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

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mrh74
Hi everyone, I would welcome your wise thoughts on a dilemma which has cropped up this week....

My daughter has been WR for nearly a year now (over 100% weight for height at the last weigh-in in February).  She seemed to be fully recovered between August and January, better then we'd ever seen her, no anxiety at all but since February has gradually slipped into anxiety and depression, resulting in self-harming and 4 suicide attempts in March/April.

The ED didn't reappear alongside the depression and anxiety, so she was discharged from the specialist ED team and transferred to a general CAMHS clinic in May.  She spent Easter in an inpatient unit, then was discharged with a safety plan.  She's taking Sertraline, Quetiapine and Melatonin, which seem to be working to a certain extent in that she has fewer suicidal thoughts and has stopped self harming.

Over the last week, the depression seems to have receded a bit but she admitted on Sunday that her anxiety had got a lot worse and she was struggling with ED thoughts again but fighting them.  She is still eating a reasonable amount and finishing everything but I have noticed a few things which concern me,  She's wearing very baggy jumpers all of the time, she suddenly wants to become vegetarian, she is bike riding everyday (when it's not raining) and she has dropped quite a few "treat" foods in favour of ice cream (which she does eat every day).  I don't think she's lost weight but it's difficult to tell with the baggy jumpers and she refuses to be weighed because she says she would get obsessed with it, even if we blind weighed her.  She's now back-tracked and says that the ED thoughts have gone again and it was a blip.

I'm worried that the depression has retreated because the ED is taking over again - but then I feel guilty for feeling like that and I should perhaps just be grateful that she's getting better and not over-think things!  I have spoken to her psychologist but she's not en ED specialist and she's reluctant to weigh her because "it will detract from the underlying issues" - warning bells sounded here!  She has an appointment later so I'll see what is said but I'm not in there for most of it and I strongly suspect that she will tell her she can be vegetarian.  I want to phone the ED team to see what they say but I don't think I can because she's still with the same CAMHS service, just with a different team and a different care co-ordinator (the psychologist) and we are supposed to do everything through the care co-ordinator.  I'm already going to be in trouble because I phoned the duty line for advice in the week when apparently I wasn't supposed to!

Would you be thinking the same as me in this situation or am I being too anxious?

Thank you!  
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Ellesmum
You’re not being too anxious, there’s many red flags here. When you say ‘eating a reasonable amount’ can you clarify that? 

How old is she? 
Ellesmum
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ValentinaGermania
Was she stopped being weighed or why do you do not know her weight???
Is it possible that there is a weight loss maybe even since February and that caused the "new" anxiety and depression?
Can you take her to GP for a normal check up and get her weighed there?

You are not overreacting at all in my eyes, there are a lot of red flags as Ellesmum said and WR for "nearly a year" is NOTHING in ED recovery. My d is WR now for 2 years and still needs to be really careful that she does not slip back into ED...
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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mrh74
Ellesmum wrote:
You’re not being too anxious, there’s many red flags here. When you say ‘eating a reasonable amount’ can you clarify that? 

How old is she? 


Thank you Ellesmum, she's 14, 5'2" and usually eats a large bowl of cereal with chocolate milk for breakfast, beans on toast or a sandwich plus fruit for lunch, then a hot dinner (she will eat anythiing at dinner including pizza/chips etc as long as there is veg or salad too), fruit and a bowl of ice cream later on.  We never counted calories or had a meal plan so I'm using guess work to assume that this is enough.  She doesn't look as though she's lost weight when she wears shorts etc but I am concerned that this is the beginning of a slippery slope again...
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mrh74
tina72 wrote:
Was she stopped being weighed or why do you do not know her weight???
Is it possible that there is a weight loss maybe even since February and that caused the "new" anxiety and depression?
Can you take her to GP for a normal check up and get her weighed there?


Thank you Tina - I was beginning to doubt my own judgement!  They stopped weighing her in February because she didn't want to be weighed and they said this is what they aim for at the end of treatment.  They did say she could go to the GP to be weighed but it was more if she wanted it rather than us.  They only weigh at the GP if we or she asks for it - I'll see what the psychologist says this afternoon but I might have to insist if these warning signs continue...
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ValentinaGermania
If she is only 14 she is still growing and weight gain must continue until her mid twenties so there is no WR at that age at all.
I would insist on regular weighings to make sure she eats enough. We have quarterly weighings now in year 3 but my d is grown out...

