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

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scaredmom
Hi All, 
I have been thinking  about this topic for a while and in the past there was a similar thread.
In the world of ED, things are not always as they seem and it can be hard to understand what our children really mean when they say something. 
For example, many have found when their child says: "I don't want chocolate" that really means " I would love some chocolate" and so we give it to them. My D said "you are giving me too much to drink, no one drinks that much" Well, lo and behold, she was tossing her drinks in the sink!!! 

I am just asking the group what you have learned from "ED Language".

I would also extend this to ED behaviours: we know the common ones like hiding food, water loading etc.. But it may be helpful to put all of that into one thread. 

I hope that we can all share and learn and teach through this thread.

The collective wisdom and knowledge of the group is a very powerful resource.
Thank you.

https://www.aroundthedinnertable.org/post/the-secret-language-of-eating-disorder-5943746?highlight=ed+language&pid=1274413753

https://www.aroundthedinnertable.org/post/translating-the-ed-language-7770329?highlight=ed+language&pid=1289688376
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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tina72
Hi scaredmom,

as always a great idea for a thread.

"There was cake for coffee at my friends home". That means translated there was cake available but NOT that she ate one single crumpet of it.

"Must I eat ice cream for snack today" means I desperately want that ice-cream, please make me eat it.
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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mamabear
Oh so many.... 
“Do I have to eat that?” Means please make me eat that. 

“ Anythjng but fries” means- I WANT FRIES. 

When you make strawberry milkshakes every day but you know she always loved chocolate- and she says “ no chocolate” that means MAKE ME HAVE A CHOCILATE SHAKE. ( bc ED told her strawberry was at least a fruit). 

What time os dinner? Means “ I am hungry” 

Are you going to have some? Means please eat this with me I need you to. 
Persistent, consistent vigilance!
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scaredmom
Over one year of WR she asked, “ can I go try out for track?”
This girl could not sit down at all took a lot of work to get her to sit!! She wanted to be the fastest runner at diagnosis of EDand really no gym or only a bit of physical activity for the first year of refeeding.
I said ‘ no track’ she said “ good I hate cardio”??!!!!

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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scaredmom
A big lesson I learned even when d was doing really well with eating everything and there was no fuss, was to search periodically for disposed food. Her room, basement, piano bench etc...
They are very adept at hiding their thoughts and worries. There  is no harm in doing a search and finding evidence that they need help.
it keeps them safe and you informed.
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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mamabear
Yep... if the shake is suddenly “ gone” faster than humanly possible... check the monopoly box. 
Persistent, consistent vigilance!
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Ellesmum
For us I had to learn to be psychic, it was all about the look. A look towards a chocolate bar in a shop or a cake at the counter. Just a slightly longer than usual gaze and it was a plea for me to insist we buy it.
Ellesmum
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mamabear
Ellesmom- absolutely 
Persistent, consistent vigilance!
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scaredmom
I also found when d waffles between two choices, the familiar one vs something a bit different or not so familiar, she wanted the new choice.
example I made a curry she normally has with rice but there was also naan that I would have had.
She kept saying “ ooh shall I have the rice? I usually have the rice, but maybe I should have the naan , oh I don’t know” 
So I plated the curry with the naan.
All went well. That was what she really wanted, but ED kept her stuck.

They sometimes get stuck on the “same” , push them for a bit different.
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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HopeNZ
The test of how strong our love was. In the depths of refeeding, hurling abuse and ED being utterly cruel and revolting, and as we turned to disengage and walk away, crying out, "How can you walk away?"  Desperately wanting us to demonstrate that we loved her no matter what. 
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Suzanne
And... no one gets this unless you’ve lived it. Isolating and scary.  But we just keep going... thanks again to you all!
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Stephanie144
I've noticed with my daughter (26) that she will always say 'have I eaten too much' and 'am I eating too much'  to a point of obsession.

My daughter is also extremely restrictive in the type of food she will eat, has to be healthy, but to her that means no carbohydrates, no meat, only certain vegetables and fish, fish, fish. 

I noticed a couple of times when we were out and she asked for mussels, they came in their shells and she became terribly stressed at the apparent volume of food, once we removed the mussels from their shells it was less stressful for her.

On one occasion we went to lunch at her sister's house, we were all having a vegetarian shepherd's pie with sweet potato as a mash rather than potato (potatoes are bad in her eyes), and she was going to have her usual smoked salmon and salad. I realised by her mood that she had wanted some of the shepherd's pie but was presumably too self-conscious to ask. Although I also feel that eating something different is somehow important to her.

I spoke with a young woman who had eating disorders and she is now training as a counsellor, for eating disorders. Some of the similarities between she and my daughter in terms of behaviour and a couple of triggering events, seemed quite uncanny, but that's probably pretty common.

This young woman told me that one of things she would do is bake cakes for her parents, never intending to eat them but just for the smell, she would literally breathe in the cooking smell and the fresh out of the oven smell.

Another common factor was binge watching cookery programmes, following certain youtube 'stars', collecting recipes, and wanting to cook for others.

Before I started to understand these things and build up a picture, I would put clothes in the washing machine, when I got them out and gave them a bit of shake before hanging them to dry out would fly flakes of salmon mostly from any pockets.

Another behaviour that this young woman explained to me is that anorexics (I don't know if this applies in other presenting eating disorders too, and my daughter seems to have been through most of them), is checking one single part of the body repeatedly.

The stomach, lifting up the top to keep checking the stomach in the mirror or when sitting down, especially at the table to check its size. I had put this down to the OCD that accompanies my daughter's eating disorder. This young woman explained to me that in the mind set of the anorexic (in her direct experience) the stomach looks so much larger than the rest of the body that she perceived herself as 'fat'. Since studying nutrition she has learned that the body retains water to protect organs hence the apparent large stomach, nothing as extreme as the starving children around the world but seen as fat.

