Amazon.com.au:Customer reviews: Anorexia and other Eating Disorders: how to help your child eat well and be well: Practical solutions, compassionate communication tools and emotional support for parents of children and teenagers
Practical and realistic. This book answered many of my questions and reassured me as a parent trying to re-feed my child. When I felt like I was failing I knew that I was not alone. I needed all of the motivation I could muster and this certainly helped.
One Sunday night I was lying awake searching for ways to encourage my 13 year old son to eat. The eating disorder had stopped him from eating since Wednesday night. By Sunday night my wife and I were convinced he would be admitted to hospital on Monday morning. He had had only a few glasses of water during that time and was looking withdrawn, tired and dehydrated. All the books recommended by my psychologist helped explain the pathology and hell of eating disorders and repeatedly told me family based therapy pioneered by the Maudsly was the way to go. There were no practical tips regarding mealtime management. We had no access to a family based therapist. Poor access to mental health services is unfortunately all too common. I put in a slightly different Google term and found a video of the Bungy Jump Analogy by Eva Musby. This made a huge difference as the video changed my attitude from 'how do I get my child to eat' to 'my child is genuinely terrified of that food on the plate, how can I help him overcome his fear, how can I help him trust me enough to follow my direction?' The analogy helped me to see my son's point of view. On Monday morning, a conversation prior to visiting the doctor about trust, how much safer and more comfortable home is compared to hospital, resulted in a few glasses of water go down. Prior to this my son had postural hypotension and his pulse doubled from 70 to 140 when he stood up. The water was just enough to stay out of hospital that day. More conversations about trust were had on the drive to and from the GP. Refeeding started when we got home. We still have days where eating is very difficult for my son, generally a reaction to situations that provoke anxiety. It's still a long journey. The breaks in eating are currently shorter, generally less than 24 hours, then back on board for at least six days at a time. We are now broadening food groups to improve nutrition and brain chemistry. Progressing from the bungy jump, other very useful information in the book includes detailed descriptions on how to manage mealtimes and what our family calls 'plate frisbee'. Chapter 15, I have found very useful on how to build resilience as a parent and carer. I highly recommended this book to a parent or carer of someone with anorexia nervosa. Other books I have found helpful are the Boy Who Loved Apples, worth reading to know there is hope and light at the end of the tunnel, also a great motivator to find a therapist trained in Maudsly Family Based Therapy. A therapy that the poor parent author (a doctor like myself) only found very late in the journey. Help your teenager Beat an Eating Disorder by Lock and Le Grange is a book that helps explain the disease and advises Maudsly family based therapy but is not helpful on 'what can I do today to break the starvation cycle.' So, read this book and find a family based therapist. Parenting courses based on Janet Treasures book are also useful.
I bought this book last year when my daughter was first diagnosed and found it the most helpful amongst all the books I have read. I can't thank Eva Musby enough for sharing all her knowledge, research, insight and lived experience. She is my hero! After a very difficult patch I returned to the book at the beginning of this year and accessed the meditation audios. I can't begin to say how much they have helped me to help myself and better understand my beautiful daughter. I can sincerely say these resources have saved me.
When my 12 yo was diagnosed with anorexia and my world turned upside down - this book was a life saver. Finally someone who spent more time giving practical advice, tools and tips that I could actually apply. So many books outlined the problems and complexities and left me with bewilderment and hopelessness. Not this book - it was a game changer for me..
Eva's practical re-feeding scenario's saved us. Until then I knew what we needed to do but did not know how. And it worked for us. Having the words and dialogue to say was what I needed when mother's instinct flies out the window. I needed examples, I needed words, I needed options. Eva gave that to me along with a deeper understanding of this complicated illness. It also helped my husband as he was often the tough one on the battle front with re-feeding - I read out various sections of this book and he understood - he had a task to do and instructions to help. That was more than we got from any doctors and therapists! Strongly recommend this book.