Is it possible that she has grown?

I cannot believe that cahms stopped weighing her because she said she does not want it any more...that is dangerous.

Never doubt your own judgement and gut feelings - that is most important thing I learned from AN...
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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sk8r31
Weighing in on this ....pardon the pun.  I say go with your gut.  You really have no sense if things are slipping backward without a regular weight check.  And as your d is 14, and will be needing to gain yearly for quite a few years, you really don't want to put your d at a disadvantage and need to climb back up after a relapse if you can help it.  I would frame it to the CAMHS team something like this: as part of a relapse prevention plan, regular fortnightly weight checks at the GP are needed. A year of being WR is great...but it can take years to truly be in a strong recovery, and you want the very best for your d.  If she needs more structure or scaffolding around meals and weigh-ins, that's what is needed.
Sending warm support,
sk8r31
It is good to not only hope to be successful, but to expect it and accept it--Maya Angelou
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kazi67
My d is 20, she gets weighed weekly by her physcologist 
this is a safety net for her as she knows if she looses x amount of weight it’s back to hospital she goes 
if you d is 14 she isn’t technically WR as they are still growing (gaining weight) into their 20’s
with my d any stress that may be happening in her life can effect the ED, or any extra activity, socialising mire or just being busy
i still have to gently guide (be a dolphin) and remind my d about wether she needs to up her intake
any chance of getting a specialised ED physcologist?
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Enn

mrh74,
I have a few thoughts as I think I am in a similar position at this time with my D who is also 14.
Recently my d started to hide food again and we found it and all is better as I intervened quickly. There were some triggers at school with other girls being on DIETS!!!

I agree she needs to be weighed and her thoughts about being veggie and riding her bike more and dropping some treats etc.. are a bit worrisome.
I find with ED as I have learned here through so many stories, is that they have the tendency to back slide and you don't really know that yet.. so get her weighed even at the doctor's office??

I am learning in my own home that WR and plus more is needed, and that there are other things to attend to, like the depression that you are taking care of. My D has anxiety and on sertraline.

This is an age full of angst about everything and I know for my d, with stress, (new high school next year, no old friends going with her, the pubertal issues, body conscious teenage girls, boys etc.) she will tend to eat less to control those feelings.  I think it is hard and maybe harder for our ED kids to navigate without good structure and planning for these "triggers". I suspect for my d, there will be a lot of anxiety this summer in preparation for high school and I need to be on top of the food and exercise etc.. (My d too is biking  more too)
I think what I am trying to convey is that NO you should not feel that you are over reacting and WR is only a part of this and you are on top of it. Get her weighed and then see what needs to be addressed.
All the best,

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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mrh74
Thank you everyone for your most helpful thoughts- the psychologist offered to weigh her but backed off when d refused, which is frustrating. I listed all of the things I have noticed which make me concerned, d had a rational explanation for them all and psychologist appeared to agree with her! That said, d seems to have taken some of it on board, she’s wearing more fitted clothes today and she doesn’t look as though she’s lost weight. We’re going to try brunch out tomorrow to see how she reacts....
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ValentinaGermania
That is really frustrating. A 14 year old ED patient should not decide wether she is weighed or not. If there is no less, why wouldn´t she proof it?
If the strange behaviour continues, take her to GP to get weighed or put her on the scale yourself.

An ED specialist should know that they ALWAYS have an excuse for EVERYTHING and listen to the parents concerns...
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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mrh74
You are so right Tina, I am trying to come up with a plan for getting her weighed without the professionals' help!  
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ValentinaGermania
There is always a plan B. And knowing her weight is essential for relapse prevention. I will not stop to weigh my d until she is in her mid 20s I think. I now think I know how she looks like when she is o.k. but until the eyes see that there is something wrong takes too long in my experience.
Keep feeding. There is light at the end of the tunnel.
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