When an eating disorder develops in someone FEAR becomes a constant companion to many if not most families. I hear it every time I coach a parent, they are so afraid their child might die, or never speak to them again if they set boundaries.
Setting boundaries with a child/partner/etc who is very ill can be a daunting task. When we are afraid it becomes even more difficult. This is why it is essential to provide support to families who have a loved one with an eating disorder.
It takes a lot of courage to admit you are afraid and even more to ask for help. Often families don’t know what to ask for! But they all know they want their child well and they want the fear gone.
Here is a solution:
March 20th another Conference Call Class Series for Caregivers begins and I have some great feedback from this most recent class to share with you!
From Parent Participants:
“I liked that I could hear from people all over the country who are dealing with ED. It makes you feel joined together in a great group of people who otherwise might not have met or been able to transfer information about ED. EVERY PIECE OF KNOWLEDGE GAINED MAKES YOU FEEL SO LESS ALONE IN THIE STRUGGLE WITH YOUR LOVED ONE.”
“Becky has a real knack for listening and having great empathy for people, her words of wisom and knowledge of this hideous disease are comforting escpecially with people who are lost and frustrated and at their wits end. Becky gives great information for reclaiming your life back from ED. I hope to stay conneccted with you during my family’s struggle with ED, IT IS JUST SO COMFORTING FOR ME.”
“I met some great people that I might not have had the oppurtunity to speek with and share stories with. We get a great sense of comradary from each other. I also got connected with some one who lives 10 minutes from me who I know I can count on and go to when needed. As they say everyone needs someone to lean on! I am just so greatful for my son’s therapist for getting me on the list. BTW your book was excellent reading it was truth in your face about this disease.”
And here is what Dawn Hynes, psychologist and founder of Eating For Life Alliance had to say about participating:
“It’s so important for all of us to not just focus on our clients, but to also be concerned with the challenges and struggles that family members face as well. Unless you have personally lived with someone in the grips of an eating disorder, it is hard to imagine the overwhelming stress and frustration felt by parents and siblings in this situation.
The focus was certainly on how to best cope with the eating disorder in general, participants were also provided a crucial support system for those who were simply at a loss as to how to effectively manage all of the needs for treatment which this illness requires. There were ample opportunities to discuss effective communication stategies. And I noticed over time, that family members were feeling less alone in their struggles and more at ease talking about what it was like for each of them to personally be in this situation.
The other aspect which is unique to Becky’s approach, is the caregiving component. All of us gained valuable insight into the stress this role plays on our life, and how we need to also focus our energies on taking care of ourselves in this process. This is something that I would love for all of my families to not just learn how to do, but more importantly, be OK with taking this time for themselves.”
CEO and Co-Founder
Eating for Life Alliance
Here is a description of Becky’s program:
Hope Network, LLC wants the parents of the patients in your treatment center to know about additional support to help them make your job easier and be better equipped to handle their child returning home. Sign up now or Contact Becky Henry at firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up.