I asked this young woman what finally changed, she said she had been checking her stomach yet again and suddenly as if never seen before she saw how painfully thin her arms were, and then she slowly began to change.

Something else that I am finding is that the 'experts' do not understand this, these sorts of things may be documented and are, but doesn't mean they've read things or hung out on forums with parents

I have no answers, we are still in the battle with no end in sight, but it helps to identify and to know that the behaviours are typical rather than unique.




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scaredmom
I do recall an old post noting that some of these kids talk  in the third person. I remember the poster said that their d would say “ do you remember  X threw out her lunch in the bathroom at school?” She was telling parents that she herself was throwing out her food!
Also when they seem a bit too compliant it might be that ED has found a loophole. So although we are happy they are happy with eating they could be dumping somewhere. 

Keep your eyes and ears open. 
Our kids tell us so much by not saying so much!😉
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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tina72
What I remember as a very strange ED behaviour around language/voice was that my d spoke with a very low voice and very reduced amount of words and very short sentences (she has a very wide word dictionary normally and speaks very eloquent). I thought it was because she had no energy any more but other parents told me that this is a popular ED symptom.
It was one sign for recovery here when she started to talk with her normal voice again one day and she now uses language the same way as before.
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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Ellesmum
tina72 wrote:
What I remember as a very strange ED behaviour around language/voice was that my d spoke with a very low voice and very reduced amount of words and very short sentences (she has a very wide word dictionary normally and speaks very eloquent). I thought it was because she had no energy any more but other parents told me that this is a popular ED symptom.
It was one sign for recovery here when she started to talk with her normal voice again one day and she now uses language the same way as before.


oh yes, same here, at the worst she’d whisper and be very economical with her words, as she began to eat again she’d often talk in a strange sing-song voice, a bit like a very small child does, i actually found that almost eerie as it didn’t sound at all like my daughter.  Now she speaks at normal range using her regular (vast) vocabulary, still yells sometimes when frustrated, then I hear just how vast her vocabulary is and how proficient her Anglo Saxon as evidenced last night!!   
The very quieter voice struck me as her wanting to ‘disappear’ in a way. 
Ellesmum
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Ronson
Yes we had the reduced speaking and different almost soulless voice - it was terrifying 
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kazi67
Self harm
Just when I thought life was going pretty good and things starting to look up
Bammm my d has just shown me her arm with cuts all up it 🙁
she seemed to be going so well, doing all the right things everyday trying so hard 
an arguement with a friend and she falls to pieces 
🙁
i guess the positive is she showed me and we talked but now what ?
phone call to physc in the morn I guess?☹️
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tina72
Hi kazi67,

we had that too. But my d did not dare to show it to me, her friend found out and told me.
So yes, it is really a good sign that she showed you and asked for help with that.
If she can talk about it ask her with what things she does it and take it away. Check her room for all sharp things that she can use (scissor, knifes, but also compasses). My d used a paperclip so be creative with that. Give her some cream to make sure it does not get inflamed.

Try to stay calm although that is hard. I can tell you that all the marks are nearly not visible any more nearly 2 years later. You see them only when you know they are there. This too will pass.

If possible ask her in what situations she does it. Maybe she has a hard time coping with stress at the moment. My d had a hard time to cope with all her pain and anger in the first months of refeeding and we bought a punching bag and told her to use that when she wants to hurt herself and that worked. She did it less and stopped about 2 weeks later totally.
Some had progress with a rubber band around the wrist and told the kids to pull that rubber band instead of self harm. But I think to put the anger against something else outside the own person (like a punching bag) is better.

As long as it is not inflamed the dr will not do anything with it. But tell the ED team.
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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scaredmom
Kazi67,
I am glad she showed you and that and you are on it. Yes call her doc. 
Yes get it checked. 
Big hug!
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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kazi67
Thanks Tina
my d seems to internalise things she’s never really used bad manners, yelling, swearing, throwing food etc, none of  that sort of thing 
in the refeeding process she just cried and cried the first time round anyway 
then once hospitalised she self harmed as well as crying a LOT
shes asleep now so I’m hoping in the morning she will feel better
D says she is finding EVERYTHING a struggle 
and this is after what seemed like a great day out with a friend (possibly she’s doing too much too soon)
another (very immature childish) friend has been very mean and saying stupid things on social media 
grrrr bloody social media 
will see how she is in the morn 
its just upsetting as she hasnt SH in quite a while now 
when does it ever end? Stupid question I know ☹️
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tina72
My d was the same. Swallowed everything and did not talk about her feelings. But that is something that got better after surviving ED.
I am sure it will end some time. Puberty is a hard thing for a healthy teenager/young adult and most of our kids are younger in heart than on paper so puberty was delayed here and my d found herself being "adult" and feeling still around 12 I think...hard to cope with.
I hope she is better tomorrow. Feed, feed, feed and try to get her through this time. Hopefully it is only a blip and you will get through this together.
Yes, social media makes it harder. I was glad mine uses only whatsapp and nothing else...
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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sandie
Thanks HopeNZ for reminding me last night that when being screamed at and told to f off out of room, that means I need your love/ don't give up on me. Gave me the boost needed to try again and persuaded D to have dinner at 10pm.
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tina72
Hi Sandie and a very warm welcome from Germany although I am sorry that you need to be with us in that club nobody wants to be member of!
They often say exactly the opposite from what they want inside. And although she will say and do really bad things she loves you. She will thank you for what you have done when she is herself again. My d is 2 years in recovery now and doing great, do not lose hope. We are as close as before and she thanked us a thousand times for being stronger than ED and for saving her life. Recovery is possible. Food is the medicin. Keep going. There is light at the end of that tunnel!
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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