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

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maidmarion
Hello

It's been some years since I last logged on to this website. My daughter had Anorexia back in 2012. She went into a unit, and is now having a good relationship with food! 
However, my son has now been recently diagnosed. I'm not quite sure with what ED when I sit and think about it. He *was overweight, but in a space of 7 months he lost 7 stone. By the time we got to Camhs, he was not classed as underweight as such, he only really needed to gain a few kg, but it was the rapid loss and not eating that set those alarm bells ringing. 

Anyway, after 3 weeks now of being off work, and doing the FBT re-feed, he is doing pretty well, but not doing it because he wants to, he's doing it because he knows he has to.

I have been plodding along quite happily thinking "Yeh, I'm on it- I'm sorting it" when yesterday he tells me he's struggling with "snacks" I think now he is beginning to feel hungry again, he fancies a snack occasionally- dont we all- but he is seeing the link between being overweight and snacking- so he is drinking water to help keep those snack attacks at bay. 

So, my question to you all is this, when my daughter was in a unit, her days were filled with therapy, sessions on body image, overcoming fears. I do not have those tools. I don't know how to help him overcome these fears, the fear of having a biscuit, how to make him understand he wont be overweight from eating a cookie. He has just started on low dose anti-depressants so I am hoping this will help, but even still, he needs to be overcoming these fears. 
After the Christmas period he goes back to school and starts weekly Camhs sessions, but is once a week enough talking time to sort these fears? I wonder if my daughter did so well in the unit because therapy was in her face 24/7 

Can anyone point me in the direction of any resources? I have spoken to Camhs and they said the fact he is talking about his fears is good, and I should simply remind him that he won't get big again eating a biscuit. But surely I should be doing more than that?
He is eating all that is put in front of him as in dinners. Though he wont eat anything I cook in my big saute pan- I like to make risotto, but he seems to associate that pan with frying ie-fat. 

Any knowledge would be helpful. And in terms of him being a male with an eating disorder, does anyone know if their recovery differs from girls? 

Thank you


Maidmarion
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Colleen
One thing that is common to both genders is that this is a biological brain disorder, not a choice.  That your son was able to lose so much weight (7 stone = almost 100 lbs!!) in such a short time really does play havoc with the brain--even a brain without the wiring for ED.  Three weeks is a super short period of time to stabilize his weight, thoughts, emotions, metabolism, etc.  I wouldn't worry about a timetable, or even his fear of getting fat over a biscuit, for a long time--like months.

Are you confident that he has been given a good weight FOR HIM?  I think this post from Dr. Julie O'Toole is interesting:  Determining Ideal Body Weight

If you are sure that his weight is adequate, just keep supervising his nutrition.  Up the calories if he is hungry and isn't able to respond to his hunger cues comfortably.

The thing about sufferers (if he is one) who are overweight to begin with is that they are sick for a long time before anyone gets concerned.  By then the disorder may be well entrenched.  I don't know if your son really has ED or not, but no matter what, he's been operating at a deficit, energy-wise, for a long time.  It will take a long time for that to normalize.

I'd just sit tight, keep up the nutrition, make sure he's where he needs to be weight-wise, and keep on carrying on.  I'd acknowledge very briefly his fears and then move on.  "It's too bad that eating a biscuit makes you so afraid.  Here--have one.  Before long you'll be able to enjoy a biscuit without those feelings."

I'm not 100% convinced that therapy does much good when their brains are so compromised.  Even Dr. Lock (of Lock and LeGrange fame) recommends waiting 6 months post w/r to see if therapy is even necessary.
Colleen in the great Pacific Northwest, USA

"What some call health, if purchased by perpetual anxiety about diet, isn't much better than tedious disease."
Alexander Pope, 1688-1744
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Torie
maidmarion wrote:
I think now he is beginning to feel hungry again, he fancies a snack occasionally- dont we all- but he is seeing the link between being overweight and snacking- so he is drinking water to help keep those snack attacks at bay. 


Sounds to me like he needs you to require him to eat snacks.  

maidmarion wrote:
He is eating all that is put in front of him as in dinners. Though he wont eat anything I cook in my big saute pan- I like to make risotto, but he seems to associate that pan with frying ie-fat.


Sounds like he also needs your help to be able to eat things cooked in that pan.  Maybe starting with just a bite? 

Please keep us posted. xx

-Torie
"We are angels of hope, of healing, and of light. Darkness flees from us." -YP 
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BattyMatty_UK
Quote:
He *was overweight, but in a space of 7 months he lost 7 stone. By the time we got to Camhs, he was not classed as underweight as such, he only really needed to gain a few kg, but it was the rapid loss and not eating that set those alarm bells ringing.


Please can I scream? Not at you, dear MaidMarion, but at The System and CAMHS!!! If you click onto my blog below you will see that I rant on and on about how boys often STILL aren't taken as seriously as girls when it comes to being diagnosed and treated for anorexia. My son was a big burly rugby player until the age of 15 when he lost around one quarter of his bodyweight very, very quickly, just like your son. He was extremely sick and the ED was raging on all counts. Yet it took me ages to get a referral, ages to actually get into CAMHS and once we were there it was like you, being told only to gain a bit of weight, that they weren't too concerned about his weight, even that he may only need to see CAMHS for one hour a FORTNIGHT and so on and so forth. Yet my insincts were yelling NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! Please do click onto my blog and scroll through this and last week's posts as I am sure you will identifty with them 100%!!!!! (You can also download the whole blog, year by year, in pdf form if you might find that useful too?)

Meanwhile I am so, so very sorry that you are having to face this nightmare again. You are one very, very strong mother.

xxxxx
Bev Mattocks, mother of 24-year old male DX with RAN 2009, now recovered. Joined this forum in 2010 - it was a lifesaver.
 
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