Education – My Top 10 Tips When a Child is Diagnosed with an Eating Disorder
My Jan 24, 2018 article: What Parents and Health Care Professionals can Expect from Residential Eating Disorders Treatment, highlighted 15 points for parents to consider and prepare for while a child is in
You may recall from my article; What Parents and Health Care Professionals Can Expect from Residential Treatment that the 4th step necessary for parents is education. Here I’m going into depth on the topic of Education.
What do I do when my child is diagnosed with an eating disorder?
1. Learn as much as possible.
Sadly, it’s not that simple. There is a lot of pseudo-science out there, inaccurate information, myths and so on. So it is vital to learn as much as possible from RELIABLE SOURCES.
How do I know what sources are reliable you ask?
1. Most treatment
2. Large organizations have lists of resources. Just google search eating disorder non-profits and you’ll find some like; NEDA, ANAD and The Alliance for Eating Disorders. I have a list of resources which I’ve vetted here on my website.
3. Books and articles – there are so many you could spend years reading. Right now, find 1 or 2 to get the basics. Of
2. Understand that there are not a lot of solid answers yet from research about these deadly illnesses. Many myths still abound and flourish…so the more you know, the less chance you’ll go down a not so helpful path.
For instance, there is not yet as of August 2018 a definition agreed upon in the field on what defines “recovered” or what “recovery” means. So how can someone fully recover when we don’t have a definition of what that is? Tricky I know. I know people who I highly respect who have come up with definitions that make sense to me, but again there is not one that is agreed upon and is the standard.
3. Memorize my top 10 “What do I need to know when my child has an eating disorder” answers:
4. Starvation changes the brain AND can happen in any of the eating disorders and in any size person. Practice
5. Anyone who can breathe can develop an eating disorder. Here are the factors that don’t determine if someone can have one: age, gender, nationality, size, shape,
6. You are a vital part of the treatment team and need to be included in treatment and be treated with respect. Practice
7. With individualized treatment and enough time, eating disorders are treatable. Practice
8. Brains and bodies can heal. Practice
9. Your child will likely hate you during the illness and
10. Boundaries and love are necessary and
You may have noticed if you’re astute, that I mentioned
Clients and retreat participants have told me that they resisted
What will you shift in order to help your loved one? How will you practice
Check out the Mom Moment video I made on EDUCATION. This is a preview of