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Posted 4 years ago
I have read the books, I think that I understand how I should behave as a meal time approaches and during the mealtime. But still I cant seem to keep meal times calm. First of all my daughter tries all sorts of distractions to try to delay eating and I know what she's doing but when I have challenged her on this she just gets very cross and then the whole meal time is very stressful and tearful. When the food is in front of her she behaves as if she is beaten. She drops her head and cuts the food up into tiny pieces the mealtime takes ages, She is always asking for huge glasses of water. From what I have read this is quite typical behaviour; but that doesn't make it any easier to deal with for me. Any tips?
Member 1 post
Posted 2 years ago
I have just discovered this forum. I hope that someone replied to your post. My daughter makes meal times difficult too so I understand a bit of how you feel. Sometimes I find it too overwhelming and then I know that I need a break. I hand it over to her father to be the " coach" for the evening and try to ignore what is happening at the table. Another option is to invite someone over for dinner, an aunty or someone else so that at least you have a distraction and bit of social pressure might help the situation. Hopefully things are much better for you and your family now.
Posted one year ago
Hi, I very much hope your daughter and your family are in a better place now. Like you 8 months ago, I am now just coming to grips with our 16yo daughter's developping anorexia and learning about it.
Here at home, I can see our daughter is really trying hard to eat and listen to all the advice given to her by therapist, doctor, and dietician. Yet it is difficult.
Although when she has a day when she eats 3 meals and 3 snacks she does not binge and purge later in the evening, yet, when she has more chaotic meals she does binge and purge and all the food consumed, good and bad, is out. It is particularly difficult on the weekend as she does not get up till late and so there is little time and it is very difficult to get the necessary amount of food in for her not to feel the urge to binge in the evening late.
If I wake her up, she goes into a fury and is upset for the rest of the day, which then makes the remaining meals almost impossible. So far as it is relatively new to us, we have let her go to her room after meals. Clearly this is not working, but it is rather difficult to keep her downstairs, short of restraining her physically?
Should I be tougher or just be patient? I am genrally patient and try to get her to eat as much as possible hoping that the weight gain will improve her resilience, but when her weight drops yet again, I do panic.
This is quite difficult because your daughter does have days when she eats, I think the truth is that she will find it easier on some days and impossible on others. I would advise you talking to her away from meal times and when she is having a good day. Try to explain to her that a late breakfast puts a pressure on the other meals, ideally if you can involve her in the decision making and try to get her to come up with a solution. One solution perhaps could be to make the later meals more calorie rich, this might work.
Hi Kirky and thank you for your care, advice and good wishes. I am happy to report that yes meal times are much better now. My daughter is in a much better space, she was 19 when she was diagnosed and she is in her late twenties now and so as she has recovered meal times have become her responsibility but they are no longer stressful.
It is a sadness for me though that apart from Christmas dinner, she no longer joins us for family meals when all of my children are home. I will really feel as if we have achieved something when that happens. But I suppose the truth is that she has been through a lot and we are now all in a different space, we are not the same as before and that has many positives and a few negatives. The major positive is that she is mostly happy and rebuilding her life, she has gone back to exercise in a controlled way and that is helping her as she has always enjoyed exercise.
I hope that meal times continue to improve for you. It is so good to hear that you are both working as a team to support meal times. I know now that meal times are the time of major stress for someone with an eating disorder as they battle the contradictions of their thoughts. Eventually I learnt to plan ahead to agree meal times timings with my daughter before hand and insist that we stick to them, I also agreed the menu with her just really to take away any surprises. I also eventually learnt not to give in to her every persuasive reasons. Wishing you and your family the best