If you have a child who has an eating disorder, your world has likely been turned upside down by the diagnosis. We have created this video to help you figure out how to move forward.
1. Get informed
Eating disorders are complex, and they are misunderstood. Eating disorders are very serious, but full recovery is entirely possible, and you can help! Find out what eating disorders are, and what they are not.
2. Build a team
Eating disorders require professional care and treatment. You wouldn’t hire a vet to treat your child if she or he had diabetes – don’t hire a non-specialist to treat your child’s eating disorder. At a minimum, your child should receive psychotherapy and nutritional counseling. She or he may also need hospitalization, inpatient and/or outpatient care. Studies have shown that family therapy and education can have a big impact on healing.
3. Make some rules
An eating disorder is not as simple as food and weight, but because the disorder is based on behaviors tied to food and weight, your whole family will need to make some adjustments in how they treat weight, food and body size. You’ll also want to learn some emotional hygiene, which includes learning how to talk about feelings in a healthy way.
There is help available. Please let us know if there is anything in particular we can do to help you through this time!
Ginny Jones is the editor of More-Love.org. She writes about parenting, body image, disordered eating, and eating disorders. Ginny is also a Parent Coach who helps parents handle their kids’ food and body issues.