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Posted by sarah on September 08, 2000 at 20:08:02:

In Reply to: 14 year old daughter has anorixa-help!!!! posted by Lisa on August 29, 2000 at 16:33:07:

Hello. Unfortunately I have as well been in your daughters position and there is so much advice
I could give you and yet time and space dictate that this is impossible. I will tell you right off the
bat that I am not recovered. I am no longer anorexic however; I continue 6yrs later to battle an
eating disorder...binge eating. This does not however indicate that my advice is of no value as I
have choosen to continue to fight this battle. This I suppose is the first peice of advice I can give
you. In overcoming an eating disorder a person must choose to do so on their own. This is not
as easy as it sounds. Eating disorders, unlike other addictions, cannot be cured soley through abstinance
but rather entail continuing to use the negative element of the disorder ( ie. food) for survival
as well as struggling through the issues that have created or cause the eating disorder to
continue. Psychologically and physically this is an exhausting and difficult experience and the
only way that I believe I have survived and continue to fight is by looking back as seeing that
slowly, although many times I do not feel so, I am progressing and healing. The second peice
of advice is to be open with your daughter and almost force her to learn to express her feeling
and emotions. Her healing process will be difficult however perhaps if she can bring her feelings
foward and deal with them on an emotion and not soley intellectual level she can avoid where
I have come and allow herself to resolve the issues behind the disorder. And finally just continue to love and
support your daughter because at times that may be all she has to hold onto. Let her know that in
her problem she is not alone and that in life she is not alone. I could continue on for so long but from
me to her please let her know that she is special and not alone in her experience. That when
she falls she has not failed. That she does not always have to be strong. That tears heal.
That the key to life is not money and popularity but laughter and happiness. Let her know
that choosing to resolve her issues will be a difficult process but that she will realize joys
in life that few people do see. By choosing to heal and not repress she will grow beyond many
people and experience a different rehlm of life. Let her know that when the darkness overcasts
everything that turning around reveals reaching hands to lead her to the light. And finally let her
know that although she may feel like her efforts are fruitless that when she looks at how far she
has come she will see progress. She is at a difficult age to face this because she is coming
into the age of independence and exploring. Perhaps for her it will be a completley different
experience then for myself. My problem began when I was 16 not 12 and my experiences prior
are most likely different then hers however; from the people I've talked to in general the
experience and healing process is quite similar. Let me sooth your mind that if your daughter
chooses to heal herself that it will be diffucult to see and the feelings you experience will
most likely be very upseting and frustrating however; time heals. All you can do is ask the
best of yourself as that is all your daughter can ask of herself.
I hope this very long reply helps in some way. My empathy to you and your daughter and my
hope that all works out for the betterment of your lives.

I have a 14 year old daughter who has been anorexic for two years. We live in a small town in Mississippi and I can not find anyone to treat her. We have been to several drs and they refuse to see us. We are on going to another this week to see if he will see her.
: What do I do in the meantime? How can I help her? Does anyone one have any advice to the mother who is watching a child struggle with this?
: Pleas help,
: Lisa

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