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

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Mumoffantasticboy
So, the good news....we’ve been out of inpatient for 9 months and have managed to stay stable. Puberty is just kicking in now and our son is growing quickly - he seems to grow at least 2cm in height a month.  For 2 years before we knew about AN and during the year of AN so far, he had only grown 1cm in height.  
We are facing new challenges now.  I managed to get 1 kilo on him in the last month, so the weight to height percentage has stayed stable ( not that that is the be all and end all, But is a measure, I suppose).  
I just wonder if anyone feels able to share any stories of getting a child, particularly a boy, through the rapid growth of puberty.
from a position of stability with no push back on eating, no fear foods and very little expressed anorexic voices ( though lots of worries still), he has anorexic outbursts again.  That’s been hard.  He does eat everything I give him, though always asks for reassurance and says he thinks it is too much, but he does eat it.  Anyone been at this point and got words of wisdom ( or sanity).  Thank you all.
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Torie
It takes so much food to grow a boy into a man.  He will hate that, but that is okay.  It's great that you are keeping on feeding and requiring him to eat what you serve; it sounds like you "just" need to keep up that good work and keep feeding for the increases he still needs.

It does get better.  Until then, it gets really, really old.  But it is so worth it.

Keep swimming. xx

-Torie
"We are angels of hope, of healing, and of light. Darkness flees from us." -YP 
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Torie
P.S., my ED kid is a girl instead of a boy, but the idea is the same: you just keep feeding and feeding so that they keep gaining the weight they need to gain.  Girls gain a lot through puberty, but of course boys gain much more than even that.  Otherwise, I think it is similar process. xx

-Torie
"We are angels of hope, of healing, and of light. Darkness flees from us." -YP 
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Enn
@deenl and @KLB 
have boys. please search their threads. 
With puberty testosterone really puts down a lot of muscle and so their metabolic rates really shoot up and they need a lot of calories to get through puberty and beyond. It will be your constant effort that will get him there and look how great you have done to date!!
🌱
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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Mumoffantasticboy
Thank you all.  So helpful. I’m a bit damaged tonight after a particularly horrible anorectic outburst so needed a bit of tlc to reassure me that we’re doing OK.  Will keep battling on, with your encouraging words ringing in my ears x
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Enn

I am sorry you are having a tough time tonight. Remember how much you have been through and you are standing tall and strong! 

big hug! 🌺

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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Foodsupport_AUS
It does take a lot of food to get a boy to grow into a man. Average weight gain over those teen years is huge, with an expected gain of around 25 -30kg for boys. His thoughts will of course get in the way of what he needs to help him keep on growing. I am sure he will get there, keep feeding. 
D diagnosed restrictive AN June 2010 age 13. Initially weight restored 2012. Relapse and continuously edging towards recovery. Treatment: multiple hospitalisations and individual and family therapy.
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AUSSIEedfamily
Dear Mumoffantasticboy,

If you read mamabears recent post "Feeding an ED child through puberty" she provides a heap of info on that topic of getting her daughter through puberty and the amount of food needed and even mentions about about comparison between girls and boys
ED Dad
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deenl
Hi Mumoffantasticboy,

My son got AN when he was 12 and he is now 17. He was horrifically ill and down to a very low BMI even IP. So our recovery has been very long but steady and he is very happy, dealing very well with the exam stress, low anxiety and perfectionism. We are working on eliminating the last few AN habits and I have a feeling that they are habits and not AN compulsions.

I have 3 sons. The first was your stereotypical boy, ate like he had hollow legs and grew like a weed. I kind of expected the same to happen with my middle son but it didn't and I think that is one of the biggest reasons why he got AN. My youngest son also does not have very strong hunger cues but I have learned enough to keep an eye on his weight and to make sure that he eats enough to fuel puberty.

We did not get good professional support in the beginning so our son sank very, very deep into ED before we found our path using a wonderful pediatrician and the knowledge we gained here. It took us two years to get to almost WR but then, of course, he began to grow so we have always been a few kilos behind where I would like to be. I think the most important part of our story is that he still has very little decision making around food. Between catching up on growth and puberty, both of which were delayed due to ED, he has needed 3,500 cals per day for the last 4+ years. Whenever we have handed over any control, he has eaten too little and is resistant to coaching. Therefore, we still do what we must to make sure he gets enough. This also means that he will commute to university next year rather than taking rooms.

Another thing that I have noticed is that I cannot rely on his historical averages. I was always relaxed about food and, while they had to taste everything every time, there was no problem if they didn't like it or didn't finish their meal. Buy I actually think that he either felt full too quickly or he always had higher calorie needs. He was always around average height or just below. Now he is at the 75th percentile which is more in line with his dad and brothers (between 76 and 85th percentile).

Basically, what I have done is to keep feeding, keep adding additional concentrated nourishment (cream, butter,oils, full fat milk) to his food, keep checking weight for many years (sorry!) Kartini Clinic says not to assume that boys are finished growing until they are shaving regularly. My son is 17 and has never yet shaved so I am assuming that we will be fueling growth for at least another year or two.

If there is anything else you would like to ask, please let me know.

It takes a long time but is so worth it when we see them well. Hang in there.

D
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.
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PurpleRain
You can look for batty Matty's and trustthe process' posts, they both had boys with AN during the teen years.
13 yo d started to eat "healthy" September 2018, she had a growth spurt a bit later, followed by tummy bug. She started restricting breakfast and school lunch in January 2019 (that we know). We succesfully refed at home.
I have found inner strenght, patience and compassion that I did not know I had.
Never retreat, never surrender
keep feeding
 
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KLB
Hi. My son is 16, 17 in June. Diagnosed Aug 2018 at 15. He hasn’t grown an inch for nearly 2 years but I’m expecting a full on growth spurt any moment now, frantically trying to get as much weight on as I can in preparation, not to mention the muscle building requirements. He is needing around 8000 calories a day to gain anything at all at the moment, though we have the added complications of a ramped up metabolism and that he is an athlete, as well as the later stages of puberty. I feel like I’m playing catch up all the time. He burns through calories like they don’t even exist. I know his body is still in repair mode to a certain extent, and as soon as he’s ready it’ll take everything he’s consuming to grow taller and then his BMI will drop. It’s all about creating a big enough buffer for that drop not to cause him to spiral downwards. I still plate all his food. I fortify most meals. Anywhere I can add calories I will. At this stage I don’t think there’s such a thing as too many calories. 
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mamabear

Did you read my “ expert by experience” writing? It’s there on the main page. It’s all about feeding kids through puberty. My tiny ten year old 66 pound girl needed 6000 a day until around 14. Grew 9 inches, full puberty, over doubling of body weight. 

Bottom line is they need what they need and my advice: DO NOT BACK DOWN for many many YEARS. 


my D is almost 20 and has been in full recovery for many years now. 

Persistent, consistent vigilance!
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Mumoffantasticboy
Thank you all.  I've read your posts.  Very helpful.  Sometimes you need to keep reminding yourself of the mantra 'Feed, feed, feed and feed some more'.  Have put on just over 2kg in the last 6 weeks and grown over 2cm too, so the growth is happening, even if the true brain healing isn't through yet.  Am really focussing on high energy, low volume food as these seem to be getting the calories in with less 'there's a lot on this plate, are you sure?' resistance.  Such a long, long road and one that I must stop catastrophising about.  We are moving forward.  He is growing.  We are getting the calories in and he is eating the food I give him.  The psychotic, vicious times happen but they pass.  Then he still eats.  Got to keep on, keeping on.  Thank you all for your support.
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ValentinaGermania
You are on the right path! Keep feeding and he will get better with every year.
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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