National Eating Disorders Association

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New to Forum - Parent of Teen Suffering from Anorexia

Hi there,
My name is Lisa and I am Mom to a beautiful teenager that has been suffering from anorexia since April. She came to us with her own concerns about her eating patterns, and from there, a speedy referral and treatment program ensued, as by that time, she had dropped substantial weight, lost hair, and periods had stopped.
She essentially missed April-June of the school year, which naturally has produced all manners of social side effects.
While strong academically, and previously a self-described extrovert, she has turned back into herself during this time and finds herself very lonesome.
Throughout the summer months, she participated in a local musical for which she had previously auditioned. As her vitals began to stabilize, the Dr gave her medical permission to proceed, and she felt it did her quite a lot of good. We felt it did also, as it provided helpful meal support "ammunition" as it were to encourage her to get all those bites in if she wanted to get to rehearsal.
Since the beginning of the school year, her anxiety has heightened and restriction has resumed. While she occasionally eats partial meals, eating all that is on her plate has become a thing of the past, and some meals, breakfast in particular, seem to be a non-starter.
She is being treated for depression, and I find myself tip-toeing that delicate balance between trying to make her smile (or at least not cry) and enforcing the nutrition.
I am a single Mom of 3 and primary caregiver to my elderly father who has dementia and pulmonary fibrosis.
To say I feel my plate has spilled over is an understatement.
I am seeking some support to get me to a place where I may better support her.

Thanks in advance,

Hi Lisa

Hi Lisa!

Welcome to the Forums! You sound like such an incredible and supportive mother. I am so happy that you got your daughter the help that she needs, but I am concerned about you! Have you thought about seeing a therapist? An ED can be tough not just for the sufferer, but for everyone around her. A therapist can teach you the proper coping skills and give great advice. Also, have you looked at the NEDA Parent Toolkit? they have a lot of useful information in there.

I hope you find the support that you need :)

Hi. Your words sounded very

Hi. Your words sounded very familiar to me in your love for your daughter. I know what it's like to want to see them smile, because it means the world to a mother. Best of luck to us.