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

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Jeneldridge

I already posted once today, but decided to start a new post since it’s a different topic.

Our family would really like to take a beach vacation this summer. My question is, at what point will it be safe to travel with our daughter? We would stay in a rental house and prepare all meals at home and be able to stick with her current meal plan and schedule. (No restaurants these days anyway because of COVID.)

Our daughter loves the beach more than anything, and I think it could be a good incentive for continuing to make progress this summer. That said, we would not want to do anything that disrupts her recovery.

I welcome any thoughts on whether/when it might be safe to take this kind of a trip. 

Thank you.

15yo D diagnosed with AN-R Jan 2020. Hospitalized since late January. Almost fully weight restored as of late May; ED voices remain very strong.
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Enn

You can post as much as you wish! 

This is a valid concern. We did go to a cottage 4 months into refeeding. It was very hard . I was stressed to the max and we did go to restaurants and she did eat well overall and I did cook a few meals. It was helpful for us to help extinguish the standing all the time. We had to drive three hours to get there. Going to a beautiful area was good for me and it helped our 2 older kids. They needed a break. Also the month after we flew to a Caribbean holiday and we had a house and cooked breakfast everyday and ate out for other meals. That was better.
There a positives about going away: the new scenery, a bit of a break. It was a way to challenge Ed too. I did not cook every meal. 

the negatives, I was stressed in case she did not eat. The newness could make ED very upset and we were not home. 

d was medically safe at that time . That was a must before travel. I did take snacks from home, clif bars and granola bars and bought similar foods as we would have at home. 

Our experience overall was just OK. I know I truly needed something to look forward to at that time. 

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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teecee

Hello, this is just my personal opinion on holidays with ED....we thought the same and tried a trip to Portugal in the summer of 2018 (diagnosed Feb/March) but it was not pleasant at all. In fact so much so I vowed not to do it again until she was well which caused great issues in our house as she desperately wanted to go away....it was just too stressful and not a relaxing holiday at all...Fast forward to this February and we had a lovely holiday even though you could see some ED behaviours due to the anxiety of ‘somewhere different’ and the unknowns. We took her boyfriend with her which also helped a great deal. 

We are all different with different experiences so there’s no right or wrong. It could be really good for your family .... remember feedback not failure. We learn by doing different things. 

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Jeneldridge
Thanks Erin - That is helpful. If we do go, it will be 7 months into refeeding. We would only go if she is weight restored and medically stable. It’s not our home, but it’s a familiar setting - the same house we’ve rented every year since she was born. We’ve never gone out to eat there, always cooking every meal at home. Taking restaurants out of the equation makes me less nervous than I would be otherwise. I was also thinking we could take two cars in the event that she doesn’t do well and needs to return home, one of us could stay with our other two children and enjoy the rest of the week. Those are my thoughts at this particular moment anyway. 🙂
15yo D diagnosed with AN-R Jan 2020. Hospitalized since late January. Almost fully weight restored as of late May; ED voices remain very strong.
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Foodsupport_AUS
We went away to a familiar beach house 5 months into refeeding. D was still very ill. Despite planning all meals as per home it was definitely not a true holiday, though the change of scene was good. For the first few years post diagnosis any trips away were always with the caveat that it would be abandoned if her eating disorder could not cope, there was food restriction, worsening behaviours. She knew I had no hesitation in leaving and it allowed us to have a change of scenery whilst still battling her ED. Going away and eating out took a lot longer. 
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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MKR
Hi @Jeneldgidge,

Despite planning all meals as per home it was definitely not a true holiday, though the change of scene was good.
...any trips away were always with the caveat that it would be abandoned if her eating disorder could not cope, there was food restriction, worsening behaviours. She knew I had no hesitation in leaving and it allowed us to have a change of scenery whilst still battling her ED.


Two important points (from experience):

1. Set the rules. The option to be taken back home was keeping behaviour in check. Though the trip away provided good distraction.

2. Insurance. (I received great advice from the wise ones on this forum!)  ED would be a pre-existing condition, which could invalidate a general travel insurance claim, so make sure it is stated in advance.  For a recently planned trip overseas, I managed to find an insurer that covered it.

And some minor points:

I agree with @Enn re sitting down in the car during the trip. When we took the train, there was exercising for the entire 6 hours, a nightmare for me!

If you are changing time zones, adjust the meals/snacks so there are no more than 3-hour gaps while your child is awake.

I am confident you will manage it! Our hard-won ED skills will come handy 😀.
Mum's Kitchen

14-y-o "healthy living" led to AN in 2017 and WR at 16. Current muscle dysmorphia.
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PurpleRain
We had to travel when my D (13 at the time) during refeeding, 1 month into it. It was stressful but not too bad. She had a good time and her brothers too. I had snacks in my purse and got more everywhere we went. It was a buffet so I did magic plate (which was what we did at home). We did a bit of walking and a bit of swimming but nothing too strenuous. It didn't count as a holiday to me exactly, I was exhausted by the end of every day, but being near the ocean is always lovely and we manage to have some fun. It was only five days and we couldn't avoid it, I'm not sure I'd do it again at that stage knowing all I know now, but I don't regret it, we have nice memories of it.
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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PurpleRain
Just to add, i was prepared to stay with her in the room  had she not eaten. Didn't have to. She was anxious the first day but since it was more or less the same buffet every day,cshe relaxed. We went to restaurants a couple of times and we gave her a couple I options, I would decide if I sense she couldn't. It's a bit of a blur, but we managed. Probably helper that her big brother came with us (he doesn't live with us, it was a big deal to be with him for a few days, maybe that helped, she always ate better if other people, friends, grandparents, cousin's, etc were present)
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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