National Eating Disorders Association

6 posts / 0 new
Last post
My 12-year-old daughter is on a journey of recovery

It will take a lot of baby steps, I truly get it. Especially in the beginning, it will be slow. I tell myself, be patient, beginning is always hard. The breakthrough will come eventually.

At least she has opened up herself to me and expressed that she wants to seek professional help. We got a friend and pastor’s wife involved and she is a beautiful and kind fitness instructor. I am taking my girl to do workout sessions with her, and one premise is that she must eat, or “no eating, no workout”.

She used to push herself do excessive workouts and skip meals. My friend and fitness instructor told her to do limited workouts and eat a certain amount and has kindly created her a simple menu framework to follow. She is not following it for sure, I am fully aware, as she intentionally hides herself in washroom at breakfast or dinner times. At least she has stopped doing excessive workout now!!! All those baby steps count...

I took her out intentionally tonight and our family watched “Green Book” movie. Eating disorder also makes young girls depressed easily. Being pregnant for 7 months and working full-time, I desperately want my girl recover 100% from anorexia, though feeling tired from carrying a heavy belly around. My hubby totally did not get it, and saw eating disorder as a result of my spoiling our daughter. I yelled and screamed at him, “ stop trying to be one if you cannot make it a good doctor; just be a helper on the side if you do not know how to be a good parent, stopping making the problem worse. Enough on my body already!” Later on I showed him a YouTube video on eating disorder story, he started getting it!

I also approached our family doctor and we have to wait until early Jan. There is an eating disorder program run by a local hospital, doing family-based treatments for my daughter’s age. And it does need referral from our family doctor.

I am constantly tired and still on medications for morning sickness and heartburn. Plan to work until end of Jan to get top-up allowance during maternity leave. We have to consider the financial reality. I wish I could be off work now to focus on helping my daughter with her eating disorder issue. At the same time, I am sometimes unhappy with her, thinking that she is so self-Centered on her body issue and forgets that her not-so-young mother has to go through pregnancy discomfort all the time! Hope my baby will not pop out too early because of the stress! All in God’s hands...

Hello getwell2019, We are

Hello getwell2019, We are glad you are here on the NEDA forums seeking support in taking care of your daughter. Your post was edited slightly to remove specific numbers and behaviors that may be triggering to other forum members. The community guidelines can be found here: you, and we hope you continue to post!


Hello and welcome to the forum. Thank you for sharing your story. I am so sorry your young daughter is struggling with an eating disorder but glad to hear she wants help and she came to you. That is really going to help in the difficult days ahead. I am sure you just want to put your feet up and rest with all that is going on. Soon the new baby will be here and you will be getting help for yourself and your daughter. It is such a good thing she is young and wants help. That should be of great help. Not easy. Just the thought processes and behaviors aren't ingrained for years and the process although difficult won't be as difficult to turn around. I don't want to make it sound like she isn't sick and doesn't need help. Not at all. And I am glad you are there for her. I am in recovery after thirty plus years of suffering. The family based treatment wasn't around in the 80's and I don't know if I would have been able to go it. I have been in recovery from the anorexia for around three years I think, and the overeating and binging for six months as well as self harm for six months. I also suffered from major depressive disorder and anxiety. A lot of individuals do who also suffer with an eating disorder. The depression is a lot better as is the anxiety but there are still days it can be difficult. But the eating is great.

One thing I am always careful not to do is give the eating disorder an identity. I say, "the" or "an" or "it", to take power and ownership away from it. It doesn't own us. It may want to but it doesn't. We may suffer from an eating disorder but to say my or my daughter's, etc. to me gives it an identity and power. My identity is in who Christ says I am. I am His child. I am set free. I belong to Him. The only one who has that kind of power in my life is Jesus. So I have learned over the years to treat the eating disorder as an entity outside of myself. I truly believe this helped in my recovery. So just something to think about. I am glad you posted. Sorry it took a while to get to your post. Please keep us posted and let us know how you all are doing and how the baby is. Take care. I know you are worried. I saw what I put my parent's through. Do what you have to do, but don't worry. It won't change anything except make you sick. Take care of yourself too.



Hi, iwanttolive, since you mentioned past self harm we just wanted to post some resources in case you or anyone on these forums need them now or in the future.  Crisis Text Line: text "NEDA" to 741-741 or S.A.F.E: (800) 366 - 8288 or 

Medical Signs and Symptoms

Hi, getwell2019, since you mentioned constantly feeling tired we just wanted to provide you with a list of some signs and symptoms of a medical emergency. The following are just some of the signs of a serious problem that demands immediate medical attention:• accidentally or deliberately caused themselves a physical injury• become suicidal• confused thinking and is not making any sense• delusions (false beliefs) or hallucinations (experiencing things that aren’t there)• disoriented; doesn’t know what day it is, where they are or who they are• vomiting several times a day or has uncontrollable vomiting or diarrhea• experiencing dizziness or fainting spells• too weak to walk or collapses• painful muscle spasms• complaining of chest pain or having trouble breathing• blood in their bowel movements, urine or vomit• a body mass index (BMI) of less than 16• an irregular heartbeat, and fast heartbeat, or very low heart beat (less than 50 beats per minute)• cold or clammy skin indicating a low body temperature or has a body temperature of less than 35 degrees Celsius/95 degrees FahrenheitOr any other serious medical concernsIf you experience any of the above, we highly recommend seeking medical attention as soon as possible. Another option is 911.


Hi. I am just checking in to see how your daughter is doing, and you as well. I hope you had a nice Christmas. Take care,