has made it to WR. I completely understand why you are considering the second house. A couple of thoughts--is there a partial hospitalization program near you that you could access?  Or intensive outpatient?  My d. is currently in week 2 of a residential stay at a treatment center and we are planning to do their PHP even though it will mean having one parent stay home with younger sibling and the other stay near treatment center (which is thousands of miles away).  We had a local PHP but it was only doing Zoom meetings due to COVID and we knew our D. needed more than that.  Since then I've learned there is a difference in the structure of PHP programs--the treatment center's version is 11 hours per day and seems to include almost all meals and snacks and the child just sleeps "at home" (rented apartment/hotel room/Ronald McDonald house); versus our local one which is less than 8 hours per day and only includes 1 meal and 2 snacks. I empathize with protecting the younger sibling whenever possible while balancing your own energy and stamina needs.
No PHP programme but that is basically what the unit will do for a month more (although by zoom) when she comes home, before discharging. 
Currently no light; only tunnel 🙁

The transition home is so very hard and I think we do whatever we can to get through it
is you d having some kind of step down to transitioning home?

Is it called partial hospital where you are?
Our d clinic had a day program where she went from 8am-2pm to be home for arvo snack then dinner and then I had her back to the hospital next day for breakfast 
once she was discharged from that program transitioning home was still difficult but at least she had some exposure to being back home/in the real world 

as lonelymum has said would you have any support in those times when you needed it?
as I know I wouldn’t of wanted to be alone with my d when I/she wasn’t coping 
im sorry it’s so difficult for you atm, it’s really not fair what we need to go through with this illness
and the effects and stress it places on us is immense (understatement of the year)

i believe your d other siblings are younger and  that must be so hard and I understand you wanting to protect them 
our d siblings are older (adults) and it was still hard as they don’t  understand the illness either and they and would roll their eyes and think that d was just being a spoilt brat and throwing a tantrum and express why doesn’t she act her age?  which started many family arguements or would result in me just breaking down 
Now when my d under stress and can’t cope with something she will revert back to her immature ways (recently needed covid19 testing and the rigmarole to get her to the clinic was ridiculous but anything stressful effects her
in the end she went (by herself) so I was very proud of her but sometimes you think why can’t anything be non eventful ever?

can you talk to your team and have a plan if things go pair shaped?
i had no clue what to do when my d was SH, and depressed except I slept with her, massaged her, did breathing exersizes with her, it really is a good idea to ask the hospital what you should do in these instances 
she did learn skills to cope with distress at the hospital but we didn’t get info on this so that made it difficult for us, has your d hospital given you this info?
if my d failed to eat a meal i threatened to take her back to the clinic (not that we had to use this thank goodness as it’s an hour drive away)
but this was something I didn’t think to discuss on discharge (you think they might have a plan ready) I really felt I was left on my own which isn’t much fun
my d a YA though and possibly they expect them to be able to cope ??

it does get better, 
I had many moments when I didn’t think my d would EVER get better, it takes time a LOT of time 
wishing you all the best x

@Lonelymum H probably couldn't take over anyway as D wont even talk to him currently.

@PleaseEAT - there isn't a step down like that but D is having home visits (pretty difficult still) and will still be supported by the programme in her first month home. we are all trying to get her back to school for A levels if possible - otherwise she will spend a year out of school with no motivation to get better. If we don't make it, then we don't - but we feel we need to try.
Currently no light; only tunnel 🙁
Hi @CED123,

Follow your instinct, of course, but I think it is a very sensible idea.

WR is a great starting point and very precious. You may find it easier to focus on building on it, without being stretched. 

If I had it over again, I would have kept the kids separate during the most intense times. Missing each other is less of a trauma than living through intense ED behaviour (essentially not the real child, just ED).
Mum's Kitchen

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

We did not have separate homes but ED son ate in a separate room for the first two years with one parent in the room with him. This was more calming for him, gave the other kids some one-on-one attention and buffered them from some of the ED trauma. I did a lot to protect the other two and to make sure they were not consumed (any more than necessary) from the difficulties of being a sibling to someone very ill. Obviously, I could not do everything as I simply did not have the time, the energy or the emotional bandwith, but what I could do, I did. If my son's ED had presented with the symptoms that you describe, I would absolutely have considered something along the same lines as you. It's all about tring to balance the needs of all your kids. And don't forget to try to keep the connection with your husband in as much as possible. Almost impossible to have enough time and energy, I know.

Sending you continued courage and strength for this next phase,

2015 12yo son restricting but no body image issues, no fat phobia; lost weight IP! Oct 2015 home, stable but no progress. Medical hosp to kick start recovery Feb 2016. Slowly and cautiously gaining weight at home and seeing signs of our real kid.

May 2017 Hovering around WR. Mood great, mostly. Building up hour by hour at school after 18 months at home. Summer 2017 Happy, first trip away in years, food variety, begin socialising. Sept 2017, back to school FT first time in 2 years. [thumb] 2018 growing so fast hard to keep pace with weight
  • Swedish proverb: Love me when I least deserve it because that's when I need it most.
  • We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence Recovery, then, is not an act but a habit. Aristotle.
  • If the plan doesn't work, change the plan but never the goal.
  • We cannot control the wind but we can direct the sail.
I can't say (or know) what the correct answer is for you - I trust your judgment if this is the best route for your family.  What I CAN say is that if you decide to go this way (second house), I'm sure you can get some good ideas about implementation.

Also, when you saw my name on this new thread, you probably thought, "Oh geez, she's going to question if my d is well and truly weight restored."  I'm sure you have heard me say that my d is among the many who needed quite a bit more weight than anyone expected.  Not a magical "fix" for everyone of course, but crucial for many of us.

Hey, congrats on all the progress!  Miracles do happen in the ED-world, and you may have one in your future. 

Keep swimming. xx

"We are angels of hope, of healing, and of light. Darkness flees from us." -YP 
Ha! @Torie not at all. I am keeping that thought in mind but our immediate challenge is to get her to maintain this weight and i think i will let her sit here for a while and cope with the other changes before thinking about this. We are all at the bottom of bmi anyway so am hoping that 95 for her is more like 100, but that may be wishful thinking. 
Currently no light; only tunnel 🙁