Having your child be diagnosed with an eating disorder can bring about a mix of feelings. On one hand, you are happy to finally have a diagnosis and understand what's been going on with your child. On the other hand, you're looking forward to months, if not years, of treatment, and you're not yet sure what that entails.
Eating disorder treatment has come a long way over the past few decades. Therapists and doctors can work together to uncover and address the mental health problems behind the eating disorder, along with the symptoms. Having a good treatment team in your corner is definitely step one. Step two, then, is following these tips to help your child with an eating disorder succeed in treatment.
1. Make sure your child knows you support them.
This sounds really simple, but it's also really important. As your child begins eating disorder treatment, make sure you make time to sit down with them and tell them how supportive you are of their recovery. Reassure them that you love them and that you are proud of them for taking steps towards recovery. And repeat this step throughout treatment whenever your child reaches a milestone. Even if they act like they don't care, children are continually seeking support and validation from their parents, and having that support will keep them moving forward with eating disorder treatment.
2. Attend family therapy.
Most eating disorder treatment programs include family therapy sessions. If your child's program does not automatically include these sessions, ask their therapist if you can schedule a few. Family therapy helps teach you how to interact with your child in a more supportive way. It can help clarify the role you'll play in your child's recovery. Encourage other family members to attend these sessions, too.
3. Answer to friends and family members for your child.
Friends and family members may begin asking your child about their eating disorder and about the treatment they are receiving. Having to explain themselves can be really overwhelming to a child, and the stress may interfere with the effectiveness of treatment. You can help your child, in this situation, by answering for them. You may even want to reach out to relatives and close friends and let them know about your child's treatment ahead of time so they know not to ask your child too many questions.
With the tips above, you can help your child succeed in eating disorder treatment. It can be a long process, but if you and your child work together with the doctors and therapists, your child can make progress.Share
14 May 2021
My name is Dan and this is my blog. I am a recently singled father of three that is learning everything about caring for my kids as I go along. Before my wife passed, she was the one that took care of the kids when they were sick or injured, so I had a lot of learning to do and I had to do it as quickly as possible. I got together with some of the parents from my kids' school and they helped out quite a bit. I created my blog for two reasons - to keep my facts straight and to help other parents learn what I have struggled to learn.